No One Remains Virgin
‘Because life fucks everyone’. That’s how the original Tupac line goes (‘No one remains virgin because…’). But it would be a mistake to expect anything like the gangster rhymes of the late (if you believe the rumours) American rapper from Hong Kong trio NORV. “We didn’t know that line was originally from Tupac but, anyway, he told the truth,” says Mono, the man behind the electronics, software and sounds of No One Remains Virgin since the band formed in 2009.
The band’s sound is about as far from Tupac as you can get, a mix of music which they like to call ‘local cheesy pop’, inspired by the desire to redefine the concept of ‘pop’ in Hong Kong. No One Remains Virgin’s concept of pop sounds are more like thus: hovering, smoked vocals all wrapped up with snaking electronic snippets, stutter-stepped rhythms and accidental zheng-resembling guitars, like their own distinct take on dream pop and shoegaze.
“Seriously, we found that there is no pop music in Hong Kong. Most Cantopop sounds more like industrial noise,” says Mono. “We find it funny that some local musicians love to describe themselves as alternative/experimental rock but they actually mostly sound like pop. We
just simply follow this unique naming system.”
Indeed, there’s a strong desert-dry ironic sense of humour that comes through in their music. Careless Hipster, one of the tracks from their appropriately named debut Life Fucks Everyone, launching on April 28, is a mocking piss-take of hipster culture, complete with wailing sax-sample from the George Michael track. There’s also album closer, Jesus & Mary, No Chain. But then, central to their music, are things that NORV say are no laughing matter: political stuff. Says Mono: “Living under a dictatorship is tough, living under a dictatorship with millions of royal slaves is another story. That’s why we want to tell this story via music.” It’s a sexy one (if you think about it), in a dark kind of way.
No One Remains Virgin launch Life Fucks Everyone on Saturday Apr 28 at Hidden Agenda. Tickets: firstname.lastname@example.org, 9170 6073.