Saturday, September 29, 2012

KEANE Live! In Manila: Strangeland Tour

This October 2nd, be ready as British alternative rock band KEANE welcomes you into their Strangeland through their Manila concert at the SM Mall of Asia Arena. 

KEANE achieved mainstream success with the release of their debut album, “Hopes and Fears” in 2004. Lead singles “Somewhere Only We Know” is one of the greatest hits of 2004. The album sold more than nine million copies worldwide, and won a Brit Award for Best Album in 2005. In addition, the band also won the Brit Award for British Breakthrough Act, voted by listeners of BBC Radio 1. Success continued with their second studio album, “Under the Iron Sea,” which topped the album charts in the UK and debuted at an impressive No.4 on the US Billboard 200 chart. This album marked the transition from piano-driven songs in their first album to more progressive, sophisticated music, again without using guitars. Their third album, “Perfect Symmetry,” explored and moved from their established piano-pop sound to the use of guitars for the first time. 

KEANE’s latest album “Strangeland,” released in May 2012 under MCA Music (Universal Music Philippines) debuted at No.1 on the UK Albums chart. This feat made them one of three bands in UK pop history to have five consecutive Number 1 albums. It’s the first album to feature bassist Jesse Quin as an official member. In an interview with, lead vocalist Tom Chaplin said, “The album has the vibe of earlier Keane. 2008′s “Perfect Symmetry” was a big self-indulgent and this record felt a bit more like we knew ourselves a bit better and what our strengths were.” Pianist Tim Rice-Oxley added: “We wanted it be less production led and focus on making sure that the songs were great. You write a lot of shit songs to get to the good ones.” Drummer Richard Hughes said, “In many respects, it feels like the completion of a circle. On the album you have songs that draw upon the experiences we used to share as kids, growing up in Battle. You can never really go back, of course. We’re married. Some of us have kids. Once in a while though, after a good day, we’ll go to the local pub and talk about everything and nothing until it’s time to go home. Whatever it is that makes us Keane – that invisible glue – is still there. And you can hear it all over ‘Strangeland’.”
Photo courtesy of MCA Music

KEANE’s albums are out now in CDs exclusively under MCA Music available at Astroplus and Odyssey Music and Video or online via iTunes and

KEANE is composed of Tom Chaplin on lead vocals / acoustic guitar, Tim Rice-Oxley on piano / keyboards / synthesizers, Richard Hughes on drums / percussions and Jesse Quin on bass guitar.

Since their debut, KEANE’s music has won over the hearts of music fans all over the world, especially those in Manila. Catch Keane Live! in Manila on October 2, 2012 at SM Mall of Asia’s The Arena. Tickets are available at or call 470-2222 for more details. Ticket prices are at: VIP A (first 10 rows) 6340, VIP B 4760, Patron 4760, Lower Box 3170, Upper Box  1590 and General Admission 740.

“KEANE Live! In Manila: Strangeland Tour” is brought to you by Trilogy Live and STRO World in cooperation with Dayly Entertainment. Co-Presented by Jack TV and ETC. Major Sponsors: Terranova and Banco De Oro. Official Residence: EDSA Shangri-La Manila. Media Partners: ABS-CBN, MYX, RX 93.1, Mellow 94.7, 95.5 Pinas FM, 96.3 Easy Rock, Business World, Philippine Daily Inquirer, The La Sallian,,,, Manila Concert Scene, Philippine Concerts,,, and Special thanks to: MCA Music (Universal Music Philippines), Astroplus and Odyssey Music & Video.

Thursday, September 27, 2012


Photo courtesy of Disney Animation
The story of an arcade-game bad guy who embarks on a quest to prove he's really a good guy, Walt Disney Animation Studios' "Wreck-It Ralph" journeys through wildly diverse arcade-game worlds, including the '80s-era, 8-bit video-game world of Fix-It Felix, Jr., the ultra-modern first-person shooter game Hero's Duty and the candy-coated cart-racing game Sugar Rush.

             Helping to differentiate these worlds from one another are unique cinematography, animation, effects and music. "Music is another way to set the stage and make these worlds completely different," said producer Clark Spencer.

             But not just any music. Filmmakers tapped diverse and unexpected artists to help tell the story. Composer Henry Jackman created the film's score, which is complemented by original songs and music from Skrillex, AKB48, Owl City and Buckner & Garcia. 

             Directed by Rich Moore, produced by Spencer and featuring the voices of John C. Reilly, Sarah Silverman, Jack McBrayer and Jane Lynch, "Wreck-It Ralph" crashes into Philippine theatres on Oct. 31, 2012. The film's soundtrack from Walt Disney Records will be available Oct. 30, 2012.

             "When it came to the music of 'Wreck-It Ralph,'" said Moore, "we wanted to work with some really talented artists and I love that they aren't necessarily the people audiences expect to hear in a Disney animated movie. But when they hear the music and how it supports the story and drives the emotion, they'll say, 'This is perfect.'"

             Moore said he took his lead from the original director of animated movies. "Walt Disney was a pioneer when it came to music. What sounds like classics to us now—Ukulele Ike in 'Pinocchio,' Peggy Lee in 'Lady and the Tramp'—were very unexpected choices."


             Classically trained composer Henry Jackman ("Winnie the Pooh," "X-Men: First Class") was called on to write the score for "Wreck-It Ralph," helping to shape the diverse worlds with music. Jackman researched arcade games and incorporated their classic sounds into the score, bringing the arcade and its individual games to life. "The music transports you," said Moore. "It channels each era perfectly. [Henry Jackman] is fantastic."

             According to Jackman, the score was driven by the story, which allowed him to tap his classical roots, too. "When something emotional is developing, it actually opens the door to the orchestral score without it feeling imposed," he said.


             Ralph's quest leads him to the intense, cy-bug-infested world of Hero's Duty, where he hopes to land a medal. Underscoring the chaos and excitement of the first-person shooter game, GRAMMY®-winning artist Skrillex wrote the game-play music, "Bug Hunt," hand-picking Netherlands' producers/DJs/videogame soundtrack composers Noisia to remix the track for the album. "The mood of that game world is high-energy and futuristic. I make music with many different colors of the emotional spectrum—this reflects a more aggressive side of my music." 

             Japan's pop phenomenon AKB48 accompanies Ralph to the land of sweets with the aptly named theme song "Sugar Rush." "We've always thought of Sugar Rush—with its nod to anime—as a game that may have originated in Japan," said Spencer. "So we went to Japan and got the hottest J-pop group to perform the song that really sets the tone for this '90s-era cart-racing game: young and hip." 

             Owl City ("Fireflies," "Good Time") provides an upbeat and story-driven cap to the film with "When Can I See You Again?" According to singer/songwriter/instrumentalist Adam Young, the song offers a bit of an emotional tug-of-war. "It's a very bouncy, happy, uplifting song, but there's a bittersweet part of it, leaving a key relationship in the film open-ended." 

             Also contributing to the end credits are Buckner & Garcia, the team behind the 1982 Top-10 hit "Pac-Man Fever." Jerry Buckner of Buckner & Garcia co-produced the song "Wreck-It, Wreck-It Ralph" with hit songwriter/producer Jamie Houston (Steven Tyler, Macy Gray). "It was great to be invited to contribute a song to the movie and soundtrack," said Buckner. "The song has an '80s pop flavor with a contemporary twist—we're really happy with how it turned out."

PUSH AND SHOVE --- NO DOUBT’s latest album release for over 11 years!

It’s been eleven years since NO DOUBT’s last studio album, “Rock Steady” and seventeen since “Tragic Kingdom” produced the hits “Just A Girl” and “Don’t Speak”. This September 2012, American rock band No Doubt releases their fifth studio album, Push and Shove. The group’s natural camaraderie, not to mention the musical alchemy that occurs when these four friends reunite, is palpable throughout the band’s new album which is a supercharged blend of ska-rock, dancehall, and 80s electronic pop that will remind people why No Doubt has maintained its position as one of the most beloved and commercially successful acts of the past 20 years.
Push and Shove album cover

Though the reception has been mixed for dancehall-inflected lead single "Settle Down," there are singles to spare on Push and Shove, many of which rival and occasionally harken back to their biggest hits. "Looking Hot," for example, is a guitar-heavy rave-up in the style of 2001's "Hella Good," but with a surprise Jamaican horn breakdown straight out of "Spiderwebs." Then there's "Undone," the closest No Doubt has come to a reaching-for-the-rafters power ballad since "Don't Speak." Recorded across Los Angeles over a two-year-plus time period with producer/mixer Mark "Spike" Stent, Push and Shove begs to be played live. And indeed, the band will preview the album at the iHeartRadio music festival in Las Vegas before kicking off a small residency at Los Angeles' Gibson Amphitheater in December.

No Doubt has achieved a lot as a band, including releasing several multi-platinum albums (1995’s diamond-certified Tragic Kingdom, 2001’s Rock Steady, and a 2003 singles collection) and a string of chart-topping hits (“Just A Girl,” “Don’t Speak,” “Hey Baby,” “Hella Good,” “Underneath It All,” and “It’s My Life”). They’ve launched international sold-out tours, won two Grammy Awards and five MTV Video Music Awards, and were invited to perform for Paul McCartney and the President at the annual Kennedy Center Honors in 2010. Lead singer Gwen Stefani has further emerged as a global music and fashion icon via two best-selling solo albums and her L.A.M.B., Harajuku Lovers and Harajuku Mini clothing lines. Through all the success, the band members have remained grounded by a long-standing friendship that began when Gwen Stefani, guitarist Tom Dumont, bassist Tony Kanal, and drummer Adrian Young — bonded by a shared love of ’80s British New Wave and ska bands — began performing together in their hometown of Anaheim, CA.

No Doubt’s PUSH AND SHOVE is now available in CDs at Astroplus and Odyssey Music & Video or online via iTunes or Special thanks to: BusinessWorld and

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Maroon 5 Goes Beyond Loud


All roads led to the Big Dome last Tuesday and fans from all over the city filled the iconic coliseum to the rafters in an unprecedented turnout as the pop-rock band Maroon 5 held the Manila leg of their Overexposed World Tour 2012. Although this was the third time the band performed on local soil, it seemed like it was their first as the event quickly turned from a one-night concert to a historic musical experience in the Philippine concert scene.
Photo by Bruce Casanova

The queues at the newly-transformed Grand Atrium of the Smart Araneta Coliseum said it all. It was a veritable sea of humanity as excited fans snaked through the lines to enter the venue. There was a mad rush to buy the merchandise and the glow sticks around the coliseum concourse before they positioned in their places. No one wanted to miss a second of the much-awaited performance. Who could blame them? The mad scramble for tickets to the concert started as early as June when these were uploaded on TicketNet Online. In just a few days, the concert was sold out.

When Maroon 5 finally came on stage, the screams went beyond loud. Adam Levine and his band brought the house down with the opening number, “Payphone”. Glow-sticks illuminated the Big Dome as Adam Levine wowed the crowd with favourites that catapulted them to worldwide fame like “This Love,” “Harder to Breathe,” “Won’t Go Home Without You,” “Misery” and much, much more. Aside from their hits, the band also gave worthy covers of The White Stripes (Seven Nation Army), Justin Timberlake (SexyBack) and Human League (Don’t You Want Me). They even teased with samples of the dance craze “Gangnam Style” only to rouse the crowd and lead them to their finale number of “Moves Like Jagger.”

Levine also showed why he is considered as one of the world’s leading pop icons with his tireless energy as he crooned, rocked, and screamed their hits to the tens of thousands of Pinoys  in attendance. He sang, he played the drums and guitar, he teased, he rocked the Big Dome into a frenzy. No fancy stage-work and production was needed as the lead singer’s stage appeal and his band’s musical prowess were enough to keep the crowd electrified throughout the night.

The choice of venue couldn’t be more apt as the Big Dome has hosted numerous global icons in the past and has been the Philippine home of foreign acts for decades. It is but fitting that Maroon 5, a band that was able to deliver an iconic concert to their Filipino fans perform in the only iconic venue in the Philippines.