after the fire

26 10 2008

A few pictures from outside and inside the venue during Up dharma Down’s launch last Friday. Why not pictures of the performance? I have none and that’s because I was mostly outside, trying to appease those who couldn’t get in anymore. A decision, as hard as it maybe, i had to make, being that safety and well being of everyone inside was more important than being greedy and just squeezing everyone in.

My apologies to those who weren’t able to get in but i’d rather that than guilt on my head should’ve anything bad happen inside like fire or some other tragedy. Just as well, it was clearly stated that the event was at “8PM”. I even delayed performance time to 8:30PM so there’s not much excuse from those who went an hour, hour and a half later. Traffic i can understand but people should take these things in consideration when planning to see a performance much like if they’re trying to catch a specific time for a movie.

Yes, you can say we should’ve done the event in a bigger venue but that’s easy to say as everything has a price and to add to the already surmounting costs of the limited edition this is not something we could easily consider. Not to mention there aren’t any mid sized venues in this city. As for the album, the normal release is slated for the 3rd or 4th week of November. It’ll be the normal Terno carton packaging for the actual release so for those who want the collector’s edition better act on it while there’s still some left.

THanks to the UDD listers,mainly Ed, Mayee, Bel and Jheysi for their help and to everyone else who made it possible. Special thanks to ADIDAS, Philmusic, RSL, Team Manila, NU107, Living It UP, Jam88.3 Myx and MTV.

NO thanks to the prospective sponsors we sent proposals to who didn’t even bother to get back to us and had the foresight of a paperweight in terms of knowing a good, premium event. What else is new? Comes to no surprise really.

…and the following day Saturday, an equally successful launch at Cubao X by Ang Bandang Shirley for their debut album “THeme Songs”. T’was a fun launch with an early Halloween costume party angle. Combine that with Shirley’s bright and happy sing along pop tunes and Cubao X’s crowd of Lomo/Photography/film/design, hip and equally trendy scenesters and you’ve got a parteeey indeed.Thanks also to Mario Serrano who spun for the kiddies.

Unfortunately my camera died on me and my current phone’s camera capabilities aren’t really spot on but here’s a few pics from it. Congratulations to both bands on their new albums.

open up your mind and let me in

15 10 2008

While the majority of the youth and Filipinos in general are continuously getting derailed in terms of electronic dance music, there is still hope for some of the young uns who refuse to conform, who think and decide for themselves and are open to new sounds, new ideas, new experiences.

I post here a blog entry i stumbled upon from a young, bright lass named Jaja who went to the first DEEP FRIED night last Sept.6. and while she mistook everything played the whole night as all techno ,(actually, it was a combo of deep and tech house and techno), she’s excused. Not bad for a newbie and better than mistaking it for Trance! Kidding…


First Techno, First Balut    Sep 7, ’08 6:18 AM

I went to Saguijo for the first time last night and was introduced to TECHNO (although it became more house-y towards the latter part of the night, er, dawn) at Deep Fried by Groove Nation with Mr. Toti Dalmacion on the decks. It’s definitely not your like your garden-grade exclusive though. That’s for sure.

the place
reminded me of a much cleaner version of xaymaca. hehehe.
lots of posters and murals. baul saguijo -where i bought silver and gold wire bangles (a steal!) was upstairs. small but efficient and well-stocked bar. wood floors. definitely homey. only one bathroom but very clean. and they never ran out of toilet paper! the flush was working. no liquid soap but the water pressure was strong. the walls were a different much more pleasant version of your public washroom vandal. my personal favorite scribble was “god is coming. look busy.” 🙂

the outfits
I haven’t been out to a party party in the longest time and i’ve never been to saguijo, so i wasn’t sure about what i was supposed to wear. i shouldn’t have worried – at all. i could’ve been wearing a baby blue shirt, tiny tiny green pekpek shorts, fuschia tights and sneakers and nobody would’ve even noticed or cared. and yes, someone was actually wearing that – complete with a tiny white shoulder-purse and hair ponytailed  in a matching pink scrunchie. there were people wearing flipflops, stilettos, ruffles, tank tops, leather belts, good ol’ t-shirts, blouses, onepiece safari-type  shorts ensemble, skin-tight jeans, square-legged bottoms, jerseys, dresses, skirts, jackets, scarves, boleros, sweaters, chucks, boots – all heights, too.

I loved it.

the people
all ages and sizes were there. mixed breeds too. drinking water, redhorse, pale pilsen, smlight, cocktails. i was personally enjoying my favorite malibu rhum and coke.

the dancing
i’ve never seen anything like it. people weren’t dancing with each other at all. everyone was facing the dj, doing their own moves. and by own moves, i mean their Own Moves. rocking side to side. rocking front to back, back to front. stomping. clapping. hopping (for lack of a better verb). crazy footwork. swaying. jumping. hands up in the air. hands down by their sides. hands everywhere. no gyrating bodies humping each other like agogo dancers. there was no one common dance step that the entire room would do at a particular part of a song.

It was new. I Liked it.

the music
came from a turntable, a mac book and other contraptions i’m not familiar with. i’m not sure if toti uses discs but i did see vinyl being pulled out and placed back in their case on almost regular intervals. very little lyrics. mostly beats and other stuff i can’t really explain.
let me just say that now, i truly understand the power of a dj – how s/he can make an entire room move. He alone controlled the pace and brought us to different levels -up and manic, steadily rising, steadily falling, slowing, calm, then rise again.
the music was something that would move your feet and pulse through your groin even if you’re sitting at one corner of the room people-watching.
astig talaga.

it was very much different from the dance music i was used to. i still think nothing beats dancing with someone else – may it be one person or two or ten, and singing along to a song you just love. but last night’s environment was a new and refreshing and welcome change.

would i go back? oh yeah. and maybe bring some girlfriends along so i have pretty lady friends to dance and share the experience with.

are you game? 🙂

p.s.  i ate balut for the first time last night too.
i think the yuckiness hype it’s been given is overrated. it’s not that bad at all.
and hella Delish!


Now this is the kind of attitude we’re looking for. Bravo and kudos to you Jaja. May there be more of you to balance the future of this country!

dance with me

7 10 2008

…or just by yourself or with other people. Whatever. The point is to take it all in and celebrate life through music and dancing. This is an advance warning for the second installment of Deep Fried on November 29. I know ya’ll do the right thing. Be there early. Saguijo neighbors complain around 2-3am so make the most of it that by 10pm you should be on the floor warming up and preparing yourself to surrender to the gorgeous grooves and relentless beats.

Help build this new community of discerning electronic fans and dance aficionados together from the ground up just like how it was built back then. Be a part of the quality,underground dance set. See ya on November 29!

your soon to be monthly electronic fix

your soon to be monthly electronic fix

the first and the second coming

3 10 2008

UP DHARMA DOWN’s second on the 24th.

Ang Bandang Shirley’s first on the 25th.

punks vs.chongs

1 10 2008

I'm still looking for old pictures from that time when it wasn't odd to see some people in trench coats or leather jackets in the middle of the day(even summertime) but temporarily this will do,for now. A bit more general, with the preppy, pastel color galore 80's Menudo kind of look than the dour European New Wave visual. It does remind me of current trendy bands though, both local and international. mismatched Chucks, skinny jeans. Ahh, the cycle in music and fashion. What goes around comes around. Scary.

both noun and adjective
An 80’s term of endearment by local punks for new wavers.

Punk1-Huh?Pupunta kang party sa Corinthians? Puro Chongs doon no!

Punk2-di bale Positive Noise yung mobile, nagpapatugtog yon ng “Damaged Goods” at “Wild in The Streets”, pwede na rin!

If Britain had Mods versus Rockers, well then, here in the fabulous 80s there was the amusing Punks versus Chongs division. It wasn’t as bad as one would imagine though and wasn’t even close to the stupidity behind the Rock versus Hip Hop call for arms in the 90s. It was just a loving, slight derogatory term placed upon people who were into New Wave by the local Johnny Rottens and the Sid Vicious’ of the day like they were better because they listened to something harder,noisier, chaotic and rebellious.

I was actually both, a hybrid. I enjoyed Circle Jerks as much as i enjoyed The Lotus Eaters but being that i’m from a different background and didn’t sport a mohawk nor wore a dog collar with rusty nails protruding, i was definitely referred to as a “chong”.

It wasn’t something bad to me nor did i take offense to it. I’m not going to deny i was more into the cool demeanor of a Tim Butler(bass player and brother of Richard-Psychedelic Furs), Martin Fry of ABC, the quirky Mark Hollis of Talk Talk and moreover, the unabashed, fey swagger of David Sylvian (Japan). Heck, at one point i even sported Phil Oakey‘s(Human League) lopsided hairdo. This sense of style appealed more to me than having to put egg yolk on my hair to make it stay up and spikey though from time to time i would be caught wearing PVC trousers,(or something close to it), something narrow and plaid or something with loads of buckles and zippers tucked in a pair of U2 or The Alarm looking boots. Not just for the weekend mind you, but more for school, partnered with the school polo uniform, shirtjack style.

However, seeing Paul Weller in a white trenchcoat, Fred Perry sport shirt with drainpipe trousers and loafers seemed to connect with me more and that’s where the “mod” posturing came about. But to most i was a “chong”.

Still, the group of mobile friends i was with then and i were probably the only ones who could get away playing Hardcore/Ska and Punk/New Wave/Post-Punk altogether. Ex. D.O.A, The English Beat ,The Fall, Dead Kennedys, Seona Dancing (Ricky Gervais) and The Fire Engines etc., side by side for a Punks not Dead party or a trench coat wearing (96 degrees in the shade), allblack,eyelinerheavy,The Cure lookalike soiree. I’ve certainly had my fair share of beer bottles whizzing by, being spat at and given the finger by groups of Punks, and all this, while playing their favorite Minor Threat song or the never fail “Sex and Violence” by The Exploited.

But yeah, still in the configuration i was a considered a “chong” and i was, for the most part. But, was i really one in the Industry “State of The Nation” sense? Check for yourselves and decide whether i was a permanent fixture at the Corinthian club house or whether i have New Wave pedigree and an indie cred… from a sample of records in my arsenal. Click HERE

While the subject’s on New Wave here’s one of the best bands from the 80s in my book. Critically acclaimed yet criminally misunderstood by most.

Yes, you heard correctly. Mark Hollis was singing live over the minus one for this simple video directed by then wonder boy Tim Pope. There is another version of this video btw. The other two, Paul Webb and Lee Harris went on to form O’rang and if i’m not mistaken Paul Webb collaborated with Beth Gibbons under Rustin Man. Sadly, Mark Hollis, after putting out a wrist slasher of a solo effort in the same vein as the last two Talk Talk albums has retired completely from the music business. He should make a comeback. Their last two albums Spirit of Eden and Laughing Stock are considered by many music fans and critics alike as the progenitor of “Post Rock”.

For another excellent Talk Talk video click HERE.