Jam 'n' Bop

Music is more than just listening. It is an experience. Get up. Enjoy the rhythm. Sing it out. Dance. Jam 'n' Bop.

car radio twenty one pilots review

twenty one pilots rocked the MTV Movie Awards yesterday with their powerful performance of Car Radio. They wore their heart out and introduced their brand of music when they opened the show. I am pleased that MTV is still not done presenting their music to more listeners. Last year, the duo was featured in MTV Push. While MTV Push barely helped their popularity, the MTV Movie Awards is doing wonders for them. The song entered iTunes daily top 100 and will surely debut in Billboard Hot 100 when the tracking period is over. This will be their first song to be in US’s main chart containing all genres.

The mixture of rock, hip hop, piano-driven pop, electronic and folk style of twenty one pilots sets them apart from all the other bands around. Couple with that brilliant storytelling, lyrical depth and emotion, the band is just in another level even though they have just released their label debut album, Vessel.

Car Radio is the most fascinating song I have heard in the past few years. It started off with Tyler talk-rapping with a light accompaniment of keyboard and drums. As the song progresses, the instrumental became fuller and no first time listener could have prepared for the explosive techno-pop breakdown tied up with Tyler's screamo in the end. The sound is not the only praiseworthy here. The lyrical content is mind blowing: "Faith is to be awake / And to be awake is for us to think / And for us to think is to be alive / And I will try with every rhyme / To come across like I am dying / To let you know you need to try to think." The vocals is powerful and compelling, adding weight to the sensitivity.

I have formulated this thought that maybe the world is not yet ready for twenty one pilots just like they were not ready with label mates, Paramore and fun.'s first albums back then. We know both bands went big with their second albums, RIOT! and Some Nights. I thought this is how it will turn out for them too, but it seems like Vessel will bring it on for twenty one pilots.

image courtesy of Real Bear Media
OneRepublic Love Runs Out review

Counting Stars has surprisingly become OneRepublic's biggest hit after Apologize. Now, the challenge is to choose the right follow-up single. It will be the deciding factor if they will keep or kill the momentum going for them. With the sound of their latest single, Love Runs Out, it is clear they are keeping it.

Love Runs Out was supposed to be the lead single for Native but Ryan can't figure out a chorus for it so it ended up not being on the album. A year after the album's release, they are re-releasing it with this new track.

The Native vibe is recognizable in Love Runs Out. It has the edginess of Counting Stars and the instant appeal and memorability of Something I Need. Thinking about its sound, I think OneRepublic didn't really intend the album to be represented by electronic pop rock songs: Feel Again and If I Lose Myself. They wanted the experimental ones, but because the planned lead single was not finished, they went for the safe choice. It backfired on them when these radio-friendly singles failed to become big hits and the unconventional single choice was the one that became successful. I'm glad the public made Counting Stars a huge hit which led us to Love Runs Out seeing the light of day.

The first lines of the song will make you hooked with its brilliant rhyming and melody: "I'll be your light, your match, your burning sun / I'll be the bright and black that's making you run." The verses help build up the emotion leading to the explosive hook that will surely invade the airwaves. Ryan Tedder's vocals sounded aggressive than ever before which complimented the ambitious production.

Nowadays, the general listeners' taste is eclectic. Just check the current top 10 in iTunes and you will see all of the genre represented (you will even see that Despicable Me song at #1). This is a time to bring something new to the table. OneRepublic definitely did with Love Runs Out. Now, I am eagerly anticipating what sound they will incorporate for the fourth album.

What are your thoughts on Love Runs Out? Feel free to use the comment box below.
ed sheeran sing review

Title: SING
Artist: Ed Sheeran
Album: x

Ed Sheeran, what happened?!? He was one of the most interesting artists to come out from the UK in 2011 with a solid debut album. The gentleness and peaceful atmosphere that + brought us was refreshing compared to emerging British rock and indie bands back then. Now, he is leaving that style and going for something more mainstream. SING, his comeback single, was produced by Pharell -- the guy who is in every #1 songs (Get Lucky, Blurred Lines and Happy) and his influence in this new single is clearly audible. Pharell is a great artist and producer but I am skeptical about his collaboration with Sheeran. The sound of SING can easily be compared to Justin Timberlake especially when Ed is using his falsetto. The originality in his artistry is being masked by the production that is making him sound just like other pop artists.

SING will surely win him a larger audience because of its mainstream appeal. I just hope this style doesn't represent x in its entirety. Ed can surely rap and be fun but he is at his best when he's sensitive and introspective.

image courtesy of Billboard
i will wait mumford & sons

I've shared before that Mumford & Sons is the reason how I got into folk music. But I haven't told the story how I got into Mumford & Sons. Like my post yesterday, it's because one of my favorite bands loved them. Ruben Juarez of Tenth Avenue North tweeted how he loves I Will Wait. I listened to the song and was surprised to discover that folk music can be so much fun. Afterwards, I listened to their Grammy awarded Album of the Year, Babel. I loved it a lot. I bought a physical copy of it the next day.

Mumford & Sons' songwriting has depth and color that is not just entertaining to listen to but insightful as well. They don't give away what the meaning of the song upfront. I have to dig deeper, most of the times, what they are singing about. By doing so, I can relate to their songs with my own personal story.

terraplane sun get me golden

Switchfoot shared their Fading West Spring Tour pre-show playlist. It's amazing to have a glimpse of what your favorite band loves to listen to. I am not familiar with a lot of the songs included in the playlist which is pretty cool. That way I get to discover new artists and new songs. And I did. I am currently loving Get Me Golden by Terraplane Sun.

I gotta plan in the palm of my hand to get me rollin
I gotta plan in the palm of my hand to get me golden

The same playlist is the reason I appreciate Lorde's Team as well. I think I should listen to the whole playlist more often. It collectively sends out summer vibe.

the 1975 matthew healy live trinoma manila

Confession time: I have no idea who The 1975 was back in February. It's only after I saw my Facebook friend posted Girls that I came to know about them. I got quickly addicted to the song. I know they will have a mall tour here in the Philippines this March which was free (same promoter as The Relient K show) so I wasted no time listening to their album.

the 1975 matthew healy live in trinoma manila

The 1975 debut record is solid. It was groovy. It makes me want to dance every time I listen to it. I instantly became a fan.

I'm happy my friend got me a ticket for The 1975 show in Trinoma a week before the show. He told me that those are the last tickets and there are others who failed to claim theirs.

the 1975 live in trinoma manila 2014

The 1975 concert I went to was held last Saturday in Trinoma mall. I arrived at 4 PM and was surprised to see people already crowding around the activity center. At 5 PM, they let us enter the venue. The band arrived an hour later, but the show still started at 7 PM. The venue was jam-packed. They opened with their self-titled song, The 1975 (that's something new, all I know was self-titled album haha).

the 1975 live in manila 2014

The crowd surely know their lyrics. We all sang along to each of the songs and yes, we sang in British accent: "But she cahn't be what you need if she's seventeen. They're just garls. They're just garls."

the 1975 manila 2014
the 1975 live at trinoma manila 2014

The best moments of the show were during the performances of Girls, Chocolate and Sex. Everyone was dancing and fist pumping. I recorded the chorus of Girls. Watch it below:

I also recorded Settle Down since it's one of my favorite tracks off The 1975.

I enjoyed the show so much. The 1975 are awesome performers. Matthew Healy's vocals sounded as good as it was in CD. I'm glad they announced their plans of coming back here in the Philippines even before they left. I will be surely looking forward to that.
love runs out onerepublic

Ryan Tedder talked about OneRepublic's fourth album with Billboard during his photoshoot for the magazine which honored him with the nickname, "The Undercover King of Pop." He said that he is writing on the road incessantly. After writing for Beyonce, he is currently working with Taylor Swift and Mikky Ekko for their new materials. Most importantly, he has finished two OneRepublic songs which are planned to be singles. The first one is Love Runs Out which will be the new single following their mega-hit, Counting Stars and the second is the first single for the band's upcoming fourth album. 

Ryan Tedder announced that Love Runs Out will be OneRepublic's new single during their show in Amsterdam. It was considered to be the lead single for Native but it didn't make the cut because Ryan can't figured out a chorus for it. Now, it will be released as a non-album single. Listen below to the live performance of the song:

We have no details about the new single for the 4th OneRepublic album yet. All we know is that it's finished. That means we can expect a OneRepublic album very soon.

Here's the interview with Billboard:

avril lavigne live in manila 2014 photos

Last month, I finally got the chance to see Avril Lavigne perform live. I've been a fan of her since 2002. Yup, back when she was still wearing a necktie above a tank top. She was the voice behind my childhood soundtrack. You can only imagine how I have anticipated the day that I thought was never going to happen.

I'm glad to be among the first few people to know about Avril's concert date here in the Philippines. They announced the news before the start of OneRepublic's concert in Smart Araneta Coliseum (I was there and that one was an awesome show too). But shame on me for buying a ticket two weeks before the Avril concert when I knew about it months before. The result was an underwhelming seat.

Before The Show

I went with my friend who I was with on OneRepublic's concert. We arrived an hour early in the venue. When we approached Door 1 (the indicated entrance in our ticket) we bumped into Avril's band. I wanted to greet them but was shy. They left the backstage so me and my friend was peeking through the entrance to catch a glimpse of Avril but of course we are not successful. We entered the coliseum and looked for our seats. We are disappointed to find out that we will be beside the stage and not in front of it unlike what the online map illustrated in Araneta Coliseum's website. (Their map is not too reliable. I demand a refund!) After some minutes, I went to the men's room again. On my way to my seat, I saw the band approaching with their coffee. Apparently, they went out to grab some coffee and I finally greeted, "Hi Rodney!" He greeted back. Rodney is the only band member I know in Avril's current lineup because the others just joined her last year.

Looking around the venue, I noticed some fans wearing red paint on their face resembling Avril in Rock N Roll music video. There are also a lot of them wearing Avril and the R.O.C.K.S. foundation shirt. At around 8PM, a huge group in the upper box just decided they wanna yell and all the people turned to them. They raised their "AVRIL" cut outs and unveiled a banner that reads "WE LOVE YOU BITCH!" They kept screaming and everyone in the venue brought their cameras out and took photos of the spirited group.

The Show Begins

avril lavigne live in manila 2014 photos

At around 8:45 PM, they turned off the lights. The show began with a slideshow of Avril's pictures played as her voice over thanked the fans who has been with her through all these times. (You're welcome, Avril.) Then the video ended, she came out the stage. Ahh!!!! I fell head over heels. "Avril is so beautiful!," I almost shouted. As soon as I gained composure, I took my iPad out to take photos. She opened the show with Hello Kitty wearing... you guessed it right, a Hello Kitty dress. "Ka-ka-ka-kawaii!" The electronic track perfectly matched the crowd's loud welcoming. Keeping the energy up, Girlfriend was played next. Afterwards, Avril rushed to the dressing room. It was located in the right side of the stage so every time she changes, she runs closer to where I sit (10-meter near LOL).

She went back the stage wearing a R.O.C.K.S. shirt that appropriately matched as she performed her fist-pump-inducing songs: Rock N Roll, Here's To Never Growing Up and I Always Get What I Want. I took a video of Here's To Never Growing Up's chorus. Watch it below.

Chad Kroeger!!!

After the lively performances, they toned down to give way for ballads: Hush Hush and Let Me Go. The coliseum went nuts when Chad Kroeger came out singing his part in Let Me Go. Nobody expected it because he has only performed the song on award shows and never in a concert venue until that night. The performance was worth every scream it received. It was a lovely duet.

avril lavigne chad kroeger philippine concert 2014

When Chad left, Avril picked up her guitar to perform her Under My Skin hits, My Happy Ending and Don't Tell Me. Continuing the past hits streak, Complicated was performed after. As expected, everybody can't get enough of that song. "You fall and you crawl and you break and you take what you get and you turn it into..."

avril lavigne manila philippines live 2014

Bad Girl 

live in manila avril lavigne 2014

Avril left the stage to change outfit again. Then Marilyn Manson's face was on the screen as her band played his hit, The Beautiful People. To people wondering, what's up with that. Avril collaborated with him on Bad Girl which she performed when she came out the dressing room. While she's performing, a tour exclusive music video of the song played behind her. The clip was so entertaining. I can't decide what to watch. Her or the screen. The video showed her playing with her lipstick, applying it heavily on and beyond her lips and even her teeth. It was hilariously cool. I hope they'll release it on YouTube. 

First Encore 

avril lavigne live philippines 2014

One complaint from her fans that I kept hearing about this tour was her lack of enthusiasm to perform her new materials. Since this is my first concert of her, I did not care or should I say I prefer to see the past hits performed live. Her old songs are beyond amazing. For the first encore, she sang He Wasn't, Losing Grip and Sk8er Boi. She did the He Wasn't game like the one in The Best Damn Tour Live in Toronto DVD. It was so much fun. The game was pretty simple. When she raises her arms, the crowd should go insane and when she put her arms down, the crowd should stop screaming. The lighting department helped to make the game extra entertaining.

When Sk8er Boi ended, they fired the confetti up in the air. Avril and the band left. I'm pretty sure it's still not over because she hadn't performed I'm With You and Nobody's Home yet. But that did not stop me from joining the crowd in screaming, "Moreeee!" The people in upper box are stomping their feet and I remembered it sounded like a stampede.

Surprise! Second Encore!

avril lavigne philippine concert 2014 photos

We won. They came back though I'm sure this second encore was staged. She performed What The Hell and Smile back to back. She knew that the crowd was eager to sing so she let us do some vocal warm up in WTH.

I'm (Cryind Inside) With You

avril lavigne live in manila 2014 pictures

I'm With You was the last song on the setlist. (Yep, I was wrong. Nobody's Home didn't make the cut.) I've read in the forums, that this song has been the closer for this tour so I'm sure this is the ending. It was an emotional performance. I clearly remembered 12 years ago. Every night I listen through my portable radio player waiting for this song to get played. And when it's on, it's magic. That's how I will describe the performance: magical. She made us sing the last chorus twice which added to the magic of the moment.

magic coldplay review

Title: Magic
Artist: Coldplay
Album: Ghost Stories

Coldplay made sure fans understand that they will not be getting another upbeat pop record nor a Rihanna collaboration with their next album like Mylo Xyloto. They hinted what sonical direction they will take with their Hunger Games: Catching Fire song, Atlas. Then they released Midnight, a teaser track from their 6th record resembling Bon Iver's earthy and spacious sound. Today, the lead single Magic was released together with the announcement of the album title, Ghost Stories.

If you became a fan of Coldplay circa Parachutes, A Rush of Blood to the Head or X&Y era, you will be rejoicing with Magic's calm and soothing adult contemporary vibe. But if you became a fan during Viva la Vida or Death and All His Friends or Mylo Xyloto era, you might felt lost with the song's lack of instrumentation. I personally became a fan during the latter eras. Yes, I love mainstream Coldplay. Generally, I have always been a fan of loud music. It takes sometime before I comprehend how gorgeous a peaceful track is. With Magic, it didn't took me long to appreciate its goodness. Each of the instruments entered at the right moment and were given enough time to shine.

The song is typical Coldplay. It is an introspective allusion to an ex-lover whom Chris Martin is still in love with. The lyrics mirror a depressed nursery rhyme but worked perfectly with the hypnotic beat.

Magic is enchanting. It is a great single choice that takes us back to early 2000's when some of us tried our luck at love but lost.

the avril lavigne tour live in manila tickets

I've been waiting for that day to see the voice behind my childhood soundtrack and hear her perform those songs live. That day is fortunately TOMORROW!!! Me and my friend already have our tickets for The Avril Lavigne Tour: Live in Manila. I can't wait to see how dazzling Avril is and hear her angelic small voice live.

For now, I'll listen to Tomorrow until tomorrow comes. 

By the way, this performance is one of my favorite Avril performances ever. She is so real here. She's like one of your friends assigned to sing at her grandparent's funeral. It's piercing.