Energy (band)

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Energy
Genres Alternative hip hop, Rapcore, Pop rock, Mandopop, Dance
Years active 2002 - 2009
Members Ady
Penny
Joe
Xiao Gang
Past members Milk
Toro

Energy is a Taiwanese pop rock boy band formed in 2002. The original band consisted of five members, namely Milk, Ady, Toro, Penny and Joe. Toro and Milk left the band in 2003 and 2005 respectively. Xiao Gang joined the band in mid-2007. The band disbanded in 2009.

History[edit]

Early years[edit]

Five-member Energy had a distinctive Hip-Hop sound, which is sometimes mixed with electric guitars, like in their breakout hit "Let Go" (放手). Energy incorporates dance cheography to perform their up-tempo tracks, often compared to dance performances of Korean boy bands. Energy also has slow ballads like "Love Me for Another Day" (多爱我一天) and "One Day" (某年某月某一天). Energy's popularity grew at a time where other mainstream Taiwanese boy bands like 5566 and K One emerged. Energy had a fan base of mostly goth fans and people who liked Japanese rock, but also attracted a mainstream audience.

Energy's first studio album Energy! Come On! was released within the same year of the band's formation. The cover of Korean boyband Shinhwa's "Come On" had a huge publicity in Chinese pop culture, and caused controversy between Shinhwa's and Energy's fans. Shinhwa fans claimed that Energy copied Shinhwa's dance moves and musical style. The two bands themselves were not in conflict. This album contains mostly up-tempo songs, but also has ballads such as "Loving You the Second Time" (第二次愛上你) and "Never Say Goodbye" (永遠不說再見).

Their second album, Invincible, features the title track "Invincible" (無懈可擊), which is a cover of jtL's "Enter The Dragon". This track continues the band's signature rapcore and dance style. The single "Love Me for Another Day" (多愛我一天) is the best selling single throughout Energy's history, so much that Energy was labelled as a one-hit-wonder in view of this song. Other notable songs include "Boom", advertising Converse, which is a cover of metal band Saliva's song. "Ra-Men Song", advertising a brand of instant noodles features Singapore's Terry Lee rapping with Energy in English. Ady injured himself while filming a music video for the album, and had to give their Asian tour a miss. He also missed out on the filming of music videos and promotional videos for the album.

Their final album as a five member band, E3, was released shortly after. The single "Capturing Evil" (退魔錄), a Triple 8 cover, is the theme song for an online computer game. Like the previous two albums, ballads were the minority of the tracks. The music video for "Only Me" (只有我) shows Toro behaving coldly towards the other bands members. Although the scenes in the video are obvious scripted acting, Toro left the band not long after this video was released. He formed a new trio called "Typhoon" (Chinese: 台風), of similar musical style to Energy. This other band has only one album - titled Overflow (Chinese: 天大地大) - to date.

Four members[edit]

Without Toro, the band's popularity declined. The musical style of four-member Energy lacked the Rapcore sound which attracted most early fans. The remaining members continued their career with a Greatest Hits Collection entitled Energy 4 Ever, which contained four new tracks and two mash-ups of their previous songs. A limited edition of this album contains a VCD advertising Michael's Dance, a television drama Energy was shooting at the time. Touring by the band proved "tough" as Toro's lines had to be covered by the remaining members. Energy expressed that they were optimistic about the situation, and even joked about Toro's departure during public events.

In 2004, Energy launched their first idol drama serial titled "Michael's Dance" (Chinese: 米迦勒之舞). This was seen by the media as an attempt to revive their popularity. Its original soundtrack (OST) released contains songs recorded by them, including "Hey You" and "I Hear the Angels Sing" (我聽見天使歌唱). "Hey You" contains heavy rapping while the latter track was a melodic ballad. Both songs, and "Dark Times" (黑暗時期) has slight Biblical references. The soundtrack also contained songs by other artistes like Sugababes and DMX. A notable track is "Let's Go" (一起走吧), which is performed by Energy and Show Luo (羅志祥). Penny sang a solo track for this show titled It Isn't Raining (Chinese: 天空沒有下雨). This song is not included in the soundtrack, nor released on any other CD. This song was performed by Penny himself in Energy's FINAL FANTASY concert.

The album FINAL FANTASY (最後的樂園), released in 2005, signaled the end of a four member band. The singles "Heaven and Earth" (天與地) and "Taste of Tears" (眼淚的味道) had a more pop sound compared to early Energy music. This album FINAL FANTASY was criticised for using an excess of freestyle battle. The music video for Heaven and Earth has Ady trapped in a castle, and the other three members saving him. This seemed to allude Only Me and Toro's departure, telling fans that Ady was leaving the band. During Energy's Asian tour, fans tried to persuade the band to not disband. A documentary of this effort is released in the second edition of "FINAL FANTASY". After a series of FINAL FANTASY concerts, Milk turned to his solo career, which included hosting, advertising, and recording his first EP, titled "Puppet", which was released in 2006. Milk released his first solo album in 2008.

After the four man split, Energy attended several award ceremonies without Milk. They only performed their award winning hit "We" (我們). The announcement of a new album New Generation (猩人类) with a new line-up confirmed that Milk was no longer in Energy.

2006 to Present[edit]

After a year of inactivity, the three-member Energy released an album titled New Generation (猩人类) in mid-2006. This album has a more rock sound, slightly different from what Energy had always been. The cover song "New Generation" (猩人类) features them dancing with extended arms, matching the ape-man theme of the album. The hit ballad, "Love Went Out of Control" (愛失控), is a cover of "One" by Korean boy bandTVXQ. The lyrics for Love Went Out of Control is written by Penny. This fact was emphasized by the band during live performances because Energy was criticised for not writing their own songs, and repeatedly covering other band's singles. The most notable track, "Quick Kill" (秒殺) is written by Taiwanese rock band MayDay (Chinese: 五月天). The two bands met in a charity drive in Singapore, and MayDay agreed to compose a song for Energy. MayDay sings in the song and appears in the music video. The last song of the album, "Defeat" (打敗) is written by well known songwriter Chou Chuan-huing (Chinese: 周傳雄). He, too, lends his voice. In this album, Energy distinctively dropped the rapcore style they had in their previous albums. However, Penny still gets to show off his rap vocals, at a time where rap was decreasing in popularity in Taiwanese music. The band's logo is revised, despite having an iconic logo for five years. China's release of this album has two songs taken out because of "inappropriate content". One of the removed songs was Quick Kill, Energy's collaboration with MayDay. The band remarked in an interview that it was a "pity that the China audience don't get to enjoy the full album".

In mid-2007, Xiao Gang came as an addition to three-member Energy. Xiao Gang had helped Energy and K ONE to come up with dance moves, and reportedly is Penny's close friend. On tour, Energy described the addition as a move to make the band "more complete".

Energy's latest 2007 album, Born To Be Bad (天生反骨) was released on 22 October 2007. The album received generally positive reviews. Energy was praised for being 'more vocally sound', and having 'unique musical ideas'. The title track "Born To Be Bad" (天生反骨) received huge radio play and publicity because of its unique mix of hip-hop and rock. Energy's recording company initially didn't want the band to incorporate dance for this song, but Energy managed to convince them otherwise. To train their dancing skills, Energy came up with an exercise routine called the "Requires three thousand lives" (Chinese: 要你三千命) "Too Much Freedom, Save Me" (太自由救救我), a track similar to Born To Be Bad contains heavy drum beats and guitar riffs. The lyrics of the single "Stars" (星空) are entirely written by Joe and Ady. Another melodic ballad, "Promise Me" (答應我) had a musical style that was similar to that of their earlier ballads.

Members[edit]

Current[edit]

Stage name Birth name Date of birth
English Chinese Romanized Chinese
Shuwei 書偉 Chang Shu Wei 張書偉 (1980-11-04) November 4, 1980 (age 33)
KunDa 坤達 Hsieh Kun Da 謝坤達 (1982-03-18) March 18, 1982 (age 32)
Edy 阿弟 Hsiao Ching Hung 蕭景鴻 (1982-07-21) July 21, 1982 (age 32)
Ice 小剛 Tang Chen Kang 唐振剛 (1983-10-13) October 13, 1983 (age 31)

Former[edit]

Stage name Birth name Date of birth
English Chinese Romanized Chinese
Milk 牛奶 Yeh Nai Wen 葉乃文 (1979-09-02) September 2, 1979 (age 35)
Toro Kuo Wei Yun 郭葦昀 (1981-10-02) October 2, 1981 (age 33)

Discography[edit]

Studio albums

References[edit]

External links[edit]