Let me open this concert review by saying Jomal Linao is the coolest dude on the planet. And if you care-like people seldom do- read on to know why.
Initially don’t have any plans of attending this concert. For the most part, it has the reputation of slightly tolerable violence and intentional mishaps. Anything could go high on the chaos level when you put rock bands and liquor together. And to make it more exciting, Iloilo City added a little ingredient to that mix – pouring rain.
Two days before the event my friend James begged me to go since his all time favorite band Parokya ni Edgar is set to perform. I-being a good friend that I am- tweeted Chito Miranda if we could steal a chance of getting a photo with him and Vinci. That is actually on James’ bucket list. When Chito replied “no prob” I jumped and down like a total idiot and decided to go without even having a clue where to score a ticket.
Eventually, my friend Raizza got me her spare ticket and we excitedly arrived at the venue an hour before the concert. It was my first time to attend a huge and celebrated concert. There were booths everywhere, towering Tanduay balloons and just about other marketing stuff you see in a concert. They are milking whatever exposure they can get in exchange of the free admission. The only band I came there to see is Wolfgang as I havent seen them live before. By the time that I am already old enough to be permitted to stay out of the house and watch a concert, they were already on a hiatus.
We were standing and admiring the set when heavy rain suddenly poured and dampen the excitement of the crowd that was slowly building up. We took shelter on a Pony tents along with long-haired guys on black heavy metal shirts. Other people hung out on the Tanduay booth holding plastic cups of gin, rum and rain water. One would only think that this concert is going to be an epic fail as Axl Rose’s Rock in Rio performance.
When Wolfgang started half of the audience were already seating on the bleachers, a basketball court away from the football field where the stage was put up. But you have to admire the passion of the die-hard Wolfgang fans who stayed in front of the stage and waited for the band to come out. Maybe they thought, they never expected to see Wolfgang on stage again. And who knows this might be the last. Knock on wood. And when Basti Artadi and his gang took the stage, the crowd howled in excitement. It was pure display of passionate fandom. From above, on the dry bleacher where I sat, I could see the crowd simultaneously jumping. It was magical.
Chicosci was pretty much a bummer. Miggy Chavez just ruined the whole thing with his uncool potty mouth, obscure song segues and plain lousy singing that sounded like screaming actually. If I was close to the stage I could’ve bottled that guy straight to his forehead. Or maybe he’s face is just so cute to be assaulted. But still the crowd-at least on the bleachers-had fun hating him, which was fine. Fun is still fun. Also, we need a petition to urge them to go back to making metal music.
In summation, Sandwich‘s performance is just like any other concert you’ve seen. It never left the boundary of being entertaining, to especially entertaining. Raymund Marasigan sure was a voice live but the thing that made a connection to the crowd was his dialect knowledge. He could talk to the crowd in Ilonggo which amused the whole crowd (including me)and somehow made them felt valued (not including me). Sandwich songs are mainly built of instrumentation and lyrics that stimulates motion, well the crowd did exactly what the song told them to do. They clapped, jumped, sung like they are one person. Raymund has that ability, to control the crowd.
Name the opm band with the most fans, I bet you would think of Parokya ni Edgar faster than the shortest note could possibly last. Well, they have more than two decades worth of fans transcending the generations who have undergone numerous music trends. They have the Harana fans, the Gulong Itlog Gulong fans, the Mr. Suave fans and of course there are fans like James. The power of Parokya’s music is when someone sings it, you’ll find yourself singing along with him/her. Imagine 3,000 crowd singing along in unison. Yes, yes, show.
Kamikazee closed the show and the whole year worth of touring with songs that I couldn’t remember. I was already at the backstage, cups of Tanduay mix in one hand and a plate of sisig on the other. How we ended up at the VIP are was rather a not exciting story.
The backstage could only be summarized by madness and mudness. My beloved Converses were trustworthy in keeping my feet dry despite the crazy amount of mud it was soaked in. I now understand why people wear them on concerts. By the way, just a little mud trivia, did you know that ‘grunge’ was named after the mud that sticks on people boots during damp seasons? It is pretty grungy in Seattle and so is in Iloilo. Along with the heavy downpour, the drinks flooded and the buffet table was a feast. It was all for free. It was all mad, in a good way.
So now you wanna know why Jomal Linao is the coolest dude on the planet? Here.
And as for Chito Miranda here’s the only photo we got of him.
There were other things that happened that I couldn’t recall though I am writing this when I got home. Some things I can recall but I choose not to tell. Yes, I want to keep this real, but rock n’ roll has a sanctity that is unbreakable. What happened in a rock concert stays in a rock concert. You only tell the people the “how” of the excitement and not the “why”. I’ve been to a lot of concerts and gigs, both international and local bands but none of them made me see what I previously heard about rock n’roll.
PS: This is another overdue review and I personally blame you James.