H-Artistry KL 2014 delivers an astonishing finale!
H-Artistry − The Global Art of Mixing, shook the grounds of Kuala Lumpur once again, this time treating partygoers to a mind-blowing night of stunning performances and hard pumping beats. Taking things to whole a new level, H-Artistry delivered the super-clubbing experience with a world-class production that showcased an outstanding visual innovation, making H-Artistry 2014, the party of the year.
The stage at the Malaysian International Exhibition and Convention Centre (MIECC) saw a varied mix of musical genres on the night of November 15th, which included artists from both East and West. The line-up of the night featured headliner, London born international award winning artist Tinie Tempah, Japan’s newly formed group CREAM, and American duo MKTO, as well as local heroes Paperplane Pursuit and Imma *Bleep* YouUp.
Featuring beautiful LED visual accompanied by a striking laser show, the party started with Malaysia’s pop trio Paperplane Pursuit kicking off the night with hits such as “Higher” and “Everybody Wants Somebody”. New age J-Pop/Hip Hop duo, CREAM, then took the stage and continued to keep the energy in the arena pumping with their eclectic performance.
Next up was MKTO. Made up off Malcolm Kelley and Tony Oller, the boys drove the crowd into a wild frenzy as they performed some of their most loved hits including “Thank You and “American Dream”. The duo also surprised the crowd by teaming up with Paperplane Pursuit for a collaboration on the track “Black or White” (originally by Michael Jackson.
As MKTO bowed out, Tinie Tempah was the next act to take over the stage. The headliner of the night gave fans and partygoers drove the crowd insane with his spectacular performance and he also had them sing along to “Pass Out” and “Written in the Stars”. The night then hit an ultimate high as electro house trio Imma *Bleep* YouUp took the stage with a dramatic entrance of laser lights and eccentric graphics on the LED panels.
Inspired by H-Artistry’s very own Global Art of Mixing platform, the trio were then joined by Paperplane Pursuit to perform 2 singles live for the very first time, “Chasing Dreams” and “Live Forever” which took partygoers on an euphoric journey!
Needless to say, H-Artistry 2014 was definitely a night to remember for partygoers.
Fortunately for us, we got to chat with MKTO before the madness of H-Artistry took place. Here’s what they had to say:
Hey guys! Are you excited to be here in Malaysia considering that it’s your first time here?
Tony: Hey love! Oh absolutely. We did this event last year in Hong Kong and to come over to Malaysia, especially where our music is being played, I think it’s going to be great − great energy, great crowd so we’re looking forward to it. I also just saw the stage and it looks massive!
Cool. We can’t wait to see what you guys have in store for us. Tell us, how MKTO (apart from it being the initials of your names) came about, how did you guys meet?
Malcolm: We did a TV show together. We played best friends on this TV show and yeah, stayed in contact after it was over. From there, we met some producers who saw some videos of us on YouTube, having fun, making music and we ended up talking about putting together an album and getting signed on to a label. So everything they said happened, so yeah. Haha.
And what has the journey been like so far ever since then?
Tony: Man…it’s been…wow.
Tony: Yeah, it has been very unexpected. I think you know, like he said, just kind of starting this…hoping, you know? You hope to achieve all this and we have so, it has been surreal. It makes us feel like we’ve been putting in the hard hours and things have paid off so it’s great to be here.
So you’ve had a pretty good year, what does MKTO have planned next?
Malcolm: Urm…we just got off the Demi Lovato tour which was amazing. So now, we’ve just been home, in the studio working on a second record. We have some radio shows coming up, we’re doing a Macy’s Day parade in New York for the first time. That’s going to be awesome because we’ll be on a Ninja Turtles float and we’ll be performing “Classic” so that’s going to be pretty cool. Apart from that, just enjoying Christmas with family, then preparing for the start of the year with new music and hopefully get some touring together. Hopefully, we can get back out to Malaysia and have a good time.
Oh, we’ll definitely love to have you guys come back here! Speaking of “Classic”, what inspired the track? Is it about anyone in particular?
Tony: I think that was a track that we loved but wasn’t a track that we really wrote. We heard the track, we loved it and it was the first time we were putting together a record so of course we wanted to cut it. But this next record is all us, writing and everything so it’ll be a little more special. Anyway, “Classic” was basically just something that we wanted to do that I guess you could say would give a throwback feel with the pop chorus. It definitely hits on the kind of artistes that inspires us like Marvin Gaye, Michael Jackson, Muddy Waters, Jimi Hendrix – you know, a lot of old school artistes. Oh my God. What a terrible explanation (laughs).
Malcolm: It’s cool man.
Tony: Thanks man.
Haha you guys are adorable. If you could collaborate with an artiste from the past, who would it be?
Tony: Hmm…Pete Townshend from The Who.
Malcolm: Definitely Michael Jackson.
Lastly, back to H-Artistry. What can fans expect from your show?
Tony: Oh man…Probably the same thing we do every show – we just put all our energy we can on stage, get people singing along with us. Expect the unexpected ;)
Malcolm: A lot of energy! We’ll have our full band with us so that’s something to look forward to. We’re definitely looking forward to interacting with the crowd and have everybody sing along and have a great time. It’s going to be amazing!
Thanks so much guys! It was lovely talking to ya’ll.
Tony: Thank you, love! It was lovely meeting you.
Malcolm: Thank you so much!
We’re definitely a little smitten after talking to MKTO. The boys were super sweet, down-to-earth and friendly.
And apart from MKTO, we also spoke to the headliner for H-Artistry 2014, Tinie Tempah! We caught up with the rapper to find out what he’s been up to since his last visit to Kuala Lumpur.
Hey Tinie! Welcome back to KL! Are you excited to be back?
I am excited to be back. It’s my third time now. Well yeah, technically it’s fifth time but I stayed in the airport two out of the three times.
Stayed at the airport?!
Yeah, it was a transfer. Hahaha. Got you there didn’t I?
You sure did. Haha. What can partygoers expect from you at H-Artistry?
(Laughs). A lot of energy. I’m always happy to be here. We came from a very long way to be here, so I always make sure it’s worth it. The past two times I’ve done shows, it went down crazily and I’m also really excited by this H-Artistry idea. I like the concept of it and I like the fact that I get to perform with incredible artistes from Japan, America as well as the local artists. I can’t wait to do that and to watch them and just see how their performances go down, it’ll be fun. I came with my DJ and my crew, and we’re going to rock the place.
Okay. So let’s talk about your background. You’re an A-levels holder in media studies, psychology, and religious studies, what made you go into music?
Mmm. That’s a good question. It was cool to learn all those things. I like to learn about things but music was the one thing that I think I could do really well. So when I really got into music, I told myself that this was quite good and that I could do it better than lots of people so I stuck to it and continued to nurture it and that’s how this happened.
And were your parents supportive of your decision at the time?
I was really young when I made that decision. I was like 18 and I’ve started doing it before but when I said I’m not going to university at 18 and like all parents, they wanted the best for me. They wanted me to be stable and of course they wanted to be singers when they were younger so they were like NOOOOO. But yeah, I proved that I was making the right decision for myself, so it’s cool and they’re happy now. My sisters have got like graduation pictures on the wall and I’ve got music awards. Haha.
Who would you say is or was your biggest musical idol/inspiration?
Erm…The biggest is definitely Michael Jackson. From every level as a kid, then I as grew up and became a teenager, I was more into hip hop so I listened to Eminem, Busta Rhymes and DMX. When I started listening to the UK rap, I really like Dizzee Rascal and So Solid Crew, I mean these are the guys that made me want to make music.
Cool. And if you could collaborate with one artiste right now, who would it be?
That’s a good question, man. Really good question. It still would be someone like Adele or maybe Ed Sheeran, I suppose. Ed is cool, Ed is British and he’s a good friend of mine as well. Sometimes it feels like he’s rapping as well when he sings really quick, so I think we could make a fun track together.
Speaking of collaborations, you’ve worked with artistes and producers like Labrinth and Diplo. What was it like working with them?
Really cool. It was really, really cool. I’m definitely a fan of everybody I’ve collaborated with. Labrinth of course, he made my first single. We met and that took us 12 hours to make, like on the first day − it’s like you and me meeting each other now, and then “Pass Out” is the end result, 12 hours from now. I feel like Labrinth and I will always be bonded by that. With Diplo it’s really cool. I have a lot of respect for him, I like the fact that he makes a lot of edgy music and that’s he has produced for some of the biggest and best names in the world including Usher and Beyoncé. Yet, he’s still so down-to-earth and still so accessible, even though he has sold like millions of records, he’ll do like a DJ set or guest on someone’s radio show and I like him for that so it was really good working with him. I’ve done a record with him and 2 Chainz and it’s still one of my favourite tracks to perform all the time. I mean it’s really cool, I usually try to work with people that I’m fans of so even after the song is made, I’ll still listen to their next tracks.
Yeah I’ve been in the studio with Steve Aoki quite a bit and that’s really fun. He’s been doing great things and is taking the world by storm, I think next year is going to be a great for him. Anyway, we’ve worked on three things at the moment, I don’t know where they’re all going to go but there’s definitely something there that’s special for my record so I’m very excited. I think next year will be good, I can’t wait for everyone to hear the stuff.
We’ll be sure to keep an ear out for it! Last question, if you had to give up, which would you pick – food or sex?
OOOHHHH! Damnit, that’s a really hard one (laughs). If I give up food, and I have sex, then how would I survive? And if I give up sex and if I have food, then how would I procreate? Oh wait, I could still procreate. This is a really complicated one. HMMM…I don’t know. This is too hard. I can’t pick (laughs).
Haha fine. We’ll let you get away with it this time.
Thank you so much Tinie.
No, thank you! :)
We had such a blast chatting with both MKTO and Tinie Tempah. Big thanks to our friends from H-Artistry for making these interviews happen and for having us at H-Artistry 2014.
Check out the gallery below for more pictures:
H-Artistry events are by-invite-only, and are open to non-Muslims aged 18 above. Keep it locked on to H-Artistry for updates on future events slated for 2015.
More pictures from the event can be found here.