Friday, November 29, 2013

Greenlight Music Festival

As the sun sets. People starting to gather for Greenlight Music Fest 

Have you ever had one of those whole day events, where you get so tired but you are just enjoying every minute of it? Well that was the case for Greenlight Music Fest (which was held last November 22, 2013) that brought a multitude of people together looking to enjoy a night of great music from some of OPM's greatest acts. But not only was Greenlight Music Fest lined up with amazing bands but there were so much fun activities that you could as well. 

Skater Boy hitting the skate ramp in Greenlight Music Fest

Sometimes they say that the best things in life are for free and that was the case for Greenlight Music Fest because of the great show, the skate ramp, the mechanical bull, the freedom wall and the great food and drinks available at the event. 

One of the great things about Greenlight Music Fest being held in Greenfield District was that it was a beautiful commercialized area that had security in place and the convenience of well loved restaurants and establishments around. Definitely a great commercial and residential area at the heart of Ortigas-make sure to check it out! 

The Portal at Greenfield District 

The Greenlight Music Fest was opened by the talented Reese Lansangan, now Paul and I have seen her perform with her pop-rock band Dressed Up Days so I was really surprised to see a toned down (Fiona Apple) side to her. Definitely a fan - make sure to check out her Youtube page here and listen to her great original songs and covers. 

Talented Reese Lansangan, opening up Greenlight Music Fest

Thanks to this event we were also able to discover techno/electronica band Techy Romantics who just came out from a nine month hiatus due to baby duties. While Paul and I are not usually fans of techno music we really liked theirs and are just glad that they are back and performing again. Make sure to check out their original songs in their Youtube channel here

Make sure to Escape with Techy Romantics! 

The event was hosted by boys from Jam 88.3 DJ Lambert Cruz and DJ Mighty Mike who never wavered in their energy as they brought the crowd through the night until the early morning. They were also game masters as they had some drinking games (both for the ladies and the gents) all courtesy of event sponsor Bavaria.  

The Hostest with Mostest - DJ Lambert Cruz and DJ Mighty Mike of Jam 88.3 
There were also a lot of messages of love and hope that was given out by the artists for our brothers and sisters who were victims of super typhoon Yolanda. Not only where there just messages for the victims but there was also concrete action on the part of the organizers of the event because there was a booth from Caritas Manila that was set up and was accepting donations. Just ask Paul since he had to haul bags of clothes of food which were our donations. :) 

Caritas Manila booth set up at the entrance of Greenlight Music Fest
It was the ultimate Flashback Friday for True Faith vocalist Medwin who kept on making jokes and references on the obvious age gap that they shared with the audience but that didn't stop the good vibes and the great music. 

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Panic! At the Disco and All Time Low Night and some personal thoughts

Disclaimer, Paul was not with me during this event due to work, photos were taken with my father-in-law's Panosic Lumix point and shoot camera, so pardon the photos. :P Paul promises to make it up on the next event :) 

Over the past year, Paul and I have been fortunate enough to go to and cover local gigs and bars and because of this we've been able to meet so many talented local acts and we've also been able to appreciate OPM even more. 

Recently, I've had the opportunity to be part of a young team composed of talented music lovers who organize events like album launches and bang nights -Sparks Productions - (like our Facebook page here) We had our first official band night last Nov. 22, 2013, at Autonomy bar. (Panic! At the Disco and All Time Low Night). This specific band night was in conjunction with the recent album launch that we had with Odyssey Music. (You can read about the Panic! At the Disco and All Time Low album launch here).  

The Pearl Report 

It really is different when you are (really) in charge of the event instead of just being 'outside looking in'. I will be honest and say that the turn out was not what I would have hoped it would be, but I really am a 'glass half full' kind of person so I will just put everything under 'learning experiences' and as Paul would say 'Tuloy ang boxing' (the boxing continues). 

Wearing my my 'thinking/reflection' hat I realized that one aspect of being part of of a production team was being able to provide a venue for young bands and budding musicians for them to grow in their passion and craft. After all successful bands are not made in a day (unless you are a one hit wonder)

Amazing prizes from our sponsors <3 Which were given during the fun games

Band nights and music events is not just for the music lover in the crowd to watch, enjoy and discover music and artists that they can appreciate and admire but it is also an opportunity for artists and bands to forget about their day job, or maybe even school (even, for a while) and be the rock star that they really are. 

Thursday, November 21, 2013

The Hunger Games: Catching Fire: Movie Review

So I'm a little disappointed in myself since my review came in later than I wanted. I usually start working on my movie reviews the minute I get home from the premiere but when I got home- my mom's home not our home, the mouse was acting up and this was already at 1:00 AM so I just decided to go to sleep and work on the review the next day - so here I am now busy typing away a movie review to a movie I really enjoyed. :) 

Just some personal thoughts before diving right in to the movie review. You can jump right in at the Movie Review below :P 

I have been going to movie premieres for some time now so I pretty much know what happens. So imagine my surprise when I saw the large number of people lined up to see The Hunger Games: Catching Fire it was unlike any other movie premiere I have ever attended and there were at least 3 cinemas having the premieres and all of them had long lines! Talk about being the anticipated movie of the year! 

The firsts didn't stop there though since another first encounter for a movie premiere was the fact that ALL phones and gadgets with cameras were collected before the movie. While I know and understand that this was all for the fight against piracy it was a pain in the ass. 

Can you imagine collecting every phone and gadget in a theater full of people? Yeah you do the math, especially in this day and age where everyone has at least one cellphone or gadget. Collecting the phones may not have been much of a problem but everyone claiming their phones after the movie all at the same time - well that's another story. 

And since I didn't have a watch I couldn't tell what time it is or update my mom and my husband how I was doing, I was with my baby brother for the movie so my mom really wanted updates. We came in the movie house around 7:00PM and left at past 11:50PM. It was an inconvenience but you know what? The movie really made up for it and all of that was worth it in the end :P

Me at around 12:00 AM with our movie premiere tickets. :P

On to the movie review! 

So for everyone's reference I actually read the books - the whole trilogy about three years ago so I pretty much had an idea of what the story was about. Now even if I have read the books and am a fan of the franchise I was not going to go 'Oh it was a great movie!' blindly since I actually did not enjoy (the first movie) - Hunger Games last year. I was really disappointed at the last part in the movie since it failed to capture the hanging by a moment, nail biter ending in the book. With that being said I can critically say that the second installment Catching Fire - was AMAZING! 

From the beginning of the movie until the end you find yourself in an emotional and political arena (pun intended) where you have to deal with the dynamic of a rebellion unfolding and of course all the emotional baggage that the characters carry. 

The Odds are never in your favor. Scene from Catching Fire. 

When The Hunger Games came out last year I had to roll my eyes so many times and bite my tongue since people thought the movie was all about a battle to the death of children (which is why it was compared a lot to Battle Royale) when in fact the whole battle to the death was just the tip of the ice burg and that the story actually deals with a more complicated political dynamic. I was glad that this was touched on in the second movie and I was really glad that they included (SPOILER ALERT) the scene in the Presidential Ball where Peeta is offered a purple elixir to drink so that he can throw up what he ate - just so he can eat some more and try everything was very important to me at least and I really felt strongly about this scene (also when I read it in the book) because as Peeta put it: "People in District 12 have nothing to eat while in the Capitol people where gorging themselves sick from eating too much food" and surprisingly this is something that we don't just read in books and watch in movies because it actually happens in real life! 

Some people have so much and too much while others have nothing at all. I was really glad that they included this scene in the movie, although it was really short it was really powerful for me and really spoke a hundred words. I hope that the people who come to watch the movie catch it also. It's really important to understand especially to get an idea of what the rebellion is all about. 

Amazing cast and amazing acting  

In case you guys didn't know Jennifer Lawrence is actually an Academy Award Winner for her role as Tiffany Maxwell in Silver Linings Playbook. She isn't just some actress known for being the lead in a well known franchise but she also has the acting chops to back it up.Which is a good thing since the character of Katniss Everdeen is very complicated as she becomes the reluctant symbol of a rebellion and is torn between the love of a long time friend and the love of a fellow tribute. Some things that people don't realize or maybe forget is that unlike the Careers who spend their lives training and wanting to be part of The Hunger Games and winning at all cost, Katniss is a great archer and hunter because she had to be, she had to learn how to hunt in order to provide food for her family. She didn't pick up the bow and arrow to learn how to make pin cushions out of other tributes but she picked it up (and became good at it) so her family can eat. There is a lot of ugly crying and ugly shouting that Katniss does throughout the movie but Jennifer Lawrence delivers it in a convincing way and that is real acting. 

Smile for the cameras. Oddly enough the victors' celebrity status and Katniss and Peeta's on-screen romance so that people would 'forget' the real problems is eerily familiar to how we follow and poke into the lives of real celebrities for our own pleasure and amusement.

Monday, November 11, 2013

Kamikazee represents JB Music Philippines

Merry Christmas! Kamikazee with their toys from JB Music.  
Last Friday November 8, 2013 Kamikazee became the new face of JB Music Philippines and they will be representing the brand as they continue to bring great music to fans. 

Ever since 2000 when they were first formed Kamikazee has been a house hold name when it comes to Original Pinoy Music, their no holds barred lyrics and humor and all out energy on stage have made them a staple in the local music scene. Which is why it is no surprise that they have been tapped by JB Music Philippines as their newest endorsers. 

You can't really go wrong with this equation to since Kamikazee is partnering with the Philippines' number 1 musical instrument and professional audio distributor. JB Music Philippines has been providing the Filipinos with high quality music instruments and equipment for 39 years! 

Kamikazee with a JB Music Employee. 
Let's welcome Kamikazee to the JB Music Philippines family we know that these two will make great music together! :) 

Don't forget to like JB Music Philippines here and you can also follow them on Twitter @JBMusicPh and make sure to check their stores for their HIMIG LAKAS SALE with up to 70% off on selected items. Hurry since the sale is only up to November 15, 2013 :) 

You can also catch Kamikazee in a benefit gig tonight, November 11, 2013 at 70's Bistro. Proceeds will be going to the victims of Typhoon Yolanda. 

For more photos of the event click here!  

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Greenlight Music Fest

Update! As of November 12, 2013 - Three days before the event - In light of the recent events due to the devastation brought about by Typhoon Yolanda, organizers of Greenlight Music fest are currently organizing ways and means so that the festival can also benefit the victims of Typhoon Yolanda. Admission to the event is for free but donations will be accepted in the concert venue. Use the #greenfielddistrict if you want to help.

It's no surprise that music festivals are suddenly popping left and right-after all Filipinos are infamous for loving music and while there have been a number of music festivals featuring international music acts we've had our own share of music festivals featuring our very own talented OPM artists. 

And Greenlight Music is not just another music festival but the music festival of the season as it not only features some of the country's leading and up and coming acts but it's also FREE! Yes! Admission is FREE!    

All you have to do is show up - gates open at 4:00 PM - show starts at 5:00 PM and you get to enjoy performances from these bands: 

Up Dharma Down
True faith
Taken By Cars
Techy Romantics
Never The Strangers
Madhatter Day
Yolanda Moon
She's Only Sixteen
Save Me Hollywood
Jensen Gomez
Reese Lansangan
Earth Mover

Wow! Talk about a great line up of bands! I have a lot of personal favorites in that line up and I can't wait! So stoked! :) Also another reason for the excitement (drum roll please) Pcheng Photography is covering! Wohoooo! :D So expect photos galore and a blog post from us! :) 

But wait! There's more! 

Aside from the great live music lined up there are also a number of activities that will be made available to attendees such as moving statue, freedom wall and graffiti, Open Skate Jam (so for the skaters out there-bring your boards!) and Bull Ride Rodeo! :) 

Save Me Hollywood: BTone Music Gig

Feeling It: Julz Savard of Save Me Hollywood jumping to the music. 

I haven't been able to catch Save Me Hollywood in a gig for some time and so naturally being the fan that I am I missed seeing them perform. So when I heard that they would be headlining a gig at BTone Music Cafe in Baras I wanted to go and good thing that Paul has the weekends off! :) 

It was a bit of a road trip since Baras was a few towns away from us. :P 

I used to go on this long route when I was still going on duties as a student nurse but travelling at night was really different and difficult especially for the driver but all for the love of Save Me Hollywood right? 

BTone Music Cafe is a nice bar with a great interior, I like that the design is pretty much open which allows for fresh air to come in, unlike most bars that are small and cramped and that gets full of cigarette smoke-which I don't like. It's even big enough to have like a birthday party or a big gathering and not just band night. The service was a bit too slow for my taste though :P 

While Save Me Hollywood was slated to perform second to the last in the line up I enjoyed the performance of the Indie bands and it's just fun to think that these guys are basically my neighbors! :P 

Here were the bands that performed that night: 

Give Us A Break
Retaso Castro 
Triple P 

To his own beat: Let's show some love for Melvin Macatiag of Save Me Hollywood
When Save Me Hollywood got on stage my heart just exploded seeing the love that the crowd had for them, there was crowd surfing, lots of singing and cheering! :D 

Reaching out: One of our favorite photos of the night - Julz reaching out to a fan mid song. 

For more photos of the night click here

Monday, November 4, 2013

Project 365: Week 14

As the end of April approaches, I kept faith and tried my best to hold true to Project 365.  By this time, I've been shooting constantly ever since January 24, 2013. So without further ado here are the photos from April 26 - May 2, 2013.  

April 26, 2013 - Mission accomplished
It was a Friday(my rest day), and the car was with me and had free time, so I went ahead and washed the car.  I tried my best to be thorough but there are still some parts that I couldn't clean.  But if you ask me, I think i did an OK job. Not bad for cleaning the car for the first time.

Shot with an iPhone 4S, post processed in Snapseed.  I thought of posting this image in color  but I find it too distracting. So I de-saturated and sharpened the image to give it a smooth finish.

On the following day, me and my wife went to an event to cover the Album Launch of Fall Out Boy.  We were fortunate to get invited by Odyssey(a local music/video store in the Philippines as we were fortunate a few local acts that we may cross paths with in the future. 

April 27, 2013 - F#/B
Above is a photo of Ina Martinez of Red Paradox, during the Album Buy out in Odyssey.  This image was shot with Canon 500d, and a 50mm F/1.8.  It may seem blurry but I got the focus on left hand to the head stock of the guitar which was what I wanted to emphasize here.  

April 28, 2013 - From the mountains to the city
This day, I went out for a walk to shoot a sunset from the highest peak near our house.  Remembering this one, It has a strong orange cast that day and a huge cloud was over the horizon and looked ominous, but I like the way the buildings were showing like silhouettes.  It may seem grainy but I like this shot all the same.  Shot with a Canon 500d, and 50mm f/1.8.

As for the following two days, I went out to watch a gig and blogged about this one. I went out to cover an even from featuring bands that played Foo Fighter songs.

Friday, November 1, 2013

Halloween Comic Fest

My Baby Sister Isay in her Iron Man Shawarma shirt from The Perfect White Shirt - (which is my birthday gift to her by the way) with Batgirl. 

Hey guys! My baby sister Isay will be guest blogging with us. She's the real comic geek in the family and she went to Fully Book's Halloween Comic Fest. Paul and I had a Baptism/First Birthday to go to. So without further adieu - here is Isay's first and hopefully not last post with us. :) 

(As I was writing this, I'm listening to my nerdcore songs: X-Women, 616, Magneto was Right, Comic Shop, Nerrd Lines, Marvel vs. DC, and a whole lot more. J )

It was definitely a fun treat to drop by at Fully Booked Bonifacio High Street Branch for Halloween Comicfest. Being one of the many individuals who braved the heat last Free Comic Book Day, I was expecting a very long line of comic book enthusiasts going around High Street. But when we came to the store (at exactly 10 am), the line was surprisingly shorter, and went around the front of the store, not like the line last May 4th.

We saw friends, families, and individuals of different ages waiting in line for their chance to get free comic books. There were also grown-ups in costume, like Kick-Ass and a casual Robin. There were little kids with their parents in superhero costumes who looked so adorable, and grandmas standing in line with their grandchildren. The weather was cool, making the wait comfortable, unlike the glaring sun that melted us away last Free Comic Book Day.

Free Comic Books during Halloween ComicFest 

While in line, it was nice to be able to talk about comics with people who actually understand what you’re talking about. Falling into easy conversation, we didn’t even notice the line and before we knew it, we were already inside the store. We were led to the table with the vast array of comics that we could choose from. On one table were the comics from American publishers, such as DC and Marvel, with a wide variety of comics for children too. On the second table were the manga issues, like back issues of Shonen Jump.

Colored spread from Shonen Jump. 
Each person could choose 3 comics from either table. Unlike their protocol last Free Comic Book Day, we were given the comics without a choice to the issues that we wanted. So I sort of panicked in front of the table, not knowing what to choose. In the end, I went for Batman: Long Halloween, Batman : Lil’ Gotham and an issue of Shonen Jump. Fortunately, my friend was nice enough to lend me his copy of Marvel’s offering, the first issue of Thor: God of Thunder. (which I was really thankful for because it was colored by my idol, Dean White <3)

Aside from the table with the free comics, there were also tables around them with graphic novels of up to 50% off. From DC to Marvel, to Image and Vertigo, whether thick or thin, it was a beautiful collection of books at half the price. But our search for a nice deal had to be set aside for later, because we decided to go up to the fourth floor and visit Comic Odyssey for the latest releases. There was also a book signing of local artists and writers right outside the store. Fans were all lined up for the chance to get to meet and greet their favorite comic book creators.

Two shades of the Caped Crusader. Above a page from Lil' Gotham that features Chibi Batman and Robin and Below the good old Batman in a centerfold action scene with Catwoman.