Last February 17, the American rock band Incubus played for the fifth time in Manila at the Smart Araneta Coliseum. It was my third time to see them and the band did not disappoint—from the well-designed dramatic lighting, to the hypnotic visuals on a huge round LED screen, to, of course, an all-out live performance highlighted by Brandon Boyd’s powerful voice, tantric moves, percussions. And, as expected, to a shirtless Boyd which got the crowd to scream and sing their hearts out.
The band filled Araneta Coliseum with good music and good vibes with a really great show. They played a good mix of old and new songs starting off with “Love in the Time of Surveillance“, a song from their new eighth studio album “8”, as well as other songs from their past albums. The crowd sang, danced, and jumped, feeling the high in every second.
My interest in the band started years ago because lead singer Brandon Boyd reminded me of someone who was special to me at the time.
The band had their first show in Manila in 2004. At the time, the name Brandon Boyd didn’t ring a bell at all. That is until a friend told this guy, “Hey, you look like Brandon Boyd!” I said, “Who?” After learning he was the front man of the American rock band Incubus, I researched in earnest—and started listening to the songs of his band.
The band impressed me, from Brandon’s powerful and distinctive voice, the well-written lyrics one can easily relate to, their dynamics, and unique sound. Their music is something that gets through me and I’d listen to it over and over again and just get lost in it.
The first time I watched the band was in 2008 during the Manila leg of their Light Grenades Pacific Rim Tour. It was their second time in Manila.
When they returned for the fourth time in 2015, I said I couldn’t let the opportunity pass since I had become a total fan by then. Luckily, the universe conspired. I worked with Yahoo Philippines at that time and we had partnered with Ovation Productions to become a media sponsor of the show.
And that’s how I met Brandon Boyd, spoke to him, shook his hands, and had a photo taken with him.
Photo courtesy of Ovation Productions
It was indeed a dream come true and I will forever be grateful.
Aside from his rock star good looks, interesting tattoos, long wavy hair which I envy (LOL), and sexy, distinct voice, Brandon is an artist—and a versatile one. He’s not just a musician—he is a visual artist, painter, photographer, surfer, and a writer who has published three books. His books, “From The Murks of The Sultry Abyss,” “White Fluffy Clouds” and “So the Echo”, are a collection of his thoughts, poetry, lyrics, sketches, paintings, and photography.
Being an animal lover and an environmental activist, he uses his art as a means to support these causes. He believes in the opportunity to give back and is involved in various charitable causes including raising funds for Yolanda victims through the band’s Make Yourself Foundation. And all these made me admire him even more, not to forget him being a talented yet very simple, down to earth and kind-hearted human being.
Watching them always leaves me in awe and craving more. Aside from songs from their latest album “8,” the band dished out stuff from previous albums like 2011’s “Morning View,” 1999’s “Make Yourself,” 2004’s “World A Crow Left of the Murder, and 2006’s ”Light Grenades.” They also played “Pantomime,” a song which was included in the band’s DVD, “Alive At Red Rocks”, and also released in the greatest hits compilation “Monuments and Melodies” in 2009.
Here are some photos from the show:
It was a great setlist, but still bitin. I know that if Incubus returns to Manila in another three years, I’ll be back in whatever arena they’ll be playing in and fangirling just as hard as I did this last time. Over the band, over their songs, over Brandon. Who knows? I might even get to meet him again.
Video Credits: Grace Foronda
Were you there, too? What was your favorite moment of the night? Tell us in the comments!