Bangkok based alt-indie outfit Wicked Lights return with a new single ‘The Underlying’, lifted from the new EP ‘Have A Nice Dream’ out now. Fronted by Two Charuson, the brainchild behind the project, shares his stories and confessions with a directional honesty.
’The Underlying’ continues Two Charuson’s voyage into soulful and quietly intense song-writing and features acclaimed drummer Aaron Sterling (John Mayer, Taylor Swift, Lana Del Rey, Miley Cyrus, Fiona Apple). Coupled with its more melodically romantic groove, sometimes the delicate prettiness of the acoustic texture and the melodious sweetness is shadowed by the cryptic complexity of the lyrics which are worth perusing in their own right. The accompanying verité styled video depicts the journeys and connections we long and yearn for.
He says: “Through the pandemic, a lot of things got taken away from us. Especially with making journeys, seeking new cultures and experiences or connecting with loved ones. I wrote this song to remind the listener and even myself that the joys in life are still out there and that we should not lose our sense of curiosity. And there is nothing better to remind us than when things have been taken away. Not having travelled anywhere for three years and to be able to start another journey again. To me it was so liberating. Having travelled so much before. To be able to enjoy the little things again that you can easily find anywhere new or even old places re-visited. For me the biggest joy is to connect with a total stranger, to be able renew the senses, just like how creating music is. We could die at any point in time. Life is uncertain for everyone. But even the best of us can forget the feelings, our values and philosophies if we stay still in the same place for too long. Everything around us changes every second. When you travel you are constantly moving, seeking, absorbing and connecting with people and places. To me that is the Underlying.”
Wicked Lights aka Two Charuson, has worked for three decades to hone his craft, learning a variety of instruments along the way in order to create his songs. Born in Thailand he was schooled privately in the British countryside. This exposure to an alien culture represented an early culture shock, but it also opened up a new world musically. Forced to attend church, he learned to sing traditional hymns and to adapt to British cultural influences. He found solace in picking a guitar and idolizing Eric Clapton, Prince, Jeff Tweedy, Neil Young, Elliott Smith, Radiohead and Joy Division.
The music of Wicked Lights has evolved from these experiences and touches on themes of disillusionment, joy, love, sadness, courage and playfulness. Today Two lives and works in his native Bangkok, using his music to express the conflicts of identity that his background inevitably creates, but also exploring those same conflicts in the cosmopolitan, increasingly uprooted Thai capital itself. Playing most of the instruments himself, he has been able to create a unique and wholly personal response to these conflicts, creating in the process a musical style unlike anything else in the Asian landscape.
The new EP, ‘Have A Nice Dream’ was recorded in a few weeks with Two’s best friend and producer Montonn Jira (The Neptunes, Hugo, Slot Machine, Kenna and Director of Wonderfruit Festival) at Unisonic Sounds Studio and mastering by John Davis (The Killers, Gorillaz, The xx, Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds, Blur) – Mastering Engineer of The Metropolis Studioin London.