David Meng – Tinh Phai

Sure, David Meng’s debut, Tinh Phai, will be the lamest album released this year (if not all time), but let gives the dude a break. Despite his limited vocal ability, mispronunciation (he’s not Vietnamese) and karaoke delivery, he is trying really hard. If you get past those three flaws, you’ll hear his passion for Vietnamese shallow pop songs.

My girl and I were listening to his rendition of “Xin Loi Em” while preparing salad for our lunch for the next day. Near the end of the song she had to give in: “Alright, alright! I forgive you.” Whether his sincerity or annoyance was delivered, it worked. So the next time she gets mad at me, I don’t even have say a word. I’ll just play this song on repeat until apology is accepted. When he sings “Nguoi Dan Ong Chan That,” you can feel the honesty even in his stilted flow. Somehow I keep on wanting to hear him busts out “6 cau vong co” (six bars of Vietnamese opera) to completely the sweet and vinegar soap opera on “Anh Khong Muon Lam Nguoi Thu 3.”

“Mac Ke Nguoi Ta Noi” should have been chosen for the title track for the album. It fits him so well. Regardless of what people are saying, David Meng is doing his thang. Hate the game, not the contestant.