“We are just a small indie band from the Philippines. We have no idea what we are doing. We just have this audacious dream,” states the members of alternative and indie rock band Last Song Bea. This statement has one absolute untruth, and one that needs qualifying. On the first count, I would affirm that the band knows exactly what it’s doing, and it is proven in their debut single, “Nakakotse”, as well as their sophomore release, “Tara!” On the second count, Last Song Bea may be a relatively small indie band, but they have an epically big sound which is showcased in all of its glory on “Tara!” Heavily influenced by the community, culture, and sounds of the 90’s era, the band which formed just before the pandemic began, has become an all-embracing musical unit made of Richard Parcia (vocals), Xyrus Judan (bass), Donie Dico (lead guitar), Mark Bambico (drums), Nimrod Lacquian (keyboards/guitar), and Erwin Dimaculangan (guitar/vocals).
“Tara!” returns to the rich, straight-forward and melodic musical style that has been missing from the mainstream for a while. It makes for an enjoyable listen. The vocals flow easily and the guitars are always energetic and ebullient, supported by vibrant horns.
It is a showcase of instrumental mastery and melodic gold, and sounds effortless. Last Song Bea draws you into a flawless framework of alternative indie goodness, as the song is catchy as hell with this amazing oscillating beat and strong guitar motifs.
There is something exorbitantly satisfying about enjoying what you might deem to be a classic sounding track, especially when it arrives from a band that you have never heard before. Balancing their pop ache with keen rock structures.
Last Song Bea manage to perform every single line and note so lovingly, you begin to feel a deep appreciation for their work. In a genre that today often values style over substance, Last Song Bea constructs a vast sonic template of sprawling instrumental grandeur.
But naturally, being indie-rock guys, Last Song Bea refuse to take themselves too seriously, which allows their music to come across as smooth and spontaneous, yet sounding like triumphant crowd-pleasers. “Tara!” contains enough substance and musicality to keep things fresh and thrilling.
But more than that, it’s the music of a band with purpose; with drive; and with creative integrity. Songs like “Tara!” serve as reflections of the world, mirrors in which listeners can take in other’s perspectives and develop their own.
The songwriting and arranging on “Tara!” is full of deft, imaginative touches, signifying a high level of musical ambition, to which the band proves itself completely equal. The song is the perfect synthesis of Last Song Bea’s highly varied musical capabilities up to this point.
It retains elements of a fresh approach to indie rock, while mixing in just enough of the classic song-craft that dominated the genre’s golden era. But it is the irresistible energy that saturates this song which really sets them apart from the rest of their contemporaries.
“Tara!” is a moment of pure musical celebration that captures the tremendous vision of this humble and unassuming band out of Manila, Philippines.