Following their first three shows of 2018 in Taipei, Tainan and Tokyo, instrumental post-rock four-piece Prune Deer are back with their highly anticipated second album, Chemistry.
The Hong Kong-based band are scheduled to perform at Fortress Hill’s iconic music venue MOM Livehouse at the end of the month to celebrate the launch of the new record, followed by dates in Guangzhou and Zhongshan in April.
Speaking with Young Post about the new material, guitarist Li Cheun-hin, aka Nature, reveals, “We tried new instruments such as the flute, guzheng, synthesiser – and even [singing] lyrics for the first time.”
Drummer Wong Kwan-shing adds, “The debut album was good, but we wanted to break new ground with this record. We looked at song concepts, new recording methods, how we play, and creating a fuller sound without making it complicated.”
Since their first full-length release, 2015’s Solid Transparency, the quartet have also acquired a new drummer; Kwan Shing joined the band in 2016.
“The most important thing for drummers is to have their own style,” Wong explains. “Some drummers like to play as fast as they can, but to me it’s all about music."Nature echoes these sentiments. “Shing plays a very important role in a post/math rock band like us. He is an inspiring drummer who comes [up with] creative ideas.”
Not only have Prune Deer experimented musically, they also entered unknown territories in their release strategy, deciding to get the recording crowd-funded through crowdsourcing website Kickstarter.
As part of the campaign, fans can receive a Prune Deer CD, wristband, tote bag, poster or towel, depending on how much money they were prepared to pledge.
Talking about the importance of funding, guitarist SF Express, also known as Fung, says, “For us to produce music of the best quality, we need to seek help from supporters, as recording sessions and CD printing costs are very expensive for independent bands like us.”
The group recently surpassed their target of HK$30,000 through Kickstarter, with the help of more than 120 backers.
“It’s amazing,” says Wong. “The support from our audience has helped elevate us to the next step; we couldn’t have made it without those backers, so thank you to everyone who pledged.”
Nature adds, “Since we are a band of two undergraduate students and two graduates, we did not have enough money to finish this album without additional financial support.
“Indie musicians can write good songs and have good ideas, but lack the money to achieve anything. Crowd-funding can help them remove that obstacle, and dreams can become reality.”
Prune Deer’s album launch will take place at MOM Livehouse on March 31.