October 24, 2010

Urbandub's Influence

   I remember distinctly how I came across Urbandub. It was a cloudy day and my friend Hans who loved his indie music, categorically arranging each CD cover alphabetically from pop to rock to J-rock, recommended Urbandub's "Birth" album. His experimental nature in music and rich connections were used to track down every good indie artist he could find. I quickly learned that "good" is an understatement when talking about Urbandub.

The next vivid memory about the band was of computer speakers blasting in an apartment during college. I was with my first real boyfriend Mark P. I don't recall who influenced who first since he's from Visayas and Urbandub was more popular there; what was certain was our pure love for the band if not for each other.
Wait, I think it was me who introduced him to the band, I just remembered a conversation we had that Mark's own band started playing some of my music he brought over. Hmmm. Anyway, I cannot deny how I thoroughly enjoyed college and the time Mark and I spent together. Like the music we were playing, we were both experimenting in all aspects of our lives and the excitement we felt for each new discovery were heightened by Urbandub's fresh, angst-filled and sometimes soulful beats.

Songs like Sailing, Fallen On Deaf Ears, Soul Searching, Give and First Of Summer were a staple in our playlists. We played them before, after or during intense moments such as the usual uhm "sessions", after quarrels etc. You get the picture. Mark's fraternity brothers Earl, John and Quincy formed a band covering all Urbandub's songs. Their band was wittily called "Urbandumb" yet on the night of their first live performance  (Feb Fair) they decided to change it.

Fast forward to my second boyfriend Mark O. (I know I know, I like Marks) who quickly adopted most of my music, he found Urbandub a fascinating talent and an important musical aspect of Pinoy pride. He bought most of their CDs and we played it in his car all the way in Sydney, Australia. First of Summer and An Invitation were often played cruising on highways from town to town.  Urbandub's "Under Southern Lights" could not have found a proper venue in the land wayyy down under.

After 9 years, I'm still listening to their songs. We just bought their latest album "The Apparition". Now how did I end up in this concert?

One week before the show  Mark casually asked me if I wanted to watch Urbandub's major concert. I knew about it but we had been so busy to get tickets which sold out fast in days. Luckily Mark's aunt Precy Florentino who owns Promenade and Music Museum in Greenhills was kind enough to invite us and gave us seats even though every bit of seat was taken. It was meant to be. I just know it.

Friday, and the line was as long as the building itself. We zoomed pass up and were warmly greeted by the manager who directed us to the bar and waited there to avoid the crowd. When everyone was in and only the crew was out, we were given seats  near the stage and yes, enjoyed the rest of the night screaming, singing and almost crying from remembering how much I grew from the kid who would take everything in like a sponge or a block of Lego waiting for the other pieces to make her whole. From the kid who listened to anime soundtracks and rock music curiously searching for the next band that would speak for her.

And then I found this band.

Urbandub does not only speak for me but for the whole country and our generation. They make me proud to be a Filipino because I know talented people existed around me. And these people actually influenced me and my taste in music. I'm proud that this band is a part of my childhood, my college era and where I am now. I hope they continue to make good music. I hope their music still comes from their soul and not form the pressures of their bank accounts. Although I doubt that will ever happen. I know so because with their influence, I'm in safe hands.

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