I’m currently on dial-up using a borrowed laptop computer coz my desktop at home finally crashed (I still don’t understand why it always happens whenever I get a bonus from work. This explains why I don’t have any savings; whenever I get some extra cash, my computer conks out. And since I can’t live without it, I have no choice but to shell out some money on repairs and upgrades). So now, I’m trying to survive on prepaid dial-up which totally sucks coz I had to turn off image loading on my browser just to get a speedier download time. And to think I’m only browsing text-heavy sites. Haay…

I totally miss my DSL.

-ooOoo-

Warning: bitch-fest coming up.

Bitchfest No. 1: Still hasn’t seen the Change.

I just saw the last 10 seconds of Change is Breaking Us Apart video by The Dawn. Funny, up until now, all that I have seen of that video is the last 10 seconds – long enough for me to have a good look at Mon Legaspi’s outfit in the video and totally HATE it. Apologies to whoever styled it, but, really, asking Mon to wear a jacket – sloppily, I might add – with an untucked shirt that has a collar that’s waaay up there on his neck… isn’t it too ‘hot’ (not hot as in sexy hot, but HOT hot) for him to wear something like that? And knowing Mon, I bet he’s not comfortable wearing that, either. I don’t know why do they insist on asking him to wear something thick and heavy when he’s already thick and heavy-looking in the first place, plus he’s carrying a heavy instrument. A black muscle shirt and jeans would look perfect for Mon. Just my opinion, of course.

Also, I miss those days when Junboy Leonor would wear Nike apparel from head to foot. Just sayin’.

Bitchfest No. 2: There’s a reason why I watch Korean drama at the wee hours of the morning.

My sister, bless her soul, has this annoying habit of popping in to talk to me while I’m busy watching Korean DVDs. Since I’m no expert in Korean language, I depend heavily on subtitles to understand what I’m watching. And watching a subtitled movie/TV show means giving it your undivided attention. Regardless of whether my sister is talking about something important or not, it’s totally rude to talk to someone while your eyes are glued on the TV set. Ergo, I had to make a choice between ignoring her and continuing with watching my Korean drama, or pausing the DVD (which totally sucks especially if you’re watching a cliffhanger) and letting her talk.

So to avoid meaningless dilemmas like this, I watch my Korean DVDs when everyone else is asleep. That way, I get to enjoy it without anyone to disturb me. The downside to this, though, is that my insomnia just became worse than it had ever been.

Bitchfest No. 3: I still don’t get it.

Spongecola is said to be the hottest band in town. Girls are said to be going ga-ga over them. Even Marc the guitar god asked Yael for his autograph (which prompted some guy to say, “bat ka pa nagpapa-autograph dyan eh mas magaling ka naman dyan??” My sentiments, exactly).

With due apologies to Spongecola fanatics, but I have to say: I still don’t get it.

My friend Therese said it’s because Yael Yuson is cute. I’ve seen the guy, and I wouldn’t exactly call him cute (but then again, maybe he’s just not my type). Marvin Tad-y, there’s a cute guy. Louie Talan, now there’s a totally HOT guy. I’d even dare say Francis Reyes has a certain cuteness in him, coz otherwise, he won’t get all those pretty girls to fall for him. But Yael? Nah. (Again, maybe he’s just not my type.)

Marc gave me an interesting insight on why Spongecola is popular. #1, they’re Ateneans. According to him, Ateneans (and LaSallians) have this school spirit thing going on that they will support anyone of their kind. Thinking back: Parokya ni Edgar, Paolo Santos, Apo, Marc Abaya… I guess he’s right. #2, Spongecola songs are the kind that anyone who can pluck a decent guitar can play. “Pang-songhits”, ika nga. Given the popularity of Eraserheads and PNE, I guess he totally nailed that point. Therefore, I vowed to quit bitching about the fact that Spongecola is not even technically excellent. When PNE and E-heads started, they also kinda sucked in the technical sense. When E-heads got technical, their popularity dropped. Makes sense to me.

-ooOoo-

On a parting note, belated Birthday greetings to Atsushi Matsuura (who didn’t reply to my greeting…hmf!) and Louie Talan (and also to Bono and Vernon Go).

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P%^#(@!!! ANG INIT NGAYON!!!

Ok, with that out of the way…

-ooOoo-

I’m on a Bi high these days. Last Saturday, Marissa and I went on a tour of Binondo, Malate and Taft Ave. “for the love of Korea”. Me, I went there to buy Bi’s albums from this quaint Korean specialty store at University Mall in Taft Ave. called MY ROOM. It’s Korean heaven, I tell yah. Most K-fans gather there not just to shop but also to meet fellow K-admirers. We were even able to meet some people who want to join us for the Korea tour in October. Unfortunately, the only item I was able to get was Bi’s 2nd album >> which was AWESOME. Really, even for someone like me who’s not a hip-hop/RnB person, I loved it. No wonder, most Bi fans think it’s his best amongst the three he has. Of course, I can’t tell since I only have the 2nd one, so I broke my own self-imposed rule and bought something from the internet AGAIN (at the same time, crossing my fingers that Customs will not touch their crummy hands on my purchases again). I got Bi’s 1st and 3rd albums from Yesasia.com; I even went the extra mile and got the Japan pressing of the 3rd one, which has a photo book and a DVD insert. It finally arrived yesterday, and after listening to it, I can finally say that… the fans are right. The 2nd one is the best, IMO.

One thing I can say about these foreign pressings is this: they definitely don’t scrimp on cost of album packaging. All 3 albums have something extra: there should always be, at least, an ultra-thick Cd sleeve with lotsa photos. Bi’s first CD has a mini-photobook and an enhanced CD with desktop wallpapers, screen savers, music videos and behind-the-scene footage. The second one looks like a DVD from the packaging alone. Of course, it has a photobook as well and some discount coupons (which, of course, will only work if you’re in Korea). The 3rd one is the best coz, hello, it’s JAPAN pressing. In Japan, you always have to have something extra. In this case, b0nus cuts, a photobook in addition to the photobook on the inlay (which makes it 2 photobooks. Duh.) and the above-mentioned DVD insert which has two music videos (including the exclusive Japanese version of his song I Do), behind-the-scene footage and a personal greeting from Bi in Japanese (hello, Atsushi, I need you to translate!). For all these extras, I certainly wouldn’t mind paying extra. I got the 1st and 2nd albums for roughly php700, and the 3rd one for about php1,200. Not bad at all, especially since these albums are not available on local record stores.

Sana our local releases are just like this. Hah. Dream on, Paulette.

-ooOoo-

KinkyhOOters will play tonight at Rajah Sulayman Plaza, Manila, with Spongecola. I’m gonna be the manager tonight coz Master Sushi is under some ocean looking at fish. There’ll be some record execs present daw. I hope something good will happen to KH tonight. :)

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KinkyhOOters at Nu107’s In The Raw with Francis Brew
10 April 2005

Apologies for the quality of the pics. My new camera was still held hostage by UPS (or to be more specific, by Customs) and my most recent cam before that, the Canon A75, was already with its new owner at the time of this interview. I had to use my trusty old Casio digicam which is a bitch to use in low light conditions. Well, better this than nothing.

Also, apologies for the delay in posting these. I got sidetracked by my day job and by a certain Korean singer/actor. hehe.

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My 13-year old cousin asks the most amusing questions. She’s currently addicted to K-stuff and actually asked her mom if it’s possible for a Pinoy to become a Korean. As in ide-denounce nya ang citizenship at lineage nya para maging Koreano. Gosh, the things people do to satisfy their obsession (duh, look who’s talking here! Someone who actually went to HongKong to watch a certain Latino singer’s concert!).

I have two friends who are so obsessed with this Korean thing that one of them actually enrolled in a Korean-language school and is currently organizing a group tour of Korea just so they can see where the hell the kissing scene from Winter Sonata was shot or whatever. The other one decided that everything she will use, eat, listen to, watch and, if she can, probably even talk to, is Korean. I’m currently obsessed with Bi, but my obsession, so far, is only limited to downloading every possible stuff I can find about him and actually shelling out thousands of bucks to buy his CDs. Unfortunately, I can already feel the symptoms of being a K-junkie. So far, I have the following:

1. My cable channel barely leaves Arirang now. And if it does, it’s only to catch episodes of Tagalized Koreanovelas on local channels (aside from The Amazing Race and American Idol, that is).

2. Most of the downloaded stuff on my computer has something to do with Korean entertainment. Specifically, Kwon Sang Woo and Bi. Coming soon, Jang Dong Gun and Jo Il Sung.

3. My K-viewing ritual comprised of watching a Korean movie or series while eating a cup of Korean ramen.

4. I can never sing the Three Bears Song from Full House in its Tagalog version. It has to be the Korean version (well, actually, the kids in the house are doing the same thing).

5. I can actually eat kimchi now!

Also, if funds will allow me, I am part of that group tour to Korea in October.

Somebody stop me. Please.

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Finally! After three posts about Koreans, here’s a post that will actually talk about bands.

Aftermath: DWTM Friday Magic Madness party, Metrowalk, Ortigas – 29 April 2005

Featuring: The Dawn, Side A, True Faith and Mojofly.

Yup, you read that right.

First off, I didn’t actually see the entire show as I was busy meeting someone at Robinson’s Galleria (nope, not for a date, unfortunately. Darn it.). My band-stalking co-AFRMer Therese was already there at Metrowalk and she kept me updated at the goings-on thru text while I was at my meeting. I left Robinson’s as soon as she said Side A is already starting with their set (I didn’t care about Mojofly). I figured I only need a few minutes to get to Metrowalk, so I can still catch half of Side A’s set. Unfortunately, it’s my first time to go there commuting from Robinson’s so I got kinda lost and ended up literally walking an extra mile just to get to the correct side of Ortigas (this is one of those days when you just wanna kill Bayani Fernando for blocking off those places where people can usually freely cross the road). While looking for that darn pedestrian crossing, I can still hear Side A playing Tuloy Pa Rin Ako, so I guess I still have time to catch The Dawn’s set – which is the main reason I was there, in the first place. However, I got the shock of my life when I finally reached Metrowalk after less than 10 minutes and found Francis Bru setting up onstage while Naldy Gonzales of Side A is clearing up his stuff. In short, I’m just about a few seconds late. Later on, I found out from Therese that Side A only played 3 songs and packed up coz the keyboard isn’t working (which, much later on, I was told that that is not exactly the real story).

So anyway, here comes The Dawn onstage, and their first song is… I Will Follow by U2. At least they kept the 80’s theme. However, I found it odd that (1) they didn’t play songs like New Year’s Day and Pride, which are usual staples in their other gigs (in fact, they play Pride so often that I actually hate that song now. Hmm… I shouldn’t be complaining then. hehehe), and (2) they played songs from their latest album Harapin. Ok, fine, they have to promote, but, uh, guys… this is an 80’s-themed show. But then, since we consider Change is Breaking Us Apart as an 80’s-sounding song… I guess that’s ok.

On the technical side: ok, I’m keeping this real huh, and I guess I can say this upfront coz this is not The Dawn Community Forum anymore, this is MY blog, so… (why am I making excuses?? anyway…) I didn’t find their playing that night as GOOD. JB and Mon can’t seem to connect, and Francis, while I have a lot of respect for him as a guitar player, I have to say… he still can’t give justice to the Tulad ng Dati riff. Sure, he can do the riff, but he can’t PLAY it, ya know? Same thing goes to Love Will Set Us Free, nevermind that he set his sound to a crunchier tone (to make it sound more like… a Les Paul, maybe?). There’s just no ‘oomph’ to it. But then again, who am I to say these words, it’s not like I’m a guitar player myself… (insert *rolleyes” smiley here). Maybe Kiko, Mon and JBL just had an off night last Friday; who knows?

I still couldn’t get over the fact that they didn’t play Pride.

They did manage to collect a moshpit, though, so I guess it’s still a good gig. I guess I’m just too picky coz I’ve seen waay too many gigs that I can tell the difference between the good ones and the bad ones.

After The Dawn, True Faith came on. They did an all-80’s covers set, which, managed to drive the crowd into frenzy. But since I am particulary peeved at bands that have more than enough original hits to complete a full set but chose to do covers instead just to please the crowd, I must say I’m disappointed in True Faith that night. They didn’t play a single original song. Maybe it’s because… their album came out in the 90’s? Am I right?

Also, I’m disappointed that they played Bird’s Fly (Whisper To A Scream) without the trademark drum lines. That’s what made that song oh-so-cool, guys! (However, Therese later on informed me that True Faith has a new drummer; their old drummer can wing it [pun not intended]).

So all in all, did I enjoy this gig? A little bit. I’m an 80’s kid, and I really enjoyed looking back at my high school days when everything was simple and everyone was sporting gel or Aquanet on their hair. Also, I got to finally use my new camera on a gig. The results were generally good but I still have a lot of learning to do. Hopefully, The Dawn or KinkyHooters will have more gigs in the coming days so that I can road-test my new ‘toy’ some more.

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