Mosaic Music Weekend

T-Rex shine as closing act

T-Rex comprise (from far left) Ahmad Khaliq, 28; Bryan De Rozario, 20; Axel Serik, 25; and Junaidi Kusnong, 30 (on drums).
T-Rex comprise (from far left) Ahmad Khaliq, 28; Bryan De Rozario, 20; Axel Serik, 25; and Junaidi Kusnong, 30 (on drums).PHOTO: ESPLANADE - THEATRES ON THE BAY

REVIEW /CONCERT

T-REX

Esplanade Outdoor Theatre/Sunday

Switching out and swopping instruments like seasoned professionals, genre-defying home-grown band T-Rex closed the last performance of the Mosaic Music Weekend in style.

Combining everything from post- rock to progressive metal to even jazz, the band's proficiency as a live act outshone the platform they were allotted to play on - a free performance that could very well have been a ticketed one.

The three-man band - Ahmad Khaliq on guitars, Axel Serik on bass and Junaidi Kusnong on drums - looked fairly nondescript as they walked on stage, with the trio dressed in T-shirt and jeans.

But they traded instruments from the get-go, with Junaidi picking up the guitar and Ahmad having a go on drums in their first song, White Rabbit.

Their ability to move from instrument to instrument so effortlessly was as impressive as the spontaneous feel of their multi-textural sound that spanned a 40-minute set.

After one song, the band were joined by saxophonist Bryan De Rozario - whom The Straits Times understands is now a permanent member of the band - who added an entirely new dimension and a jazzy touch to the already technically challenging soundtrack.

Irregular time signatures - characteristic of math rock - coupled with fluid jazz lines, made for an incredible live showing by the band, which have been around for less than a year.

The band have yet to have an album to their name.

But perhaps, before that comes, they would be better off getting a new name, given T-Rex's immediate association with the English glam-rock band, T.Rex, fronted by Marc Bolan. Not only is their sound completely different, but also an online search for the up-and-coming band would pull up a barrage of hits by Bolan and company instead.

Surprisingly, drummer Junaidi, 30, revealed to the crowd mid-set that he had pulled the band together as part of his exam requirements as a student at the Lasalle College of the Arts.

For a band assembled for school, they are certainly turning out to be one of the most exciting additions to Singapore's burgeoning live music scene.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on September 06, 2016, with the headline 'T-Rex shine as closing act'. Print Edition | Subscribe