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Neopia's Fill in the Blank News Source | 13th day of Swimming, Yr 26
The Neopian Times Week 139 > Articles > Hikalakas Huge Hits

Hikalakas Huge Hits

by mungo_hardbottle

MYSTERY ISLAND - Hey Mon, there is a new sound arriving from Mystery Island and you don’t have to be there to appreciate it anymore. The Hikalakas are here to introduce this ‘island sound’ to the population outside its place of origin, and they hope to gain mainstream success. But can they do it? Will Neopians like this new music or will they through it out like yesterday’s trash? I intend to explore.

The Hikalakas originate from Mystery Island, which has had an obvious influence on their music, in a great way. With the use of steel drums and the maraca, they really capture the sound of the island and its calm and relaxed mood. Already a major hit on Mystery Island, many critics had said that The Hikalakas would not be able to gain much success past the islands white, sandy shores. However, with the band’s first show at the Tyrannian Concert Hall (the most prestigious stage any band can play at in Neopia) being a sell out success, The Hikalakas look set to prove the critics wrong and succeed in making their music become increasingly popular. Along with many others I went to see the guy’s debut performance in Tyrannia and I thought it was excellent, one of the best shows I had seen in a long time and almost certainly the best first appearance of any group I had ever seen. The Hikalakas don’t suit everybody’s tastes but everyone their really enjoyed themselves. Afterwards I spoke to Skalpo, who is in charge of booking the bands that appear at the Concert Hall and selling the tickets for the show.

‘It was amazing, as soon as everyone heard that their was a new band playing for the first time I had a stampede of Neopets and their owners at the ticket booth trying to buy tickets. Many were disappointed as I sold out pretty quick. I saw some of the unlucky bunch trying to sneak in, but they were no match for Grafney and his team. You would expect this from a band like Sticks N' Stones but not from some unknown group with a style of music most Neopians are not used to. I’m not complaining, the guys made me a lot of Neopoints that day.’

Alongside their hit performance The Hikalakas have released their first album ‘Sounds of the Island’ and it is set to be a big seller in all of Neopia’s shops. After the show I grabbed the album from the souvenir stand and went to go and listen to it. What can I say, for their first album it is excellent. It combines calming and gentle music with upbeat and fun carnival tracks of the guy’s home island. I don’t think it is an album I would listen to often, but after a long and strenuous day I can just imaging sitting on my nice cosy couch in my Neohome listing to the soothing, calming songs. Or maybe even when your low, listening to the big steel drum numbers that really make you want to get up from your seat and dance or at the very least they put a big smile upon your face. Like I said before it doesn’t fit everybody’s liking, so don’t expect to be thrashing your head to their music like it’s a Sticks N' Stones record. This is my personal favourite album to be released for some time.

However that’s not it. Someone has been busy creating merchandise for the group, and busy they have been, with such a wide variety of goodies for you to buy. Everything from The Hikalakas Shirt to The Hikalakas Lamp. If your lucky enough you might even be able to get your hands on The Hikalakas Bottles Of Sand, which clearly has to do with the fact that the guys are from Mystery Island where the bottle of sand is given out daily as a prize by The Tiki Tack Man, another island native. With such a wide variety of merchandise, whoever is in charge of marketing for the group truly thinks that they are going to gain mega commercial success. Merchandising is very important for any band and generates a lot of Neopoints. Every “true fan” has to have their room decorated in the group’s furniture and wear a shirt with their most desired member on it. I spoke to Skalpo about the importance of the merchandise at The Concert Hall.

‘After the show is over everyone goes to the souvenir stand and buys the clothes, a poster, a mug or in this case maybe a bottle of sand. I didn’t stock up much for The Hikalakas, as I wasn’t sure that they would do so well. Now I know that next time they play in The Hall that I am going to need a lot more of their merchandise to please the fans.’

If you have got some of the band’s merchandise from their show in Tyrannia then you might want to consider selling it as soon as possible. With all the hype surrounding the band at the moment even a bottle of their sand will fetch for a good price. Soon prices are likely to fall, after the band has been fully integrated, so get selling quickly.

So what exactly does the future hold for The Hikalakas? One sell out show doesn’t guarantee fame and fortune for life. It can be very difficult for a new band as I found out when I spoke to Jazzmosis

‘The most difficult time in your career is at the beginning, especially when you are trying to introduce a new style of music to the main population of Neopia. One minute everyone loves you and then they get bored and want to go back to recognised music and bands they listened to before. It is going to be hard for The Hikalakas but we wish them the best of luck for the future.’

Does this mean that the group could just fall into obscurity, or can they maintain a bright and successful career? If they want to achieve the latter they are going to have to play with the big boys, like Jazzmosis and the Neopian Philharmonic who have introduced a new form of music to Neopia and still have been able to establish brilliant careers for themselves. The Hikalakas have a long road a head of them and only time can tell how popular they can become. As long as they can carry on producing great quality music and amazingly high-energy performances I am sure that they can achieve great fame. What ever is to happen I wish the guys the best of luck with ‘Sounds of the Island’ and for their future plans.

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