Friday, June 17, 2011

1:43 - time to give OPM a chance

Regardless of your nationality, I think we all have a love-hate relationship with our country. Don't get me wrong - I love my country, but there are just some things that you hate about it, too.

Well, one thing that I don't particularly wholeheartedly approve of is the debuting Pinoy groups who seem like they're trying to ride in the current KPOP craze but, unfortunately, seem to keep missing the bus and going to corny land.

I'm a fan of KPOP - not all of it - but most parts of that entire industry. They audition and they train and train HARD. They go through years of practice and have so much discipline. It's no wonder that compared to the groups here in the Philippines that look like they were just picked out of mall and haphazardly put together, our locals just seem so lacking that there's even no competition.

I don't consider myself as a snob. In my defense, I have tried to watch previous groups' attempts at replicating KPOP magic but so far, had been bitterly disappointed by their efforts. I had even posted a long, and in my opinion, constructive comment at one of the group's company homepage. Okay, yes - maybe I was a little detailed in what they should and should not do, but I did it for their best interests. It didn't matter anyway, since my post didn't even see the light of day and the group, as far as I know, has also faded into obscurity. 

Group after group had tried to overcome the immediate bias we KPOP fans have over them. Corny song. Bad dance moves. Ugly styling. One thing, though - our people can sing. No one can't take that away from Filipinos. But other than that? All we needed was Cherry Gil to haughtily tell them that they were nothing but second-rate, trying hard, copycats.

And so, last Wednesday, as I attended a free concert in Ayala Triangle Gardens, I mentally braced myself to watch this group called 1:43 (One Forty-Three) who, before that night, I have never heard of before.

 1:43 (One Forty-Three)

I had no plans of listening or even staying that long to watch their performance, but thanks to their enthusiastic fans who cheered loudly (with pompoms!) whenever their name was mentioned, my curiosity was piqued. Who were these guys to inspire that kind of response from these people?

All these and warning bells were sounding in my head as I prepared to watch their performance. And then they came in.

What a surprise.

Okay, not really that much, but still... hmm... not bad. Or, at least, not horribly bad.

At first glance, 1:43 could pass off as a wannabe Korean male idol group, being styled like such with the hair, the clothes, and their looks which screamed oriental.

But they came in and sang in FILIPINO. Straight Filipino so props for that. The song, Para Kang (I guess translated to: You're like...) was upbeat and refreshing. It almost sounds like it could be sung by a band. Sort of retro, but still... with the proper promotion and marketing, I can see it being a hit. Sure it was sugary sweet, but hello? Don't tell me we don't hear songs like that from KPOP groups too. Translate the lyrics and you'll probably end up with the same thing. And it's not just me who thought so. I looked over to my cousin and she also concurred that the song wasn't bad.

1:43 Para Kang (Audio Teaser)

The singing, no question, was really good, if it indeed was live. I really don't know about these things but I'm pretty sure they did. And well, Filipinos and singing talent, there is no questioning that.

After Para Kang, they sang PiNK which was really Pag-ibig Na Kaya? (trans: Is it love?) abbreviated. Oookay. LOL. Actually, really ingenious I admit. Come on, give the guys a break. Who are we to criticize when KPOP has produced such wonderful titles as LaChata, NuABO, Bonamana, etc.? Regardless of the title, the song was also good. Huh - was what I thought. Surprise, surprise again.

1:43: PiNK (Pag-ibig Na Kaya?) OFFICIAL MUSIC VIDEO in HD feat. MYRUS

They only sang those two songs, but I was impressed by the group. Yes, they do have a lot (and I do mean A LOT) of room for improvement, but this was the first group I've seen that didn't make me want to immediately go in a tirade of anti comments. They just have to work on choreography (calling fellow Pinoy Shaun Evaristo!), styling, and FOR THE LOVE OF GOD MAKE A DECENT MUSIC VIDEO. I've always wondered how we can win advertising awards and totally suck at making music videos. Is it a budget thing? I didn't even graduate from film school and I had about 10 ideas on how to make the MV better as I was watching it.

While I am not about to become a 1:43 fangirl, I will have to keep an eye and ear for this group. If I was a fairy godmother, I would totally wave a magic wand and make good things happen to them, but all I can do now is sincerely wish them good luck and ask everyone to give them a chance, or at least (haha) their time of day.


Facebook Page:1:43 Boyband
FanClubSite: Time4Love
Twitter: @onefortythree

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