By JOHN LEGASPI
Gathering the finest of the local indie rock and funk music scene, Malasimbo Music and Arts Festival 2019 lined-up numerous great acts that stormed the stage with raw energy, intense vocals, and songs for slow swaying. Held last March 1 and 2, the music festival from the mountain was brought down to the fine greeneries along the White Beach of Puerto Galera.
One of the first live acts of the Day 1 of the festival, Coeli offered soft tunes to match the golden hours of the sun. Their mild percussion was a great appetizer to the intense sounds coming later at night. Completing the afternoon was her airy vocals sending you to different dimensions of wonder, with the help of Muni The Band, through her songs Hanggang Dito Na Lang, Magkaibigan o Magka-ibigan, and Sweet Escape.
It’s like kundiman but infused with modern sound. Munimuni‘s performance was an ode to remembering love, whether it had passed or stayed. With songs Calachuchi, Para Sa’yo, Sa Hindi Pag-alaala, and Tahanan, the sweet tones blanketed the lyrics of the songs beautifully, and that sudden pause during their performance presented great showmanship.
Coffee Break Island
Masters of ska and reggae, the Coffee Break Island are rebels of through their own music. Musky and a powerful, the leads vocalist showed prowess you only heard during meaningful protests. Their original Gahaman and Wild Time wowed the festival goers will breathtaking vocal runs and instrumental stamina.
Ruby Ibarra and the Balikbayans
She blew the minds of the 2018 Malasimbo crowd. This Filipina lyrical rapper brought the house down with the Balikbayans. Like a true master rapper, she literally splashed the raving crowd with water from a bucket as she declaimed her truth through urban beats and jazz tones accompaniments.
IV of Spades
The rock and funk indie band, IV of Spades, was one of the musical acts everyone was waiting for. IV of Spades has this command on stage that slightly mirrors the rock icons of the ‘70s and ‘80s. From the arching backs due to intense string pluckings to the candid statements like, “If you don’t want to listen, you can go, bye bye,” are an epitome of true rockstars. The crowd sang with the band in songs Bawat Kaluluwa, Mundo, and Hey Barbara.