Cynation Exclusive: Rock Star Fashion Trends

Most musicians wear something unique on stage or on video to show off their style. In the following interview with Veronica Fashion popular Australian Rock band “Cynation” members talk about their edgy look and the must-have items to looking rock star chic. Vocalist, actor, songwriter and composer Josh Mak has brought his sense of fashion to express his artistic vision. It is no surprise that Josh has been featured on magazine covers and modeling photoshoots. 

Guitarist, actor and musician Simon Lai reveals the meaning behind his tattoos and unleashes his inner rock star by being a confident man and having a stage presence. Guitarist Shah talks about his guilty pleasures and favorite performance. What makes his persona appealing is his humble ways and his guitar skills are impressive. Bass player and martial artist Andrew Teo talks about Cynation‘s new single “Go Louie Go”. Andrew Teo is considered the badass of rock  bass.

‘Dancing Devil’ Debut Single, cover illustrated by Nick Le Blanc, featuring model Tracey Leigh

Cynation‘s debut single “Dancing Devil” is available on iTunes, Google Play, and Spotify.  The track has received great international reviews. Drums are arranged by Bryan Ulric Santa Maria, and Jason Hawkins mixed the song at Rock Hawk Studios. The cover features model Tracey Leigh, and the artwork is illustrated by visual artist and photographer Nick Le Blanc.

Josh Mak Creating Trends

How would you describe your off-stage image?

Josh Mak: My off-stage image depends largely on the seasons. In summer I generally wear t-shirts, ripped jeans shorts and thongs (That’s what we call sandals or flip flops in Australia).

During the rest of the year I generally wear t-shirts and jeans but will add a jacket, coat or blazer depending on the weather. On rare occasions, I do wear suits but my main love is street wear.

Josh Mak, Cynation (Suit by H&M) ©Aaron Mak Photography, ©Enigmatic Pictures

Do you follow trends or do you like to create them?

Josh Mak: Fashion for me is just another form of artistic expression. Like my art I try to have originality in how I approach my style but at the same time I’m also open to new trends if I find something new and creative.

Tell us about the “Dancing Devil” Music Video. What will inspire the video look?

Josh Mak: The Dancing Devil video will be dark, gritty and sexy in style. The song itself is about the seedier parts of society but I find such topics can still be addressed with a touch of class and not come across as crass.

What are your thoughts about how men’s fashion is evolving right now in Melbourne?

Josh Mak: Melbourne is considered by many people as the fashion and arts capital of Australia. It is a cosmopolitan melting pot of creativity and cultures.

All this diversity encourages new and innovative thinking in our home-grown designers. Men’s fashion and fashion in general from Australia is now held in high regard among both Street wear and Couture Labels.

Great examples of these brands that have now achieved international acclaim are KsubiSass & Bide and Carla Zampatti.

Josh Mak from Cynation Band (T-shirt by Sex & Death, Black Jeans by Lee) ©Aaron Mak Photography, ©Enigmatic Pictures

What are your go-to’s?

Josh Mak: I’m a huge fan of jeans, they are my number one go-to. A good jacket and a nice pair of Converse Chucks are also a must have for me.

What is your favorite brand?

Josh Mak: Most of the brands I love are local street wear labels such as Ksubi, Tuesday Night Band Practice, Sex & DeathChronicles of Never, Sushi Radio and Arthur Galan to name a few.

What do you do to stay in shape?

Josh Mak: I do a daily workout regime that mixes up calisthenics and free weights.

All my training is done from home and can also be done without any gym equipment. This makes it easy to stick to the routine even when I’m traveling.

Josh Mak, from Cynation band (Denim jacket by Gstar, White Tee by Industrie, Jeans by Ksubi) ©Aaron Mak Photography, ©Enigmatic Pictures


The meaning behind Simon Lai’s Tattoo

Define what it means to you regarding being a confident man?

Simon Lai: Believing in your fashion sense and as you wear them like how you trust yourself, it will bring out the flavour of a confident man.

How would you describe your off-stage image?

Simon Lai: Casual, Presentable and comfortable.

What is the meaning behind your full sleeve tattoo?

Simon Lai: My tattoos are basically telling a story of why I got into music and dedicated my life into it. In short, it is a tribute to my mother and having my own “voice” in what I do.

Guitarist, Actor, Musician Simon Lai (Cap by Jordan, Shirt by Normadic, Jeans by Sushi Radio) ©NADGE Photography

What’s a favourite piece of clothing or accessory you always wear? What are your 3 must have items?

Simon Lai: Probably my ring and the two hair bands I wear on my right wrist, don’t ask me why, I guess it’s a habit. 3 must have items would be, necklace, watch and ring.

If you were to design one thing for men this year regarding fashion, what would it be?

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Simon Lai, Cynation (Cap by Jordan, Shirt by 13 Percent, Jeans by Other, Shoes by Jordan, 1 Retro David Letterman) ©NADGE Photography

Simon Lai: A good cut for a sleeveless tee. Yes, it is to show off my full sleeve tattoo. hehe.

What are your thoughts about how men’s fashion is evolving right now in Singapore?

Simon Lai: It’s pretty much following the Korean wave in a sense that a lot of the younger men are dressing up like their favorite Korean stars. But most of the time due to the weather here, we wear what looks good for one layer, anything beyond that would be a hot mess.

Do you have a favorite festival or venue you have performed at?

Simon Lai: I love Singapore, the fans, the culture, and the energy here is amazing. I particularly enjoyed playing at Hood Bar and Cafe as it’s my home ground as well as places where I perform like, Wheeler’s Estate, Beer Exchange, Shuffle, Shanghai Dolly and not forgetting where I started, Dragonfly. As well as events such as Clark Quay’s Music Fest and Wheeler’s Music Fest.

What is your favorite brand?

Simon Lai: My favourites include Depression, Other, Sushi Radio, Bershka, and any designs from H&M. I am a huge fan of Jordan shoes and I have a collection of Jordans

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Simon Lai, from rock band ‘Cynation‘ (Jacket by Depression, Shirt by NCE, Jeans by Other, Shoes by Jordan 4 Retro Oreo)

Shah’s Guilty Pleasures

Do you have any tattoos? What is the meaning behind them?

Shah: No..I’m afraid of needles hehe. But if I do, I would like a tattoo of a snake, python coiling onto the wings of a dragon. Why? Because according to the Chinese horoscope I was born in the year of the snake, 1977 but my birthday was actually on the January 24th so that actually makes me a dragon instead because I’m about a few weeks younger to be the actual snake. So I’m kinda like a dragon snake.

What are guilty pleasures food wise?

Shah: A big piece steak with real brewed coffee and a thick fat authentic cigar to go along after that.

Cynation Guitarist Shah

Do you have a favorite festival or venue you have performed at?

Shah: Yeah, there was this great festival called Metal Fest back in Singapore I did with the boys when we were still called “Cynical Annihilation”. And, one more rock music festival I did with a different band also in Singapore, where we played a stadium venue which also featured big time Malaysian rock acts.

How would you describe your off-stage image?

Shah: I’m a simple person usually with a shirt or a tee and jeans. I love boots like those from Caterpillar, Doc Martens or Red Wings. Those are the things I wear anywhere possible.


What is your favorite fashion brand?

Shah: I don’t have a preference really. Anything that looks cool on me, I’m game.

Is there one product that you can’t live without?

Shah: Let me see…ah the computer. Because I did mostly everything with it especially these days I’m using computers to do my guitar stuffs a lot.

How did you feel when you did your first ever performance?

Shah: I feel like God has answered my prayers.


Shah, Cynation


What keeps Andrew Teo motivated

What key styles or pieces should a rock star have in his wardrobe?

Andrew Teo: I think it’s important to have a nice pair of fitted jeans and definitely a pair of leather boots.

How would you describe your off-stage image?

Andrew Teo: Normally I would go for T shirts with a pair of nicely fitted jeans. I like odd shaped articles of clothing, like long shirts and oversized oddly cut shirts. I’m a shoe-fiend so when I am out shopping for clothes, most of the time I would normally end up at the shoe section or shops that sell shoes. I like Jordan’s, my favorite being the Jordan 5.

What is your favorite brand?

Andrew Teo:  My favorite brands at the moment are Depression and NCE which are brands from Singapore. I like Sushi Radio and ASGER JUEL LARSEN as well. One of my close friends runs a clothing store call OCD Empire in Singapore and normally when I need to get new threads I would pop by his store to have a look at what’s fresh. I often shop at SECTS Shop as well which is located at the same building.

Andrew Teo, Cynation

If you could travel anywhere, where could you go?

Andrew Teo: The Band is currently trying to share our music and expand our fan base to as many places as we can. We are currently planning to do a tour around Australia and in the near future also debut in USA and Europe. During My last trip to Australia the band did a mini road trip to places like Bright and Balarat. While there, we were looking at venues and places and commenting that it would be fun to play a show at those venues.

I love traveling and have been to places like China, Taiwan and Thailand. The music scene is very big in those places and the band would definitely make plans to tour there as well.

Andrew Teo, Cynation

What keeps you motivated?

Andrew Teo: I get asked this question a lot. How do I avoid getting burned out from all the work and how I stay motivated to keep pursing music. The one thing that keeps me motivated is my love for performing and creating music. There is a magical feeling I get when I am on stage. It is hard to describe, just being focused and lost in the music. I like to watch concerts and learn new techniques as well. When I am free I like to go to music venues and check out other bands and musicians and just listen and see what I can learn from other musicians.

Where I can I like to share what I know to the new and younger musicians as well. It was tough growing up learning music in Singapore as there wasn’t many people willing to teach and impart their knowledge without a fee. Whenever I can, I like to share my knowledge with musicians who are starting out and encourage them to pay it forward in the future and guide the new musicians.

Any upcoming projects you are working on?

Andrew Teo: I’m not allowed to say too much but I will say that I just recorded the bass parts for our new single “Go Louie Go”, which will be released soon. Do check out our website for more information and our YouTube channel Cynation TV.

Bass player of Cynation, Andrew Teo


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