SYDman's Top 50 OPM Bands of the 90's (Part 4)



By the way, get the rest of the ranks by clicking...




ALMOST BUT NOT QUITE:

One of the requirements in this list is that bands must at least debut an album before the year 2000. There are a lot of top bands in the country that were formed in the 90’s but only got their album in the 2000’s. Here are some of them:

(I got my research from Wikipedia and other online sources)


ITCHYWORMS / FORMED: 1996 / RELEASED DEBUT ALBUM: 2001 (LITTLE MONSTERS)

CHICOSCI / FORMED: 1996 / RELEASED DEBUT ALBUM: 2000 (REVENGE OF THE GIANT ROBOT)

BATTERY / FORMED: MID 90’S / RELEASED DEBUT ALBUM: 2000 (SELF-TITLED)

BADBURN / FORMED: MID 90’S / RELEASED DEBUT ALBUM: 2001 (BOUND BY BLOOD)

MOONSTAR 88 / FORMED: 1999 / RELEASED DEBUT ALBUM: 2000 (POPCORN)

SUGARFREE / FORMED: 1999 / RELEASED DEBUT ALBUM: 2003 (SA WAKAS)

IMAGO / FORMED: 1999 / RELEASED DEBUT ALBUM: 2001 (PROBABLY NOT BUT MOST DEFINITELY)

RADIOACTIVE SAGO PROJECT / FORMED: 1999 / RELEASED DEBUT ALBUM: 2000 (SELF-TITLED)

ORANGE AND LEMONS / FORMED: 1999 / RELEASED DEBUT ALBUM: 2003 (LOVE IN THE LAND OF RUBBER SHOES AND DIRTY ICE CREAM)

URBANDUB / FORMED: 2000 / RELEASED DEBUT ALBUM: 2001 (BIRTH)

KAMIKAZEE / FORMED: 2000 / RELEASED DEBUT ALBUM: 2002 (SELF-TITLED)

6CYCLEMIND / FORMED: 2002 / RELEASED DEBUT ALBUM: 2003 (PERMISSION TO SHINE)

More rules? Here are the rest!


CRITERIA:

It’s important to have a gauge on who’s in and who’s not on the list. Aside from the fact that I have evidence to shield myself from stupid and baseless queries, it can make my article extremely credible!

YEAR: This part is very important. Very, very important! The particular band in the list must have released an album from 1990 to 1999. I don’t care if this was their debut or their swan song. I don’t care if this is an EP, a full-pledged album, or a live album (although I will give a shit on compilations and collaborations). While I could care on whether or not they released this particular album for a major label, it is important that they at least became recording artists during this span! 

MAINSTREAM: When you say their names and the person you’re talking to would say “Who are they” or “I almost forgot about them” then chances are, they won’t make the list. Bands need to sell themselves. I don’t believe in the whole “I am an artist and I won’t stoop to mainstream” act because if they were the ones that succeeded, they wouldn’t think like this. If the band can ride a jeepney without attracting any buzz, this means they have yet to be enjoyed or they are nobodies.

MAN AND CHICK FRIENDLY: Men would definitely pick on the bands who love to growl. Women won’t. Chicks would pick on the sappy seducers. Men won’t. If there is a way that man and chick could like the same kind of music, chances are they’ll rank up top.

INFLUENCE: Are they relevant? Did they do something awesome in OPMlandia? Kulay brought funky, hiphop stuffs on their gigs while Put3ska brought ska. Tropical Depression brought reggae while Francis Magalona introduced rap-rock. Because of the Eraserheads, the tunog lata movement exploded but they have to thank acts like Juan dela Cruz and The Jerks for opening the rock world for their generation.

GETTING SYDRIFIED: Of course, my inputs matter. Sure I had help from a lot of internet researches, interviews conducted in Facebook, MP3 download sites where I would listen to a particular band’s song. Fact is, I am a huge fan of the alternative rock genre. I wasn’t really a fan of the underground stuff then and although I am a fan now, I still find some acts amateurish.

I hate:

Shouting expletives for the sake of being cool.
Stupid lyrics.
Emo.
Songs with zero harmony.
Annoying vocalists.
Repetitive melodies inside one album.

With that said...

This is my list.

If you want to do yours, then do so.

That’s my disclaimer.


21 to 28


28 THE JERKS
YEARS ACTIVE: 1979 – PRESENT
90’S GROUP ROSTER (KNOWN MEMBERS): CHIKOY PURA, NITO ADRIANO
90’S HITS: RAGE, SAYAW SA BUBONG*, REKLAMO NG REKLAMO*, TAMBOL*, MAD MATHEMATICAL WORLD*, AND HE SAYS* (*from their Jerks Live album)   
I was about to write them off because I thought they never produced an album during the 90’s. But they did... which is why they are in this list. Aside from their Jerks Live album (1994), Star Records produced an album, their first major outfit album in 1997 called Haligi ng Maynila. They have been belting out tunes since the Manila Sound era. In terms of influential, it is safe to say that most bands of the 80’s and 90’s (heck, even in the 2000’s) look up to The Jerks. Their music is pretty much a chopsuey of everything. Chikoy Pura and Nito Adriano are icons in the industry and they are still performing up to this day. Listening to their music, I like their English songs better. If this was during the 1980’s they would have been up top. I would like to thank Chrisangelo Jacinto for feeding me the band infos.


27 BACKDRAFT
YEARS ACTIVE: EARLY 90’S – I DON’T KNOW
GROUP ROSTER: UNKNOWN
90’S HITS: ANAK NG GABI, SMB, SUGO NG DILIM, ANG HIMIG NATIN, DAMA DE NOCHE
I was oblivious to their existence at first since I wasn’t in to the Pinoy heavy metal part of OPM then. That sucks because when I encountered their music now I realized that I seriously missed out on a lot of good things. Thanks a lot Afro-American boybands like Damage, Az Yet, and Boys II Men, British boybands like Ant and Dec, Take That, and Boyzone and Australian boybands like Code Red and 911! YOU ROBBED ME OF MUSICAL AWESOMENESS! Their music roams from a la Wolfgang-like to a la Shampoo ni Lola. There are moments where they sound “lata” and they growl at times but I am now appreciating their brand of music. A friend told me that SMB, their version of Himig Natin, and Dama de Noche are great hits and I believe him. But if I’m going to pick a favourite song from this band, I’d probably say I find Anak ng Gabi awesome.

IMPYERNONG KINAGISNAN!!!


26 AGAW AGIMAT
YEARS ACTIVE: 1993 – PRESENT
GROUP ROSTER: QT PADUANO-NADELA, RENMIN NADELA, HANK PALENZUELA, JEPHTHAH WENCESLAO
90’S HITS: SABI NILA, KISS-A-ME, NAIS KO, WANLITELTU, KULANG, MIRAKOL, PROPETA NG BAYAN, TO OUR DEAR COMRADES, KULANG     
There was a band then that produced awesome hits that often delve into the romantic and patriotic side of Filipinos and Agaw Agimat is that band. They were great in dishing out heartfelt renditions of seemingly odd verses. In the process, they gained fandom. Their music is like editorial cartoons – it is sharply intellectual, entertaining, and harshly satirical. Agaw Agimat treats their popularity as a medium to pronounce their intention for a change in the way is handling the country’s poverty issue. Kiss-A-Me told an awesome story and finished it up with a wicked swerve. This is my favourite Agaw Agimat song. Sabi Nila had a great chorus... if only it was a love story to make it further work. I liked their first album better although I like most of their songs except Wanliteltu. For some insane reason, it reminds me of Jaymie Baby’s Eh Kasi Bata. Whatever happened to that person?


25 HUNGRY YOUNG POETS / BARBIES CRADLE
YEARS ACTIVE: 1997* – 2005 (*Barbie’s Cradle started in 1998)
GROUP ROSTER: BARBIE ALMALBIS, FRANKLIN BENITEZ, RICCI GURANGO (as HYP), ROMMEL DELA CRUZ (as Barbie’s Cradle)
90’S HITS: As HYP – FIREWOMAN, TORPE, & PERSONAL FLIRT; As CRADLE – TABING ILOG, GOODNYT, & THE DANCE
The band basically features nice songs without a shred of violence. I was actually more of a HYP fan than their second incarnation only because I really like Firewoman. Yes, that song was so sweet and heartfelt that it automatically made people care for the band. I remember when I first heard the song on MTV Asia – it was golden. However, it was more of Barbie Almalbis more than anything here. I remember when they first showed up and people were asking who that cute chick was. When Barbie and Ricci Gurango had a falling out, the band was forced to change their name to Barbie’s Cradle which further accentuated the popularity of Barbie. Barbie Almalbis is the key element here. Her voice and style can be likened to former Sixpence None the Richer vocalist Leigh Nash. Aside from singing angelically Leigh Nash and Barbie embarked on solo careers after singing songs for teen shows (Kiss Me was part of the first Dawson’s Creek OST album while Barbie sang the Tabing Ilog OST).


24 KULAY
YEARS ACTIVE: 1991 – 2000
GROUP ROSTER: BOOM DAYUPAY, JEANNIE OAKMAN, RADHA CUADRADO, ANGEL JONES* (Angel replaced Jeannie after the latter died in 1997 because of an epileptic seizure)
90’S HITS: DELICIOUS, BURN, SHOUT
Man I love this group! I also like the way they made the computer a musical instrument ala Daniel Bedingfield. Yes, Kulay is a band. In their recordings, they used the wonders of technology. In their live gigs, they use a bunch of people to do their beat.

Cheap plug: If anyone of you have a copy of Kulay’s live and unplugged works, share it with me! Boom was the key element in this group.

Once a Vancouver-based DJ, he worked to give the band a distinct edge. The funky, hiphop, electronic style gave the band an identity. The Vibestation was also his brainchild. Using this element, they scored film appearances (Gimik: The Reunion), commercial endorsements (Pepsi), and international fame (United Kingdom). At their peak, they were the only known group to have that sound. If there was one thing missing in that decade, it was combining style, arrangement, and production. Kulay had that and in their live gigs, just like their studio released albums, it was spot on.


23 P.O.T.
YEARS ACTIVE: 1996 – 2005
GROUP ROSTER: KARL ROY, FRANCIS REYES, MALLY PARAGUYA, IAN UMALI, JEFF LIMA, HARLEY ALARCON, JAYMAN ALVIAR
90’S HITS: YUGYUGAN NA, FISHCAKE, MONKEY ON MY BACK, ULITIN, PIECE OF THIS, FYB
They looked like a melting pot of awesomeness when they started. Led by the tattoo-infested Karl Roy, they would deliver varying tunes that made a lot of people begging for more. Their sounds border from blues, punk, rock, and hell... even dance! Basically they knew how to market their selves. Roy wasn’t like this when he was in Advent Call and in time he and his bandmates learned that to get the mainstream public to like their music, they must have other opportunities to plug their craft. I remember when the Fishcake MTV was enjoying heavy exposure on MTV Asia. In the Philippines, Yugyugan Na was becoming an anthem as it was seen and heard in every other radio station that is not NU107. Their self-titled album is so good that most of the songs in that album received mmasive airplay. In 2003, that same self-titled catapulted them again to the top with its Re-mastered version.


22 FREESTYLE
YEARS ACTIVE: 1996 – PRESENT
90’S GROUP ROSTER: TOP SUZARA, JINKY VIDAL, TAT SUZARA, CARLO TAPIA, NIKKI CABARDO, GERALD BANZON
90’S HITS: BEFORE I LET YOU GO, SO SLOW, ‘TIL I FOUND YOU, THIS TIME
The band traces its roots in Davao City, where they first displayed their talents. They got noticed by the Viva execs and they were brought to Manila where Before I Let You Go spiked the singles charts and made them a household name. All of a sudden, they were the toast of the town especially with a giant recording company backing them up. Their concerts are sought after and they often get to do gigs with the best singers. I remember watching VTV back in the 90’s when they had the PBA, Who Wants to be a Millionaire and Weakest Link. They were pimping them so heavily that at one point, they were regarded as Side A’s heir to the throne. So Slow was used as background music when Bobby Andrews was date-raping Gwen Garci in the 2003 Viva Hot Babes movie, First Time. Top Suzara moved out of the group in 2005 and joined another supergroup (?) Sabado Boys. And yeah, I almost forgot... they made a very good song in Ogie Alcasid’s Bakit Ngayon Ka Lang unbearable because when they made Top duet with Pops Fernandez. Ever since, the poor song has been butchered in Christmas parties, birthday parties, trips to videoke bars, strip joints, and other social gatherings.


21 SOUTH BORDER
YEARS ACTIVE: 1996 – PRESENT
90’S GROUP ROSTER: JAY DURIAS, BRIX FERRARIS, LUKE MEJARES, TATA BALANE, BUTCH VICTORIANO, RIC JUNASA
90’S HITS: KAHIT KAILAN, LOVE OF MY LIFE, HABANG ATIN ANG GABI, SA ‘YO, MAY PAG-IBIG PA KAYA
I find them sappy and oily (Brix Ferraris’ blonde hair has too much pomada) but they did made an impact especially with the rise of showbands in the country. Yes, the late 90’s launched a lot of things. It made rockers worthless and showbands the “In” thing. This R & B band from Davao came to the scene in the 90’s when most rock bands were disbanding or moving to obscurity. Sure, South Border had a problem with regards to their vocalists... but there is no denying that they had a lot of hits in their existence. Jay Durias was the key man in this group. He engineered a lot of wonderful songs. He is an awesome composer and an underrated singer. Kahit Kailan was their most popular song and it started their rise to the top. This was the song that made them a household name and it also gave them a bunch of awards and citations. Some of their best songs though happened during the 2000’s. They would produce a bunch of hits over the years under Luke Mijares, Vince Alaras, and Duncan Ramos.  


NOTES:
The big guns are going to work now. The two showband superstars in South Border and Freestyle have been unleashed. Rock demigods Backdraft and The Jerks are here as well. Mainstream favourites Hungry Young Poets and P.O.T. are now here so expect their batchmates to show up as the list continues. Remember that “Getting Sydrified” criteria? Well, this is why Kulay and Agaw Agimat are up there.  


For comments and suggestions (before I finish this list), contact me now!

Game over.

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