Arts Esplanade Annexe Studio Experimental Music Review Singapore Theatres

Mosaic Music Series 2017: sudo by FERRY X Canvas Conversations (Review)


The Esplanade’s 2017 Mosaic Music series kicked off with a real showstopper last night, with local electronic band Canvas Conversations collaborating with fellow local musician FERRY (of Giants Must Fall). Interestingly, this was actually our very first show at the Esplanade Annexe Studio, and we couldn’t possibly have asked for a better introduction to all its capabilities.


For the geekier readers amongst you, you might already have had an idea of what sudo was all about. sudo is short for “superuser do” and is a computer command prompt that allows users to run programs with the security privileges of another user. What sudo then did was explore what it means to live in a technologically vibrant world, while considering the thin line between artificial intelligence and humanity. Combining music at the forefront of the electronic genre, and incredible projections and visuals by Aqilah Misuary, sudo was a total immersion into a carefully crafted digital world, evoking strong emotions and awe.


It’s not hard to see why Canvas Conversations have become so successful since their debut at Noise 2015. From the very beginning, it was evident that sudo was going to be one of the most innovative feats of musical engineering we’ve seen in a while. Utilizing a six speaker set up created a truly surround sound experience, allowing ‘voices’ to feel as if they were coming from various points in the Annexe Studio. As the band played songs, Aqilah Misuary’s projections simultaneously played across three screens, depicting scenes ranging from a waves crashing in a black ocean, to a myriad of constellations swooping across a starry sky. Always perfectly in sync with the music, there are times one can completely let go and enter the virtual world that Misuary has created, visually arresting and commanding attention with its richness.

Both Ferry and Canvas Conversations vocalist Namie Rasman possess strong, distinct voices. There’s real emotion that flows through the genuinely moving delivery of their lyrics, even as they distort their voices, transforming cacophony into glorious, grand soundtracks. A sense of the epic fills the entire studio as the music pierces audiences’ very soul, a multidimensional environment of sound one could almost reach out and physically touch.


Emanating intrigue and bursting with emotion, sudo was an unbelievably strong set to start off the 2017 Mosaic Music Series, and being a local act, made us all the more proud. This was an incredibly ambitious, high concept show, and it worked, transforming even the ambient noise of passing static into key tracks. A fully integrated act that elevates electronic music to art itself, consider us new fans of Canvas Conversations and FERRY, thoroughly impressed with the work they’ve put out, and we can’t wait to see where their skill and imagination takes them next.


The Mosaic Music Series runs from 10th – 14th November 2017 at the Esplanade Annexe Studio and Concert Hall. Tickets available from the Esplanade 

To keep up with Canvas Conversations, follow them on their Facebook, Instagram and their Bandcamp. To keep up with FERRY, follow her on Instagram and Soundcloud

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