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MANILA, Philippines – At the last Karpos Live show for 2019, fan favorites IV of Spades and Phum Viphurit concluded this year’s series on a high note.
With disco and soulful folk, respectively, the two headlining acts drew a substantial crowd – despite the change of venue: from the Vertis Tent in Quezon City to the Filinvest Tent in Alabang.
IV of Spades thrilled their fans who made the trip down south with a high-octane set that included most of their hits. The trio of Zild Benitez, Blaster Silonga, and Badjao de Castro – with all their bewitching theatrics – effortlessly kept the audience pit bustling and grooving.
They garnered their sizeable following with their glittery disco and funk-inflected tunes like “Hey Barbara” and “Where Have You Been, My Disco,” and of course, the ubiquitous yet sublime ballad “Mundo.” So, it was only natural for them to perform those hits that propelled them to stardom.
They pumped up the volume with some numbers from their 2019 record CLAPCLAPCLAP! – an impressive display of their gamut of influences, too.
There was the deliriously psychedelic “In My Prison” with its space-age synths. “Come Inside My Heart,” meanwhile, evoked a long, meandering drive along a highway (like its music video) and echoed garage rock’s romantic side.
Beaming from ear to ear – as usual – Phum Viphurit, with his towering figure onstage, was a warm presence. Indeed, he was mighty glad to be back in the country for the third time.
The Thai-Kiwi singer-songwriter serenaded his Filipino fans with his sun-drenched tunes as if the show was an intimate jam. His indelible smile was magnetic and his music, equally irresistible.
The “Lover Boy” singer kept things interesting – adding some spice to his folksy undertakings. He went from upbeat (his aforementioned hit, plus the likes of “Strangers in a Dream,” “Long Gone,” “Hello, Anxiety,” or “Adore”) to mellow (“Pluto,” “Sweet Hurricane”). He even gave the stage to his longtime collaborators for a little beatbox duel.
Giving in after the crowd clamored for more as the night neared its end, Phum astonished the crowd with a vulnerable moment: performing a never-before-heard song, “Poem.” It was inspired, he said, by a picture of his parents when they were very much still in love.
There seemed to be a gentle quiver in his voice, tinged with the ache of nostalgia as he conveyed something so deeply personal. “Bigat,” (That’s heavy) someone even said in the crowd. People listened intently to what he had to say, and appreciated his sincerity.
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