When electronic and alternative music meet

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MARK BONIFACIO

What happens when you combine two different genres in one show?

It may be weird for some but it was proven it can be done as Somedaydream, an electronic artist, collaborated with a singer with alternative background Nicole Asensio in an online show for D5 titled D5 Studio Live Originals.

Streamed live October last year, the songs in the show were released this January as a digital album (downloads and streaming) where they performed together covers of “In The Air Tonight” (Phil Collins) and “I Can’t Make You Love Me” (Bonnie Raitt) plus their own hits.

Somedaydream was known for the hit single “Hey Daydreamer” which was used in an ice cream commercial and “Do-do With You” from his 2011 debut album under MCA Music. He also gave a glimpse of his upcoming music via the new song “Kailan” in the show.

Nicole Asensio was a former vocalist of the band General Luna who went solo. She released her debut album Schizoprano under MCA Music in 2015 and in this show/album, performed her originals “Leader For A Day,” “Sewn To Skin” and “Sakali.”

This was not the first time D5 Studio Live Originals held this kind of show though. Also last year, who would have thought bossa nova could mix with rap with Sitti and Loonie as their first guests? It was so successful that D5 just had to do it again.

Music Geek sat down with Somedaydream and NicoleAsensio on their thoughts about their collaboration.

How does it feel to have collaborated live for ‘D5 Studio Live Originals’?

Somedaydream: It feels surreal! It was something unexpected and Nicole seemed to enjoy it a lot during the live sessions. Performing with her was an honor.

Somedaydream and Nicole Asensio

Nicole Asensio: I was quite nervous because it was something that came together at the very last minute, I had never worked with Somedaydream before but was confident with his musical prowess. I lost my dad so my mind was everywhere but here. But I am grateful I had an opportunity to try and collect myself and somehow express my innermost thoughts through this collab. Though I feel I was unprepared, this opportunity came at the right time.

What was your reaction when this was presented to you?

S: Felt like it was a pleasant surprise as my first job coming back into this music thing. It felt like a new challenge at first but it made a lot of sense when I got to hang out with her more through the music making process.

N: Are we going to get along? After a pizza and a few beers, we totally did. I knew all along that I wanted my horns section here with me, I felt it was the most uncommon way I could present the flavor of the Schizoprano album alongside Somedaydream’s awesome arrangements.

How does it feel that your live collaboration was released as digital album?

S: It’s only fitting that that whole performance was recorded and saved for something greater. For me personally, it’s an unforgettable recording of time. This goes down as an achievement in my personal history as a musician.

N: Nervous, if I go back and do it all over again, I want to polish it more, make it less impromptu, but I guess I’m grateful that it came out that way.

What can you say about this concept of D5 in combining two different genres in a live setting?

S: Genre-bending is cool, glad the concept is being tapped by media companies now. It brings a certain insight into the future of music and entertainment. Kudos to the D5 studio team for coming up with this plan!

N: I love that D5 is opening these doors to artists all over the Philippines, if given an opportunity, I’d do it over and over again!

What adjustments did you do in terms of music since you both have different genres?

S: Honestly, I haven’t worked a lot with people from this genre but knowing how musicians think and do things around collaborative settings like this inspired me to work out the finer details of our mixed music. It was give-and-take thing but I had space express my style for the project too, so that was awesome.

N: I’m not used to singing without live musicians so it was definitely an adjustment to sing over loops and follow the sequence which was arranged not too long before taping. I loved how Rez rearranged my music. We trusted each other and we just let ourselves have fun.

For Somedaydream, what kept you busy after releasing your debut album in 2011?

Schooling. I had the great challenge of finishing up college even after releasing that phenomenal album. I like being in control behind the scenes with music in general so in the last five years and during my hiatus, I’ve built a name for myself producing and guiding a new generation of electronic musicians locally, evolving into a new form.

For Nicole, what is keeping you busy nowadays and your plans for the immediate future?

I have completely turned over my life, I now have a deep well of realizations and amazing stories to write about, so the task this year is to set it to music. I’ll be having more live elements, because that is my home as an artist. Building my own studio is in the plans for late 2017 until 2018.

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