Ben&Ben
The bands are back
Baby A. Gil (The Philippine Star) - December 6, 2019 - 12:00am

It has been 50 long years since the Juan de la Cruz band created Pinoy Rock with Ang Himig Natin. The move that certainly rocked popular music was soon followed by Hotdog with Pers Lab and the Manila Sound. For the first time in Philippine music history, Filipinos were listening to and buying records with original compositions by Filipino musicians. And bands like VST&Co and Cinderella were bigger than before and playing their own music.

Of course, although Pinoy Rock and the Manila Sound became the main genres of local music, fallow periods would from time to time sidetrack the progress that Juan de la Cruz and Hotdog set in motion. Thankfully, a massive push came along with the arrival of the inventive and very commercial music of the Eraserheads a generation later. And it was boom time again for the bands. In fact, what happened during the ‘90s was often described as a band explosion. Rivermaya, Parokya ni Edgar, Siakol, etc.

There is a strong chance that a band explosion is also how the past few years would be described in the annals of Philippine pop music. Just take a look at the current hit charts. Bands, bands, Pinoy bands are everywhere. And they come in all types and all kinds of sounds. Years from now when you take a listen back to the music of 2019, these are the sounds you will hear.

The folksy emo of Ben&Ben with Kathang Isip, Maybe the Night, Pagtingin, Masyado Pang Maaga; the aching hugot of December Avenue in Sa Ngalan Ng Pag-ibig, Kung Di Rin Lang Ikaw, Huling Sandali and of This Band with Kahit Ayaw Mo Na, Di Na Babalik, Nang Iwan Mo Ako; to the hip-hop of ALLMO$T, Dalaga, Miracle Nights, Bagay Tayo or the one-man laments of I Belong to the Zoo, Sana and Balang Araw.

There were also Mundo by IV of Spades and its off-shoot Midnight Sky by Unique, Buwan by JK Labajo, Oks Lang by John Roa, Sandali by Because, Hindi Tayo Pwede by The Juans, Magnus Haven by Imahe, or the incredible return to the hit charts of Itchyworms from the previous band explosion with Janine Teñoso’s cover of their original Di Na Muli. It now feels like the Itchyworms never left the hit lists.

Come to think of it, it also seems like Hotdog never left. Just think. What is the song with the strongest last song syndrome that everybody is grooving to in their minds as of this moment, Manila by Hotdog.

And now let us take a look at the latest Philippine Music Charts Top 100 songs tabulation. And how nice to see Pinoy bands competing on equal levels with the foreign hits.

Here are the Top 40 big sellers:

Memories by Maroon 5; Zeffriana by Skusta Clee; Neneng B by Nik Makino and Raf Davis; Ikaw At Ako by Moira dela Torre and Jason Marvin; Señorita by Shawn Mendes and Camila Cabello; Pagtingin by Ben&Ben; 10,000 Hours by Dan + Shay and Justin Bieber; Lose You To Love Me by Selena Gomez; Binalewala by Michael Dutchi Libranda; It’s You by Alie Gatie.

Someone You Loved by Lewis Capaldi; Don’t Start Now by Dua Lipa; Circles by Post Malone; Magnus Haven by Imahe; Mabagal by Moira dela Torre & Daniel Padilla; Sa Susunod Na Lang by PDL, Skusta Clee & Yuri; Huling Sandali by December Avenue; Masyado Pang Maaga by Ben&Ben; Hindi Tayo Pwede by The Juans; Bagay Tayo by ALLMO$T.

Miracle Nights by ALLMO$T; Mean It by Lauv; Lover by Taylor Swift; Make It Right by BTS ft. Lauv; Get You The Moon by Kina ft. Snow; Sanctuary by Joji; Kathang Isip by Ben&Ben; How Do You Sleep? by Sam Smith; Beautiful People by Ed Sheeran ft. Khalid; Dance Monkey by Tones and I.

Sana by I Belong to the Zoo; Maari Ba by Wilbert Ross; comethru by Jeremy Zucker; I Don’t Care by Ed Sheeran & Justin Bieber; Kill This Love by BLACKPINK; Goodbyes by Post Malone ft. Young Thug; Don’t Call Me Angel by Ariana Grande, Miley Cyrus & Lana del Rey; Feelings by Lauv; ‘Di Na Babalik by This Band; and I.F.L.Y. by Bazzi.

Hotdog

 

BEN&BEN PINOY ROCK VST&CO
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