The perplexing musical language of Bani Haykal

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Bani Haykal: an introduction.

The enigmatic Bani Haykal doesn’t create musical artwork out of thin air. Instead, as an Associate Artist of The Substation, he experiments with music and text based on his research, intelligence and knowledge within a cultural and socio-political context. And it’s supported and buffeted with perceptual affects that are usually more-so intrinsically complex.

Needless to say, Bani Haykal is admired for his ability to hold interest in a whole other side of music reliant on a narrative form and work of fiction that most artists are never hugely involved in.

Origins and the rise

Bani Haykal came to prominence in the Singapore creative scene as the prime force behind the alternative rock band B-Quartet. He’s also a contributor to performance/music collective, mux, audio-visual performance group OFFCUFF, and a recent member of The Observatory.

Needless to say, his other work stretches across various disciplines including dance, installation, poetry and theatre.

As a solo musician, he explores structured improvisation and spoken word, having worked on two studies, ‘Ergophobia’ and ‘How I Got Lost And Died Trying’. He recently completed a residency project (Dormant Music) at Platform 3, Bandung, under The Art Incubator. Not just that, he has also published one book of poetry (Sit Quietly In The Flood) and has read/presented works in several festivals including World Event Young Artist UK, The Kuala Lumpur International Literary Festival, Singapore Arts Festival and The M1 Fringe Festival among others.

His intellectual and creative talent as an innovative sound artist has earned him recognition and was awarded the Young Artist Award at the Istana, Singapore in 2013.

The sound and the emotion

Bani Haykal’s body of work focuses on production, composition, arranging and of course, poeticism; something that requires precise technical talent to perform with instruments which makes you wonder why he would choose a certain technique or instrument, but more often than not, content to sit back and enjoy whatever raw effect it creates at the same time able to arouse emotions.

Keep your brain entertained and listen to all of the little nuances in the complexities of Bani Haykal’s soundscapes here:

by Izyan Liyana
Photo via Bani Haykal