|Reaching heights: The progressive rock band Ngu Cung (Pentatonic) will debut songs from their new album Cao Nguyen Da (Rock Plateau) on Friday in their first-ever live show. — Photo courtesy of the band
HA NOI (VNS) — The progressive rock band Ngu Cung (Pentatonic) will debut songs from their new album Cao Nguyen Da (Rock Plateau) on Friday at the Giang Vo Exhibition Centre in their first-ever live show.
Rock Plateau is the Ha Noi-based band's second album, following 360,000 Days, released in 2009 to celebrate the city's 1,000th anniversary. Since its 2007 fouding, Pentatonic has been a fresh sound in the rock scene because of its unique songs inspired by ethnic minority culture, and its ability to creatively mix ethnic minority instruments with traditional rock ones.
Both albums include songs that fuse traditional music from northwestern ethnic minority groups with rock. Using the ken moi (lip lute), popular among Mong men, the band recalls the soulful, mountainous region in its songs Goi Tinh (Love Calling) and Huyen Thoai Nguoi Con Gai Mong (Legend of the Mong Girls).
The song Rock Plateau 1 praises the determination and endurance of the people living in the rocky region. Rock Plateau 2 talks about difficulties in those people's lives.
Tam Tien (Naked Bathing in a Stream) creates a poetic scene in the listener's mind, using the sounds of wild birds singing, a brook murmuring and Tay women bathing. Another song, Tam Khan Kho Uot (The Dry and Wet Cloth), is about motherhood in Tay culture. Tay women, together with their dowry, always have a special cloth. After the marriage, the cloth is used as a bed sheet for her and her infants. When the infant makes the cloth wet, the mother gives her child the dry part and take the wet part for herself.
Playing big hits
In their live show on Friday, the band will play some well-known hits along with their own songs. The concert will also feature two guest artists: diva Tran Thu Ha and the rock band Black Infinity and Oringchains.
Their songs have been ranked on XoneFM and VOV3's list of top songs for several weeks in a row: Cuop Vo, Tuc Le Nguoi Mong (Wife Kidnap, Custom of Mong People), which is about a very famous traditional custom of the Mong ethnic group; Gia Com Dem Trang (Pounding Green Young Sticky rice in the Moonnight), which springs from a Tay custom; Noi Dau (The Pain); and Nu Hon Tren Dinh Fansipan (The Kiss on the Fansipan Summit).
The band has four members: Do Hoang Hiep on vocals and guitar, songwriter Tran Thang on guitar, Nguyen Hung Cuong on drums and David Goodman Peyne on bass guitar. — VNS