“It’s not giving up when it’s a losing game.”

“Zero-Sum” by Charlie Lim | Now, us getting the timing of Charlie Lim’s new album Check-Hook off is unforgivable. Again, I’ve been so busy, I didn’t realize the album dropped six weeks back or so. And to think I knew he was coming here (well, technically, he already was here, performing with Clara Benin). I finally dived into the album yesterday morning, knowing that there’s a slight shift of sound, singer-songwriters exploring that minimal, slightly electrified R&B vein being common these days. And while the record sort of lags in the end, it’s still an interesting journey, because you always just knew there was more to Charlie than being gentle; there was always that undertone in him I couldn’t quite place. Or maybe I’m gathering all that because the music video for “Zero-Sum” is more claustrophobic than that one that suggests a plane crash[NB]

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“Life keeps spinning like a broken record.”

“I Only Tell The Truth” by Charlie Lim | I was going through my feeds over lunch yesterday when I noticed that Charlie Lim’s released a new video. It’s a song off his Time/Space album (which we gave a shoutout to a few months back) and, well, it led to a moment between me, my earphones, and the YouTube video. It’s a gorgeous music video, directed by Felipe Soares (or so the Bandwagon article tells me). It’s sprawling yet suggestive of longing. And then the loud middle bit comes in and it all clicks. I found myself writing things on a Post-It note. Airplane imagery. Transitory. Empty. Particularly vulnerable. “What if the plane crashes?” [NB]

The inventory: Five songs for Singapore’s fifty years

I crammed this. I’ll admit that I crammed this. I was busy, and I didn’t have the time to do some half-arsed study of a country’s popular music scene, even if it’s Singapore’s, a country that’s both small and one that I am more familiar with than most. So I have a quarter-arsed job instead, which is a shame considering that I’ve been planning this in my head for months, and Singapore is arguably one of my favorite countries, if only because it’s just so organized and walkable. So, with help from friends, Wikipedia and stock knowledge, here are five songs that, well, might not be representative of the Lion City – but since they’re turning 50 years old on Sunday, it’s nice looking at some history. Some. [NB]

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