Good Night: Interview with Chochukmo
Ever since the summer of 2005, Chochukmo — a 5-piece indie rock band based in Hong Kong — has been using their talents, genre playfulness and innovation to make the current music scene… a much colorful and better place.
With the current member line-up since the spring of 2008, Jan Curious (Vocals), Mike Orange (Guitar, Keyboard), Les Hunter (Guitar), Kento Anything (bass) and Kitty Trouble (Drums), the band was included in Time Out Hong Hong’s list of Top 20 Hong Kong Musicians, and were also included on CNNGo’s list of the Hong Kong Hot List: 20 People to Watch.
I got the chance to talk to Chochukmo’s guitar-keyboardist Mike Orange, and he answered some questions about the band’s sound, their current activities in Shanghai, and what we could expect for their upcoming album!
First of all, since there’s very little information in English about you guys, how would you describe Chochukmo in one word?
“Water” — We’re like water, with our shape-changing all the time, but the taste is still the same.
We do not want to fix ourselves in a position that we just play a certain kind or style of music. Our music is about our lives, and our lives include a lot of things, such as love, friendship, society, politics, etc., and we have different emotions from time to time. We can be romantic, can be angry, can be cocky, just like everyone does.
Different styles of music have their music of expressing some particular emotions, and what we’re trying to do is to write in different styles to express our different feelings or emotions. What we are trying to do is, to experiment and to blend different styles together, create a unique experience for every single song.
How did you come up with the band’s name, and how do you actually pronounce “Chochukmo“?!
You can actually pronounce it like “Cho – chuck – mole” — I don’t know whether it helps or not.
These are actually three Chinese characters that we randomly wrote on paper and picked out, as we always think it’s a bit time-wasting to keep thinking of a cool band name, we just wanna get a random name and start writing music right away.
I loved LOVED listening to The King Lost His Pink — which is not available outside iTunes US or Australia, so you should fix that! The feelings it gave me reminded me of when I listened to the Arctic Monkeys’ debut for the very first time. Fresh, energetic, and quite unique~
I know that in terms of music influences, you are as varied as they come, but could you list some of the biggest ones?
Thank you so much for liking our debut album. We’re actually trying to put out something which is totally experimental and different to what we’re listening to. It’s a pure attempt with the hearts of youth, without thinking too much how the outcome would be, while we’re trying to deliver what we think is cool.
We all have very different music influences. I’ll try to give some big names… but it doesn’t mean we all love these bands, just some of us:
The Libertines, Deftones, The Cardigans, Blur, Arctic Monkeys, Mew, Shiina Ringo (Japan), Toe (Japan), Mono (Japan), Kings of Convenience, Sigur Ros, Billy Talent, Dizzy Gillespie, etc.
These are the bands I remember someone’s loving them, but we actually don’t have a band which is the favorite for all five of us. Weird.