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Acclaimed music producer Steve Lillywhite upbeat about Singapore's music scene

Published on Apr 11, 2013 8:19 AM

Weish, the lead singer of local indie band sub:shaman, is good enough to make a living in music for the rest of her life.

Another home-grown band, indie group Atlas, show shades of iconic English band The Smiths in their music.

Do not take anyone's word for it, hear it directly from English producer Steve Lillywhite, who has encouraging comments for the Singapore music scene.

He is one of the top producers in the world of rock music over more than four decades and the man responsible for the distinctive sounds found on the albums by commercially and critically successful bands such as U2, The Killers and Talking Heads.

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Background story


1. Peter Gabriel

Peter Gabriel (1980)

Steve Lillywhite produced the third album by ex-Genesis frontman and prog-rock/pop pioneer Peter Gabriel. The singer's first album to go to No. 1 on the British charts, this work also marks Lillywhite's first high-profile album after working with punk and New Wave acts in the late 1970s such as Ultravox. It was known for its novel use of keyboards and sampling technology.

2. Morrissey

Vauxhall And I (1994)

Considered one of the finest solo albums by indie godfather Morrissey, this was his second album to hit No. 1 on the British charts. Lillywhite overhauled the sound found on the singer's previous albums and gave Vauxhall And I a distinctive raw and airy production.

3. U2

How To Dismantle An Atomic Bomb (2004)

Lillywhite recorded the Irish band's groundbreaking first three albums in the early 1980s but it was his work on U2's 11th studio album that had the most impact at the Grammys. It won all eight awards that it was nominated for, including Producer of the Year, Non Classical, for Lillywhite and was also named album of the year by publications such as The New York Times and USA Today.

Lillywhite was not the original producer - he was called in to save the recordings after the band felt that the work of the previous producer, Chris Thomas, was sub-par and fired him.

4. 30 Seconds to Mars

This Is War (2009)

The third studio album fronted by rocker and Hollywood actor Jared Leto is the band's self-styled concept album with big rock tunes mixed with progressive and electronic sensibilities. It underscored Lillywhite's ability to craft a solid sound for the contemporary rock generation.

5. The Killers

Battle Born (2012)

This album marked alternative rockers The Killer's comeback after their hiatus. It was voted last year's second- best album by readers of Rolling Stone magazine. Lillywhite produced many of the tracks, including lead single Runaways.