Long-time buds and former Anglo-Chinese Barker boys Daniel Chan and Gabriel Chen are the two eclectic adolescent wild hearts that make up the duo that is Xingfoo&Roy. A band of humble beginnings, it started as the boys grew, not only into their pre-teen years but also into their guitar-strumming, pop punk-listening and alternative rock- jamming phase.
Yet, it is not a phase that they’ve grown out of.
Dressed casually in a smattering of carefree shorts, singlets and tees, the lean, tallish boys are reminiscent of reckless abandon gone by and of days when we have had one cigarette too many.
“Sad music that you can dance to!” quipped the cheery duo, when quizzed on how they would classify their music.
What started out as afternoons after school spent head-banging to Blink 182 and All Time Low covers, quickly turned into a frantic rush (fuelled mostly by the unrelenting nature of teenage enthusiasm) to discover their own sound as they seek to inject their individual peculiarity into the local music scene.
Their first single, Evening Sunshine, taking a good 2 years to fine tune into Xingfoo&Roy perfection, immediately conjures images of a 90s after-party, where the music is slow, revellers buzzed from vodka down lemonade, and the room permeates with marijuana.
Written when he was 15, and on a bus on his way home, vocalist Dan was, “feeling pretty shit and many things were happening in [his] life.” The song encapsulates the struggles typifying a teenager’s growing years in the high roller streets of Singapore.
Like the boys, their sound has developed through the years. Their debut single has grown from being playfully coined “Evening Sunsets in Potong Pasir” on a bus ride home from school, to where it is today - a lyrical time machine which transports the listener back into years mired by nostalgia.
Sad music that you can dance to!
Great Wide Open and Does the Pope Shit in the Woods? makes up the rest of the 3 title half-EP they currently have. Blessed with vocals reminiscent of Taking Back Sunday’s Adam Lazzara in his early days, the songs in the duo's upcoming EP, Mating Season, (to be released in December 2013) speak intimately about the different phases and chapters of life. From inhibited childhood ambitions to how mistakes make a man, Xingfoo&Roy seeks to tell sad stories, one upbeat song at a time.
Refreshingly honest yet strangely close to the heart, this duo promises to bring you on a musical car crash that will undoubtedly awaken your dancing boots.
Dan and Gab are two rare teens that have heads that belly their misleading ages. As they look forward to their later years with their heads up high and amps up loud, their music is primed to make waves. Don’t bet against them carrying on their terrific work beyond Mating Season.
After all, wild hearts can't be broken.