Us-2 Evil-0
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Us-2 Evil-0

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"The Dirty Debut of Us-2 Evil-0"

Last Saturday, Nov. 28, saw the launch of “Dirty Debutantes,” the first album of indiepop act Us-2 Evil-0 at Mag:net Bonifacio High Street.

The date was chosen for practical reasons, but it turned out to be serendipitously significant.

Guitarist/keyboardist Wincy Ong realized it was the exact date of their first-ever gig two years prior, making it an anniversary party as well as a debut album launch.The album takes its name from the multi-volume series of adult videos that may have made an impact on Henares’s high school years.

Henares is no stranger to the music scene, having been the manager of several bands as early as his college years, most notably Ciudad and Chicosci (when they were still Chico Science).

Henares occasionally sang with Ciudad (who were his high school classmates), and even recorded lead vocals on a few songs over their first three albums. He also sings for anti-show band Blast Ople.Mich Dulce may be familiar to the average person as a fashion designer and former Pinoy Big Brother housemate, though she’s been in the music scene for years. She recorded an entire album as the singer of Candyaudioline that never saw release. She was the vocalist of semi-riot grrl indie rock band Death By Tampon, which saw dissolution before they could release a proper album (a single made it to airwaves, though).Bassist Nix Puno has played with Twisted Halo. Drummer Bogs Jugo came from Pupil and Daydream Cycle. Wincy Ong was a member of the first, best iteration of Narda, and also has a solo career as Patience Dear Juggernaut.The packed house first heard from newer guest bands like Arigato Hato and Turbo Goth and more established names like Monsterbot and Ciudad. Arigato and Goth have been making waves in recent months, with their delicate electro/downtempo pop and brash guitar riffs, respectively.

Monsterbot reminded us how good they are live, and Ciudad, having just arrived from a few gigs in New York, also played a great set, which included older songs they haven’t performed in a while.But when the main act finally took the stage, the audience was in for a visual as well as sonic treat as Us-2 Evil-0 emerged in matching basketball uniforms, with Dulce as the cheerleader.

Kicking off with album lead-in “Yeah, OK!” the dual vocalists launched into occasionally synchronized/spastic dance moves. They ran through their stable of songs in between playful banter, including their current single, This Mighty Heart Attack. Its music video, directed by JA Tadena, can be seen on music TV channels and on YouTube.

Both Mikey Amistoso (Ciudad vocalist and the album’s producer) and Mong Alcaraz (guitarist of Chicosci and Sandwich) were in the audience to hear Mikey Is The New Mong, which is about them apparently.

Us-2 Evil-0 even played Apparently Not which they don’t often include in their set lists. Puno and Jugo seemed to be in a world of their own as the pulse and backbone of the songs, while Ong multi-tasked between singing backup vocals and playing guitar and organ. He even whipped out a melodihorn to the delight of the crowd.After their set the band received numerous requests for autographs and photos, especially in their uniforms.—Mark your calendars in advance as +/- (Plus/Minus) returns to Manila on Dece.18 at Encore (formerly Embassy). Last year’s gigs were a joy and this year should be no different. Consider it an early Christmas gift for being so good.

-Ramon de Veyra - The Philippine Star, December 06, 2009


"Your Newest Cardiac Delight"

For all that the local music industry is worth, we can’t sometimes help but be disheartened by all the monotony pouring out of our ears. Fortunately, at least every once in a while, the spell of complacency in churning run-of-the-mill songs can be broken—there is hope for this industry yet—and sometimes, it’s a surprise where that hope comes from. For example:

I would think that anybody who has never heard of Quark Henares or Mich Dulce, Wincy Ong, Nix Puno or Bogs Jugo must have been hiding under a rock. A sizable chunk of our relevant population would know that none of the five mentioned are strangers to the music / entertainment industry. It’s fun to think of how they came together as Us-2 Evil-0 (I’d leave that for the band to address), but what could be more fun is to watch what they can do together as musicians.

I remember driving to work one morning some months ago, and for the first time in a really, really long time, felt compelled to open the radio. After a slew of advertisements that I thought was all that ever took up airtime, some song finally came on: drum beats. Then a male voice that, by the way it sounded, appeared to be singing, but not quite. I would have mindlessly switched stations already if not for the fine female voice that shortly came on singing about some mighty heart attack in what was the catchiest chorus I have heard in too long. Being such a big fan of boy/girl duos, I decided not to switch stations. The chorus got stuck in my head. Not at all bad. Then the DJ came on and said something like, “… that was Us-2 Evil-0 with ‘This Mighty Heart Attack’…” Now THAT was a surprise. Of course I already knew then who Us-2 Evil-0 was… I just didn’t think that the song was theirs. “It’s local!” I thought excitedly. It just got better. Finally, something different.

Not anymore to my surprise, ‘This Mighty Heart Attack’ entered the Jam 88.3 countdown some time ago. So I got curious. To feed my curiosity, I tried searching for Us-2 Evil-0 on every other networking site that I knew, but ended up not finding much—no lyrics, no blogs, no mp3’s—just random and separate stuff about the band members as individuals. I therefore concluded that this young band was still quite obscure and that, I think, is a nice thing. I find it a wonder how their individual popularity faces off with their collective mystery. I was successful in finding their Facebook page where fans have so far, posted nothing but words of encouragement—a positive sign that the band is doing something right.

Quite obviously, ‘This Mighty Heart Attack’ is but a taste of what Us-2 Evil-0 can give the music–loving public. If you like their music, you’ll love them live. With Mich and Quark’s choreography, who wouldn’t? November 28, Saturday, 10:00 pm at Magnet Bonifacio High Street marks the release of their debut album called “Dirty Debutantes.” Sharing the limelight with Us-2 Evil-0 on the night are Arigato, Hato!, Turbo Goth, Monsterbot and Ciudad. - lilystars-records.com


Discography

LP: "Dirty Debutantes" (Nov 2009)
Singles:
"This Mighty Heart Attack" (Sep 2009)
"Our Weekends Dissolve" (Feb 2009)

Photos

Bio

Us-2 Evil-0 is a Filipino indiepop band composed of people who aren't known as musicians. These include internationally-renowned fashion designer Mich Dulce (vocals), filmmaker Quark Henares(vocals), actor/cult fave Wincy Ong (guitar/keys), graphic designer Nix Puno (bass) and audio engineer Bogs Jugo (drums). They were all also members of other bands before they decided to band together during one drunken Rockeoke session, beholden to the promise to stick together by pinky swears. On November of 2009 they released their independent debut record "Dirty Debutantes", and since then have released two singles; "This Mighty Heart Attack" and "Our Weekends Dissolve". When asked to describe their music, they replied, "it matters not what our sound is. what is important is that we are on the side of good."