Leaving Normal: Dull Entertainment Programme
We were alerted by Nizang today that DEP, one of the oldest stalwarts from the earliest 90s Kuantan’s “Under The Sea” bands is calling it quits. The picture above was taken after their sudden farewell show at the Little Bali, Cherating on Saturday.
Here’s what frontman Acai wrote on the band’s blog: “the one thing that I really want to share with you here (maybe some of you have heard it by now) is that last Saturday was DEP final show. Tojeng, Panther, Asma and me have decided that we have no longer share the same direction and interest. For all that have been said and done, it’s best that we find our own direction. Seems like DEP is no longer relevant to us. Not like 15 years ago. So we started it in Kuantan and we ended it there too. To friends who can’t make it, I’m sorry but you missed it!”
DEP rose from the ashes/inactivity of MINORITY, which was one of the focal points of the Kuantan scene in the early 90s and played numerous times in KL including gracing the now legendary stage at Piccadilly, Damansara. Dull Entertainment Programme came out of that and played its first show in 1995. After releasing a slew of demos and an EP, gigging around generally being active, including running their own label, DEP faded into the ether in 2002.
After a long hiatus which seen the band members getting married, starting families etc., DEP resurrected itself in Kuala Lumpur in 2008. The band released a CD of its previous recordings and started playing shows again. It is thought that the band will carry on for a few more years and maybe forever, but I believe with many of its band members now back to living in Kuantan, it’s gonna be difficult.
Whatever it is I must state here that DEP and its many band members throughout the years were the ones instrumental in making Kuantan one of the best scenes in the mid-to-late 90s. As such we are all indebted to these guys. I just hope none of them would stop playing music, lets see more bands rising out from that ashes.
visit the blog for more: dullentertainmentprogramme.blogspot.com
Below is DEP’s bio taken from the band’s myspace page:
It started with a band called Minority back in 1990 in Kuantan, Pahang. The band consists of Pete (guitar), Acai (bass), Puyu (vocal) and Naen (drums). After been playing covers (from The Ramones, Ear Damage, Sub-Society, Dead Kennedys, Buzzcocks, Sex Pistols and Misfits, just to name a few) for some time, Pete (who’s a kid brother for Ili and Abang from The Pilgrims) decided that they should do their own songs.
With RM70, they recorded an 8 songs demo entitled “Quantity Doesn’t Matter” sometime between 91-92. Been gigging at only a few venues (including funfairs) in Kuantan and Temerloh and the most memorable one, supporting The Pilgrims in “Away From The Numbers” at Picaddily, Damansara PJ, together with Future Primitives and The Stone Crows and few other bands. In between this active progression of Minority, Acai had been approached by Wan (Spirit Alcohol) to do a side project band, which was yet to be named. The idea was discussed, when Acai was supporting Wan, playing bass for his rehearsal tape project. They jammed a few sessions with Wan on guitars, Acai on bass and the drummer(who if not mistaken) was Wan’s cousin. At times, they will be joined by Shahril (By Side Off) on guitar and Wan will be on drums. The band didn’t last long mainly because of lost of direction or maybe… lost interest.
However, the idea of forming a band with Wan didn’t end there, as Acai feels it’s important that, besides Minority… Kuantan needs another active band to bloom… By the agreement (and by the power of GreySkull) of Acai on guitar and vocals, Tojeng on bass and Wan on drums, DEP started to venture the nasty world of the underground (intended to make it sounds dramatic)…
Back to Minority, circa 94 – 95, they seemed had lost their touches and senses when everyone in the band was particularly busy with their lives. Pete had been into lots of Islamic learning and been devoting himself extremely towards this direction. Naen was rarely to be found available as most of the times engaged with his SUKMA shooting activities/trainings. Puyu will only be around if Naen and Pete are present. This left Acai with no time to waste and get DEP to be in full force that very instant.
DEP had made it’s debut appearance at TMS Dangdut Disco, Kuantan in 95. They had also supported Carburetor Dung together with few other bands at the same venue. During this active time, DEP has an avid follower who never fail to attend to their shows and even during their practise sessions. His name is Panther and he joined them on bass replacing Tojeng who later took 2nd guitar. They became more powerful than ever. From there, they have been actively gigging (around KL and Kuantan) and writing new materials and later decided to cut a self-released/self-titled EP in 96 at Bach & Traz Studio in Bangsar, KL.
Few months after the EP was released, Wan suddenly decided to leave DEP due to some personal reasons. Fortunately, the emptiness was immediately filled by Little Jam’s Asma, and DEP was back on track again. They managed to cut another release entitled ‘Dullaby’ around September 99 at Zanzibar Magic Studio, in Ampang KL. An 8 songs (plus 2 short intro and outro) release and was produced collaboratively between Oz Yusof (Naked Butterfly) and DEP.
They still did some shows up till 2002 and later became less and less active. Circa 2003-2007 they were almost on a hiatus. But make no mistake…they had never leave the scene, but only remain dormant and…DULL!!!