Eight years after the release of their third studio album ‘Colors,’ Bandung-based Mocca is back with their familiar brand of catchy pop tunes in ‘Home,’ now on sale. (Photo courtesy of Mocca)

Mocca Comes ‘Home’ After Eight-Year Musical Hiatus

JANUARY 20, 2015

Mocca’s brand of playful pop has garnered the Bandung band a loyal mainstream following that goes far beyond their independent roots.

Having done a “farewell” concert a few short years ago, the band never really did follow through on their alleged disbandment, instead continuing to perform various one-off shows for the pleasure of their fans. 

Clearly, Mocca’s success — they have released three albums, multiple singles and toured globally as headliners — guarantees that they will be around for a long time. Technology has made it so that the distance created by main vocalist Arina’s move to the United States has little effect on the band’s activities. 

Now, eight years after the release of their last record, 2007’s “Colors,” the band returns with “Home,” a reliable record filled with Mocca’s signature brand of upbeat, whimsical pop. Though not a band that will ever drastically alter their basic sound, the members of Mocca delve into a larger sonic palette than usual, resulting in one of their most crunchiest sounding record to date, with a light propulsiveness that should also get the crowd shaking their hips instead of just bopping their heads.

To launch the album, Mocca performed a multimedia concept concert at the Dago Tea House in Bandung on Jan.9. 

“This was probably the only concert to really provide audio, visual, and scent-related interactive elements,” guitarist Riko says, referring to the olfactory effects provided by event organizers Blackwood Entertainment and Traffic Light.

The album’s first single “Bandung,” an ode to their hometown, picks things up with bright horns and Arina’s descriptively romantic lyrics about the West Java city. Other standouts, such as prospective second single “Changing Fate,” feature waves of crashing cymbals and a forward-moving shuffle rhythm. 

While the foursome’s brand of cute-laden pop may be difficult for harder-music fans to get into in the past, “Home” seems intent on inviting them to join. These are, for the most part, songs that seems written for the stage. 

“Home” features 12 tracks, all featuring English lyrics, which have been Mocca’s calling card since the release of their self-titled debut record in 2002. It was self-produced by the band members, who did most of the recording at their respective homes before periodically sending the files to each other to add to.

As is Mocca’s wont, the album comes in an interactive cover sleeve, which can be folded into the shape of a play house. 

A video of Arina providing a tutorial on how to exactly fold it is also available on the Internet. 

“Home” will also be the first record released under the band’s own label “Lucky Me Music,” though it will still be distributed and marketed by Fastforward Records, the Bandung-based independent label which has released all of their previous albums. 

According to the record’s press release, “Home” features a different perspective for the band, whose members are all now married and with children. 

“Mocca matures like quality wine,” reads the statement, written by author — and Arina’s sister — Dewi Lestari, who also assures that Arina’s move to the states has not hindered the group’s creative process, but has instead resulted in their best album yet. The press release also refers to the record’s “brave, rich, and colorful” nature, with every band member claiming songwriting credits. 

Riko, the band’s main songwriter, says he has grown more confident as a writer, providing the rest of the band material they feel energized about. 

Dewi Lestari describes “Home” as being a reflection of the band and their member’s familial relationship.

“If you have a chance to get to know the band [better], and see their interaction with one another… I am sure you will come to the same conclusion. They are a big family that moves together: warm, funny and... homey.”

For more information, visit Mymocca.com & Ffwdrecords.com.