KRU is a Malaysian pop group that was formed in 1992. The group comprises three brothers: Norman Abdul Halim, Yusry Abdul Halim and Edry Abdul Halim. Apart from revolutionizing the Malaysian music scene with their unique blend of Pop, R&B and Hip hop, they have successfully established their own entertainment company named KRU Studios specializing in the entertainment and media industry.
Their interest for creating music sparked when they were very young, when one of their aunts bought Norman a keyboard which also attracted his other brothers. They spent their teen years in London, where they were exposed to various genres of music, in contrast to the Malay music scene at that time which was dominated by classic rock and ballads.
The brothers were loyal supporters of the Selangor team and so decided to write a rap tune for their favourite team back when they were originally known as Selangor Rappers' Unit, writing Viva Selangor.
They continued to write original songs, but little did they know one of Norman's college mates sent a demo to EMI. The International Label Manager by the name of Calvin Wong (now Vice President at Warner Music Asia Pacific) was very impressed by the song and called the brothers to audition. Thus, KRU was formed on May 19, 1992. KRU means "team / squad" that cooperate, and there is no meaning behind the letters of K-R-U, but it is also the Malay spelling of the word "crew". Though it is pronounced "K.R.U." and not KRU.
The brothers are now venturing into various types of other businesses that are nevertheless still related to their musical roots. They began KRU Records, a record label and music publishing company, releasing their own recordings as well as those of other artists.
They also produce movies, corporate movies, music videos, publish books etc.
Today, KRU Studios is one of the biggest names in Malaysia. Cicakman, Duyung and MySpy are some of the movies that have been produced by KRU. These productions have received great success in the Malaysian Entertainment Industry. One of KRU's films, Magika, won Best Film at the Malaysian Film Festival. Their other mega project which is the Hikayat Merong Mahawangsa or its international title, The Malay Chronicles : Bloodline was sold to 72 countries worldwide, making it one of KRU's greatest achievement ever. The film also became the highest grossing Malaysian epic film after only 5 days of shows.
1992 - THE DEBUT : CANGGIH
IT was way back in 1992, and rap was the craze then. Vanilla Ice and MC Hammer were huge. Teens greet each other with a “Yo!” Local authorities cry for murder on the so-called rap culture. A lot of rap groups were formed around the same time, and KRU was seen as yet another group jumping into the bandwagon.
Many predicted that they wouldn’t last, as it seemed as if they were just betting on their good looks. Boy, have KRU proved them dead wrong! In fact, KRU is the only surviving rap group from that ‘era’.
Their first album was Canggih, with the song that introduced them to the Malaysian audience, ‘Hanya Kau’. At this time, Norman was KRU's frontman and rapper for the group, and his shy brothers Yusry & Edry almost hidden behind their keyboards. They adopted amusing monikers like MC Normy, Beatman Yus and DJ DD.
Unfortunately for them, 7 out of the 10 tracks in the album was banned by RTM (Radio Televisyen Malaysia) since apparently they have ‘abused’ the Malay language (KRU used a mixture of Malay, English and street lingos in their lyrics). Nevertheless, the album sold almost 65,000 units, thus qualifying them for their first platinum award. Another sweet victory for KRU was the fact that their patriotic (rap) song 20/20 was played at a local TV station daily at that time.
Canggih also features a duet with Seha (of Freedom) in the English track, ‘U Make My Day’ and sampling from Deep Purple’s ‘Smoke on the Water’ in ‘Generasiku’.
U Make My Day
Get In 2 The Hype
Perception of Love
Ain’t Got No Soul
Sekali Lagi (Gadisku)
1993 - SOPHOMORE EFFORT : reKRUed
AFTER the success of their debut album and recognition from the industry watchers on their songwriting skills, the brothers worked on their second album, titled reKRUed.
They returned with an edgier image, posing on Harleys and wearing leather pants (gone were the windbreakers. Phew!). Their sophomore album spawned many memorable hits like ‘Inikah Ertinya Cinta?’, ‘Janji Tinggal Janji’ and the song that shot them to superstardom, ‘Mengerti’. This particular song topped all local chart shows in Malaysia and around the region. ‘Mengerti’ also made it to Juara Lagu 1994 in the Pop Rock category.
Quite an intriguing album, with rap & rock fusion in ‘I.R.A’ (which features legendary Malaysian guitarist Man Keedal, a’la Aerosmith & Run DMC’s ‘Walk This Way’) and even a Malay version of The Pasadenas’ ‘Enchanted Lady’- ‘Gadis Jelita’.
Inikah Ertinya Cinta?
KRU is Wild (Makin’ My Stand)
Di Depan Mata
Go! KRU (t.r.r.g)
Janji Tinggal Janji
1994 - THIRD ALBUM : AWAS
THEIR third effort is the mini-album AWAS, which contains three new tracks, 2 remakes and 1 live recording.
The result? Their first triple-platinum award (for sales exceeding 150,000 units), AIM (Anugerah Industri Muzik) 1995 awards for ‘Best Album Production’ & ‘Best Pop Album’, a fast-expanding fan base, ubiquitous appearances, KRU merchandise and a movie offer. The album was originally meant to be a time-gap filler while they come up with the next full album.
Untukmu ’94 (originally sung by Feminin)
Mengerti (live from Life Center, KL)
E’nuff Eez E’nuff
Janji Tinggal Janji (from reKRUed album - different version)
Di Dalam Dilema
1995 - BEWARE : AWAS da’ SOUNDTRACK
IN 1995, they had a field day (or year) with the word ‘AWAS’. There’s AWAS da’ Soundtrack (their fourth album), AWAS da’ Movie (their debut silver screen appearance) and AWAS da’ Concert (nationwide concert tour sponsored by a cola giant).
It was also through this album that KRU won an AIM 1996 award for ‘Best Vocal Performance in An Album (Group)’.
All of the songs were featured in AWAS da’ Movie and even includes remixed versions of the songs Awas & Di Dalam Dilema.
Sack Da’ Boss
I’ll Be Waiting
Di Dalam Dilema (Latin Mix)
Awas (LP Mix)
1996 - FIFTH OUTING : OOH! LA! LA!
OOH! La! La! was released a year later, and this album won them the prestigious ‘Album Of The Year’ (artiste/producer: KRU) and ‘Best Engineered Album’ (engineers: Edry/Izan/Jon Gass/Martin Horenburg/Steve Hall) awards in AIM 1997.
KRU went to Los Angeles, USA for mixing & mastering of Ooh! La! La! They got to work with people like Jon Gass, Martin Horenburg and Steve Hall, who has engineered albums of big players in the international music industry.
The album showcases West Coast-influenced tracks like Boom! and even heart-wrenching ballads in the form of Balada Hati, apart from hits like the first single Ooh! La! La! and Apa Saja. Another interesting bit is that they introduced their first artiste under the KRU Records stable, Elite, through the song Diari Metropolitan.
Ooh! La! La! earned KRU another triple platinum award (read: sold really well).
Ooh! La! La!
Diari Metropolitan (feat Elite)
Apa Saja Reprise
Ulangkan Sekali Lagi
1997 - COMPILATION ALBUM : KRUMANIA
KRUmania - This is one highly controversial album. From religious uproar for doing a duet with a dead person to the usage of the word ‘MANIA’ for their concert tour.
15 of their best works were included in this album, and of course, three new tracks too. The first single off KRUmania is the in-your-face Fanatik that features Elite, Indigo & DanceKRU. The video clip of Fanatik was a breakthrough at that time, setting KRU’s video clips on a class of its own. The futuristic-themed video clip, directed by Saw Teong Hin costs about RM 40,000 and was tastefully done. It was little wonder that it swept 6 out of 7 awards nominated in Anugerah Video M 1997, AIM’s Best Music Video and became the first Malaysian video to be nominated in MTV Asia Viewer’s Choice Awards!
Instead of simply making a cover version of P Ramlee’s Getaran Jiwa, the brothers decided to ‘duet’ with the deceased legend by painstakingly extracting his vocals from the original song. It was the first of its kind in Asia, and only third in the world, earning them a spot in the Malaysian Book of Records (woo-hoo!). Alas, it caused a major uproar with the powers-that-be and almost caused the song to be taken off the album. It finally saw the light of day when the authorities decided that it was A-OK.
The KRUmania Mega Tour 1997 – their big-budget concert tour also almost got axed for using the word “mania” – believed to promote hysteria & mayhem. After months of uncertainties, the tour was finally given the go-ahead, with the itsy bitsy condition that the word “mania” was taken off and concertgoers were to behave (duh!).
Fanatik (feat Elite, Indigo & DanceKRU)
ManiaMedley (Hanya Kau/Inikah Ertinya Cinta/Katanya)
Di Pintu Syurga (duet with Elite)
Ooh! La! La!
Janji Tinggal Janji
I’ll Be Waiting
Di Dalam Dilema
E’nuff Eez E’nff
Getaran Jiwa (duet with P Ramlee)
1998 - FIRST FULL-ENGLISH ALBUM : THE WAY WE JAM
KRU has always wanted to do a full English album after the release of their debut album Canggih, but they put the intention on hold for various reasons. Well, The Way We Jam was definitely worth the wait.
Why? KRU actually got to sing compositions by HUGE composers from the US, like Babyface, Dianne Warren, David Foster and Teddy Riley! It was an achievement on its own for it wasn’t easy to get these composers to contribute their song to relative unknowns to them.
With big names in the album, combined with KRU’s own masterpieces, the album was released across the region – Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia, Philippines, Thailand, Dubai, Bahrain, South Korea and even Australia. They also went on a regional tour to promote the album and the response was highly encouraging.
First single off the album is The Way We Jam, or More Than Forever (written by Diane Warren) in some countries. London Jones’ For You was also a big hit among listeners across the Asia Pacific.
KRU also secured a lucrative deal with another cola giant who sponsored their album promotions and concert tours, both local (Jammin’ The Nation Tour 97) and regional (Jammin’ the Region?).
The Way We Jam
Every Single Minute
More Than Forever
Leave That Girl Alone
Why Must I Feel Like That
Never Ask Too Much (Of Love)
Do My Thang (Upside Down)
Won’t Look Back
Out Of My Mind
1999 - EIGHTH ALBUM : FORMULA LUAR BIASA
KRU released two singles before releasing the full album as a teaser to fans. They unleashed the first two singles - Luar Biasa and Formula. Both singles were eagerly snapped by fans, some of whom who have been waiting for a long time for KRU’s all-new Malay album (after two years of a compilation album and a full-fledged English album).
In Formula Luar Biasa, KRU decided to go with live instrumentation, unlike their previous sounds that are very much programmed. They have also decided that it’s time for another change – not to put their own photos on the album cover. Thus the cover album shows three babies, but no, not their baby pictures!
A classic from this album: Jangan Lafazkan. Fans seem to can’t get enough of the song and this song became a massive hit!
I’ll Make You Famous
De Ja Vu
What If She Knew
2000 - GONE VIRTUAL : TYCO
IT'S the new millennium and KRU was ready for a (drastic) change. Norman, Yusry & Edry are now Tylo, Yiko & Psylo respectively, using a new name, Tyco (“big brother” in Cantonese). They dropped the bomb on unsuspecting masses with da’ BOUNCE!
Causing a stir within the industry for being ‘virtual’, some parties think it was very innovative of the brothers to think of such things while some jeered and think it’s just plain silly. Well, the gimmick worked wonders, fans loved the music and KRU, through Tyco, secured ANOTHER entry in the Malaysian Book of Records for being Malaysia’s First Virtual Artiste. Bravo!
Tyco gave us unforgettable hits like For You & and a Malay single, Bidadari.
People Come People Go
Saat Ku Pejamkan Mata
Never Trust A Man Again
2002 - REPACKAGED : EMPAYAR KRUJAAN v 2.0
DUE to the huge success of the album, KRU decided to repackage the whole album – they remixed the existing songs to give them a new flavor and throw in four brand-new tracks as well - nicely packed in Empayar KRUjaan v 2.0.
The result? The album sold even more, thanks to their very big hit, Perpisahan Terasing, which is a combination of two golden oldies – The Revolvers’ Perpisahan & Sudirman’s Terasing. The song zoomed its way to the top of the charts and was made the Number One song of the year 2002 in one of the most influential radio stations in Malaysia.
The other three new tracks in this album are U Got Style (their English single with 70’s disco feel), Ampuniku (their first attempt for their very own nasyid song) and a remake of Dr Kronik’s hit Hidup-Hidup Dibakar – now titled Hidup-Hidup Ditipu.
Empayar KRUjaan v 2.0 also comes with a bonus VCD featuring their latest video clips – Impak Maksima & Ucapkanlah, plus exclusive footages of KRU called Potret KRUjaan.
U Got Style
The Belly Dance
Monte Carlo Reprise
2004 - BEST BALLADS : RELAX
KRU released a collection of their greatest ballads from their 12-year career - aptly titled Relax!
The album was released on 31 March 2004, and it was their first album after two years (plus, in 2003, Yusry took the limelight with the release of his solo album, Yusry).
Relax contains 16 of their unforgettable ballad classics, and as an added bonus, two brand-new tracks are thrown in as well - Babe and Di Hatimu (a song written by Edry for his wife). Fans loved it, seeing the other side of KRU with their ballads.
Di Pintu Syurga (duet with Elite)
More Than Forever
Seperti Yang Ku Jangka (duet with Indigo)
Saat Ku Pejamkan Mata
Never Let The Spirit Die
Janji Tinggal Janji
2005 - KRUNISME
THIS album marks the lighter side of KRU, not taking things too seriously.
It is evident in the songs - from the parody of the reality TV show craze in their award-winning music video Terhangat di Pasaran, to the answer back version of Anita Sarawak's Seksis - Seksa.
KRU's collaboration with second runner-up of Akademi Fantasia 2, Adam, proved to be a winning formula as the song shot to all music charts in the nation. Plus, there's an excellent video clip depicting KRU and Adam in a (fictional) Jantan Macho.... la competition - which saw them dressed as fanatic teenage girls and even construction site workers!
Edry even poke fun at Norman, listing down his 4 Syarat for his dream wife. Masih Bersama sees them stringing the titles of KRU's previous hits together in the lyrics. Sampai became a favorite ballad among fans.
KRUnisme fuses the elements of pop, hip hop, rock & roll, R&B and also sees KRU in a more laidback fashion.
Oh, and there's a surprise hidden at the last track...
Terhangat Di Pasaran (duet with Adam)
My Evil Twin
2006 - 10 DI SKALA RICHTER
Last but not least, their last album. But still they are producing new songs and still on going. I'll keep updating on their new songs. Keep in touch.. (^^)v
Buat Hal Lagi (feat 'The Hit Squad')
Lagu Untuk Mamat
(Kena Marah Pun) Tak Kisah
Sehari Dalam Hidup