Power Slaves – Rich Rock n Roll  
Their website might state '100% rock n roll', and they might take their name from an album by English heavy metal giants Iron Maiden, but there is far more to this Indonesian band than just bombastic loud guitars. Indonesian music fans are known for their appreciation of energetic music, but they also like subtlety.
A classic example of what Power Slaves are capable of can be seen by tapping into YouTube, where there are many examples of their excellent songs. Impian has attracted almost a quarter of a million hits.
It commences with a drum intro, leading to a soft but insistent section of acoustic guitar, the output layered through effects pedals to give a soothing melodic introduction. As the verse unfolds, the video complements the soft rock background, introducing an attractive female who appears to be re-arranging a collection of Disney miniatures (or could a quirky game of chess be in progress?) The viewer's attention is captured by close-ups of this stunning model, filmed in soft focus and highlights. Shortly afterwards two females brandish fireworks. After a cut back to the 'toy chess', the chorus really kicks in, with keyboards and power chords colliding while the vocalist reaches his hands out imploringly towards the camera.
There is nothing original in this soft hard approach – it was pioneered by US proto-grunge rockers Pixies in the late 80s, and brought to the fore by Nirvana. Nevertheless the technique is just as effective now as it has ever been. Just as the verse lulls the listener into a false sense of security, along come the crunching guitar to rouse you from your state of relaxation! While the verse is all wistful shots of the singer and the model, playing chess, then holding hands seductively as they linger over their next tactical move, the chorus is more conventionally rock n roll, showing the Power Slaves on stage, plugged into their amplifier stacks.
By the second chorus the camera is panning over the model lying back, her beauty illuminated by flickering candles. The film cuts to a shot of the girl apparently involved in an argument while hunched over a pool table.
The song approaches a climax at 3:25, when a close-up of the pool balls breaking cuts to a guitar (and the sub-titles state 'Wow'!) The solo is layered with effects, so that a punchy rock n roll lead is tempered with melody. The guitars continue feeding over the vocals, propelling the song towards its finale. At 4:38 a minor chord change drops in, and the piece slowly unravels towards a majestic fade-out.
All in all, Impian is a triumphant example of how a rock band can alter tone, pace and volume, reaching a whole new audience in the process. This is a classic song that would work well in any setting where you were hoping to create am atmosphere – such as a romantic evening in, featuring candles and a sumptuous meal. But the song would work equally well in a live setting, with those powerful guitar lines erupting from speaker stacks.