Malaysia’s Generation Z Is Here And Is Making Sure They Stand Out

Text and Interview Aina Nur Sarah Photography Arifah Hadirah Make-up Fibie Liew/Benefit Cosmetics Hair Jillian Low, Sam/Leekaja Styling Lim Lee Ann Assisted by Inaara Busari Art Direction Mils Gan Wardrobe All talents own Videography Hanan Khair

We speak of an age of resilience, and we know how millennials function. Now come Generation Z. With the rise of the Internet and social media, these go-getters don’t hold back to push boundaries to reach what they want. They’re pushing the cursor further and further, making sure they’re known for their passion.

While the youth of the nation refuse to let troubled times (read: political climate? Economy? Extremely saturated digital age?) affect them, they are making moves to define their own world.

#TeamCLEO speaks to Midnight Fusic, Zulvanny and Alextbh who are young, brilliant and passionate about their future.

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Midnight Fusic
All 19, Musicians and Students

Midnight Fusic: the rising indie band

At a first glance, they seem like your regular ol’ boys who sleep in after a long night of playing games online, but they’re more than that. Straight out of high school and right into the studio, Midnight Fusic has been upping their music game and marked themselves as the up-and-coming alternative indie band.

What’s the story behind the band’s name?

‘Midnight’ came from the band’s habit of always staying up late until midnight. ‘Fusic’ was originally a combination of ‘food’ and ‘music’ but along the way, we changed it up to a more professional term which is the combination of ‘fusion’ and ‘music’.

Where do you get inspiration for your music?

One of the main inspirations for our music comes from our favourite bands The 1975, The Smiths and Last Dinosaurs. Their music compositions gave us insight on making our own music. Besides that, most of our music is inspired by our own personal experiences.

L-R: Adrian Danial, Firdaus Azmi, Arif Kamaruddin and Muaz Rabbani

What’s the song writing process like for you? Lyrics then melody, or vice versa?

For us, most of our music begins with the melody being written first. Then, the process is continued with the lyrics which are written by Arif and Adrian. However, there are certain songs in which the lyrics were composed first followed by the melody being written over it.

Do you have a favourite song that you’ve put out so far? Why does it mean a lot to you?

Personally, each of us has our own favourite song. For Arif, his favourite is Time Machine because he finds it the most relatable as he can connect it to many of his prior experiences. Next, for Muaz, Off My Mind is his favourite due to the passion and energy it gives him especially when performing live. Flowers is the personal favourite of Adrian and Firdaus as it has a deeper meaning to it which they both wish the message it carries would be spread to our fans.

Follow the band @midnightfusic

In what way do you think people can relate to your music?

People always say they relate to our lyrics because it reminds them of the stories and experiences they’ve been through, and some have also mentioned about our music sounding very nostalgic to them.

What’s the biggest challenge you’ve faced being in the industry?

One could be that people are always comparing us to other artists and argue about which of us is better, which is really unnecessary and we wish that it would stop and just have everyone appreciate the music that is there.

Do you think Malaysians have become more supportive of local acts in the recent years?

Definitely, we’ve been blessed enough to receive a lot of support just from the past year, and we think it’s important that more people to explore and appreciate other genres & artists in the industry.

Just a bunch of friends realising their dreams

What’s the biggest change you wish to see in the local music industry?

First of all, it’s our personal wish to see local music become more exposed to different genres and also for there to be more recognition for both current and uprising local music artist. Also we would greatly like to see more concerts and festivals being hosted in Malaysia.

What are your views on the ‘cancelled culture’ (calling out, especially on social media)?

It’s a little dangerous where one small mistake, with or without context, could make the whole internet turn on you and you’re ‘cancelled’, but when it’s used for good it is kind of exciting, seeing the power of people & social media.

How do you deal with negative criticism? Does it affect you?

We don’t take anything to heart and we just use it to better ourselves, but most of the times it’s stupid and we make inside jokes or meme about it.

Update your playlist with Midnight Fusic

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