The first question on your mind is probably who the hell are the people behind S Magazine ?! After reading the list, I’m sure your level of questioning will even increase two hundred fold. It’s one of the most spectacularly stupid articles in a long time.
One of the people in Wolfgang’s prod team showed me the copy and the piece was one of the most poorly-written music reviews I’ve come across with in a LONG time.
Since I’m in a forgiving mood, let me weigh in on things and react first on the bands whose inclusion I really agree with.
Wolfgang has a tremendous discography to support their claim for a spot in the Pinoy band pantheon. Through over a decade long reign as the kings of the local rock scene, Wolfgang has ammassed a formidable collection of six studio albums, one acoustic live album and various side projects. They are also among the first bands to prove that heavy music can still be marketable but at the same time critically-acclaimed.
Up Dharma Down
When all is said and done, this band will probably have a shot in being in the really short list of the best bands ever. They broken the mold of commercialization like no other in recent history. Although the music may seem high-brow for the casual listener, they still produce radio hits that keep them in the consciousness of pedestrian music lovers. On a personal note, I really love these guys. Their two albums are easily in the top 5 of the best Pinoy albums ever.
Juan Dela Cruz Band
There is no person that comes close to approximating the concept of rock and roll royalty like John ‘Pepe’ Smith and no band has pioneered the explosion of a genre like the Juan dela Cruz Band did back in their hey day. Their songs (think “Beep Beep” and “Ang Himig Natin”) are still relevant to this very day are still being used in advertisements despite being over 2 decades old. Oh, by the way, those people at S Magazine only gave this band ONE SENTENCE worth of write-up. Lazy fucks.
I’m no fan, but they were probably the easiest call to include in the list. Much has been said about them already – I’m no longer going to add to it.
I personally believe that The Dawn ushered in a new sound during the 80s that was at that time very unique and distinct for a Filipino band. With the band pushing towards its 30th year, the Jett Pangan-led group continues to churn out formidable tracks that have defined Filipino culture. ‘Salamat’ and ‘Iisang Bangka’ are two of the most electrifying songs of our generation – I don’t think any song by the Eraserheads even comes close to how these two songs build up drama and emotion. That being said, I think the biggest knock against The Dawn is that they’re not exactly known for producing strong albums. The gradient between the gems and the other tracks is quite obvious. But what the hell, that would be nitpicking.
Through all its reincarnations, Rivermaya has remained to be a relevant and creative force – even with just one remaining original member. The band has transformed from a college rock band in the early 90s that just went to the bank with anthemic rock songs to the youth to a pseudo-brit-rock outfit with Rico Blanco as frontman to a line up that feels awkwardly un-Rivermaya. At it current state, Rivermaya is like what the Eraserheads were after Ely Buendia left and Kris Gorra filled in as a replacement.
Dong Abay has to be one of the most brilliant lyricists of all time. Politically-tilted music wasn’t that big in the 90s, but Yano (thanks to Dong) made the pro-Filipino/anti-societal-ills slant in songwriting not only popular, but also profitable.
They only had one album, but if you add how they literally shook up the scene when they arrived, you would appreciate how big an impact they had with the overall variety of what was rock and funk in the 90s. Their first and only album is one of the strongest ever and once you factor in the tupsy-turvy life and health struggles of frontman Karl Roy, it’s hard to dismiss the achievements of P.O.T.
I agree whole-heartedly with the eight of the twelve bands that they cited. Any list should have them, no questions asked.
Here are bands who I think are good, but the writers may have been too generous to include.
This band’s claim to relevance for the past 15 years is a slew of tired covers. If OPM is all about doing other people’s hits, go ahead and crown these guys.
Parokya ni Edgar
I’ve never been a fan of this band. I think their approach to music has degraded rock into a genre that doesn’t need to be taken seriously much to the disadvantage of those who used music to forward a legitimate artistic/philosophical perspective. They’re popular though…
I have tons of respect for what they did, but I’m just not a big fan.
Radioactive Sago Project
Among these four bands, I’m most comfortable with giving these guys a slot. I just don’t think that their music pervaded enough as actual songs as opposed to being shocking pieces of sound that nobody ended up remembering later on. But I do appreciate that they introduced a totally new genre with their breakthrough hit “Baboy” back in ’01.
Here are my four nominees for replacements – if I were to make the list, these bands would be in, EASY.
This band is the biggest argument as to why the people behind the S Magazine article are TOTAL idiots. Asin bleeds TRUE FILIPINO AUTHENTICITY that is self-aware and pro-active. And no, these artists aren’t just fashionably socially-relevant, they’ve seen the horrors of vendetta, environmental destruction and addiction and that made their songs all the more powerful and honest. They should have easily been in the top five.
How can these guys be dissed that badly? They surely have the following, the discography (four albums!) and the road experience to make a strong case. I guess the authors really are knuckleheads.
Someone has to represent metal, right? Skychurch is the closest thing that the country has seen to a mainstream metal band. They’ve represented the genre quite well, if you ask me. It’s quite disappointing that their third album didn’t really take off.
Again, they must have been crazy to leave this super group out. Either that or they have never heard of them.