Today, Malaysian artist and producer alextbh has released his highly-anticipated debut EP, The Chase, out now via EMPIRE. Stream the EP on all platforms now here. Watch the official video for new single and EP title track, “The Chase,” here.
In an exclusive breakdown of the EP in its entirety, watch the
WATCH THE VIDEO FOR NEW SINGLE “THE CHASE” HERE
Track-By-Track video showcasing Alex delving into the inspiration and depth behind each of the EP’s songs here.
Speaking on new single “The Chase” and its accompanying video, Alex details:
- “I usually write songs that come from a place of hardship and pain. But for ‘The Chase,’ I felt empty. There was this void in me I was trying to understand after spending a good amount of time in casual relationships and finding myself shutting out guys who were well-intentioned though I couldn’t bring myself to explore something deeper with them. Those relationships, in their totality, were ‘the chase’ – it starts and ends there. The music video is meant to portray the moments after a casual hookup – melancholy scenes of the outside world juxtaposed with flashbacks of the experience veiled in feelings of disgust, like ‘why did I do that?’ A lot of queer people go through this persistent detachment in relationships. It could be the result of the lack of emotional affection we’ve received that leads to this mess. I don’t want to think about a 5-year relationship, but deep down that is probably what I want. And if I keep leaving this ugly trail, I don’t think that idea will ever be attainable. Only time will tell.”
The Chase represents Alex’s first official body of work and is a landmark moment for the rising artist whose prior releases have amassed 50 million+ global streams. Towing a line between forward-thinking R&B and slick dark pop, much of The Chase is self-written and produced and marks the culmination of a breakout year for the rising artist.
Alex began teasing the EP December 2019 with early single “superstore,” a sultry track that sparked love from outlets like FLAUNT and Billboard, and he performed the track in a live session for MTV Asia as their April 2020 Spotlight Artist. Single “Moments” followed in spring 2020, which EARMILK coined “electric R&B wrapped in liquid pop gold,” while Billboard described it as “a smooth and hypnotic electro-R&B escape.” This May, Alex released sexually-charged single “Between,” which UPROXX to praised for its “piercing melodies and down-tempo grooves.”
The EP has sparked widespread acclaim with strong support at streaming platforms, landing on the cover of Malaysia’s ‘Top Hits’ Spotify playlist and the ‘Rising Pop’ Tidal playlist. Alex was also tipped by i-D in their feature spotlighting Asian musicians defining a new era, describing his songs as “witty and weird, compelling and accessible pieces of worn-in pop.”
This spring, Alex was a featured performer on 88rising’s online music festival ASIA RISING FOREVER celebrating Asian talent from across the globe, which drew love from outlets like NME, HYPEBEAST, and Billboard. He will be included on 88Rising’s upcoming compilation album with a Cigarettes After Sex cover, out July 27. Alex was also invited by PAPER to guest DJ on their curated night of Club Quarantine, a Zoom party inspiring strength in the queer and queer-allied community amidst the pandemic. Alex also participated in IDENTITY: Project Blue Marble, a livestream event benefiting United Way Worldwide’s COVID-19 fund, which was covered by Bandwagon.
On the live side, Alex has already shared stages with the likes of Khalid, Sevdaliza, and Jess Connelly, and most recently joined Yuna as direct support on her European tour. He has also played festivals such as Good Vibes Festival in Malaysia, Laneway Festival in Singapore, and Lalala Festival in Indonesia.
Running off a string of successful single releases, including early track “Stoop So Low,” which has garnered 20 million+ streams alone, Alex is poised for a big year. Singles “still mine” “walls,” “no space,” have also landed Alex multiple covers on Spotify Malaysia’s ‘New Music Friday‘ playlist, as well as the latest cover for “Moments” below:
Proudly queer, the Kuala Lumpur native is an anomaly among a highly conservative Malaysian society where the government has outwardly condemned the LGBTQ community. For Alex, music is not only an outlet for resistance but a platform to incite change.