Most of us are already familiar with Indonesian indie-rock band Reality Club, who broke into the music scene seven years ago. Yet, their third and latest album Reality Club Presents... perhaps serves as a testament to how the band is able to excel in multiple genres. While indie-rock is still the dominant force in most of the tracks, some are also infused with the grandeur of the orchestral such as "Dancing In The Breeze Alone" or "Love Epiphany." Even "Tell Me If I'm Wrong" gives off an orchestral jazz vibe straight out of 007.
Offering various nuances of music, Reality Club Presents... is an ode to every love story there ever is. And of course, every love story deserves a soundtrack. Merging the thrill and beauty of the cinema with angelic voices and electric tunes, Reality Club carved the album with 10 tracks that's ready to entertain you, rip your heart out, or even make you dance in the breeze alone (pun intended).
More about it, main vocalists slash siblings Faiz and Fathia share the stories behind Reality Club Presents..., from inspirations, creative process, and their love for the motion pictures in an exclusive interview with CXO Media.
Where do you draw inspirations from while making the album? Are there any musicians or songs that you actively listen to during the process of creating the album?
Faiz: I think since we mess with different genres, there are different references for every song. But with this album, something that we did differently than our previous ones was that the references just stop. Our references are used to set "an imagery" for other people—our members and our producer—so that they understand the direction we are going with. After that, we tried to just do our own stuff.
What sets you apart from other bands is the way you tell a story through your lyrics. When I listen to Reality Club's songs, I feel like I'm entering and drowning in a storyline of a movie because of the poetic and well-written lyrics. Since Faiz mostly writes most of Reality Club's songs, do you have any formulation in terms of songwriting?
Faiz: Okay, to be honest with you, I don't. That might sound really cocky, but the thing is I'm a very insight-based writer. So, I'm waiting for the moment and the inspiration to come. And when it comes, I have to take all of it. There are people who write 10 songs a day, the 7 [songs] are shit but the 3 are good—but I'm not like that. When I want to make a song, sometimes it just doesn't come.
Fathia: You can't force it.
Faiz: Yeah, and that's also what happens with lyrics. Sometimes it just comes in my head and I write down what I [want to] say. After that, I curated it again or changed it to be more poetic or whatever.
You also tend to visualize your song with the music video. How do you synchronize the music and the visual itself?
Faiz: We use a moodboard when making music. From there, we already know how the music video is going to play out. Hence, the song already fits well with what we want since there's already the visualization of it.
Fathia: And it's so fun making the moodboard because you can put anything in there, even just a color. For example, "Oh, I want the song to be orange," just like "Telenovia" which is very orange. So, it doesn't have to be images per se, just "a vibe" (laughs). It's very Pinterest [board].
Faiz: The moodboard works because it helps [all members of the band] to make decisions on the song. For instance, we have two options of the guitar [composition that we want to use in a song], and people are going to vote over the two options. But we'd take a look at the moodboard again so we can create an objective decision.
Reality Club's music videos really feel cinematic. Which movies are you inspired by?
Fathia: Every music video is definitely different. For "Anything You Want", it's a mix of Euphoria and Wong Kar Wai films. We love using green tint for the running scene—a bit Matrix, kinda?
Faiz: And the reference for "I Wish I Was Your Joke" are Scott Pilgrim and Euphoria. "Desire" and "Dancing In The Breeze Alone" are full of cowboy references; The Good, the Bad and the Ugly, Django Unchained, those kind of stuff.
You're both quite the movie buff.
Faiz: Oh man, yeah.
Fathia: Yes. And for "Love Epiphany" it was La La Land.
What is the most memorable music video shooting process and why?
Fathia: Definitely, "Dancing In The Breeze Alone." Because we have to practice horse riding.
Faiz: We went to Nevada.
Fathia: Yes! We went to Bali too. And it was such a proper shoot.
Faiz: Because I feel like with all the MVs we used to do, we're really involved [in its production] so it feels like we're not exactly the talent. It [usually] feels like we're part of the shooting crew, even though we're the talent. So it was different this time.
Fathia: [Usually] we're really hands on, being responsible for the art, for example. But this time we could sit back, enjoy, and let the production house do the work.
Faiz: Yeah, we can chill. And since it was like being out in the sun, then there's gonna be people who are like "Care for a drink? Water? Coffee?"
Fathia: Right, it's so fun. The set was on a hill and the horse riding scene was going to be shot a bit far from our tent. So they'd escort us with motorcycles while the other crew went there by foot. I kinda feel bad for them (laughs). Is this star syndrome?
Well, now you know what it feels like to be a star. And what would be your favorite song from the album?
Faiz: "Love Epiphany".
Fathia: "Arrowhead Man".
(CXO Media's staff, Dezky, interjects by saying that "Love Epiphany" is an excellent track)
Faiz: Thank you so much. I was really proud of that one too. I was like "Woo!" (punching the air).
Fathia: I don't know, maybe it's a form of self-love but sometimes when I write a song and before I present it to the band, if I really like it I'll just look at the mirror and be like "You did it!"
Pat yourself on the back and say you did a great job.
See Faiz, Fathia, and the rest of Reality Club perform at CXO Media Live on Stage on July 15th, 2023 at Beach City International Stadium. Get your tickets at event.detik.com and visit @cxomedia on Instagram for more information.(HAI/alm)