The music landscape has changed dramatically since Anggun released her first commercial album in 1986, at age 12. Now 43 and with decades of experience in the scene, the Javanese-born artist continues to draw in listeners; her releases and activities has not waned nor wavered. Anggun counts herself lucky to be enjoying this longevity. Luck aside, there is a consistent element in her releases that renders it timeless appeal- honesty, of which there is no lack in her latest studio album entitled 8.
The 8 Album
Anggun’s eighth album, aptly called 8 has ten tracks, nine of which were written by herself.
The singer launches into a lecture denouncing happy ever after clichés in the first song “No Promises,” instead advocating that happiness does not need to come from a man nor from marriage. In “Inhuman,” the UN Ambassador says her piece on electing public officials of questionable integrity. The single “What We Remember” is an electro-pop number which speaks of creating beautiful memories with those who matter in our lives. “Thank You”, an anthem of gratefulness, fittingly closes off the album.
Each track is an introspection of the artist’s life and thoughts. She sings of fear, love, and happiness in different genres but still manages to deliver an aurally cohesive album.
Songwriting is a Woman
In her words, Anggun shares that she hopes to create music that moves people. A song has to have meaning for it to be lasting. Her songwriting focuses on melody and the story in the lyrics more than anything else. She thinks these two ingredients give her music relatability, regardless of a listener’s age. Songwriting is like a woman, “if the body is beautiful, whatever you wear will look good”, she says.
Fire and Frustration
Asked about what fuels her music, Anggun shares it’s simply that she loves music, as her fans should know from her social media bio. She counts frustration as a best friend that pushes her to grow, sharing “when you’re comfortable, you die inside.”
On Asians in the International Scene
Anggun is often touted as the region’s biggest music export, her advice to Asian musicians trying to make it in the West – be honest with what you want to do. Embrace your heritage and don’t try to meld in, because you are different. Admittedly, she shares there is no recipe on how to make it and can only speak of what she knows from experience.
More photos to be uploaded on Patparazzi PH FB Page.
Special thanks to MJ Felipe, MJ Juco and MCA Music!