For our List of Five feature, we ask musicians to tell us stories about five songs.
Grandi Oso is a Filipino indie musician whose music we’d listen to while waiting for the end of the world. To find out more about his music, check out his Soundcloud page.
“I’m Still Breathing?” by Grandi Oso
I wrote it with my brother for [my other music project] Dr. StrangeLuv. All of my projects were recorded in DIY manner and I was a first timer in recording and mixing tracks when I made the albums for Dr. StrangeLuv (album: Sissypuss) and [another music project] Stigmatics (album: Straight Down To The Bitter End). I did both projects simultaneously using only a cheap CDR-King desktop mic and whatever I could grab onto inside my apartment. You can even hear some children playing in the streets and dogs barking in the background of this song. I don’t even know how I managed to complete those albums without any knowledge in recording. All were just accidental. I just did what seemed to sound close to how I hear the tracks inside my head and that’s it. I don’t listen to my songs after I release them, but whenever I think of this one, I feel that even though I didn’t exactly know what I was doing back then, it’s still how I would want to do it if I’ll be making it now. I can’t repeat those albums again, which is good in itself as a means to my brute type of an end. Just like how great jazz players play the same song differently every time they perform it live.
“This Town Looks Good On Fire” by Grandi Oso
The song just revolved around the title that Ibrahim Deathray gave to me. I completed the demo in around thirty minutes. I love counterpoints and I usually use it not just in terms of the technical music stuff but also in the imagery and lyrics of the songs; the gloom and doom view of things with a maniacal laughter that echoes through the walls of existence. I then immediately thought of having female vocals in there and that’s how the lovely voices of Aly and Mariah were included. We recorded their tracks at Kean’s (the drummer from [Filipino band] The Buildings) place. It was the first time I met them in person and I was surprised how quick the recording process went. Just a short exchange of ideas, notes and references and voila, a doomsday soundtrack. It’s my favorite track in the upcoming album.
Note: A remixed and remastered version will be available in Grandi Oso’s debut album entitled The Outside Man, out in September 2017.
“I Will Bury All Of You” by Grandi Oso
Link forthcoming after The Outside Man’s release
I don’t limit myself to how far one song could go to with respect to the styles that I can incorporate in it. And it’s the same with all of the songs and projects that I made. Besides, I’m not trying to please anyone with what I’m doing, only myself. This song sounds like Tom Ze and Ennio Morricone having a knife fight.
“Philosophy Of The World” by The Shaggs
The first time I heard this song I immediately wanted to punch a stranger’s face and get beaten by his gang afterwards. I imagined the chaos it would bring when played at max volume nonsynchronous in all of the houses and cars in the city and at different tempos. It was such a beautiful or rather a sublime listening experience
[Question: What are the songs that defined specific instances in your life?]
Any of the formulaic songs that were made to be a Billboard hit.
I had a colleague who was stabbed with an ice pick multiple times in her neck. When I heard about her death, I thought that during her killing, there was someone somewhere working his/her ass off to make a song aimed to be a Billboard hit, and I didn’t have to ask myself why.