Sunday, April 19, 2015

Setting the record straight

7:39 PM

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Summer has descended, and so has the supervillain of the tropics: the heat. The sun’s ultra-mega-life-sucking powers have sapped the energy from all the cool kids in the city – but from the baked concrete of the Bonifacio High Street Amphitheater, a new superhero sprang into action: Satchmi Vinyl Day!

Sure, Vinyl Day didn’t have super-cooling rays or an epic battle with the sun, but it did have this: vinyl records on sale, liquid nitrogen ice cream, some handcrafted drinks, and an insane line-up of musicians performing.



Devotees of the vinyl record made their pilgrimage from all over the Metro. The siren call of records on sale called many into the heat, joining a frenzied conga line to the cashier, getting longer and bigger like the Hungry Caterpillar – almost three decades too late, some would say.

Those who weren’t getting their hands on vinyl records were out celebrating what they were all about – music itself. A kicking lineup of bands let loose the beats of drums and the sweet strumming of guitars for the growing crowd to sway and tap their feet to.

Beating the heat was an uphill battle won as the sun sank beyond the horizon of buildings to the music of artists like Ourselves the Elves, Jensen and the Flips, The Cohens, BP Valenzuela, Tandems ‘91, and Ang Bandang Shirley.

The Thing got to ambush these victorious music warriors after their sets to ask them what they think about old things still being cool.



BP Valenzuela
Can you name a band or a gig you’d go back in time to watch?
The Bangles in their heyday!

Do you collect vinyl records or really like them?
Yes! I like them more when they’re old records, because new records are mastered like CDs, while old ones are really made for record players

What do you think of old things like vinyls coming back in style?
I like that people are starting to appreciate the physical form of music again. It’s nice how they’re going out of their way to listen to stuff even if they can just get it online now.



Ourselves the Elves
Aly Cabral, vocalist and guitarist
Can you name a band or a gig you’d go back in time to watch?
Fleetwood Mac or Nirvana.

Do you collect vinyl records?
Yes, I am a slow collector! I usually don't have enough money to buy records, but when I have extra and stumble upon secondhands, I always try to grab one or two. Because of this, I rely more on CDs and digital downloads since they're usually cheaper. But I don't prefer any over the other! If it's good music, I love it whatever the format it comes in.

What do you think of old things like vinyls coming back in style?
Retro and vintage is always nice, and works best if the "old stuff" are being resurrected in a justified way. For example, with vinyl records: they're supposed to be resurrected not to undermine and dominate other formats, but rather to relive the rich experience of listening to music in the olden days, when people had to go to the house of a friend who had a turntable to be able to listen to a new record, rather than the more isolated experience of listening to a new single on iTunes, all alone in your room, with your earphones on. In this instance, the record's purpose is to bring back its own sense of community. But it doesn't mean that listening alone to your computer isn't okay. All formats, new or old, should coexist in harmony.

Ponch Salvador, drummer
Can you name a band or a gig you’d go back in time to watch?
The notorious Jimi Hendrix at Woodstock 1969. Because it’s Woodstock. And Jimi Hendrix.

Do you collect vinyl records?
No. I’m poor, ha ha! I’m pretty okay na with downloading music digitally.

What do you think of old things like vinyls coming back in style?
I think it’s great! It’s like the music is going full circle.



Ang Bandang Shirley
Ean Aguila, guitarist
Can you name a band or a gig you’d go back in time to watch?
Elvis! He was really handsome and it would be a treat to see his moves in real life.

Do you collect vinyl records?
I used to have 22 Beatles vinyls, but I was forced to sell them all because I needed the money. I don’t collect records anymore because they’re pretty expensive.

What do you think of old things like vinyls coming back in style?
I think it’s like any other trend of old things becoming cool again -- like, things that are new right now will probably be cool again in the future, so I don’t have a special reaction to it.



The Cohens
Karl Valdez, bass guitar
Can you name a band or a gig you’d go back in time to watch?
PARAMORE.
Do you collect vinyl records?
No, I buy CDs.

What do you think of old things like vinyls coming back in style?
I think it's bound to happen, it's part of the cycle.

Joe Puyat, drummer
Can you name a band or a gig you’d go back in time to watch?
I actually dream of going back in time to watch The Beatles perform live. Out of all their performances, I’d want to reverse time and watch them perform the “Rooftop Concert”, or their last live performance. My favorite Beatles song “Don’t Let Me Down was played, so I’d definitely want to experience that live.

Do you collect vinyl records?
Yes, I collect vinyl records old and new! My first record was actually an original US release of “Meet the Beatles” which my mom found in a garage sale. Since then, I’ve been collecting records more than CDs because listening to records is a whole new experience compared to listening to CDs. The raw, analog sound of vinyl takes you back in time as you listen to what people would hear over fifty years ago.

What do you think of old things like vinyls coming back in style?
I feel that old things like vinyl records coming back in style today make us appreciate our past and present much more. With our senses being so accustomed to clean, high definition sounds, the experience of being taken back to the past through vinyl records is absolutely wonderful. Although knowing that some people deem the rise in popularity of vinyl records as a “hipster” fad of some kind, I just appreciate the beauty of what has been being appreciated for over half a century, and will continue to be appreciated for longer.

[Editor's Note: Joe was unable to attend Vinyl Day, so he sent his answers to us via Facebook]


Oh Flamingo!
Billie dela Paz, bassist
Can you name a band or a gig you’d go back in time to watch?
I really want to experience the weekly weekday gigs at the AS steps (in UP Diliman) back in the late 80s/early 90s. I believe bands like Eraserheads started out there. It would be cool if something like that happened again now!

Do you collect vinyl records?
No, I don't collect vinyl records. But I'm really interested now after attending Satchmi Vinyl day, and after watching The Diegos live for the first time ever. Their set was amazing! The Diegos mixed music live from a vinyl! The quality of music that came out was so sincere, because it's analog. It was really nice, and it takes a lot of skill to mix songs from vinyl records so perfectly.

What do you think of old things like vinyls coming back in style?
I think it's just a cycle. Old trends always find their way back, and people just add a modern flavor to them.


Interviews by Jan
Article by PaCho
Photos by Arielle, Jovy, and Jelou
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PaCho  is the nickname of a full-time fangirl who wants an infinite amount of money with which to travel the world and buy merchandise. This girl is currently amassing the skills to achieve these goals, and collecting stories and perspectives along the way (to consequently be the best that no one ever was) at a university. She will smile in satisfaction at the fall of the patriarchy and Western domination of international affairs. She is only half-joking about this (which means that she's completely serious). 
If asked, most people would probably say that Jan is a puppy in a human’s body, and she thinks that’s a pretty accurate description. Armed with genuine affection and super soft cuddles 24/7, she’s pretty much always ready to be the best pet, I mean friend that she can be for you! Some of her favorite things would include museums, her pet Chihuahua, videogames, and decreasing WorldSuck. Although she’s a very big fan of sitting around all day doing nothing, Jan always ends up being ready to head outside to go on any kind of adventure, as long as she’s got her friends by her side! 


Jovy is a girl who wants nothing more than to earn a living from photography and filmmaking. Also, she is weird when it comes to her books, as she is very discriminatory towards paperbacks and made an Instagram account with the sole purpose of posting pictures of her growing pile of books. If you ever try to damage her precious hardcovers--in any way--she WILL cut you

Mostly seen holding a pen on one hand and a camera on the other, Jelou (struggles) to stand firm on her personal ground rule, "to fathom the unfathomable". She is into oozing-with-cheese pizza and late-night free verse poetry reading. Also, she works to keep up with: being a college student, living as a cheerful extraterrestrial, and staying as the chinwag buddy of her dog. You can find her attempting every possible thing at http://ajelouishnarration.tumblr.com/

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