Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Eto nAPO review ko

Tribute albums are a dime a dozen.
In the foreign market, name a famous band and chances are, there's a tribute album to match the aformentioned artist. The pickings are definitely far from slim from across the shores. As for our own local scene, tribute albums are few and far between, except for last year's noteworthy Eraserheads tribute album Ultraelectromagneticjam, 2006 will best be remembered for Kami nAPO Muna.

Jim Paredes. Danny Javier. Boboy Garovillo. The APO Hiking Society. Shortened from their original ironic tongue-in-cheek 70's moniker of Apolinario Mabini Hiking Society, this OPM Pop trio mined a substantially lengthy and lengthily substantial list of memorable hits that spanned a good portion of two decades. These names may not be that familiar with today's youth, but if you were growing up during the heady and turbulent Martial Law years, well into the early yellow fever years of the 80's, then your acquaintance with the APO was surely made, etched indelibly on your aural psyche.

Fast forward to the here and now, Kami nAPO Muna is a fitting tribute to Jim, Boboy and Danny, and their music that helped etch OPM into what it is today. If not for artists such as the APO Hiking Society, OPM would not have the sturdy foundation today's local music scene solidly rests on. Which brings us to the music.

There's something for everyone of Kami nAPO Muna. From cool Pop musings (Sugarfree's snappy-not-sappy Batang-Bata Ka Pa and Sponge Cola's version of Nakapagtataka) to faithful readings (Panalangin by Moonstar 88 and Orange & Lemons' Yakap Sa Dilim), the resounding remake (Imago's elating Ewan) that takes an established idea and gives it a new dimension. The rollicking tracks (Blue Jeans by Rocksteddy and Kamikazee's excellent Doobidoo) are painless ear candy with an edge, adding new perspective to these timeless APO classics. Though some opted to play it safe (Parokya Ni Edgar's lackadaisical Pumapatak Ang Ulan), others were plain dismal (ex-Freestyle singer Top Suzara's constipated Anna). Others bravely delivered with standout style by merely being themselves, as evinced on Sandwich's Bakit Ang Babae, as well as the APO fave When I Met You done by Barbie Almalbis, a rendition that could've easily fit into her own album. Even the Itchyworms manage to make Awit Ng Barkada work well for them. Kudos as well to Sound for their jazzy take of Di Na Natuto, with a clever "doobidoo" interpolation to boot. My personal fave? Kitchie Nadal's stoic yet soaring Pag-Ibig. My hat's off to producer Jack Rufo for playing all the instruments, which certainly did it for me. Way to go, Jack!

Like I said, there's something for everyone. Even the lemons.
Of course, as far as Kami nAPO Muna is concerned, if a tribute album gives you lemons, then order Iced Tea.
A worthy tribute album that definitely worth its weight.
A good buy!


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