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Hello Asia! IFF 2015 Review: Jalanan (Indonesia, 2013)

Screened for the second time in Melbourne during the Indonesian Film Festival, Jalanan received a warm welcome breaking the festival’s record and selling out 390 tickets for the first time in the festival brief history. The festival closing film is a documentary that explores the street life in Jakarta highlighting elements of politics, sex, love, family, corruption, and globalization through music.

Hello Asia! Live Review: Forever Star Concert FT. S.H.E + Aaron Yan - Qantas Credit Union Arena, Sydney (03.05.15)

“Light stick? Light stick?” greets the crowd as they enter through the doors of the Qantas Credit Union Arena. This bodes well, for a concert isn’t a concert without a sea of light, and this concert for Taiwanese pop trio S.H.E and guest Aaron Yan is certainly no exception!

Hello Asia! Live Review: Forever Star Concert Ft. S.H.E + Aaron Yan - The Plenary, Melbourne (01.05.15)

It was has been a year, almost to the exact date, that the angelic Hebe graced Aussie shores. This time around, much to the intense happiness of fans across Australia, she brought along her fellow band members Selina and Ella, making up the super-pop trio S.H.E. In tow, the girls were joined by the incredibly charismatic Aaron Yan in a double bill that filled The Plenary of thousands of joyously excited fans.

Hello Asia! Film Review: Parasyte: Part 1 (Japan, 2014)

Madman Entertainment, known for bringing the best of Japanese anime, film and television to Australia, this weekend held screenings Australia-wide of the 2014 hit sci-fi horror film Parasyte: Part 1.

Hello Asia! Film Review: The Admiral: Roaring Currents (South Korea, 2014)

The Admiral: Roaring Currents follows Korean Yi Sun-shin from his reinstatement to Admiral, through the quiet preparation of his strategy and into the Battle of Myeongnyang. It is a fascinating insight into both the tactics of 16th-century naval battles and the strategical mind of one of history’s greatest Admirals, and it is all incredibly thrilling.

Hello Asia! Album Review: MFBTY - "WondaLand" (South Korea, 2015 LP)

South Korean hip hop heroes MFBTY’s latest full-length offering, WondaLand lives up to its name as a varied, dynamic and entertaining record. It’s LONG, but it’s not a matter of quantity over quality – each track plays a role in creating a cohesive and masterful record.

Hello Asia! Film Review: Cherrybelle's Crush (Indonesia, 2014)

Irving Artemas, producer of Singaporean film 3 Peas in a Pod starring ex U-KISS member Alexander Lee Eusebio, presents yet another entertaining production starring Indonesia's most famous and successful girl group, Cherrybelle. His latest release titled Cherrybelle's Crush was screened in Melbourne at The Backlot Studios last Monday and by the end of the year, it will be screened in another 12 countries in South East Asia.

Hello Asia! Live Review: Apink PINK PARADISE - The Max Pavilion, Singapore Expo (22.03.15)

Tension and excitement filled the air as fans came running – despite the security’s shouts of warning – into the Max Pavilion at the Singapore Expo when doors opened that Sunday evening. Finally back in Singapore, but this time for a full-length exclusive solo concert called PINK PARADISE, the six-member Korean girl group Apink – loved for their cute and innocent bubblegum pop concept – made me, as well as their fans, swoon that evening.

Hello Asia! Live Review: ONE OK ROCK - Soundwave Festival, Brisbane (01.03.15)


Soundwave's promoters know Japan makes great rock music. In the past several years Japanese bands have been billed for many Soundwave festivals and then pulled out (X-Japan, Maximum the Hormone, yes, we mean you) but this year Japanese artists were all over the Soundwave tour - Coldrain, Crossfaith and my personal favourites, ONE OK ROCK.

Hello Asia! Album Review: ONE OK ROCK - "35xxxv" (Japan, 2015 LP)

One OK Rock - "35xxxv"

As a fan of early 2000s rock music, I was really excited when I discovered ONE OK ROCK - four twenty-something guys from Tokyo who still make music like the songs I used to love as a teenager. Apparently I’m not the only one - after wildly successful American, South American and European tours last year, ONE OK ROCK are slated for four appearances across Australia at Soundwave Festival from this weekend - perfect timing following the release of their most recent long-player, 35xxxv.

Hello Asia! Indonesian Film Review: Erau Kota Raja (Indonesia, 2015)

Having filmmakers venturing overseas for vibrant locations is not uncommon in Indonesian screen culture. Their efforts often compliment the narrative producing exceptional international and best-selling standard many of us are proud of. However, simply replicating the success formula of Hollywood unfortunately emphasizes the lack of identity in Indonesian films. With more talents exploring the beauty of the archipelago, embracing and celebrating the local traditions, cuisines and cultures in recent years, my faith in the Indonesian screen culture is restored.

Hello Asia! Live Review: Shonen Knife - Ding Dong Lounge, Melbourne (25.01.15)

Shonen Knife has earned themselves a truly robust worldwide cult following; legions of male and female fans, sold out gigs, and a brand new album of tunes in tow, the three-member all-girl Japanese rock outfit are among the world’s most famous rock groups. Touring across Japan, the United Kingdom, Europe, and America, the widely acclaimed trio finally arrived in Australia after six years!

Hello Asia! Live Review: Shonen Knife - The Factory Theatre (24.01.15)

The Factory Theatre was alive with an amazing energy when Shonen Knife decided to pay a visit to our shores, the crowd was certainly a mix of fans when the ladies came on stage and everybody who was anybody was dancing and singing along with them as they played trough their rock repertoire. Shonen Knife were supported by rock duo Polish Club and rock band Step-Panther, two amazing groups which left the crowd very excited for the main event!

Hello Asia! Theatre Review: Das Musical Rebecca - Blue Square, South Korea

Das Musical Rebecca is just what you’d expect from a Michael Kunze and Sylvester Levay musical - it’s dark, it’s romantic, it has strong characters, it’s thrilling and in some ways it’s just a bit terrifying. Indeed, what better musical to have seen on Halloween than this?

Hello Asia! Theatre Review: Das Musical Rudolf - D-CUBE Arts Center, South Korea

The Crown Prince Rudolf - The Musical is one of the most beautiful, moving and emotional musicals that I have ever had the privilege of watching. By the time the curtain had closed on the final scene I was in tears - completely captured by the characters and their story. It is this emotion that the incredible Frank Wildhorn is so often able to capture in his musicals. His lyrics and his music make one with the characters and their actors to draw the audience completely and entirely into their lives and make you feel so attached to the events that you feel everything so directly. Rudolf is absolutely a demonstration of this Wildhorn power that translates even through language barriers.