Monday, September 07, 2009

DEKADA: Sugarfree + MSO

August 28, 2009. Couldn't have been any better date, as it was just two weeks after Andrew's birthday (so the watching the gig was my gift to him), and it was also our 129th month as a couple :) And, of course, it was Sugarfree's 10th year together! It was a celebration of great relationships and awesome music :P

Music Museum, my personal favorite gig venue. It isn't too big nor too small, so anywhere you sit will still give you a great view of the performers. The sounds and lights are always top quality. And you can dine and drink while enjoying the best performances in the land :)

Sugarfree. Definitely one of my most favorite local bands, and one of the bands I hold close to my heart. I remember falling in love with Telepono once it hit the airwaves of NU107 in the early 2000s. I was in college then, and once Sa Wakas came out, it instantly became the soundtrack of my thesis days. I love Ebe, Jal, Mitch, and Kaka to pieces. Pati na rin si Bodjie :)

But this isn't just any Sugarfree gig. It's Sugarfree with the Manila Symphony Orchestra! And Sugarfree+MSO is a winning formula, no doubt about it. In 2007, they proved how already wonderful Sugarfree tunes could be turned into even more heartwrenching songs. Chino David is a genius, and the MSO is a cool and talented bunch of folks.


The setlist (c/o Orange Oasis from the Sugarfree Yahoo!Group):
Hay Buhay
Unang Araw
Feels Like
Wala Nang Hihilingin
Fade Away
Medley: Makita Kang Muli, Dear Kuya, Hari ng Sablay
Tulog Na
Wag Ka Nang Umiyak

My favorite moments:

A History of Sugarfree. The show began with a slideshow of pictures from 1999 to the present. Most of the pictures from 2002 to 2006 were my pics ;) When I emailed those pics to Karin, their manager, it was only then that I realized that I've only watched two or three Sugarfree gigs in the past 3 years - the MSO gig in 2007, and their Pisay fair performances.

The old songs, especially Wag Ka Na Umiyak. That song has this uncanny ability to make you do what it doesn't want you to do. Hearing the MSO version of Sa Wakas songs was pretty sweet, too. It was cool how they made them sound different from when they performed some of the same songs two years ago.

The new songs, especially Feels Like and Hangover. It was exactly those songs that I wished to hear that night, played with the MSO.

Ebe moments. Starting out the gig amongst the audience, then slowly making his way to the stage. Asking the lights people to shine some on the audience and taking a few seconds to "soak in the moment". Acknowledging and thanking his wife for being his best friend and his anchor.

Jal moments. Taguan! I love Jal's songs. I was hoping to hear Patawad or Form Factor.

Mitch moments. Seeing Mitch play again with Jal and Ebe was just wonderful. Like Ebe said, it was just like 2003 again :) It was also such an Awww moment when Ebe revealed the reason behind Mitch's separation from the band - he simply wanted to be there when his son grew up :)

Kaka moments. The guy is awesome behind the drums as well as with a guitar in his hands. We already saw his guitar prowess two years ago when they went acoustic on Tulog Na. But his solos on Fade Away this year were a different kind of awesome, too.

Bodjie moment. Yep, even if Bodjie didn't play guitar this year, he still had his moment when Ebe made him sing part of Prom from his seat.

Kwentuhan. Aside from the performances, the tidbits we get to know about the band (from their spiels between songs, and from the AVP) endeared the band even more to the audience.

Ebe says this will be their last major show in a long while, that they'll be sticking to touring and bar gigs in the meantime. I'm glad I got to witness this amazing show, and that, after 10 years, Sugarfree is still around to make our hearts chuckle and our souls sigh with their beautiful songs about life and love :)

- - - - -

Sorry if I couldn't mention the name of Sugarfree's guitarist for the night; I'm not familiar with his name.

My photos of the event can be viewed here.

You can also check out this post that links the other photos and videos from Dekada. Lotsa great photographs there!

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