And the 90’s Nostalgia Goes On – Moonpools and Caterpillars Reunites in Manila

Kimi Encarnacion of Moonpools and Caterpillars

Kimi Ward Encarnacion of Moonpools and Caterpillars

During 6th grade , my classmate made me listen to this cool tape with a cool album cover. She said that this is not local but most of the members were Pinoy. The band’s name sounded very interesting too – they’re called Moonpools and Caterpillars. Totally clueless, I listened to this album called, “Lucky Dumpling”. After that moment, I couldn’t help but listen to it over and over again. Since I wasn’t too updated with concerts then, I didn’t know that they came here in 1996. Bummer. Fast forward to 2014, the news broke out that finally they’re reuniting in Manila so I said to myself that I should not pass the chance to see them live. I was only relying on You Tube videos of their live performances so I wanted to know how it feels like seeing them live. And so the long wait was over. On April 11th, I watched their final performance at the Amber Ultralounge with my partner Karla.

Jayjay Encarnacion of Moonpools and Caterpillars
Tim de Pala of Moonpools and Caterpillars

While queuing outside Amber Ultralounge, I was already expecting that:

a) most of us were born in the 70’s and 80’s and therefore have the same age group (late 20’s to late 30’s)

b) this was gonna be a sing-along

c) there will be a lot of cellphones and tablets up in the air while the bands are performing

All of my expectations were correct while there’s another one that I didn’t expect, later on I will narrate.

The venue was small but definitely bigger than Saguijo or Route 196. We came inside the venue at around 8ish. No seats at the ground floor so everybody stood up while watching the bands perform. Excitement was burning inside me as we entered the venue. 90’s alternative songs were being played and as expected a) and b) above were fulfilled.

Opening acts were Chicosci, Autotellic and Barbie Almabis.

Miggy Chavez of Chicosci

Miggy Chavez of Chicosci

Chicosci’s first song was my ultimate favorite Chicosci song “Paris”. I think only a few of us totally rocked with this song (and the entire set of Chicosci). I guess Chicosci’s music was a bit off tangent with the Moonpools and Caterpillars crowd. But what the hell, I like them!

Barbie Almabis
Barbie Almabis

Barbie was with her usual self until she played a new song and showed he lead guitar skills. I was blown away. Here’s a rocking momma!


Last of the front acts was a new band called Autotellic. I haven’t heard this band yet and to be honest, they sound pretty good. Almost all of their songs were in Filipino and I would categorize them as electronica-dream-pop-rock. They remind me of Temple Trap but a little bit different.

Kimi Encarnacion of Moonpools and Caterpillars

After 3 hours of waiting, finally Moonpools and Caterpillars graced the stage. Kimi seemed still very ecstatic although this was already their 3rd performance during the week. I totally love her!

Kimi Encarnacion of Moonpools and Caterpillars

Then, Koo Koo Koo’s intro played and all of us who were 90’s kids acted like kids again – jumping and singing. Everybody endured the 90 minute set with an encore performance of the Juan Dela Cruz’ “Beep Beep” and “Ang Himig Natin”. The latter was the sexier version according to Kimi. The band was sweating a lot but the energy still kept on until their very last song which is “Heaven”. It felt that Kimi didn’t want the night to end and kept on repeating the chorus of the song which goes like ” So take care and don’t go to far, I will miss you so…”. She felt like crying while she’s singing this song and I could feel her emotions. It was a dream come true to shoot the band because their passion really shows in the way that they perform.

Blurry Moonpools and Caterpillars group shot

Thank you Moonpools and Caterpillars for performing again after so many years and fulfilling my dream to see you live and take photos of you. Although my photo of you all together was very blurred, I wanted to share this because this was the only group photo I have.

* Going back to what I didn’t expect as I mentioned earlier? Just when you thought that the annoying person taking videos from a cellphone during the entire show will be over after she runs out of battery, think again! Power bank chargers are connected to cellphones while taking videos of almost the entire concert! Taking photos and capturing the band’s moments are difficult at this day and age because of smart phones / digital cameras with monopods. I was lucky to get a few decent shots, whew!

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