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MY PHNOM PENH: VANNTIN HOERUN

Vanntin Hoerun
Vanntin Hoerun, 22, is the frontman of local deathcore band Sliten6ix

MY PHNOM PENH: VANNTIN HOERUN

Vanntin Hoerun, 22, is the frontman of local deathcore band Sliten6ix. Bennett Murray talked to the Phnom Penh native about his favourite ways to jam around town

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PLACE TO PERFORM
It [used to be] Show Box, but right now, because they have received a lot of noise complaints from neighbours, that restricts the live music. Apart from that, it would be Sharky. Even though I got banned from there, I still have the utmost respect for them. When Sliten6ix started performing … Sharky was the one that never questioned us, and said: “You guys can play? Come in.” I got banned because I would get pretty aggressive. I would get into my own zone when I was performing. I smashed a microphone a couple times and almost knocked over the soundboard. Most people say that’s rock ’n’ roll and all, but they’re nice enough to let you play. [But] their property is their property. Do I regret it? Kind of.

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STREET STALL
Me bok kray vean, which translates to “vegetarian noodles behind the Royal Palace”, they make this amazing mushroom [noodle dish]. Alma, my wife, didn’t like mushrooms before, because it was all slimy and s—t, but this Chinese mushroom is dark and doesn’t have the hat or anything. It’s pretty dense and it’s not slimy at all – it’s like chewing on a fake version of meat. They will give it to you in a noodle soup or serve it on its own. I became a vegetarian because I was on YouTube when I was staying up all night, and I saw a video on PETA [People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals], and I saw this footage of animals being slaughtered. I hadn’t slept for a while and saw this footage and thought: “F—k man, I’m eating this pig’s feet right now.” But I’m not going to say I’m a really strict vegetarian ... I don’t like to preach or anything.

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DOCUMENTARY
I wouldn’t say it’s my favourite because I don’t watch a lot of documentaries personally, but the one that actually struck me so bad was that documentary Don’t Think I’ve Forgotten. That documentary inspired me a lot to see the change of how we used to be and how we were f—ked, and the remnants and the influences and impact of the Khmer Rouge. The ’60s or ’70s old-school rock ’n’ roll, I don’t know a lot about it, but I’m keen to actually rediscover it. There’s one particular guy, Yol Aularong, he just stood up for everything I’m standing for.

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KHMER BAND
The current music? F—k no. The plagiarism can go decay and rot in the soil of my own faeces. They will take a popular Thai song and remaster it, and just translate it into Khmer. Even the choreography is the same, the outfits and everything. But Underdog are pretty good. They do covers of the old school Khmer rock ’n’ roll, and I like that because they come out and say: “Oh, we’re doing covers” – that’s great for me rather than just plagiarise. I’ll kick them in the head if they [plagiarise], but they don’t so I respect them for that.

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PLACE TO PRACTISE
Links to the Muse [52b Street 143] is pretty good. It’s a music shop that sells instruments and everything, but it has a jam room upstairs, so you can pay $11 an hour to jam there. The instruments and everything are pretty good. [It has] AC, friendly staff and they know me. It’s a pretty good place to hang – we can bring beers and everything. But I don’t consider myself able to play anything. In my mind, I’m good enough at drums to scare the kids, and the kids are people who don’t know how to play. If you have a very amazing jazz player who watches me, he probably says: “Eh, amateur.”

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