Surprising Horizons

The Joy of Travel. The Realities of New Experiences.

Month: May 2017

No Smoking $300

You know something’s wrong when Singaporeans grafitti a wall to try and resolve a problem. This wall should actually be a tourist attraction as it’s probably the only illegally grafittied wall in Singapore. And it’s been like this for months and months now. And you all thought Singapore was so clean you could eat your dinner off of it. Now you know.

So this Great Graffitied Wall of Singapore is on Sinaran Drive right beside Tan Tock Seng Hospital. The wall is, most likely, owned by 27Mr Pte Ltd. who are wayyyyy behind on building their proposed Moulmein27 apartment block in the plot of land behind the wall. The former building behind there, the Grand Tower (it wasn’t grand and wasn’t exactly towering) was demolished years ago and the plot is an empty but grassy and flowery rare bit of open space in the Novena area.

A few weeks ago the paint job was fading in the Singapore sun so somebody happily gave the lettering a second coat. That’s how long term this situation is.

New Halloween costume idea..

So what’s the issue? People are using the footpath and wall area as a place to smoke themselves stupid away from the neighbouring Tan Tock Seng Hospital. It’s annoying and passers-by have to inhale clouds of smoke they didn’t pay or wish for. People then proceed to throw butts on the ground and other remnants of their various vices. People sit under the grafitti, puffing away in a cancerous affront to the informal monetary warning. And what of TTSH? Can’t they provide their workers (and cancer patients) with an out-of-the-way smoking area far from innocent sidewalk shufflers’ lungs? It doesn’t appear so…

Extra strong beer; when one can is more than enough.

Are there other alternatives to removing the smokers’ rest area?

  • spikes, lots of them
  • smoke sensors that blast “Cotton Eyed Joe” when set off
  • dogs trained to attack on the sound of a cigarette lighter or match being struck.
  • water cannons, lots of them
  • introduce monkeys to the area
  • allow those licensed buskers who are usually in the MRT tunnels to set up shop there
  • place a durian stall there

In summary then, we have two warring factions; the smokers and the grafitti-ers. I’m with the grafitti-ers in heart and mind as the smokers are uncaring of others in their upkeep of their killsome addiction. On the other hand, the grafitti sucks to look at. At least add a bit of artistic flair to it. Draw a troll-esque smoker with 500 cigarettes in its mouth going all cross-eyed or draw a big arrow pointing down to where the people usually sit smoking and label it “MORONS”. I guess you can say stylistically I’m not with the grafitti-ers and they need some pointers on protest art.

I’m just left to wonder how will this pan out? If ever? Who will take charge of the multi-layered issues? TTSH and a Moses-esque migration of its smoking populace? Or 27Mr with a couple of sledgehammers?

In the meantime head on down to Sinaran Drive and take a few selfies with a real-life and authentic graffitied wall right here in Singapore!

Megadeth: Live in Singapore 2017

The Kallang Theatre welcomes you like an old musty bingo hall. No blue rinse hair and floral ankle length skirts on parade for Megadeth though. No it’s black. Black on black. Long hair if genetics allows. Indeed, the Kallang Theatre is a strange venue for the thrash metal stalwarts but once the lights went out the majority took to standing. If genetics allowed.

And so, this ended my 2017 nostalgic rock/metal gig saga with Guns N Roses and Metallica already in my rusty old rear-view mirror, Megadeth were the last of the trifecta on my concert planner.

Megadeth. Never top of my favourites but much respected for their pedigree and penchant for multiple dozens of guitar solos in one song. Bizarrely enough, their Countdown to Extinction album was the soundtrack to me playing the original Sonic the Hedgehog on my friend’s Sega Mega Drive.

To the concert itself then. One must admire the steadfast look of Megadeth over the decades. Dave Mustaine, the forever jeans wearing mop haired frontman, hasn’t changed his style since the 70s one would imagine. While other bands (eg. Metallica) have had mid-life crises and cut their hair and applied some nail polish, Dave and crew stuck to the same formula: long hair, jeans, trainers. No deviations. One must also admire the almost choreographed movements on stage which leaves no-one in doubt who is doing the guitar solo; two step back into shadows, one steps up front and proceeds to shred another solo.

Megadeth have always been a no nonsense metal band and their latest release “Dystopia” has got fans excited about them again. This confidence in their current offerings is shown in the set-list with no less than 6 songs included. Of course, being a fan of their old stuff, I was more engaged with their classics; “Hangar 18”, “In My Darkest Hour”, and “Peace Sells”. Only two songs from “Countdown to Extinction” (which wasn’t really liked by hardcore Megadeth fans) are played but “Sweating Bullets” and the amazing riff-centred core of “Symphony of Destruction” are stand outs for me.

With quite a short set-list for a band with so much material; it’s a little bit of a let-down. They do save the best for last though. “Holy Wars…” is probably the most under-rated metal song of all time. An amazing piece of song writing interlacing riffs and multiple solos whose lyrics are uber-meaningful nowadays more than ever. Check it out if you have time.

And after 14 songs, that was that. Sound was a little muddled at times but all in all a great show.

Megadeth Setlist Kallang Theatre, Singapore, Singapore 2017, Dystopia World Tour








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