My 10 Favorite Records of the 2010’s

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You can never quarantine the past

Not intending this to be a quasi best of list. Just ten albums I liked/loved more than the others. All which came out between 2010 and last year. Maybe this is more of a personal chart, what music songs records I’ve been listening to for the last ten years. And this doesn’t even include those which were made in the ’90s and the 2Ks. And from the looks of it, guitar/rock music has dominated my listening years, with a few interesting diversions to spice up the mix. Also, the songs are getting slower, less punk, more like “J Smoov”, Soccer Mommy, or Mitski. Continue reading “My 10 Favorite Records of the 2010’s”

20 Songs from the 2010’s

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Night Shift – Lucy Dacus (2018)
I was reading Consequence of Sound’s best rock albums list when I found this song. I was looking for songs too good for me to have missed so I clicked on a few YouTube links. But then of course the list includes Foo Fighters’ Wasting Light, which I think is fine, but no Stephen Malkmus & the Jicks? Just saying, Mirror Traffic‘s way better than Wasting Light.

“The first time I tasted somebody else’s spit, I had a coughing fit. I mistakenly called them by your name, I was let down it wasn’t the same. I’m doing fi-iine”. I initially thought she said ‘feet’ and so I played it again and I was hooked. Y’know, it’s like that song that opens with “I had – no choice – but to kill you”, the kind of opening line Continue reading “20 Songs from the 2010’s”

Thanks To The Moon

91XJC0HUHkL._SS500_And then, Sandwich parted ways with BMG, otherwise known as the Beatles’ record label, went indie, and released an album with five, (take note, not just four but five!) naked girls under a huge umbrella on the cover. Due to strict censorship at the time, under then-president Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, they had to hire the best photoshop artist (before they were called that) not to airbrush armpits, stripes and whatnot, but to clad each babe in digital two-piece. Have you ever wondered why you can’t find a high-res image of the said album cover on the internet?

The album would be called Thanks To The Moon’s Gravitational Pull. (The moon’s gravitational pull is, in layman’s term, the force that pulls things up, the oppossite of what gravity–Earth’s gravity–does, which is pull things down. So the moon’s gravitational pull makes ’em you-know-how, while the Earth’s pulls ’em down, just like in that Radiohead song about a surgeon, “Fake Plastic Trees” I believe it was called.) The album was released to little funfare. It was then that EMI signed the band and re-released Thanks To The Moon, with bonus tracks, but unfortunately with different packaging.

So, no nude babes in digital clothing this time—not this time—not even on the inside of the CD. And for this, the new edition, even with bonus materials included, always gets a rating half a star lower than the original. But the new edition helped Sandwich reach new highs even without smoking pot. “2 Trick Phony” proved that they have more tricks up their sleeve—not just one, but two. Its music video got major airplay on both MTV and Myx. Little did we heard of the original edition. Thus, only true die-hard Bruce Willis fans knew about the original version. Most people I know don’t know about it. Including my mother.

The limited ‘indie’ early pressing of the album, has since become a hardcore collectors’ item, selling on eBay and Sulit for  a whopping JPY 4000 and is only available on import from Japan. Someone must have figured the limited edition thingie back then, bought all the remaining copies and decided to migrate to Japan—just for the extra bucks, or to be more precise, “extra lapad“.

But the album, thanks to the moon, is quite good. Even better than the last one. Liked it better than the last one, has less of Marc Abaya, and less tendency of getting “Sabotaged”. It also has “Masilungan” and non single “Not This Time.”

Sandwich – Debris (2016)

Sandwich_DebrisDebris, Sandwich’s eighth LP, despite having “Kagulo” and “Outlaw,” is a little less than their previous outing—the one which they recorded live, in studio. “Kagulo”, easily Sandwich’s most recognizable hit since “Betamax,” could have been up there with the band’s best album openers—alongside “Sugod”, “Procastinator”, and “Cheese Factor Set to 9”—if only it isn’t the third cut in the album. Instead, we have “Border Crossing” opening Debris, which isn’t just as good. I miss the charred, slow burning eponymous track that opens their last record.

The chorus of “Border Crossing” is a bummer, good thing there’s “Amphibious” to make up for it. Then, we have “Kagulo”, but it is followed by another bummer, the uncharacteristically sentimental “Buhangin.” What is it with Sandwich and beaches? Remember their awful song about getting “Sunburn”? Continue reading “Sandwich – Debris (2016)”

Have you ever wished you were a 90’s kid? FYI, the 2000’s was awesome too!

Note: This was originally written in September 2016, around the time everyone was going crazy over a TV ad featuring the Eraserheads.

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“We grew up listening to the music from the best decade ever.”

                                                             – Lariat (Stephen Malkmus & the Jicks, 2014)

Everyone wants to be a 90’s kid these days. Everyone wants to relive those times when “Pare Ko” hits the top of the charts; when “Alapaap”, “Banal Na Aso” and “Laklak” almost got banned; when Rivermaya premiered their music video for “Elesi”; and when the boys of Parokya Ni Edgar debuted on national TV, wearing skirts and dusters. Nostalgia moves in mysterious ways. There’s probably another Eraserheads reunion brewing around the corner (or maybe that’s just how a certain Telco giant wants us to think and feel). There’s also this rumor spreading around of the band re-recording Ultraelectromagneticpop. But the Eraserheads and their fans aren’t alone on the reunion bandwagon. Four out of five members of Rivermaya’s 1994 lineup had a one-night reunion last January. For some, it was a night to remember, with or without Bamboo; for the others, their wish remains the same – the reunion of the “original” Rivermaya.

We’re halfway past the 2010’s already. It makes me wonder. Are we gonna be nostalgic soon for the previous decade, as we were for the 90’s ten years ago? In case you forgot, Ultraelectromagneticjam came out in 2005, a few days before the 10th year anniversary of Cutterpillow. And if you want to gauge how nostalgic we were back then, just think about this – Ultraelectromagneticjam was a tribute album for a band that disbanded merely three years prior. Yeah, that’s how badly we missed the Eraserheads, specifically the Eraserheads of early-to-mid 90’s (the Eraserheads of late 90’s to early 2000’s? Not much, I guess).

How about the 2000’s? Doesn’t anyone want to go back to the early to mid-2000s? Are we not going to see our collective nostalgia snowball into a Sugarfree reunion? Or at least make the members of Orange & Lemons play together again? Would there be online petitions for the members of Bamboo and Rivermaya circa 2004, to double-bill one big concert?

Continue reading “Have you ever wished you were a 90’s kid? FYI, the 2000’s was awesome too!”

Sandwich – Fat Salt & Flame (2013)

PhotoGrid_1463069239517Fat Salt & Flame opens with grinding of the axes that segues into a series of build up and release – a layer cake of feedback and guitar screech. Around the two minute mark, you start to wonder – either they forgot the lyrics or somebody forgot to switch on the mic. But it never overstays its welcome – it actually feels shorter than its actual length. Pretty much like the whole album.

Fat Salt & Flame marks Sandwich’s fifteen years as a band (or shall I say Sandwich S-marks their anniversary with a BBQ-flavored disc). It’s a celebration in a rock-band kind of way. And there’s no better way of celebrating fifteen years together, than going to the studio to bake your birthday cake.

After the raucous title track, comes Track No. 2, the first single that has a very important message to say – Sandwich is here to stay. Track No. 6 is, for better or worse, typical Sandwich on assault mode. The proceedings take a different turn on Track No. 8. Here, Mong Alcaraz and Myrene Academia take turns on the mic, delivering the sweetest bitter lines on top of Mike Dizon’s skipping rhythm – it’s heartbreakingly beautiful. Ultimately, Track No. 9 closes the album with an epic guitar solo that’s really effing good – they should actually do this kind of shit, more often.

Despite being another birthday bash of sorts, FS&F does not come off as mishmash of things we’ve come to love and expect from Sandwich. This might be intentional since they did that already with <S> Marks the Spot, their tenth-year album. <S> Marks was roller-coaster ride, with small and big surprises revealed in every twisted turn. FS&F, on the other hand, upholds the same narrowed scope and focus of their previous (and arguably best) outing, Contra Tiempo, with a dash of moon dust from Thanks To the Moon’s.