Spot.ph's Gig Guide: 10 Gotta-Catch-Live Local Acts

Itching to check out some local gigs? SPOT.ph lists down 10 established and promising bands you need to watch these coming months.

YouTube videos and mp3 tracks can never take the place of seeing and hearing musicians perform live. The vibrant music scene of the swinging '70s and the eclectic '80s can attest to that. But the beat changes, so to speak. Old genres are blurred into pots of obscure and exciting fusions. As younger faces populate the stage, new crowds are also formed, wooed by the interesting taste of their musical soup.

SPOT.ph zeroed in on 10 of the many local acts, both new and not-so new, you should catch when they hit the bars and events circuit these next few months.

  

"Castaway" performed at 19 East

Franco
Aptly dubbed as the new superband of alternative rock, the guys from Urbandub (guitarist Gabby Alipe and drummer JanJan Mendoza), Parokya ni Edgar (bassist Buwi Meneses), and Queso (guitarist Ocho Toleran) have teamed up to form a rock group whose powerful riffs, which complement the distinct vocals of Franco Reyes, rivals the sound of many international alternative acts today. Their potent mix of post-grunge and subtle touches of reggae (Song for the Suspect, Touch the Sky) amplified by the band's on-stage charisma make their live shows enjoyable for both die-hard fans and rock show virgins.

Sound: Alternative rock
Gig sched:
April 23 - Pulp Summer Slam: The Apocalypse, Amoranto Stadium, QC


"Hello" performed at UP Los Baños during the Bonifacio Day Anti-Gloria Concert

Radioactive Sago Project
What do you get when you cross spoken word with a funky mix of jazz rock? Ask RSP front man Lourd de Veyra. He and his talented band of musicians (Wowie Ansano on trumpet, Rastem Eugenio on saxophone, Pards Tupas on trombone,   Junji Lerma on guitar, Francis de Veyra on bass, Jay Gapasin on drums, and Arwin Nava on percussion) deliver suave and energetic sets every time they face the crowd. With Lourd's whip smart words in time with hot political and entertainment issues (e.g. PGMA's Garci snafu or insane Arthro commercials), each performance is destined to be an interesting experience.

Sound: Jazz-rock
Gig sched:
April 23 - Earth Day Jam, Tomas Morato
April 23 - Saguijo (Terno Inferno)


"Every First Second" performed at Bonifacio High Street during Manila Design Week

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Up Dharma Down
With their 2006 release of Oo, a smooth eclectic rock track about unspoken love, the band crossed-over from underground to mainstream consciousness. Now geared to take on the international music scene, UDD still makes time to perform in front local crowds waiting to be blessed with Armi Millare's magnetic vocals backed by the progressive combination of Ean Mayor on drums and loops, Carlos Tanada on guitar, and Paul Yap on bass. Their live performances never fail to draw excitement from their faithful followers and new-found appreciation from first-time listeners.

Sound: Post-rock, Electro-rock
Gig sched:
April 16 - Route 196, Katipunan
April 17 - Mag:net Bonifacio High Street
April 23 - Music Without Borders @ CITEM
April 23 - Earth Day Jam, Tomas Morato
April 23 - Saguijo (Terno Inferno)
April 24 - 121 Grille and Bar
April 24 - Mag:net Bonifacio High Street (Terno Night)
April 29 - B-Side (Terno Night)


"The Girl Is Mine" (cover of a song originally performed by Michael Jackson and Paul McCartney) performed at Xaymaca Bar

Milagros Dancehall Collective
This five-man crew will make you believers of the power of Reggae. With several Rastafari-inspired acts already in the gig scene, this band from Makati definitely stands out thanks to their playful twist on Dancehall beats. Their sessions stay fresh, upbeat, and authentic. They even have the Jamaican accents pinned-down. A hearty mix of covers and originals is enough to please a crowd not accustomed to "the love."

Sound: Dancehall reggae
Gig sched:
April 15 - Saguijo
April 27 - Saguijo
April 28 - Saguijo


"Out of My Mind" performed at Bonifacio High Street during Manila Design Week

Techy Romantics
They're not quite trip-hop nor strictly electronic. The trio of Camyl Besinga (vocals), Dondi Virrey (rhythm and beats), and Ryan Villena (guitar) prefer to call their complex sound chillectro–an infectious brand of light electronica sprinkled with just enough pop sensibilities to transform their laid-back tracks into something more danceable. The synthesized beats scattered evenly throughout their sets give out a mild New Wave vibe that '80s kids can definitely move their bodies to.

Sound: Chillectro
Gig sched:
April 15 - Amber Ultra Lounge (Out of My Mind Video Launch)


Live performance of "Trapeze"

Sleepwalk Circus
People who have never listened to shoegaze and dream pop before will definitely be in for something special when they step into a Sleepwalk Circus show. With their messy bursts of ambient sounds, ethereal layers, distorted guitars, and breathy vocals, their product can be best described as organized noise. It's always perfect to close your eyes and get lost in the melding of notes as they take you on a dreamy escapade of sounds. Of course, witnessing all the different components coming together on stage is also as equally amusing.

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Sound: Dream pop, Shoegaze, Nu Gaze
Gig sched:
April 16 - B-Side 7 p.m.
April 16 - Rox Store, Bonifacio High Street (Roam Launch)
April 16 - Saguijo
April 23 - Saguijo (Terno Inferno)
April 24 - Mag:net Bonifacio High Street (Terno Night)
April 29 - B-Side (Terno Night)



"Dizzy Boy" performed at Cubao X during Meiday

Pedicab
Unlike the other projects of ex-Eraserhead Raimund Marasigan (Sandwich, Cambio,   and Squid 9), Pedicab is the most manic. The group, comprised of Marasigan (keyboard), Diego Mapa (vocals), Mike Dizon (drums), Jason Caballa (guitar), and director RA Rivera (multimedia), stir their audience into a frenzy as they feed them with zany doses of dance-punk. The members also perk up the crowd either through queer choice of playful garbs or funny little gimmicks that spice up the show.

Sound:
Dance-punk
Gig sched:
April 23 - Pulp Summer Slam: The Apocalypse, Amoranto Stadium, QC


"Twenty Years From Now" performed at Saguijo

Outerhope
If rowdy and rambunctious isn't your thing, then brother and sister act Outerhope is a good option for a light and stress-free night at a bar. Armed with only a guitar and an electric keyboard (and occasionally, a xylophone) Mike and Mick Benedicto offer simple yet whimsical melodies on top of quirky lyrics. Much like their original recordings, their live acts play out like a set of inverted lullabies that gently rock you awake as you listen.

Sound:
Indie pop
Gig sched:
April 17 - Junkie Shop, Cubao X (Meiday)
April 21 - Route 196
April 27 - Saguijo
April 28 - Saguijo
April 30 - Mag:net Katipunan


"My Emptiness" performed live at the Esplanade Outdoor Theater in Singapore

Ciudad
Cute, happy, and mellow are some of the words you might   use when describing this band's shows. Their sets are almost void of theatrics, but the occasional puns provided by its charming vocalist, Mikey Amistoso, is enough to keep the crowd happy. Their music is an aggregate of cheerful melodies and contrapuntal nerdy lyrics, resulting to sweet tracks full of melancholy. With the rumors of a looming hiatus in the near future, it would be best to catch Mikey, Mitch (drums), Justin (guitar), and Jeff (guitar) perform in the next couple of months.

Sound: Geek-pop, Nerd-rock
Gig sched:
April 17 - Junkie Shop, Cubao X (Meiday)

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"So Blue" performed at Al's Bar

Sinosikat
Their gigs, a mishmash of uptempo and slow beats, promise to keep both old and young listeners hooked throughout the entire set. Kat Agarrado, the titular siren in the band's name, provides the sass, sophistication, and the sexiness with her soulful vocals and strong command of the stage. Band members Noel (bass), Reli (drums), David (keyboard), and Nick (guitar) supply just the perfect balance of jazz, funk, and rock to carry Kat's voice to a whole different level of sound that is intrinsically Sinosikat.

Sound: Jazz-soul fusion, Pinoy soul
Gig sched:
April 23 - Eastwood Plaza (Album Launch)
April 24 - Piazza @ McKinley Hill, The Fort (Album Launch)


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