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Posts tagged ‘robert javier’

As Long As The Song Goes On, Sea Horses by The Gentle Isolation

February 27, 2013

Jo Poblete

The Gentle Isolation (TGI) appears to have turned a corner with their latest single, a cover of “Sea Horses” by Blueboy. Despite their deceptively laissez-faire attitude towards gigging – hey, it’s hard to commit when your lead guitar-man has gone AWOL – the band has been quietly making music, sight unseen. And if you listen very closely, you sense a new confidence in the way they deliver their twee-fied version of indie pop.

“Sea Horses” has been in the band’s repertoire for a while now, with a demo already recorded last year. TGI is releasing the finished single as a tribute to the late Keith Girdler, vocalist of Blueboy, who passed away in 2007 due to cancer. Blueboy, which formed in 1989, was but one of Girdler’s projects; the original “Sea Horses” is from Blueboy’s 1992 album, If Wishes Were Horses.

Sea Horses - The Gentle Isolation

Cover Art by Justine Basa

It’s a beach tune, another spotless afternoon kind of tune, the kind of song you want playing when you’re off to an adventure with your mates, cares be damned. TGI has made their cover version even more joyous than the original – quite fitting, given that Girdler’s friends have noted how he had wanted to be remembered with “happiness and smiles.”

TGI, which currently is made up of bassist Monch Cristobal, vocalist Ness Urian, and drummer Bach Rudica, ropes in Clementine  (also their label manager and singer-songwriter of The Camerawalls, which Rudica is also member of) to play guitar this time around. The song is guitar-driven – more often than not a note held on a consistently strumming string, while the drums keep apace and then signal a change. The foursome switch up the tempo almost on a whim, from a running start to a slow glide and back again, but there’s a control there that the listener can appreciate.

One is treated to stronger vocals from Urian, who seems to be over any hesitancy or shyness usually plaguing a first-time singer. Instead of mimicking Girdler’s hushed murmur or Gemma Townlet’s strident, almost defiant, falsetto, Urian keeps it steady. There’s a conviction and a confidence in her delivery of the lyric, “don’t cry / don’t sigh / there’s more to me than you think.”

Of course, lyrics are incidental for this particular tune. Never mind those cryptic references to a love lying “bleeding on rain-soaked beaches” (yes, more than one beach is being bled upon, after the rain) and a certain Steven “writing” and “writhing” (pun intended) – who is Steven, we don’t know, and we don’t really care. The beauty of The Gentle Isolation channeling Blueboy is that it’s easy to get lost in the music. Steven can go on bleeding, rose petals can keep shedding, as long as the song goes on.

Download Sea Horses for FREE at

Words and Music by Blueboy

Produced by Clementine
Engineered and Recorded at Sonic State Audio by Robert Javier and Chrisanthony Vinzons
Mixed and Mastered at Sonic State Audio by Jonathan Ong

Recorded and Performed by The Gentle Isolation
Ness Urian – vocals
Monch Cristobal – bass / acoustic guitar
Bach Rudica – drums

Electric guitars recorded and performed by Clementine

Cover Art by Justine Basa inspired by The Blue Boy (c. 1770) an oil painting by Thomas Gainsborough

Special thanks to Gary Sansom of Dufflecoat Records

Rainmakers: The Camerawalls Releases Wanderlust To Fund Disaster Relief

August 8, 2012

Jo Poblete

Indie pop band The Camerawalls is releasing its latest digital single — “Wanderlust” — today, August 8, in anticipation of their very first regional tour,  dubbed “Wanderlust: The Camerawalls South-East Asian Backpack Tour,” later this month.

In an unprecedented move, the band will be donating seventy-five percent (75%) of the digital sales of the single for the months of August and September (roughly the duration of their tour) to aid victims of the recent floods in the Philippines, most especially the waterlogged capital of Metro Manila and its outlying areas.

The Camerawalls makes the gesture partly in empathic response to the devastation wrought on their countrymen by this most recent calamity, and particularly because one of their own, guitarist George Carillo, experienced firsthand the debilitating effects of a flood-damaged home and the loss of a beloved pet.

Pay $1 (or more) for a song, save a life

Starting noon today until midnight on Sept. 30, each purchase of “Wanderlust” will contribute to relief efforts organized by DAKILA -Philippine Collective for Modern Heroism (, together with Ride & Rock Relief (

DAKILA is a group of artists and individuals fostering social consciousness in the promotion of societal change; meanwhile, Ride and Rock Relief is a collaborative project of DAKILA, in partnership with other like-minded organizations, which pools care packages and basic necessities for calamity victims.

“Wanderlust” is made available at a flat rate of $1 (USD) on Lilystars Records’ official store/merch site powered by Bandcamp. However, buyers who wish to be more generous may choose to pay more than the asking price of $1 — in short, as much as they can afford to give to the flood victims in exchange for a song — by directly purchasing “Wanderlust” via Lilystars Records.

The pledged money will be used to buy relief goods that will be delivered to calamity victims in the various evacuation centers. Local buyers may also opt to participate and witness the exchange of goods and volunteer in relief operations. Buy this track now by following this link:

Downloads are available in MP3 320, FLAC, MP3 VBR (V0), AAC, Ogg Vorbis or ALAC format.

Postcards from the band

The first 100 buyers of the single will receive via snail mail a free postcard autographed by the band, with a thank you note for their contribution.

The memento is characteristic of the band’s penchant for sharing their travel experiences, which started when they embarked on their first “proper” tour, “Pamagdoy: The Camerawalls Visayan Tour,” last April.

In fact, “Wanderlust” the single was conceived partly during The Camerawalls’ ambling five-city tour of the Visayas, and partly during breaks from the long hours of rehearsal back home in Bulacan, prior to recording sessions.

Endless horizons are waiting

The downtempo tune, produced together with Pen & Ink Manila, prompts the listener to sigh for the nomad’s life, if not immediately bring out the backpack and slip on a pair of walking shoes.

There is a seductive, winsome quality to the music, as singer Clementine ventures that “endless horizons are waiting” — at least for those who wish to experience all the magic and color to be had on an “eager flight from daily life’s rigidities.”

“We live to have experiences, collect memories, gather dreams of someday and fulfill what we can,” Clementine has said previously. “And I use my talent to immortalize these thoughts and show it to others in the best possible way I can, through songs.”

True to its name, “Wanderlust” is an invitation to explore, to discover, to breathe, and to take a moment to appreciate what life on the slow lane has to offer. Paradoxically, what can be deemed an escapist venture is very much grounded upon reality — the road, after all, is not without its risks.

“Wanderlust” is the most recent digital single to be released by The Camerawalls under Lilystars Records, following “Awit ng mga Detinidong Pulitikal” (Song of Political Detainees) co-produced by the Concerned Artists of the Philippines last July, and “The Sight of Love” in February  2010.

To date, The Camerawalls has released the album “Pocket Guide to the Otherworld” (2008) and “Bread and Circuses EP” (2010). The band is currently working on a double-album.

For more information on the band’s upcoming tour, visit their website at and subscribe to email updates.

Related News/Links:
Wanderlust Now Available For An Immediate Cause
Buy A Song, Help Flood Victims

***Photo Credits***
Photography by Joser Dumbrique &  Dominic Calalo
Clothes & Styling by Jane Cometa
Shot on location at the Manila Yacht Club
Special thanks to Pen & Ink Manila, Requiem Rising SG, Milano, and i2i

***Track Credits***
Written by Clementine
Music by Clementine and George Carillo
Executive Producer: Pen & Ink
Produced by Clementine & Robert Javier
Recorded and Engineered by Robert Javier and Chisanthony Vinzons
Mix and Mastered by Jonathan Ong
Recorded, Mix and Mastered at Sonic State Audio, Mandaluyong

Performed by The Camerawalls
Clementine – vocals/acoustic guitars/octavina
George Carillo – electric guitars/backing vocals
Law Santiago – bass/backing vocals
Bach Rudica – drums/percussions

Cover Art and Design by Justine Basa