October 16, 2012

My review of the massive indoor festival Bazooka Rocks is now up on

Too bad we missed most of A Skylit Drive’s set, but seeing Taylor Momsen in the flesh was pretty sweet. Gotta dig that rocker chick who knows how to move. And in them boots!


When the kids Bazooka Rock-ed

Posted on 10/15/2012 10:14 AM  | Updated 10/15/2012 11:36 AM

MANILA, Philippines – We came into SMX Convention Center’s 1st floor hall and Jonathan Cook (vocalist and pianist) and a shirtless Kyle Burns (drummer) of Forever the Sickest Kids were climbing the support pillars that held up the lights and monitors stage front, to the left and right.

They were dangling 30 feet up in the air.

They were up the metal scaffolding and, having reached the top, proceeded to swing to and fro. Cook hooked his legs into a bar while one arm gripped a steel rail like a mad chimpanzee hopped up on sugar and audience energy.

Their Vedder meets Bono stunt was greeted with howls of approval from the boys, screams of ecstasy from the girls. FTSK certainly made their set the night’s benchmark for rock frenzy.

It was a humid Sunday on September 30; intermittent rain showers swept through the metro. It was a great day to be indoors, but people chose to come and listen to rock.

Welcome to Bazooka Rocks.

One ticket price, no sections, just one massive melting pot where the tweens, the teens and the youth of today (quite a few of them with their parents in tow or relatives on chaperone duty) came to see the rock bands of their generation up close and personal.

“Did you guys see the balloons?!” Vernon Go, PULP Magazine publisher and head honcho of its events arm PULP Live World, excitedly asked me. When I shook my head and said I just came in what with the payday traffic, he laughed. “Oh, man. It was awesome!”

I got to see exactly what he meant at the end of the set of The Maine, a rock band from Arizona, when half a dozen dark green balloons the size of truck wheels came bounding off the stage and into the crowd.

The Maine take their name from the lyrics of the sea shanty “Coast of Maine” by Ivory. They have a lot of post-grunge in them by way of Fuel and Filter, but gentled by shades of bubblegum and tongue-in-cheek alterna-pop.

Vocalist John O’Callaghan called for the kids to “stay in school, listen to your parents” as they wrapped up their set, making me scratch my head about where the perils of rock and roll shows have gone to.

Or did I totally miss the sarcasm?

The sheer scale and logistics it must have taken to create this 12-hour indoor music festival (that will be an annual thing from now on, say the organizers) was staggering.

Consider: there were not 2 or 3 foreign bands who ruled their subculture roosts here, but 8.

Read the rest of it HERE.



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