Rain, go Rain… (please let it rain…!)

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

Ok, with that out of the way…


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.


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. :)


KinkyhOOters In The Raw

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.

Continue reading →


“Pwede bang maging Koreano ang Pilipino?”

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.


80’s, baby!!!

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.


Random Thoughts 001

But first, a call for help…

If there is anyone out there who could tell me how to remove those unnecessary links on the right panel of this blog page, please post a comment or email me at webmaster@bandstalker.com. Thank you!


Pulp Summer Slam Pfft…!

Just when I was all prepared to go into battle for this Saturday’s Pulp Summer Slam V – of course, after being informed that I will be on the guest list of you-know-which-band – I got a text from Alvin the PA asking me if I’m confirmed to show up coz someone is asking for my pass. In fairness to the guy, he did say, “only IF you are not planning to go.” As a matter of fact, I am planning to go, but I felt iffy about the situation, so just to console myself, I just asked him what time will the band play (you know, just so I’ll know if it will be worth it to travel all the way to Amoranto just to see them play 3 songs. It will be better if it’s like last year when their old PA Mike was there early so I was able to enter the premises ahead of the band and I was able to witness Joey ‘Pepe’ Smith rock the stage with Kapatid). He said, “1am”. Yikes. So that means there is a very strong possibility that I won’t be able to see the other bands that I wanna see, anyway (especially POT’s one-night-only performance), so I just decided to let them have my pass. So, no Pulp event coverage this year, folks.

Not to sound ‘bitter’ about it, but it’s times like these when I wish this band still has 5 members, if you get what I mean.


The REAL Band Stalker

Was reading this month’s issue of Pulp and there’s a feature on famed rock-photographer BrutalGrace, who, according to the article, is a “self-confessed band stalker”. Now here is someone whom I can call a ‘kindred spirit’. We do practically the same thing; only, she’s waaay cooler coz now she gets to stalk bands and gets PAID for it. Is that awesome or what.


K-story of the day: I was channel-surfing the other day and chanced upon this historical epic being shown at Japanese channel WOWOW. I gave a yelp when I saw who’s the lead actor: it’s the guy from the Korean film A Moment To Remember, whom I had a major crush as soon as his face appeared onscreen when I saw that movie (I still don’t know his name up to now, though)! I immediately texted Rizza and Marissa about it, but neither of them are familiar with that movie. The funny thing about watching this particular movie, though, is this: Zhang Ziyi is in the cast, so naturally, her dialog is in Chinese. Of course, my oppa’s lines are in Korean. Later on, I figured out that the plot of this movie revolves around the war between Korea and China, hence the presence of both Korean and Chinese actors. And to make it all the more confusing, the subtitles are in Japanese. So pardon me if I won’t be able to comment on how the story went coz I didn’t understand a single thing. The production values are good, though.

Epilogue: a quick search on IMDB.com showed that the movie is titled MUSA, and it indeed revolved around the war between Korea and China. I also saw the name of my unnamed Korean actor, but for some reason, I can’t remember it now. Just look it up if you’re interested.


Advice to newbie fans of Korean movies: if you’re seeking advice from someone re: which Korean movies to check out, make sure you ask someone who doesn’t hate Koreans. Or else you might end up watching a major-snoozefest. Juz’ sayin’.


Razorback has a gig at Halo later! I might show up. My gas, tagal ko nang hindi lumalabas ah! Hindi ba uso ang gigs ngayon?!?!