Hadiah Daripada Hati

Triumph for Estranged

A great show, surprise winners, magic and lots more made the 22nd instalment of the Anugerah Juara Lagu memorable indeed.

It was a night full of surprises at TV3’s 22nd Anugerah Juara Lagu on Sunday. And the night undoubtedly belonged to the “underdog” finalist, four-piece outfit Estranged, which emerged champions taking home both the Song of the Year award and Best Pop-Rock song with Itu Kamu, taken from the band’s debut album In Hating Memory.

The AJL had been aptly themed “magic” and it was almost magical to see Estranged – comprising Azwin Andy Malik (drums), Solihuddin Hormat (guitars), Nor Hanafi Noor Hadi (guitars) and Rich (vocalist), – defeating bigger names in the industry such as Audi Mok, M. Nasir, Aidit Alfian, Hazami and Ajai.

Itu Kamu, a beautiful composition by Estranged and lyrics by Rich, seemed nowhere near in terms of popularity compared to other songs competing in the Pop-Rock Category, performed by the illustrious likes of Datuk Siti Nurhaliza, Misha Omar and Andy Flop Poppy, and Mawi.

Champs: New band Estranged comprising (from left) Din, Andy, Hanafi and Rich surprised everyone by emerging tops in last Sunday’s Anugerah Juara Lagu.

The odds were even higher when it came to competing against songs from the ballad and ethnic creative categories; but Itu Kamu emerge Song of the Year nonetheless.

When interviewed before the AJL, seasoned star and competition finalist Nora had said: “?. the night’s results depend entirely on the judges and what they are looking for? Some judges are looking for something new and different from what we already have in the market.”

Perhaps it was in Itu Kamu, that the judges found that something beautiful, something new and fresh. The judges were Fauzi Marzuki, Syafinaz Selamat, Helen Yap, Farihin Abdul Fatah, Amran Omar and Arab.

Apart from Estranged, Nora also had a victorious night. After being listed seven times in the finals of past AJL competitons, Nora’s Samudera (composed by husband Johan Nawawi and lyrics by Ahmad Fedtri Yahaya) won the best song in the Ethnic Creative Category. Nora took home RM12,000 and a trophy.

Samudera beat Aishah’s for Kasihnya Balqis and Ramlah Ram’s Dirgahayu.

In the Ballad Category, melodious Izinku Pergi (composed by Azlan Abu Hassan, lyrics by Sulu Sarawak and sung by Shahri) won top place and took home the trophy and RM12,000.

Still the best: Jaclyn Victor and Lah Ahmad won for Best Vocal Performance.

The song defeated strong contenders Fazli Zainal’s Harapan, Faizal Tahir’s Mahakarya Cinta, Faizal Tahir’s Kasih Tercipta and a duet by Lah Ahmad and Jaclyn Victor in Ceritera Cinta.

As expected Mawi, who sang Angan dan Sedar in the Pop-Rock Category bagged the best performance award. He received RM10,000 and a trophy for his entertaining show complete with a magic act and costume change! It was truly “hebat” (fantastic), as emcees Cheryl Samad and Farah Fauzana pointed out. Also on hosting duties that night were Ally Iskandar and Faizal Ismail.

The Best Vocal Performance award went to Jaclyn Victor and Lah Ahmad who received RM10,000 and a trophy for their powerful duet in Ceritera Cinta.

Audiences who had turned up at the Putra Stadium in Bukit Jalil – which incidentally was packed to the brim – had the time of their lives; the night was filled with good music and top singers who went all out to show their vocal prowess and creativity.

During the two-and-a-half hour show, music lovers were treated to 14 songs. From rocking with Jinbara on Farhana (Puteri Bumi Kenyalang) to traditional influences on Aishah’s Kasihnya Balqis, Nora’s Samudera and Ramlah Ram’s Dirgahayu, it was a grand show complete with elaborate costumes and dancers, and there was definitely something for everyone.

Energetic: Datuk Siti Nurhaliza performed Destinasi Cinta but failed to take home any awards.

It was extra special to watch Fiq’s Mahakarya Cinta and Bob AF2’s Kasih Tercipta (who replaced Faizal Tahir), and Lah Ahmad and Jaclyn Victor’s Ceritera Cinta as these four held their audiences under their spell with superb performances.

And after all that is being said about the “sad, sorry state of our local music industry”, it was so nice to see so much talent on stage, and a fresh new band emerge the winner.

source: the star online


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