The SessiONroad unfazed by competition
SOUNDS FAMILIAR - Baby A. Gil () - September 4, 2006 - 12:00am
Bands come and bands go. And you have to agree that bands of all sounds and sizes are all around us these days. We are drowning in bands just like we glutted ourselves with hot pan de sal some years ago. But despite their number and utter variety, it is always nice to hear from those that have withstood time and trends and whom you expect to stay. Just like SessiONroad.

A lot of people still remember the group’s early gigs in Baguio nightspots on Session Road where they sang anything. That is how they got the name. Fans were glad to know they later brought their music to Manila and easily won a loyal following. And now they are also happy to know that after several years and two albums, SessiONroad is still very much around.

The group’s latest and its follow-up to Suntok Sa Buwan is entitled Bakit Hindi? It is once again an all-original collection with all of the members of the band coming up with new songs. The rocking Blanko is the first single. It is much like what we have been getting from other groups these days and that must be the reason why it has been getting good radio airplay. The second and third cuts are Beautiful Day and Hiram, which are also pretty predictable stuff.

Things start to take off though with the fourth track Nawawala and from then on it is one great song after another. Nasa Isip Ka, Fly, Outer Space, Song for You, Never Give Up, OK Naman Tayo, Steady, (Natutulog Nating Anyo) and Uuwi Na. Outer Space and Song for You are particularly good pieces of songwriting. Other standouts are the reggae-flavored Landian and the jazzy Preno. Unlike the cuts in SessiONroad’s early albums, the songs here are more pop than rock and should appeal to a wider market.

Fans from the early days might not like the mainstream approach, but I like to think that these songs are also the kind that get covered by other artists. And as any producer will tell you, that is what gives longevity to any band or sound. It would be interesting to find out later who can sing SessiONroad songs better than how Hannah Romawac does it in this album.

If I remember right, Hannah who does lead vocals and plays acoustic and rhythm guitars, was a founding member of the band. So were her brothers JV Romawac on vocals, congas, harmonica and percussions and Chavi Romawac who plays drums, percussions and also sings. I do not know when Richard Carangdang on bass acoustic guitar and vocals and Coy Placido on lead guitar, synthesizers and vocals came in, but their faces are already so familiar, they must have also been with SessiONroad for ages.

SessiONroad is now up against competition from all sorts of new bands but these guys steadfastly plod on, creating their own music always sounding good and totally competent. Truth to tell, I have a feeling that when this band trend is over and Pinoys have shifted their attention to other types of sounds, SessiONroad will still be gigging merrily around.

SessiONroad is now in the midst of a hectic mall tour promoting the songs from Bakit Hindi? around Metro Manila. You can still catch them on Sept. 9 at Robinsons Pioneer, Sept. 16 at SM Manila, Sept. 24 at SM Baguio, Sept. 29 at SM Southmall and Sept. 30 at SM Pampanga.
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The news from MYX, the Filipino music channel, here are the top videos in the Pinoy MYX Countdown of the past week. Stars by Callalily; I Still Believe in Loving You by Sarah Geronimo; She Could Be by Christian Bautista; Waiting by Slapshock; Back to Me by Cueshé; Blue Sky by Hale; Sayang ang Lahat by True Faith; Doobidoo by Kamikazee; Taralets by Imago; Kung Maaalala Mo by Erik Santos;

Patuloy Pa Rin
by Yasmien Kurdi; Alive by Frio; Bumalik Ka Lang by Julia Clarete; A Promise by Chicosci; Hindi Ko Na Kayang Masaktan Pa by Ogie Alcasid and Regine Velasquez; Yakap sa Dilim by Orange & Lemons; Perpekto by Dong Abay; Sa Aking Panaginip by Jennylyn Mercado; Ingay by Pin Up Girls and I Do by Nina.

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