Category: Arts and Entertainment


MAKATI CITY –   A common love for sneakers and fashion drove eight college friends together to put up their own store. Nestled in cozy Perea Street in Legazpi Village, Commune is sort of an antithesis to much bigger retail outlets, and looks more like an art gallery for sneaker fiends.

MAKATI CITY, METRO MANILA –   Cecile Licad is arguably the greatest living Filipino pianist. But what is truly endearing is that she continues to prove that appreciation for classical music is not only limited to the educated elite.
MANILA – How much is a four-decade old Filipino band worth nowadays? Apparently, at least 80,000 New Zealand dollars if you’re talking about the Apo Hiking Society.

Lilith Fair Redux

Remember Lilith Fair? Founded by Canadian singer Sarah McLachlan, the music festival championed female musicians from the more popular ones like Lisa Loeb, Fiona Apple, Cristina Aguilera, Jewel, and Sheryl Crow to cult favorites like Juliana Hatfield, Cibo Matto and Aimee Mann. But as McLachlan’s popularity waned, Lilith Fair lasted only a rather short-lived three years.

About five years since then, a lot of outstanding female singers have cropped up, a lot of them garnering religious indie following, their music very well diverse. Here are five musicians that definitely deserve a spot in a modern-day Lilith Fair – should there be one. Some of them may just turn out to be as durable like PJ Harvey (artistically, too, like Bjork) or become pop darlings like Sheryl Crow. Or maybe, some might earn a short-lived turn at the spotlight. Remember Leona Naess?


Feist (real name: Leslie Feist). Her song Mushaboom made her more accessible thanks to that Lacoste commercial. While she sings some of her songs in French, she’s actually from Canada. But she’s now based in Paris, where she recorded her second album Let It Die (from which Mushaboom is taken). Apparently, she’s popular in France but she’s also lent her voice as a member of Canada’s indie supergroup Broken Social Scene. She’s done collaborations as well with US indie acts like Bright Eyes and Postal Service. Her music incorporates a bit of jazz, bossanova and indie-pop together with her sultry voice. She’s not bad-looking either.

Found yourself lately browsing aimlessly for CDs to buy at your favorite record store? (Not that there’s too many of them, Tower Records is closing its doors already). If you find yourself in this situation, you can always head for the New Releases rack.

But be warned, you’ll be wading through albums upon albums of either emo-ish acts or uniformly-dressed hip-hop groups. Or you may chance upon countless bossanova compilations that could very well be tempting the Havaianas-loving crowd to shout in unison: “Viva Brasil!” (Trust me on this, I did a “see-through” minutes before writing this piece.)
If you’re the type to stray away from the proverbial maddening crowd, you might have been taking your cues from watching The OC on what’s cool to listen to these days. But much of the music in there is tailored for the show’s target audience (read: pubescent mopeheads. Think Death Cab for Cutie.).


If you’re still raving about Franz Ferdinand or The Killers, here are seven bands worth checking out. Afterwards, you can proceed asking any ID-toting person over at the record store, though I’m betting on eliciting an almost blank stare. If all else fails, start Googling.

The Arcade Fire. Canada’s lords of indie-experimental rock went bust after the release of their critically-acclaimed debut album Funeral sometime in 2004 to 2005. The band is known for incorporating a large number of instruments including the viola, French horn, accordion and harp, among others. After garnering raves from established music icons like David Bowie and touring with U2, The Arcade Fire are now the unofficial ambassadors of Canadian indie music. The group is set to release its follow-up early this year, titled Neon Bible.
Genre: Indie
Country: Canada
Must-have album: Funeral

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