Kyoto Protocol

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Not to be mistaken for members of Greenpeace, Kyoto Protocol are a five-piece outfit based in Malaysia who kick-started a renaissance of Rock & Roll in Malaysia. It was formed by a core of long-time friends who decided to see how far they could go as musicians. Since their humble beginnings playing covers in local bars in 2009, the band reached a turning point when they unexpectedly won 2nd place in the Yamaha Asian Beat Malaysian Finals. It was not long until they got heads turning and ears listening with their no-holds-barred amalgamation of punk, rock and roll when they opened for MGMT’s maiden KL concert.

In 2011, the band released its debut album which was aptly titled "An Album". This release was a local success as singles "Pussycat" and "Never Know" clinched the number 1 spot on various radio charts on the Malaysian airwaves. The success of "An Album" snowballed when the band was nominated for "Best New Artist" in Anugerah Industri Muzik 2011. This was soon followed by another nominated for "Breakout Award" in the Shout Awards 2012.

They rode this wave to score spots at regional festivals in Malaysia and abroad such as Baybeats in Singapore, BeastieRock in Taiwan, Rockaway and Urbanscapes in Malaysia. This paved the path for them to play a coveted slot at Future Music Festival Asia 2013, where they performed on the same stage as other international acts such as FUN., Bloc Party, The Temper Trap, and PSY. This particular performance yielded favourable reviews from the media that suggested that the band held its own, even on a stage with Grammy nominees and YouTube record-breakers.

The band's path took a turn in April 2013 when they were selected to be part of Versus, a reality battle of the bands TV show in Malaysia, where they were pitted against other Malaysian bands of higher stature and pedigree. Alongside the additional exposure from being on national television, Versus marks the first time the guys performed songs in the Malay language. In the true spirit of the underdog, the boys made it all the way to the Versus final, an event witnessed by millions via their TV screens and web players but lost at the final hurdle. Nonetheless, the band could hold their head up high from beginning their journey as the minnows and transitioning into giant-killers in the span of 2 months.

The competition also yielded the band’s first Malay single, “Jelita” featuring Liyana Fizi to aplomb. It was quickly picked up as the theme song for “Autumn Dihatiku”, the first direct-to-web drama on the media giant Media Prima’s online platform Tonton.com.my. “Jelita” was released as a ground-breaking “Pay with a Tweet” download on the 1st of July 2013 which offered the mp3 version of the song for free in exchange for a post on the popular social media platform. This unique delivery method had clear benefits with over 1,500 downloads being disbursed on the first day. The song is also on heavy rotation on HotFM and SuriaFM which boasts a combined listener base of 5 million listeners a week based on The Nielsen Company’s research findings.
To put the icing on the cake, Kyoto Protocol was chosen to open for The Killers for their first concert in Malaysia by their management. They have gone pretty far for a bunch of kids who just wanted to play music, but it is absolutely clear that their journey has just begun.