“Better Than A Kiss Itself” by Chocolate Grass | Let’s make it four local songs in a row! Here’s something that Jayvee sent me over. Chocolate Grass. Yes, we’ve written about them a couple of times. They just released an album, and I badly want to review it, but I just don’t know where to find it. (I told you, I’m just a normal guy.) This song was out a few months ago, and unlike the rest of the band’s stuff that I’ve heard, this is a more straightforward jazzy affair… but then they take the pillow fight to sexy new heights and I find myself rethinking that metaphor I just laid down. [NB]
Friday night’s Jack TV MAD Fest was, arguably, a festival built around the fact that they got Kimbra to perform. I mean, save for the four DJs that followed her – I didn’t watch them for obvious reasons, and also because Rainy and I were really tired – the acts were limited to three songs each. But it was a nice way to be reacquainted with the best Filipino music has to offer: a good mix of established acts and new ones bubbling under, making you wonder what the hell happened to “OPM is dead”? So, in the following paragraphs, my five highlights, plus a quick run through the rest.
“Testify” by Chocolate Grass | As I am not a man about town, I have to rely on people who do watch gigs (a lot) to turn me on to new local artists. (This is one reason why I call myself a “sort-of music blogger”.) Eena recommended one such band last month: neo-soul outfit Chocolate Grass, who just released their EP five weeks ago. She particularly pointed towards the stage presence of vocalist
Nikki Cabardo Abs Haw – “her voice, her moves, how she performs,” she said. “Labels, watch out. She’s phenomenal.” I’m only judging from this one video – the closest we have to a music video at the moment; YouTube’s full of live performances however – and there is something entrancing about her. A completely different animal from, say, Kat Agarrado of SinoSikat?, who’s all out sultry and jazzy. Nikki’s a little more playful here, outwardly shy but everything seeps out anyway. But then again, I have to watch her live to describe that properly. [NB] (Have things I should hear? Drop me a line here.)