Borrowing a line from singer Yen-J’s lyrics, it can be said that one of the quirkiest bands of this year, Felix Felicis are like fireworks, temporary yet vibrant. Calling themselves a ‘limited edition’ side project, the four members are from tour different well-known bands on the Taiwanese indie music scene; Come on! Bay bay!, Gigantic Roar, Elephant Gym and Chocolate Tiger. Each having their own distinct musical style, they have now come together to create a diverse yet fresh set of chemistry. Allowing each other to challenge personal musical limits is one of the reasons Felix Felicis has started their band, but they also represent a temporary, yet exciting musical experiment.
Being formed less than a year ago, the group has decided to part ways soon due to all of them having other musical commitments. So like I said, Fireworks! It has certainly been my honour to record down their unique musical advancements and chemistry before the four of them part ways, while understanding their thoughts in regards to their upcoming performance as special guest for Gigantic Roar at their upcoming concert in Singapore.
It’s your first time performing in Singapore as a band, what are your thoughts?
Really excited! When we first started this band, we’d never thought we would have the chance to go to Hong Kong, Malaysia let alone Singapore. Aside from each of our separate experiences playing in our own bands, our time together as Felix Felicis has been very short. We worked hard to write a new album of songs, so being able to take these works overseas and give them to listeners is something that is really fulfilling, we really hope everyone enjoys it!
Your band members come from a few very well-known independent bands in Taiwan such as Elephant Gym, Gigantic Roar, Come on! Bay Bay! and Chocolate Tiger. Why did you wish to create this band?
The journey to creating this band was full of coincidences and luck, and the end of last year Elephant Gym took a break due to one member going off to serve National Service. Bass players Kaiting and Yi Nong took this time during band practice to write a few songs. One day, Gigantic Roar’s Pai Di happened to be passing by, and just asked casually if he could play with us. After a period of time we met Orange Grass band (now Come on! Bay Bay!)’s drummer Birdman, and tried asking him if he wanted to join our band. (The funny part is, Kaiting and Pai Di weren’t very acquainted with BirdMan). After practicing together a few times and producing many works, this side project got off to a very good start!
Where did the name of your band come from?
Ting: During the Winter time in Taiwan, they sell a kind of pillow that can be used to warm your hands (you can stuff your hands inside), I always call it Xiao Fu Qi (Little Luck). Because our band was created in the Winter so we called it Xiao Fu Qi (Little Luck). As for the English name, it comes from a kind of magic solution found in Harry Potter. In Chinese its called Fu Lai Fu Xi, once you drink it you will have a whole day of good luck!
Last year you guys released an album, would you be able to explain its concept to your audience?
This album including intro has nine songs, its name was “A bunch of assholes”, because at the beginning every song was imagined to be a human, which is how names were chosen. And these people, some of them were pessimistic, others cynical, others cocky, and so when you put them altogether it would make a bunch of assholes! Every song of ours is extremely different, with fresh images, just like every person having different personalities.
I know you are all people who are passionate about music. When was it that you realized your interest in music?
Born to love music!
What kind of influence or emotions do you wish your music presents to its audiences?
On the whole we hope that it is a new and fresh listening experience, because we challenged ourselves to do things that are less familiar to us (such as Zhang Kai Ting playing the synthesisers, Yi Nong being in charge of the guitar, Pai Di plucking strings etc.), hoping listeners can feel the adventurousness and quirkiness of our music. We also hope that some songs can allow everyone to have space to think, and ponder on their life values.
Being an independent musician is not an easy task. If you were to give some suggestions to those who wish to get into the scene, what would you tell them?
Build up your own core values for creating music, and think about exactly why you want to create music? Try your best to not be affected by trivialities and to be influenced by them. (But this is really hard).
If you an choose one musician to work with, who would you choose?
This is so hard! K.flay! (Just going ahead and naming an impossible choice)
Singapore is most well-know for its eats, like Chilli Crab, Hainanese Chicken Rice and so on. While you’re here is there anywhere you’d like to go or anything you’d like to eat?
Whatever it is, we wish to immerse ourselves into consumption behavior (what we will consume has no limits).
Singapore’s audiences are actually pretty ‘cold’. Do you have faith in allowing them to have a rocking time at your performance?
We will try! Come on! We will fight to the death to allow you guys to feel like you’ve got your money’s worth!
We hear that you are unsure when is the next time you can work together. Is Felix Felicis disbanding?
Yes we are! Although it is a pity, because of large amounts of performances and recordings, band members continue to increase in chemistry and get along more smoothly, but because next year Kaiting will be going to Japan, everyone else also has their own plans (busying themselves with albums or solo projects), so in the near future we won’t be performing. But we still hope that we can get back together at some special events, and occasionally have band practice together to try and write more cool new songs!
Friends in Singapore, if you don’t want to miss out on this chance to appreciate some good music, come down to Timbre by Switch on the 14th of December; Felix Felicis will be Gigantic Roar’s opening act that night. The performance runs from 7 to 8.30pm, entrance is free.