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Thursday, October 15, 2015

Playback: Autotelic – We Are Autotelic (album)

10/08/15 11:37:38 AM

Photo credits: Pinoytuner
There are times where all I wanna do is to shut up and listen to a variety of music. And in case I liked them, I do put my several takes on it.

And rarely—if not none—I made some words of appreciation on albums. But for now, since Autotelic is celebrating its success for over three years in the independent music scene, might as well have do a review on their album.

Just over a year ago, Josh Villena and company released their 8-tracked album at 12 Monkeys Music Hall and Pub in Makati City. Though it was only past April when I grabbed a copy of their record (their second, after an EP that was launched in 2013/early 2014).

So, first things first. I am a huge fan of 'track number 1.' Meaning, the very first song that will play on my disk—in chronological order—should better be attractive to my ears as fuck. It's like a simple sales transaction where you have to grab the prospect customer's attention by presenting the part of your product that has awesomeness. Parang pag una mong napakinggan, “Shet! Love ko na 'to!”

And that is something Kung Sa Bagay had been good for. From that introductory mix of synth, guitars, and the sudden drubbing of drums, to the rest of the way.

This time though, the album version of Misteryoso sounded a bit differently. Perhaps more polished. I admit, I'd prefer the old one (yes, the extended length). This one, though running for only five and a half minutes, was still not a bad thing to deal with. The difference is quite obvious, Kai's vocals were injected. Plus the keyboard-mix was more hearable that before.

Unstable is quite a melodical-paced one. Setting aside the music video Ballet Philippines had done, the rhythm shows the story in accompaniment to the lyrical forms. It never went to the fast lane; but still danceable, especially when heard live.

Balik, as I said on my song review, talks about nostalgia. This one, though, was a mere polished version (just like Misteryoso). But hearing this version—on a personal note—gave me goosebumps. Quite strange. I quite thought they have the same pace as Unstable.

The difference is that Balik—another Filipino language-written track—was more related to the goers. Could it be the lyrics? Perhaps. Plus the fact it changes power from slow to much-a-bit-faster-than-medium. Gep's drumming prowess during the instrumental struck me the most; along with the guitar effects from Villena, Neil Tin, and the bass from Timothy Vargas. But hearing the last chorus gave me that total lookback vibe. It's like you wanna see some rundown-travel clips and that part on your audio accompaniment.

Dalhin is something I considered one of the under-rated tracks for the album (three, in fact). Strong message in a simpler-sounding blend—and short lyrics. But the message was so strong that I had my hand picked on this as my personal favorite.

Isang Tanong, Isang Sagot was another. Talk about waiting for “answers,” eh? More dramatic than Unstable; and more melodic either.

Dahilan was still definitely (and still) an instant attraction to the music lovers. You try to hear them on canned recording (either by the album or just on that lyric video on YouTube alone), and it will give you total satisfaction on how Villena's song-writing prowess works; especially at chorus where he and Honasan's vocals blend well. Plus, EJ Edralin's exposure on synth was more evident here.

It's like one of the tracks where you will realized this should have been a sad song; and yet it's still danceable as fuck. Yes it is even if it's not as fast paced as whatever you may have think.

All Night. Where things went from a deeper-bass level. I heard more of Pab's stuff right there. And the powerful strum of the guitarists and drubbing of Macadaeg's as well. Also, the longest recording in this album.

The closure was so dimmed-sounding as fuck; it's telling a story like there's more in this band that will come out soon, as the night goes cooler (as if a gig reached its end and chill-down vibe is peaking).
Perhaps I should not be surprised anymore why Autotelic's self-titled album was an instant gem in the recent era. To think of it, even mainstream news portals had their own share of raves for this record, and the music magazine blog Vandals on the Wall even tagged them as part of its 20 Essential Albums of 2014. 

Well, I guess blame it on the process. These tracks were presented in various forms, crafted in different ways, and telling wordplay in whatever means possible. And even on the down-tempo like beat, there's no way you can never dance to any of their tunes.

And that is the main reason why Autotelic was one of the present standouts of the Philippine independent music scene—and perhaps the future of the Filipino pop music too!

The Verdict: 9.5/10
 Author: slickmaster | ©2015 september twenty-eight productions

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