“I’ll send you a postcard from hell, if in case I don’t get well.” That’s the chorus of “Hypochondriac”, the second cut off A Postcard from Narda, the very first EP from one of the best local bands in the last twenty years. A Postcard from Narda came out in 2002, back when getting fresh new music could cost you a leg or an an arm. There was no Facebook, no YouTube, no Spotify yet at the time. Suwerte, Narda’s second EP followed soon after.
By 2003, Narda have released four EPs already, showcasing the band’s flair for heartfelt lyrics and memorable riffs. Unfortunately, those EPs have been out of print for god knows how long. Lucky are those who have them. Me, I only have them in lossy mp3’s and god knows I even searched for them online and met a few “scalpers” while I was at it. (But alas, I have no luck, it was either the seller just sold them to the highest bidder or I had to make do with a used CD full of scratches.) And while most of their songs are available on YouTube, their albums haven’t been reissued on either digital or physical format. Until…
Few weeks ago.
Earlier in May, Wincy Ong (Narda, Patience Dear Juggernaut) announced on Facebook that A Postcard from Narda is already available on Spotify. Not only that, the songs were digitally remastered by Peavey Nicolas (Sleepwalk Circus) and Jazz Nicolas (Itchyworms). Two weeks later or so, Suwerte was already up on Spotify as well, and the reissues will continue until the rest of the band’s back catalog are all available online. We’re talking about two more EPs, and two full-length albums: Formika and Discotillion.
On May 23, the jocks of NU107 made their reunion live via Facebook (the 90s DJs had their own reunion the previous week). And while I didn’t really tuned in regularly to NU107 during the 2000’s (the internet started to become my favorite distraction around the mid-00’s), I have a few unforgettable NU-related experiences. I was tuned in to NU when Cueshe had their first (and maybe last) NU guesting, and they played “Ulan”, one of their would be hits. This was before most people thought it was cool to hate them. I also taped a live in-studio performance by the Itchyworms at the time they were promoting Noontime Show, and a pocket concert featuring Orange and Lemons.
I’m not sure if this was really in NU (I think it was during the last days of NU107), but Ebe Dancel once performed a cover of “Moon River” and it was fuckin’ perfect. He said his mother used to sing that song to him when he was a kid. It was also in one late night show in NU107, when I first heard Stephen Malkmus’ “Mama” and instantly became a fan. I was able to go and see the NU Rock Awards once, and it was at the time when Orange and Lemons took home the Artist of the Year award. The last song they played that night was their controversial hit “Pinoy Ako”.
So it was great to finally see the faces behind those voices: Trish, Kim, Dylan, Russ Davis. Quark and Diego looks hell lots of fun when they’re together but I can’t remember if I ever listened to one of their shows. The Itchyworms, one of the guests, are still fun to have around, especially with their “vegan” longaniza joke. Rico Blanco and Chicosci’s Miggy Chavez were there too. It was like meeting old friends. Or maybe more like watching old friends get together while you watch and laugh with them on the sidelines.
So, those are the updates; nothing really exciting or Earth-shattering. More like nostalgic shit-posting really. But it was OK, being able to listen to radio once again after so many years it must have been nearly a decade already. On the other hand, Narda aren’t really back together but their music, especially those early EPs, just became “more available” to their fans. There are no bonus materials coming with these reissues, but I’m just happy I could finally download them on Bandcamp. And retire the lossy mp3’s I have on my phone and replace them with 320kbps ones.
SEE YOU SPACE COWGIRL…