Friday, July 1, 2011


Stomping with the pioneer of Lion City Hard Core ……

RF: Hello Suhaimi, How’s life? Stompin’ Ground’s Vector Prime had a slightly musical differences compared to both We Set The Pace and Measured By Richter Scale, its kinda darker than both mentioned. Is that the new direction of Stompin’ Ground?

SG: Hi, salam..Life’s good, no complaints :)

Vector Prime was an experimental album. We have no intentions of going into that direction permanently. Since VP & our album before it, Measured By The Richter Scale are 9 years apart, that might be the reason our material sound a lot different. If we were to make an album every 2 or 3 years then U can sense the change gradually & not abruptly.
When we released MBTRS in 1995 some people couldn’t accept took them more than a few years to actually get into the progressive/metal elements. So we're not expecting people to understand VP so soon too :)

RF: I’ve learnt that Stompin’ Ground had been endorsed by few brands/labels; can you share with us the deal/contract/offer/story with those companies?

SG: The endorsements came after we got back actively 5-6 years ago & most of the officials were our longtime fans. I guess the local show on TV helped set it all off (U can check it out here - . The band GREAT SPY EXPERIMENT gave us a tribute & invited Hafiz & me to play with them. Suddenly people just realize that we are much alive & still around actively in the scene.
It's almost the same for SRH Streetwear (USA) , MACBETH Footwear. Every show or season they will sponsor their products to promote. For GooSoniqueworkx they'll pass me a new fx that they release. Im using the "Seventh Heaven" now. As for GIBSON, they're supporting me with on loan guitars. I can choose any model as & when I need it.
These people have been very nice to us & we would like to thank them for believing & supporting us all this time.

RF: During my school day, I’ve keep spinning Better Day for only god knows how many times in a day. If I’m not mistaken that song was inspired by an incident happen at one of your show in Kuala Lumpur, can you tell us the story behind that song.

SG: Better Day is about our ties with the other underground genres. We had a bit of an unpleasant welcome from some young skinheads during our set in KL 1993...if I’m not wrong the "Blast Off" gig. The song basically voices out that the underground scene should be united no matter what genre we play. That’s how good music lives forever, through unity not segregation. It's kind of funny how some kids get into something they don’t understand. They should at least know some history.
As some of U knows Stompin' Ground is made up of members with different backgrounds before we pioneered Hardcore. Ayong was from the DeathMetal scene & Syed was once a punk & most probably the first skinhead too. Later on he founded BUSHMEN which were playing reggae. Me myself was a rocker once & turned into a punk/skatepunk later. I too helped introduced the SHARP movement to the early skinheads here back in the early 90s. Even Hafiz & Imran were responsible for bringing diversity to our music. That's why we get along with everyone very well, before Hardcore we were once into everything. The scene was so small that U need to help out your other friends & session with their bands no matter what genre they play. That’s the power of a small growing scene...that's how things should workout & that makes a healthy scene.

RF: We are going political; do you think death sentence is okay to be practiced by the authority?

SG: No matter what the Death Sentence is wrong, period. I just believe that no man is allowed to play god. People should be given & deserve a 2nd chance. I know some ex-convicts turning into better people than us. People make mistakes, who are we to deprive them of trying to correct themselves?

RF: You have been playing with lotsa big names like Fugazi, Rollins Band, Sick Of It All (to name a few), do you guys learn something from them in which you can adapt to your band?

SG: We definitely learn some stuff from these great bands but we do try to be as local as we can at the same time. U have to have an identity be it musically, performance wise or technically & be proud of it. Also we approach our fans more at a personal level. We actually hate the word "Fan"...we prefer to call everyone "friends".

RF: Last few years (in 2007, if I’m not mistaken) I’ve found an article mentioning that you guys are working on new and last album, so how’s the progress since it has been nearly four years now. Any news on that album? Thanks for your time, your last shout?

SG: We're planning on going "Old School" with this final album. Would like to apologize to our friends for such a long delay on releasing it.
We had to put everything on hold due to our other commitments with our other bands, projects & family. This time we really hope to release it by the end of the year.
On behalf of Stompin' Ground, we'd like to thank all our fans/friends from Malaysia who have supported & believed in us these past 23 years. It has been an incredible & memorable journey. Meeting new faces & making many good friends along the way. We hope we will be able to play our last shows there after our final album is released, god willing.


pics credit: Stompin' Ground archive and Hafiz Kamisan Photography