February has been, thus far, exciting. Aside from the grandness of Laneway, February has been randomly filled my pockets with tiny sprinklings of amazingness. It’s all very cool; hard to believe that everything only happened in a span of 28.5 days. Funny, too, that this great month has an extra day.
We saw Toro y Moi play again, and this time I got to take pictures for Restless Cities. Not the best ones, obviously, but I briefly thought about being a photographer in late high school up to early college because of gig photography. Then, I accepted that that was probably not a smart direction for me. Still, though, I had a lot of fun.
In preparation for Death Cab for Cutie on March 5 (woohoo!), Attraction! Reaction! put together another Death Cab for Cutie night. I went to my first one as a college sophomore, and I think this has been the only other one after that. Amazing. Coverage for this up on Restless Cities. I can’t wait for next week (!!!) which is when Sarie and I have planned to camp out in line five hours before show time. Probably not joking.
I’m glad I’m spending my extra leap year day doing non-waste-y things. I finished up a bit of work stuff earlier today. Tonight, I’m seeing The Pains of Being Pure at Heart, and I don’t know, from this vantage point, the rest of 2012 looks absolutely stellar. If all goes according to plan, that is.
I guess February is music-filled; I miss going to art shows and getting to read. I’m in the middle of my third book for February, which is kind of sad because I set out to read 7 (heh) this month. It’s okay, though, I think I’m kind of in love with it. (These are the books I’ve read so far.)
On another note, I’ve been sad about this blog. I don’t know what to do with it. I think I just miss writing, and things pile up, and then I sort of forget how to without sounding unlike myself. It’s nice to look back on the things that have happened the last month, though, because despite feeling sad or unsure about certain things, at least I have proof of all the good things that have been happening to me.
Nownow began as a series of mixes Petra made for the music blog we used to run. A nownow mix is a bunch of songs that are:
- the single songs from a freshly-acquired album that happen to appeal to me most
- music that has recently been associated with a particular experience
- a song i smoke to
- guilty pleasures
- classic can’t-let-go songs
the NOWNOW turnover rate: the reason i call it NOWNOW is because it changes almost every day. songs get added, a couple get taken away. the really high turnover rate makes it forever new. this is my fickleness in its most flattering light. it’s the one playlist i’ll never tire of, & i’m happy to share it with you guys.
And now, I’m going to steal/revive this idea. Nownow is for the things I have been consuming and/or obsessed with as of late. Hopefully it’s helpful, entertaining, etc. At the very least, it’s documentation for myself.
Clockwise from the top left:
- The Drums’ Portamento, which I have been listening to a lot ever since coming back from Singapore. I’m scared I’m going to get sick of it so I put it on rotation with The Pains of Being Pure at Heart and Death Cab for Cutie, in preparation. Anyway, I love Portamento because it’s refreshing and nothing exactly like I’ve heard before. Also, I’m pretty smitten by Jonny Pierce. He’s amazing to watch perform.
- Daytum! I’ve abandoned and come back and abandoned etc. over the last few years. I’ve found a great use for it, though—tracking everything I need to track, i.e. savings for big purchases, work hours. Plus, it provides a visual of my work vs. play vs. errands.
- My Planner! I used to be attached to my planner’s non-existent hip. And then, I wasn’t, and then my life fell to pieces I became super disorganized. This is to get me back on track, and so far it’s working. Plus, it’s really pretty.
- COCO SUGAR. THIS IS THE BEST SUGAR SUBSTITUTE I’VE EVER COME ACROSS. I was skeptical (but hopeful!) at first, because something this good couldn’t possibly be a healthier option, but lo, it was. It’s safe for diabetics because of the low glycemic index, and it has a lot of nutrients. No dangerous chemicals, additives either. 100% natural. Hard to believe, but I’m just happy this exists and that we make it in the Philippines. I want to make my lola try it. I’m tempted to just eat and eat and eat it but I’ve read that sweeteners in general aren’t particularly healthy, heh.
- Solaris by Ferrania, which is a film I’ve coveted and found in Singapore! Part of me wishes I had hoarded, but I’m waiting for my roll to develop so I can decide if I should ask someone to get more for me.
- My Lomo LC-A+. I put this away for a while because I didn’t understand how to use the focus (lol) but Shine taught me estimates, so I’ve been taking it out whenever I go out of the house. Exciting!
I hope I can do this every week or month. Just to keep track and remember and sometimes, share.
While nursing my post-Laneway depression, I started listening to The Drums a lot and came face to face with the animosity that surrounds what I understand to be The Drums’ first single off of Portamento. “Money” is, in my opinion, an infectious, dangerously catchy song. I like singing it a lot, much to the annoyance of some of the people I live with.
Having been met generally with disdain and mad faces, I decided to sing the lyric: I want to buy you something / But I don’t have any money to every immediate family member within reach (i.e. my dad, my mom, my siblings) and record their responses.
Luis, brother, 26: I only like that song up until it hits the chorus (aka, the part I just sang) and then I don’t like it anymore.
Isabel, sister, 21: I hate that song! You keep singing that to me! (I have apparently subjected her multiple times to the song, even pre-Laneway.)
Mona, mom, undisclosed: That’s a real song? That’s what you went to Singapore for?
Soler, dad, undisclosed: What [are you going to buy me]?
Tough crowd! As for me, I love it a lot. I don’t get why people hate it so much. It is, in my opinion, one of the catchiest songs I’ve ever heard in recent years, and it’s actually really good musically. Is it the sudden spike up of the falsetto? The repetition of the cutesy sentiment? Sarie said it got a lot of airplay, but I don’t listen to the radio so I have no idea whether or not it got overplayed.
And even if it did, no complaints over here.
The Traveling Music Bug bit me in 2010, when my brother and I decided to go to Singapore for the Vampire Weekend concert. We went again in 2011 for The National. It’s not the first time we’ve flown to satiate the needs of our inner fans. Once, my dad flew our whole family over to Singapore because he wanted to meet Julian Schnabel. I’m tempted to say that this need to flock towards an idol runs in the family, but I think it has more to do with piso-fares and other people’s hospitality than bloodlines.
Anyway, Laneway 2012 was, if anything, such an experience. It’s my first full-on festival, having opted out of full participation in local music festivals like Muziklaban, Fete de la Musique, Fete de la WSK, Summer Slam and so on. The closest I’ve probably been to going to a music festival were high school fairs—which is such a stupid comparison, I know.
I loved it so much, though. The journey going to–a pilgrimage!—the high highs, low lows, the heat, the drizzling, the decided sweatiness of the people who shared this experience with me, the tiny moments and the secrets. All of it was memorable and still quite stark in my brain.
Anyway, as much as I would like to offer a full recounting of the events that transpired a week ago (exactly), I can’t do that, as we arrived late and missed Cults. From the back of the very long entrance line that snaked around Fort Canning, we heard the rumble of instruments and the roar of the crowd, and from that distance, I’d like to think that I liked what I heard. I’m sad I missed them, but all I honestly could think about was:
“Will we make it in time for Yuck?”
After trekking up (up!) the mountain side to stay at the lodge near the center of the town, we had to trek further up to a Akakoy Nature Park for a cultural experience. Aside from a native house-building demonstration (which was quite fascinating as they used hardwood and zero nuts, bolts or nails), there was also a bit of dancing and singing.
Part III of my trip to Mayoyao, Ifugao! I’m itching to post about Laneway, but at the same time, I’m sort of prolonging this feeling. I have a bunch of backlog, though, that I’ve promised people, so I’m slowly getting rid of that. All these photos were taken by Gracie Vergara, for whom I feel camera envy. Seriously, I’m a Nikon user (at least, by way of SLRs) and I considered ditching my Nikon obnoxiousness and maybe a kidney for her camera, a Canon 5D Mark II. I’ve since come to my senses, mostly because I am astonishingly poor right now.
Anyway. Here are some photos of the trek from our first day:
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We slept on rice sacks on the floor. I don’t know if I’ve mentioned that before, but it was extremely uncomfortable. It was worth it, though, because we woke up to this: