Unfortunately, in some countries identifying as queer or anything other than the typical hetero-normative identities is still very much frowned upon. Inciting change with his lustrous R&B sounds, Kuala Lumpur native Alextbh is breaking out of the mould and giving us EVERYTHING. His latest single "Moments" is electric R&B wrapped in liquid pop gold.
Drenched in glossy melodies and intricately littered with glistening pop droplets, the track unravels itself into a soothing ballad. Taken from his forthcoming debut EP The Chase, the track details the attempt to prevent challenging negativity from a previous relationship into a new one. With it's sleek grooves, it's hard not to feel carefree when listening to this. Yet, underneath the narrative of this track is someone who's trying to come to terms with their trauma by seeking validation in a more-of-the-same relationship.
"'Moments' preludes the upcoming chapter of my story. I'm left broken and bruised from my past relationships, but instead of channeling that into something good I chose to hurt people instead," says Alextbh in an email conversation with EARMILK. "It's ironic that I say shit like "I don't usually get moments like this" and "let me treat you right" because it's the same shit my exes use to say to me. It's a vicious cycle that I want to get out of."
Discussing his sexuality, he says, "Coming out still felt like a foreign concept because only famous internet people do it, but even then they're not Asian. Anyone I know that's queer in my community are seen as funny and stereotypically obnoxious. I definitely felt more aligned with myself after writing songs, and when I put them out people tell me they relate to them."
"I want people to know that the queer community is a spectrum," he states. "Everyone's doing different things. Not all queer artists do pop music. I think that sort of sentiment gets amplified when you live in a conservative country like Malaysia. So if I can help by shifting people's perspectives, I'd do it a million times over."
Citing influences from the likes of friends taking on drag personas, it's clear that with Alextbh we have an icon in the making. Writing empowering tunes and being an empowering artist, he is indeed creating something more than just pop-tinged music. Something that will hold the test of time. One day we'll live in a world where everyone will have the freedom to be their true self, and Alextbh is leading the way to that utopia.
The Chase is set for release on June 12 via Empire.