MANILA -- The 2019 Karpos Live series kicks off with MIX 5, featuring the chilled beats of Filipino producer and beatmaker King Puentespina’s electronic music project, crwn, and American remix collobarator extraordinaire RAC at the ABS-CBN Vertis Tent on Sunday.
R&B duo tomcat was a fitting front act for the night as the group’s slow beats and slow rap were a nice prelude to a night of chill and electronica.
Crwn cooled the audience down to King Puentespina’s playful and experimental ambient tracks for the first half of the set. There was a nice progression from the downbeat to the producer’s R&B collaborations starting with Jess Connelly’s “Wait” which got audience swaying to his grooves.
He then called a special guest, August Wahh, to share the stage. The producer and singer recently teamed up as the front act for Daniel Caesar’s "Case Study 01" concert last monyh. The duo performed selected tracks from their Labyrith collaboration. Wahh’s “Sahara,” “Gaslight”, and an acoustic version of “Can’t Want You” got the audience accompanying Wahh’s throaty vocals. The set ended as chill as it started with crwn and Wahh’s “Blue Dreams.”
RAC was last seen in Manila during the 2015 edition of the Wanderland Arts and Music Festical. I must say that it’s one thing to listen to the Portuguese-born remixer André Allen Anjos, founder of the Remix Artist Collective, in a wide-open space. It’s another, almost religious experience hearing RAC unleash the sound and the fury of bassy gigantic concert speakers in the closed confines of the Vertis Tent.
Right from his first track, a wild version MNDR’s “Feed Me Diamonds” with backing beats from Daft Punk’s “Around the World,” the crowd was buffeted with wave upon wave of glorious bass. RAC went on to live remix a genre-busting setlist which included indie-rock staples Two Door Cinema Club’s “Something Good Can Work,” and Basement Jaxx’s “Where’s Your Head At?”, Lana Del Rey’s “Blue Jeans,” The Knock’s “Classic,” a throwback with Toto’s "Africa," even going folksy with Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros' “Home.”
Tracks from RAC’s albums concluded the set including “This Song,” “Cheap Sunglasses,” and “Ello Ello.” Anjos triumphantly brought the Vertis Tent down with “Let Go” to close the set hinting he will return, pleading, “Let’s do this sooner than five years, please!”
The Karpos Live series continues its winning combination of having international and local artists perform one after the other in one night of great music. Coming up are Jordan Rakei and Unique on September 1, The Japanese House and Muni Muni on September 12, and Jeremy Zucker and Kiana Valenciano on September 24.
Check out the Karpos Live playlists on Spotify to preview the featured artists’ music and curated mixtapes.