Reader Advisory

Some articles posted in The SlickMaster's Files may contain themes, languages, and content which may neither appropriate nor appealing to certain readers. READER DISCRETION is advised.

Saturday, April 20, 2024

PlayBack: Orange & Lemons – La Bulaqueña

06/28/2023 04:27:58PM

It's been one and half decades – or between the years 2007 and 2022 – since we haven't heard a new album from the Bulacan-based pop band Orange & Lemons (well, aside from the re-recorded first record before). We all know the long news about the disastrous break-up amidst their skyrocketed popularity before, right? Some of us were probably kids back then. This would probably sound better if I wrote such thing last year, no?

However, with their return on the scene came a new creative pursuant for the now-quartet of Clem Castro, the del Mundo brothers of Ace & JM, and their new member – keyboardist Jared Nerona. Five years since the initial reunion – and three since Jared's first on-board experience, the group released a series of singles, an array of rerecorded materials – and moreover, an album. And, by the way, not just a 10-track album – it comprised all-Filipino tracks. But there's more than being just an all-Filipino by the language.

It's as kundiman and matalinhaga as it sounds, but La Bulaqueña is like Orange & Lemons's collective of odes and symphonies to the old. Sure, they totally differed away from whatever they had done, from Love in the Land of Rubber Shoes and Dirty Ice Cream to Moonlane Gardens; but that indeed was needed to be done. All the rondalla instruments done in their newest materials plus renditions of old songs penned by some of our country's legendary heroes in arts and literature. Not to mention, the transition from their Brit-pop inspired roots to the more nationally recognized sound based at the home of the poets and heroes were so evident in tracks like Yakapin Natin Ang Gabi, Ikaw Ang Aking Tahanan, and Hindi Ko Sukat Akalain, to name a few.

Strangely odd or different, but this is a damn piece of art that doesn't aim for the approval of many.

The Verdict: 8.5/10 

Author: slickmaster | © 2023, 2024 The SlickMaster's Files

No comments:

Post a Comment

Feel free to make a comment as long as it is within the bounds of the issue, and as long as you do it with decency. Thanks!