Category Archives: Made in Intramuros

Ian Penn’s latest LP Water from the Creek is one you’ll keep in your pilgrim



July may be summertime in some parts of the western hemisphere, but here in ours, it’s the season of rain.

Now picture this: It’s a downpour outside—but not the kind that would put anyone in harm’s way, of course—and you’re at home, safe, and covered with a blanket, with a cup of tea or your favorite joe in hand. What better music to accompany yourself than the ambient acoustic kind that would make you feel even more at home and cozy? Or maybe you’re on the road, going on about making a living; although there’s still a bit of rain as you look outside the bus windows, the foot-thumping folk rock jam that you have on your playlist has your back.

Whichever it is, and wherever you are, Ian Penn’s Water from the Creek is one you’ll keep in your pilgrim.

The 10-track LP launched last July 1 offers us a look from Penn’s pensive perspective of life on the road, his hometown of Arayat, and of Intramuros, among other things.



  1. Only One

I want to remember you just like this. You’re the only one. You will live in my heart. As much as I am filled deep in your tears, you’re the only one.

The album starts off with Only One. And it’s like waking up early in the morning just before the sun rises; just before the rest of the world prepares to deal with life. More importantly, waking up beside someone you cherish, and memorizing every detail of that person’s being as they lay asleep.

  1. Water from the Creek

Running back home where we used to dream. The sea rises, I’m on the edge of my seat. Nothing much to say, I am longing to be with you.

The titular track of the album is about Penn’s hometown of Arayat, Pampanga, as their house sits beside a creek. Water from the Creek could well be about a childhood friend you meet after such a long time of being away from home. You meet them again and the both of you are a changed person, so you make the effort to know and start over again.

  1. Ticketman

There’s a boat that’s hanging on my window. There’s an orchard lying by the sea. In the morning, I’ll begin to see you. Find me where the buses never sleep.

This song would’ve been the brainchild of a Beatles and Dylan collaboration if that ever happened. If anything, Ian Penn made and turned that into a reality with this track.

  1. Bluebirds

If I seize the time given on my days, would I seem to find peace?

When, in the wee hours just before dawn, you feel as if you’ve been running around in circles all this time, and you’re just exhausted, Bluebirds is your serenade.

  1. Road

Asked about what Water from the Creek could be, Penn wholly described it as being day and night—with the first four songs you could just listen all through the day, and with the rest you could listen to during the night. Road serves as the interlude.

  1. Midnight Talk

Our train of thoughts coincide like you are dreaming with me. And your midnight talk is all I have at the end of the day.

If you ever back up at the end of your day before you sleep, and you recap what you’ve done, seen, and said all in a span of a day, Midnight Talk is for you.

  1. Naked at Three

Troubles will find their way on your door. Your heart will remember you’ve been here before. Carry the stones or crucify me. No one remembers you’re naked at three.

Past midnight hours are real vulnerable hours with no one around to judge what you say or think about. For some, it’s the most peaceful time of day because they get to be alone without worry of anyone or anything bugging you to do something and—as what this song is about—naked.

  1. It’s Going to Rain

It’s going to rain all weekend, so let us stay indoors and let it rain. I’ll never get tired of the road home, it’s where I belong.

Penn debuted this song nearly a year ago (along with his band) in the Teatrino Promenade in Greenhills for the album’s fundraising gig, telling us that the song was inspired by the rains of Intramuros whenever Intramuros Rising happens on the weekend. We were braving the uncharted during that time last year as well. Now, it’s Saturday, and it’s raining outside as of this writing. There’s coffee on the table, and the chill wind makes for perfect company. The best thing anyone can do about rain is to let it rain. Stay safe.

  1. Two Weeks

Don’t carry all the weight. Lean on my shoulder and hear me, ‘cause I see a river mist rolling by. Old boats are leaving a new morning light.

For when you feel like leaving everything behind to yesterday, it’s okay do so. A new day rises for you to start over and do things that matter.

  1. Visiting a Zeppelin

Dying to see it slowly come my way. Only few people sitting there to stay. You look for me to take me home. Foolish lines, let’s fall in love.

Listening to it at first may seem like the track is pirate recorded, but there’s an interesting fact about Visiting a Zeppelin: it’s recorded live and on-the-spot at the Makati Museum using an old upright piano that’s possibly decades old. Penn said he would’ve recorded with a much better piano, but the feeling wouldn’t just be the same.

“The band really made it tasty. The band knew who I was, and it was them who made the songs come to life.”


Right from the get-go when Ian Penn debuted his band in Teatrino last year, we knew he would be a different monster. His dynamic with the band is just so organic in this record that it’s a step further—a wild abandon—from his Wild Abandon EP. “The band really made it tasty. The band knew who I was, and it was them who made the songs come to life,” he says. In addition, Penn expressed how, with the record being finished, he feels like he’s made an audio postcard of his travels, as it’s also thanks to the people he’s met and everything in between. We have no way of knowing, but one thing is certain, we’re waiting for what Ian Penn offers next with great anticipation.


3 = Emotion (3/3)

3 = Storytelling/Lyrics (3/4)

3 = Music (3/3)



Stream this beautiful LP now.


Wallowing — Soil & Green prepares to ‘let go’ with debut LP


NO, THE BAND’S NOT BREAKING UP. Although sometimes in our lives, there comes a moment where we just find ourselves in the dark. And we might not even try to get out of there because it’s such a drag to deal with things. But we got to let go of all the things that are swelling up inside. We must keep moving forward, even if it means crawling out or pulling ourselves out of our dark days.

We knew Soil & Green from way back in 2014 as we were gearing up for the first-ever Intramuros Rising. The band hails from the Mapua Institute of Technology—now Mapua University—and to best describe their sound per our boys is “a mix of heavy riff-oriented guitar licks, ambient guitar layering, ear-gasmic basslines, odd ‘singing’ drum patterns, and powerful vocals.” Surely enough, if you’ve managed to catch them in any of their gigs in the past, their description rings loud and true. In addition, they say dynamic arrangement is key to their individuality and chemistry; with those elements altogether forged their identity as a band. Nonetheless, over time, the sun rises and sets.

From left to right, Soil & Green during Intramuros Rising 1 last August 2, 2014: Marvin Montero (bass), Jacob Oliva (guitars & vocals), and Lehmann Flores (guitars)

From left to right, Soil & Green during Intramuros Rising 1 last August 2, 2014: Marvin Montero (bass), Jacob Oliva (guitars & vocals), and Lehmann Flores (guitars)


To give an idea as to what the album’s all about, we’ve managed to catch up with Soil & Green frontman Jacob Oliva and guitarist Lehmann Flores.

Could you tell us something about the whole album? What can we expect?

Jacob: ‘Wallowing’ defines Soil & Green as it is right now. All the songs from the previous release back in 2010 are included in this album, which says a lot about the genre of its track list. Why ‘Wallowing?’ As the definition of that word suggests, the theme of the whole album—from lyrics to music and arrangement—points to this: sadness without solution. If the album is the biography of a person, that person seems to enjoy the sadness he’s in, thus, wallowing in depression.

Lehmann: Almost 2 years in the making, tapos mostly experiences ni Jacob sa pag-ibig in general, pero nilaro yung words to make it [seem] na ibang bagay yung tinutukoy.

wallowing _album

The band is set to release their debut album on JUNE 10 at the saGuijo Bar + Café in Makati City, together with Talata, Saydie, Maryzark, False Apart, Kodigo, and their Indio Cartel brodies, Wasted Wendy. 200PHP gets you in with 1 FREE drink; 450PHP gets you in with all the goodies. (1 copy of ‘Wallowing’ + stickers + 1 FREE drink)


Banna Harbera gears up to release MV for ‘Sorrys & Goodbyes’

When it’s time to go, there’s no way of sugarcoating it, really, unless you’re about to tell your significant other a lie; thinking that it would ease the pain, but let’s be honest here—it won’t. Some people cut to the chase and leave without another word after. Some people take some time to say sorry, and goodbye.


After various performances around the Metro, a stint in Intramuros Rising 3 back in July 2015, and having released 2 EPs, as well as landing a spot in Wanderland 2017 as one of the Top 5 finalists, local soul/funk band Banna Harbera are increasingly one of the sought after independent acts today. The band is comprised of Yzabel Torres on vocals, Jake Masigan on guitar, Josh Planas on bass, Theo Blanch on keys, and Patrick Felipe on drums. They all came from De La Salle – College of Saint Benilde, and interestingly, all five of them have a Bachelor’s degree in Music Production which explains their distinct groove and masterful command of sound. Although the band’s music comes off as laid-back and chill, there are moments when their songs will have you up your feet and get you to dance.

After all, the band does play their music in a way that their listeners can dance, relate, and connect to.

MV Teaser


“It’s hard to say that I’m leaving you. The one thing on my mind is that you felt the same way, too.”

Now, in under a few days’ time, Banna Harbera are gearing up to release their first-ever music video for their ballad, Sorrys & Goodbyes, the second track off their second EP, Persistence. The song is essentially “a song that was kinda built around things unsaid to a certain someone, turning out to be too late to tell them,” per Banna Harbera guitarist, Jake Masigan. Asked if there were any experiences from anyone in the band that inspired the song, Masigan added that, “I wrote the song out of the blue—putting myself in the shoes of a person who’s just gotten their heart broken, or has just broken someone’s heart.” And it makes sense, because one could imagine the frustration of being left behind with all these things one could have said, would have said, and should have said.

Will we see this portrayed in the #SorrysMV? We’ll soon find out. Click here for the full event details.

MV Premiere Poster

Track Review: Caffeine and Taurine wants us to ‘Keep Dancing’


Caffeine and Taurine is back after an indefinite hiatus! And from the looks of it, they are here to stay. Now, pay close attention to this caffeine-and-taurine-brought-to-you-by-Red-Bull-infused writing as we have much to look back on with the trio from the Mapúa Institute of Technology (MIT)—chief among them was the band’s erstwhile stint in Intramuros Rising 3: OPM Weekend back in 2015.

Back then, what we saw were budding electronic synth-pop youths composed of Brandon Garcia on bass and vocals, Daniel Ching on synth programming, guitar, and vocals, and Nathaniel Pelareja on drums whom were out playing live at a bar in Quezon City and with a triple-track EP to match. Because of their fresh and distinctive sound that could go with the likes of CHVRCHES and The 1975, and in keeping with the tradition of Intramuros Rising to stage and revel homegrown acts, we immediately decided to put them on the bill. While Caffeine and Taurine had much to improve on their live performances and camaraderie back then, we saw them grow rapidly on the road to Intramuros Rising 3.

A couple of years went by, and they now have two new members: Joshuel Bautista on the keyboard, and Anthony Abitona on bass. Garcia now focuses on synth programming and vocals, while Ching now focuses on guitar and vocals.

“It’s our way of saying that we’ll keep going; we had an indefinite hiatus and almost did not come back.”

Moving on to their new track, “Keep Dancing,” the beat goes on and so is the dance, per the band’s description of the song. Clearly, “Keep Dancing” is a far cry from their previous material prior to the hiatus. It’s almost ambitious to say that this Caffeine and Taurine is a different monster, and one to look out for.

“Another day to crawl out your bed. Is it worth to think that you should try again?” Garcia’s vocals in this track is, in a way, reminiscent of Daft Punk’s “Doin’ It Right,” topped with synth-pop elements from the band’s musical influences. Asked about what inspired the song, Garcia only had this to say, “It’s our way of saying that we’ll keep going; we had an indefinite hiatus and almost did not come back.”

Honest and straightforward; a winning combo.

3 = Emotion (3/3)

2.5 = Storytelling/Lyrics (2.5/4)

3 = Music (3/3)


8.5 / 10

¿Que pasa, Indio?

For the year 2017, we aim to expand our agenda.

Intramuros Rising has been the phase one of ILVSTRADOS’ campaign to Intramuros for an alternate offering of what to see, hear, and experience in the heart of Manila. Undoubtedly, the first music and arts festival in the Walled City has opened a lot of gates to the grass roots community of Intramuros. Phase one shouldn’t stop us in our struggle for a better recognition and acknowledgment to our artists. Yes, Intramuros is now the sought after music and arts venue; you finally got the chance to know our city more, now here is a chance for you to get to know our homegrown artists better.

The second phase of the ILVSTRADOS initiative is INDIO CARTEL. We’ve provided a home for you (Intramuros Rising); allow us to extend our services by helping you build or strengthen your promising foundation. To simply put it: INDIO CARTEL will serve as Intramuros Rising alum’s management and publicist group. (They may or may not need it; we want to do something MORE—a life after Intramuros Rising.)

INDIO CARTEL will be ILVSTRADOS’ outside Intramuros arm in the music scene. It will be a separate entity from the latter in order for the former to freely operate beyond the walls and to avoid confusion of which is which. On January 5, 2016, we will be launching the clique, together with the pioneer signings, SOIL & GREEN, WASTED WENDY, ENDLESS NOISE, SAVING THE DYING HOPE, SHUTTER LIFE, and YOUNG BEAR (Brandon Garcia of Caffeine Taurine).


This shall mark a new journey for ILVSTRADOS; a beginning of an interesting year. We’ve done our part for the city, this time we’ll do something MORE for the artists.

This should be amazing.

THE AFTERMATH: There’s ERA! EP launch, plus Telenobela EP review


To be long-time friends is already a great thing in itself; the amount of experiences shared be it good or bad could range from playing music of similar interest during breaks along the school corridors to being rejected by the person you like, hence, the heartaches—and to have that friendship be the foundation of being in a band, even more so. With that established, the boundless loyalty and all, as in every endeavor, blood, sweat, and tears are necessary to keep the fire burning.


There’s ERA! – a band of brothers

The way we see it with There’s ERA!, they sure have come a long way in the 3 years they’ve spent as long-time friends and as a band, and there’s no sign of anything to keep them from growing. Last Saturday night (December 3, 2016) offered solid proof with the launch of their first EP entitled Telenobela at Mow’s which included performances by 88 City, The Oemons, Mayonnaise, KISSLING!, and Jensen & The Flips. On top of that, the volume of attendees made the launch even warmer as they nearly filled the whole venue.

Kicking it off with sheer excitement, it was indeed a December to remember for the band of brothers.

Going to Mow’s by commute may prove to be a pain in the neck as the venue’s in Diliman, which means having to deal with the dreaded Diliman, Q.C. traffic. But as the show got on the road, off-key indie band KISSLING! set the tone by opening with their track Oh, Young Love! followed by Daydream, both which gave an ambient start to warm up the incoming audience, most of whom were meeting up with one another and getting drinks. They gradually gained momentum with the following song, One Night Stand, off their unnamed and upcoming LP. Comically enough, the band noticed they had a bit more time left during their set, so they proceeded to play a couple more songs off their repertoire, before finally going loud and taking control with their post-punk track, In Control—in which a cymbal got detached from its stand by the end of their performance.

KISSLING! opening the show with an unexpected long set.

KISSLING! opening the show with an unexpected long set.

The second act, pop-rock/alternative 88 City—formerly known as Jejaview—made it a point to follow up and intensify the show with energized riffs and hammering drum beats that surely got the people jumping and banging their heads. With seminal tracks like SUMMER TWENTYELEVEN, You and Your Fantastic Friends, and Paperskin, 88 City easily managed to get the audience hyped and singing along. How they could pull off such a feat, it’s because the band themselves are pumped and engaging when playing live. Even during the time when they were Jejaview, they always had this camaraderie between them and the audience that never waned.

88 City delivering an electrifying performance.

88 City delivering an electrifying performance.

With that being said, the people were glued to where some of them stood and where some of them sat as crowd favorite Jensen & The Flips set their gear up, skipped the foreplay, and went straight to play their hit song, Lovechild. And as soon as the band started playing, the crowd was taken away by the soulful performance of Jensen & The Flips. Along with tracks like Slow and Dangerous, where things were toned down a bit, people couldn’t resist to dance until the end of The Flips’ set. These guys just know how to heat you up and feel the passion.

Crowd favorite Jensen & The Flips (Photo by LK Doble, no watermark)

Crowd favorite Jensen & The Flips (Photo by LK Doble, no watermark)

Following The Flips’ set was The Oemons—a ska-punk band hilariously dubbing themselves gone wrong as “if ska-punk had wild, passionate, and sweaty orgy sex with metal, world music, pop, and dick jokes,” they’d surely be the understandably conflicted and totally demented lovechild. Although The Oemons had been around for a while now, blaring trumpets and horns with each performance, they’re still definitely worth listening to for a solid good time singing songs about sex, kebab, and shawarma. Lol.

Rock and roll means sex, kebab, and shawarma for The Oemons (Photo by LK Doble, no watermark)

Rock and roll means sex, kebab, and shawarma for The Oemons (Photo by LK Doble, no watermark)

Now, as we know while we’re on it, shawarma is often served with a mix of dressings such as some hot chili sauce and garlic mayonnaise. The band Mayonnaise, on the other hand, has been among the most notable artists in the music scene today; with tracks like Jopay, Bakit Part 2, and Sinungaling—all of which they have performed last Saturday night, following The Oemons—they aren’t hard to miss because even from outside the bar, the crowd can be heard singing their hearts out while the band performs. One other thing worth noting, Mayonnaise frontman Monty Macalino helped mastering some of the tracks in There’s ERA!’s debut EP.

An instant trip back to the mid-2000s by Mayonnaise

An instant trip back to the mid-2000s by Mayonnaise

And then it was time…

To cap off the EP launch came the boys of the hour, There’s ERA!. Championing the Colegio de San Juan de Letran, we’ve known the band since the second installment of Intramuros Rising—mainly because they were the homegrown act that finally had the Big 4 universities in Intramuros come in full circle on that fateful day. You might find yourself asking, “Who are these guys?” as the very first question that pops into mind, what with their melodramatic lyrics about heartbreak and missing someone, it all sounds so ordinary. And yet, it’s safe to say that even if you don’t know them or if you’re seeing and hearing them for the first time live, their music would get under your skin. Truth be told, it’s because as simplistic as their songs may be, their rhythm and harmony is genuinely catchy.

The boys of the hour – There's ERA!

The boys of the hour – There’s ERA!



  1. Intro

This near-2-minute instrumental introduces the EP. Similar to sound checks most bands do at the beginning of their set, the intro sets the tone of the record—giving listeners an idea of what they can expect throughout the band’s recorded material.

  1. Telenobela

“Mabubuhay na lang ban a parang telenobela? Hindi ba ako ang bida? Lagi kong pinapanalangin kong ako’y tignan mo rin. Isipin mo na rin kung ba’t ka pa tumingin sa iba, kung ang nagmamahal ng tunay ay malapit lang sa ‘yo.”

According to There’s ERA!’s bassist, Eric Evardone, Telenobela—aside from being the EP’s titular track—is supposedly the first song written by frontman Allen Guarnes. It’s dedicated to Guarnes’ first love in which he had long hoped to be with, and they did end up being together against all odds.

  1. Asa

“Hindi makapaniwala, gugunaw na ba ng aking mundo? Kinausap mo ako’t akala ko eto na, ngunit bigla kang lumiko oh oh…”

Direct to the point, the song rings of typical teenage days, Evardone says. It’s like someone who’s head over heels for a girl, but doesn’t have that much of a chance of actually being with the person he/she likes. Put it simply, the song would resonate well with people who are torpe.

  1. Di Makatulog

“Di makatulog sa kaiisip. Ano ang gagawin para mawala sa ‘king tingin? Kahit pa nakapikit, ikaw ang nakikita ko. Ano ang gagawin para mawala ka sa ‘king damdamin?”

With a running time of 48 seconds, Di Makatulog simply tells of sleepless nights people would have just thinking about the person they have feelings for, but don’t want to have anymore.

  1. Ako Kanta Ikaw

“’Pag di ka kasama, nag-iiba. Ang oras mabagal, tulog ay wala. Nalulumbay, hinahanap ang ‘yong kamay.”

It all started as a lighthearted jest among the guys of There’s ERA! as they didn’t really know how to put the words “missing you” in Filipino. So, they just rolled with it. (As in Ako = Me Kanta = Sing Ikaw = You.) According to Evardone, this was the song they struggled with the most as it had gone through several rearrangements in the past, but finally settled with the one in the EP. Ako Kanta Ikaw is straight up a song for people we miss—be it a friend or a loved one.

  1. Kung Kailan Kailangan Ka

“Darating ka rin. Sinabi mo sa akin na sa isang tawag ko lang, mundo’y iyong tatawirin. Puso’t isipan ko’y handa sa anumang ibabato nila sa akin. Bakit kung kailan kailangan ka, ngayon mo pa naisipang mawala?”

Kung Kailan Kailangan Ka started off as a form of an alliteration that’s entertaining to pronounce, until such time it ended up having a story. Straightforward as the other songs in the EP, the track is about friends who seem to disappear in our time of distress.

Telenobela EP cover by Ardie Aquino

Telenobela EP cover by Ardie Aquino



Overall, There’s ERA! reached a milestone with the release of their EP, Telenobela. The songs are reminiscent and reflective of scenes found commonly in movies or teleseryes that captivate Filipinos’ love for dramatic soap operas. With this record, the band stood out with their straightforward and honest lyrics, pumping drum beats, and pulsating riffs which makes it great to listen to. The cover art colorfully illustrates the band in the backstage of a warehouse set, shooting a movie with a pink-haired girl and a couple of aliens. It’s plausible to think that the girl is the main character who’s also an adventurer who crash landed on some distant planet, and the EP follows her story in search of someone dear to her with the company of her alien friends. How There’s ERA! could top this with an LP in the future, only they could figure out and do themselves.

8/10 (Hint: An inclusion of liner notes a.k.a. a lyric book next time, maybe?)

– Roy Salamat


A revolution doesn’t happen overnight. It requires fervent dedication to the cause, and rigorous effort to ensure victory. Mapua Institute of Technology’s School of Multimedia and Visual Arts (SMVA) internalized that and they stood tall, with heads up high, to celebrate SMVA Week. It was a full week from the 21st of November, filled with various art shops and exhibits, to the 26th (last Saturday night) where they capped off their event with a bang.


Mapua SMVA’s SAVING THE DYING HOPE and their signature interstellar video playback/s.

Staged at the Puerta Real Gardens, Intramuros, and with a line-up of almost 20 homegrown bands that each have at least a couple of their members hailing from the technology institute—not to mention that several among them were Intramuros Rising alumni—the SMVA Supreme Student Council (SMVA SSC) managed to set the SMVA Night apart from your usual school concert. From the get-go, the concert started off with the pop-rock sound of Indigo Sweep as they swept the incoming audience off their feet and invited them to dance to the groove while breathing in the atmosphere of Puerta Real.

Around the venue, various pieces of art and photographs made and taken by the SMVA students were hung from the low-lying tree trunks where they can be easily found by people strolling around. Contemporary art stickers were sold as well at one of the booths in the event. The stickers captured the modern times with statements such as “pagod na c acoe”, “WIP nang WIP, may natatapos ba?”, and v a p o r w a v e art among others. And there were some characters from computer games and anime and erotic images, too.


Stickers for sale on-site—from hilarious millennial jargons down to memes.


Tesseract Manila—whose owner is from SMVA—is one of the concessionaires during the event.

There were some light rains that night but it didn’t stop the audience from celebrating the event and having a good time. (It was a familiar feeling.) False Contender made sure of that and we were all jumping to their charged beats and rhythm. By the time people were calming down, The Geeks made us all feel the cool air and the rain with their calm, bedroom doo-wop music. By and large, the whole night was filled with energy and love for the arts and the homegrown talents like BennyBunnyBand, MilesExperience (that even got the crowd to come up the stage), and Saving The Dying Hope, and Shutter LIFE and a whole lot more. We then just knew this community will grow well in due time.

One of the highlights of the night halfway through the show was the brief but momentous modelling through the ramp of several SMVA representatives sharing their insights about what art is to them to community, followed by an encompassing message by the SMVA SSC President Dyanne Macatangay as if passing the torch to the people—to the future of the SMVA.


SMVA SSC President Dyann Macatangay (wearing black) finds time to strike a pose with her fellow SMVA colleagues.


The SMVA community high in spirits—at 3AM in the morning of the following day.

It was an auspicious night for Mapua to really untie artistic differences and unite and embrace one another that it will surely help them thrive not only as a community within the confines of the university, but also within the walls of the Walled City. We are grateful and honored to be of assistance and guidance to the SMVA SSC, and we are looking forward to see them reap the fruits of their efforts.

-Roy Salamat

Mapua SMVA takes a stand

Uniting people of different walks under one cause is something that is unfair to label as easy, but the members of the Mapua Institute of Technology’s School of Multimedia & Visual Arts Department Supreme Student Council (SMVA SSC) managed to do it—and to culminate this momentous occasion, they are set to stage an explosive finale of their college week at the Puerta Real Gardens, Intramuros on November 26, 2016.

This is not your typical school concert; the SMVA Student Council decided to put a little twist and turn and a lot of homegrown talent in this year’s festivity that kicked off with a week-long string of various activities within Mapua that started last November 21 (and to end on the 26th) bearing the theme “IMVA: Untying Differences, United in Excellence.”

Veering away from the norm, the SMVA SSC draws the “invest on homegrown talents” card by fielding the musical line-up of the finale concert with both Mapuan acts and Intramuros Rising alumni, mainly to preserve the school pride spirit—and to acknowledge and respect the soul, identity, and music community in Intramuros that we have worked hard to serve and preserve since 2014.


For a student organization to go beyond the distance in the name of unity, this is definitely good in our books—and should be to yours, too. SMVA Night happens this November 26 2016, 3PM at the Puerta Real Gardens in Intramuros, Manila. Regular tickets are priced at PHP 400; door charge tickets are priced at PHP 500. #SMVAWeek2016 #SMVANight2016 #ThisIsRevolution


In one way or another, this event is in line with our never-ending initiatives in the artistic and scholastic community in the city of Intramuros. We have faith in the 2016 SMVA SSC. These guys are under our watch (one city, one team—blood of our blood) so we made sure that they had all the assistance they need and advice that they can get from us. To be of service to this team has been an honor for ILVSTRADOS and we cannot wait to see this one bear fruits.

To inspire others from your deeds is what makes this life worth the while. While the announcement for the re-scheduled Intramuros Rising V: Open City is just around the corner, something excellent is coming your way. And we are proud to be one of its sponsors.

Marvin Chua aka Endless Noise during our April 2016 event, EX VIVO. Shot by Antonio Vazquez.



Years after college, one of my favorite spots in Intramuros would be the sidewalk beside the convenience store near Colegio de San Juan de Letran. It used to be our spot in brainstorming Intramuros Rising 2 and Intramuros Rising 3, of course with bottles of beer — yes, vagrant, right?! (It was all fun and games until the cops picked us up. #truestory)

Beside that convenience store is a small sari-sari store and eatery that serves as a hangout place to all Letranites during their free hours. Just recently, I’ve learned that that place is owned by the family of Marvin Chua; that nostalgic and go-to-hangout place happens to house Intramuros’ very own post-rock solo act, ENDLESS NOISE.



I’ve missed doing MADE IN INTRAMUROS. For so long, I have to admit, we got lost in how we do things in ILVSTRADOS. The changing times made us innovate and trendset from the norms, we almost forgot who we really are and what we stand for.

Luckily, it was never late for us to wake up. And, admittedly, most of the things we’ve been doing right now is paying off! But still, I missed doing boring interviews like this. Marvin, on the other hand, is more than willing to share his Intramuros Rising story with us, so that saves me from typing a lot of words.

I: Billed as a homegrown act to look forward to, why do you think it’s important that you’re finally in the Intramuros Rising stage?

EN: Noong first time ko mag play for Intramuros Rising 3, yun din yun first ever live gig ko as Endless Noise. Endless Noise was just a bedroom project of mine. I never planned to play my music live. I just want to make music and release it online. Pero nabago ang lahat ng plano ko na yun when I got a short-notice invite from Ilustrados for Intramuros Rising 3. Sa totoo lang, na excite ako ng todo pero at the same time kinabahan din ako and inisip kong tuamanggi nalang. Three Days before the concert day, wala akong idea pano ako magpe-play ng live. Sinabi ko yun kay Jeremy, pero ang sabi niya, “Try lang natin” so I said yes to the gig and it was totally worth it. Lalo ako mas nagkadrive magsulat pa ng mga bagong tracks after noon and mas nagutom ako mag tumugtog ng live. Ganun yun experience at pagkakataon na binigay sakin ng Intramuros Rising sa akin. Life changing and walking distance ang venue mula sa bahay. Hehe.

I: You’ve been with us for quite some time, why chose to support us?

EN: Gusto ko yung concept ng Ilustrados na mag line up ng mga “never heard” indie artists. Ngayon kasi medyo malaki nadin ang mundo ng indie scene dito. Katulad ko na isang bedroom musician, hindi ko talaga inaasahan na matutugtog ko ang mga ginagawa ko sa stage. Yun para sakin ang isang malaking pagkakataon na binigay sakin ng Ilustrados, ang itulak ang sarili na hindi lang online ilabas ang mga gawa ko kundi ay tugtugin din ng live ito sa publiko.

Marvin Chua aka Endless Noise during our April 2016 event, EX VIVO. Shot by Antonio Vazquez.

Marvin Chua aka Endless Noise during our April 2016 event, EX VIVO. Shot by Antonio Vazquez.

I: What should people look forward to on your set?

EN: Be ready to use your imagination. I play the music; you create your own story with it. One man, big sound.

I: In your opinion, why do you think Intramuros Rising is different?

EN: As Marvin Chua, Intramuros Rising ay nagbukas daan para sa mga “never heard” artists katulad ko na ma-showcase ang mga gawa ko sa publiko. Sa Intramuros Rising, pantay pantay lang ang lahat ng mga artists. Lahat bida. As Endless Noise, “Feel at home” ka sa Intramuros Rising.


Funny how things really start from an accident. Marvin used to be in a band called Alley. Under that band, he submitted their demos during the 1st/2nd round of call-ups for Intramuros Rising. Fast forward to a couple months, and it birthed Endless Noise. A solo act who has no intention in playing live… but look what he is about to do now.

If you are into Game of Thrones, you can’t help but to ask what is it with House Stark why people keep on rallying behind them in spite of their flaws and stubbornness? After so many seasons, I came into the conclusion that House Stark is the only noble house in Westeros that has the HEART in looking after its people–even if they can’t anymore, they see to it that what they do is for them. That’s how they were able to take good care of the North. (Robb Stark, sorry, man. You should’ve just wed a Frey.)

Hate us for this, but we really see ILVSTRADOS as the Warden of the Walls–until the people don’t want us to. In the trial that we are about to face on JULY 9, 2016 at the PUERTA REAL GARDENS, INTRAMUROS (#IntramurosRisingV), we are proud to declare ENDLESS NOISE as our Champion, fighting for Castle Intramuros in a sea of foreigners.

Marvin, we rally behind you.


Creative Environment Intramuros - ff9999

Design Week Philippines April 2016


EX VIVO: From Beginning to End, by ILVSTRADOS, in partnership with Design Week Philippines organized by DTI-CITEM.

Design Week Philippines is a celebration of arts, design, history and culture aimed at fostering creativity and spurring innovations. 29 events, 14 venues, 24 partners. Celebrate Design Week Philippines with Creative Environment Intramuros. Log on to and register now!

You can also find Design Week Philippines on the following social media platforms: FacebookInstagram, and Twitter.

Official Hashtag: #DWP2016