IV of Spades and Phum Viphurit dazzled and charmed at Karpos Live 10

IV of Spades and Phum Viphurit dazzled and charmed at Karpos Live 10

These guys know how to put on a show.

Photos by Mohd Sarajan


In many ways, Karpos Live Mix 10 felt like two separate events rolled into one. The headliners, IV of Spades and Phum Viphurit, both have a devout following which don’t necessarily intersect. On that Wednesday night, it was clear: Some people came for IV of Spades, others came for Phum. And perhaps that was the beauty of the whole thing. As the night wore on, you could feel the two camps slowly tearing their fences down, eventually losing themselves to the sounds and sights on stage. The result was a genuine and infectious vibrancy, and it made for an awesome night.

One of the biggest surprises of the night actually came at the very start. The five-piece, soul and funk band, Flu, nonchalantly walked up on stage and instantly pounded the venue with their Motown-flavored jams that left your feet begging to move along to the beat. Soon enough, the whole place was buzzing, with hands clutching beer cups up in the air, swaying with the distant voices singing Get Down along with the band. It was a proper opener; the crowd was hyped  and ready for more.

Well, ready would be a bit of an understatement. I don’t think anyone could’ve prepared for what was to come. IV of Spades, in a bright flash of red, charged through with opener, Sweet Shadow and the show was now really on. 

The band has come a long way since its days as darlings of the scene a few years back. It’s now 2019, a couple of months since they’ve released their debut record, and IV of Spades are at the peak of their powers. On stage, they were just immense, harking back to the old days of stadium and glam rock. Blaster channeled the guitar-gods of the ‘70s with his commanding stance and flying guitar solos, while Zild jumped and flailed the length of the stage to suit. The variety on stage was equally impressive. There were moments to dance to, moments to sing along to, and moments where all I could do was watch in awe. 

With my eyes still flashing from IV of Spades’s set, Phum Viphurit introduced a nice change of pace. While the previous act dazzled with their flamboyance, Phum walked on stage with his bespoke boyish charm that didn’t draw much attention to itself. The Thai indie poster boy just wanted to have a good time. Make no mistake his performance was far from lax. The funky guitars were still there, along with his signature deep croon. Despite my urges to kick back after a long night, I still had some juice left in me to move along to the band’s tunes. Even if I had seen Phum earlier this year, the set still felt fresh to my ears. Hearing my personal favorites, Lover Boy and Long Gone was always going to be a treat, and Phum never, ever disappoints. Despite me having to wake up early the next day, the memory of Phum with his pink bucket hat and his green Stratocaster made it all worthwhile. 

Looking back, I enjoyed way more than I expected to. Despite being a neutral spectator, I eventually saw what all the fuss was about. I was witness to something truly special; a night I’d hold dear for years on end. At Karpos Live 10’s conclusion, I came out slightly hit from all the beer, but wholly satisfied with what I’d just seen. And with IV of Spades and Phum Viphurit on stage, I learned that it’s impossible to expect anything less.



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