Review: Bless This Mess by Bamboo

Bless This Mess by BambooIt’s been a few years since Bamboo Mañalac – formerly of Rivermaya, then of his own eponymous band, now a solo act – released an album full of new tunes, so understandably Bless This Mess is set to get some people excited. So here we are, a reminder of the best Bamboo can do: astutely poetic lyrics, almost always flowery, delivered in his breathy vocal and laid over some stirring pot of alternative sensibility and soul bravado. It is an enjoyable record, but Bless This Mess suffers from having little in the way of a memorable tune. Yes, Bamboo can still churn out a good tune, in all its creeping emotional glory, but the record trods along, content with being what it is: competent, but nothing special. Maybe I am expecting too much, but I remember my ears perking up when the last track – “Anak Ng (OFW Blues)”, the only Filipino track on the record – coming in. A pleasant surprise as it’s pretty different, language aside, from the rest. [NB]3/5

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