Khana Rung Thawi's electric phin freakout was made available online for the first time just a few months back at the venerable มนต์รักเพลงไทย. Two glorious 25 minute slabs of instrumental molam sing improvising with requisite keyboard washes and drum machine accompaniment, insane enough to fry even the most hardened of fuzzed-out minds. This isn't the kind of epic psych that takes ten minutes to get flying. It wastes no time hitting its stride. Kicking off with rapidfire electronic drums, the speed never lets up a minute, and before you know it, it all abruptly fades out at the end of the tape.
Lam sing is a recent style of Molam which emerged some time in the mid-80s in and around Isan (Thailand's northeastern provinces) and has become very popular there in recent years. Lam sing is a reference not only to the speed and ferocity of the musical style but also to its original roots in Isan's biker fraternity culture. An appropriation of the English word "racing," sing literally means to go racing by on motorcycles. The performers wear gawdy and outrageous costumes and the lyrics are often filled with sexual innuendo. Scantily-clad female dancers, known as hang khreuang, serve as the hype crew. Usually recorded live at festivals, lam sing songs are long because they were orginally a way of speeding through traditional luk thung and lam songs in a medley form. Recently, much has been made in Thailand (and Laos especially) of Molam's loosening morals. Lam sing is just one of many modern styles that has abandoned Molam's traditional lyrics of moral instruction for more lucrative themes as jilted love, carefree partying, and, of course, riding motorcycles.
Here's hoping volumes 1-7 of "Fantastic Festival Sounds of Ban Nong Ko" find their way online soon!