Auditory experiments

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Monday, March 10, 2014


IN chemistry, there’s always the constant mixture of elements to cook up the desired bond. The interaction of atoms, quanta and other phenomena makes this science all intriguing.

If music were chemistry then the synergy of genres can work the magic, and Reunify Arma is just among the genius scientists in the spectrum to formulate a creative musical alchemy.

“Music is evolution,” the band said as one.

Reunify Arma is Bryan Alipar on voice and riffs, Kim Belleza on words and low pitches, Ryan Beltran on rolls and Eddie Ybañez on keys.

It all started with every young band’s dream—taking a shot at a competition, fingers crossed, hoping to make history from there. For Reunify Arma, it was a nationwide fare, circa 2007. Several lineup shuffles, bar gigs, original compositions, a two-year hiatus and occasional mid-career crises later, the Cebu-based set decided to emit a reinvented offering to the airwaves. Not really something for history there but something new to the ears at least.

The hybrid outfit is a descendant of the great grunge clout, a big Nirvana fan. But in the progression of their identity as a band is the involvement of related influences in the matrix—American rock quintuple Foo Fighters, English trio Muse, Australian unit Silverchair, Japanese alternative rock four-piece Asian Kung-Fu Generation and discovering. Talk about assortment.

Reunify Arma strings together a sundry of musical mixes to deliver an experiment of sounds—to echo a modern approach, that is. With lyricism dancing with the playful exploration of notes, theirs is a repertoire via a fusion of grunge, rock, alternative, instrumental, ska, reggae and sometimes weird sounds.

Ten songs are in for a debut album and an official music video is underway, too. In four minutes and 41 seconds, their first self-produced demo Discontentment justifies the band’s call for radness. The title might imply discontentment with one genre.

Fresh and underground, the raw material is a playlist kick-starter.

It must be the law of chemistry, but their signature single Nemesis is a montage of musical finds. Four cymbal slaps ushered the listener into an avalanche of rhythms, break downs, effects and emotions. Altogether, the rush fades into a punching wrap, as climatic as it opened.

“It’s not noise pollution. It’s arranging music according to trend. It’s a revival,” Alipar noted.

He continued, “As the local setting grows, kids in this YouTube generation wanted to sound like their heroes. It’s identity crisis in a good way. But you know, it’s the eccentric that the world wants. There’s always this survival-of-the-fittest situation in the music scene. Learn the rules through your own style.”

In ancient Greek, arma means “unity” and in Latin, “army.” Reunify the army to fight for something—love, vindication or musical trial and error. Whichever, Reunify Arma deviated from the norm because that’s what they are—experimental.

Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on March 11, 2014.

Lifestyle

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