This is the Last El Bimbo – My Eraserheads Final Set Experience

After 7 months of waiting, the Eraserheads reunited once more. We don’t know the reasons of this re-reunion but being an Eraserheads hardcore fan, it is good news for me. For the people who ask why they are doing this, it’s not really our bloody right to know.

The night before the concert, I was up until 5 am. Supposedly, I was going to sleep early to prep up for this event but something came up. Anyway, I woke up at 11 am and headed to SM Mall of Asia with Karla. We first hung out at Bona Coffee opposite the concert grounds. Karla was wearing her Noytee shirt, the shirt I got didn’t fit me so I requested to meet up with someone from Noytee to get a larger size at 3:30 pm.

The stage (view from VIP section)

Around 4:00 pm, we headed to the VIP entrance as we are expecting that the gates would open at 3:00 pm. Apparently, they’re not letting anyone in yet. Karla and I were the 3rd and 4th person on the right side entrance (near the bay). Patricia and Gerard (newly found friends from Circus) were the 1st and 2nd on the line. We’re complete strangers but the Eraserheads binded us as if we’re already familiar with each other. The guards then were instructed to let the audience in around 4:30 pm. I was really surprised to see how near I am from the stage.

(Me and Karla posing for the cam)

(The Yellow Brigade of Bouncers. They have been there since 11 am)

(Some Circus members in the VIP section, hehe, minus me of course)

I brought a big cloth with me so that it would serve as a mat for us to sit on. Under the heat of the sun, we still managed to wait patiently. I went around to take some photographs using Karla’s camera. I just want to observe the people around. I saw lots of people that I know from Circus (the Eheads Mailing List) and had a quick chit chat with them. This event became the grand EB of Circus. I got my Circus ID courtesy of Jaz (thanks to Levan of course who really took the effort on making those for us).

Sha's CircusFreaks ID

Different kinds of Eraserheads shirts were worn by fans. Here are some of the pictures I took:

(Eraserheads Team Manila Shirt. Thanks Gerard for modeling for me! )

(Eraserheads Team Pupil Shirt)

(Another Eraserheads Team Manila Shirt. Thanks to Patricia for modeling!)

Jazz Nicolas taking a photo of the listers

(Jazz Nicholas of Itchyworms (sessioning for the Eheads also) took a picture of us. I took a picture of him also 😉 )

Ely's Piano

As I was going towards the Gold section and looking at the view of the stage, I realized that the Stickerhappy piano was there. Oh yes, the ever famous piano of Ely Buendia filled with stickers. If you are familiar with the Stickerhappy album (Eheads’ 5th album), it’s on the front and album sleeve (with Joey Mead naked). I personally was able to touch it way back when it was in 70’s Bistro and during the Eraserheads Exhibit in Megamall.

(Ely playing the piano during the soundcheck last March 6, photo by Day Cabuhat)

As the sun was setting down, the concert grounds was beginning to fill up. Friends were texting and calling me to ask where I was located at the venue. Around 8:00 pm, the MTV vjs went onstage and did their hosting stints. As usual, they did their hosting stints as they are required to mention the sponsors (especially about their network, MTV). Anne Curtis, being one of the VJs, misread an Eraserheads song as “Tindahan ni Aling Nene”. What would you expect from them? It’s their job to read and make a fool of themselves in front of the crowd that nobody really cares to listen. I was getting impatient with them as they talk non-sense (promoting their shows i.e. their Paris Hilton show??); wishing that they would get off the stage at once. The people beside me were chanting “Dyosa” to Anne, she felt flattered but I know it was sarcastic. After they had their stint, it took about 10 minutes before the actual show started. I thought that the show would immediately start after their stint but apparently sponsors again flashed their ads in the big video walls. It’s business, can’t help it. Fine.

There was an Audio-Visual Presentation of old Eraserheads videos that came from MTV shows. It was like a timeline of how the band was formed and there were never before seen like the bloopers. Of course the video when they took home the Moon Man for the MTV Asia International Viewer’s Choice for Asia was shown.

Salamat sa Diyos. Maraming Salamat to all the fans who voted for us, BMG Pilipinas, Aureus our director, Robin our producer, our crew, MTV Asia, our families and friends.
ELY: Mabuhay ang Noypi!
ALL: Bogchi!”

There was this interview with VJ KC (Montero) which he asked the Eheads “Is the Eraserheads going to disband?” and I think it was Raymund and Ely who answered “No”. The irony of it is that they are already disbanded. As one Eheads song goes “Marami ang namamatay sa MALING AKALA” 😉 .

The Eraserheads Final Set Countdown

After a few minutes, there was an alphabet countdown (yeah, this has never been done haha) and it ended up at the inverted letter E (of course as in E-raserheads). This was the cue that the concert is about to start. Fans were screaming as robotic looping sounds of “Eraserheads” were heard mixed with the sound of thumping pulse and beeping. The band was already onstage staring at the excited audience. Loop sounds of “Punk Zappa” were also played on the foreground with the pulse and beep as the background. As the looping sounds end, the outro of “Butterscotch” (the backmasked guitar riff) was also heard then BOOM! The initial fireworks lit up the stage with the word Eraserheads flashed on the videowalls. Raymund gave the cue to start the band to play “Magasin”.

(First Song: Magasin)

By the way, here is the complete setlist. Total number of songs they performed: 27. I will narrate some highlights for every set so bear with me please 🙂 .

1st set:

Walang Nagbago
Maling Akala
Poorman’s Grave
Waiting for the Bus
Huwag Mo nang Itanong
Slo Mo

Highlights on the first set:

    1. There were fireworks after Magasin. Ely changed a line on the lyrics “Medyo pangit ka pa noon, HANGGANG NGAYON”. Well actually, he was doing that way back.
    2. Ely almost forgot the intro of “Poor Man’s Grave” and took the everyone’s attention that he will do it again. (I can take over for him, hehehe).
    3. Ely threw his Levi’s Denim jacket towards our direction and guess what? The 6 of us were literally holding on to the jacket. This is how we literally fought over Ely’s jacket. I wasn’t on the picture because I was dragged on the ground. Haha. The bouncer (without the cap) was already saying that the jacket should be given to the girls (i.e. MINE and the other girl!). Of course, the men wouldn’t allow it because their hands grabbed it also. And so this bouncer (with the cap) confiscated the jacket. The 6 of us were worried that he might not give it back to us. He came back to us after the first set and was asking for a bribe (pang-merienda lang daw). WOW. Of course we didn’t give in to his demands (ano ito, ransom???) and so the 6 of us decided to just divide the jacket among us just to compromise. We might be reprimanded with unruly behavior (and the concert might be stopped because of us) that’s why just to get over it (since we’re from Circus anyway), we decided to cut the jacket into parts after the concert since scissors were not allowed in the venue. The jacket became a ‘sacred object’, you know in the religious sense? It was so immature of me but what the hell, this would be the last time that i’ll be doing this. Haha.

Where Ely's jacket landed

    1. During “Huwag Mo Nang Itanong”, they rearranged it into a reggae version and let Marcus do the vocals. Actually, Marcus does this during his gigs with Markus Highway. Jazz Nicholas (of Itchyworms) took over the drums as Raymund was frantically reggae dancing onstage. Marcus changed the first line of the song as “Chika ang inabot ko” and was singing “Hindi ko sasabihin sa yooooo” during the chorus. Ely also danced on stage (wahahaha), he never do that but he tried his very best (wehehe).

Ely Dancing - 2

Ely Dancing - 1

  1. The audience were chanting “group hug” but Marcus heard it as “Bruha”. Ely then asked “Sinong bruha?”
  2. The audience again chanted “group hug” he responded “Kayo muna!”. He saw us hug and he said “Eh ang konti nyo eh!”.
  3. Raymund took over the vocals on “Slo Mo”, “Alkohol” and “Insomya”

    Raims and Ely(I love this picture taken by Karla, they were asking the audience to sing the chorus of “Alkohol” with them)

  4. Raims and Marcus

    Buddy Zabala smilingPeople were chanting for Buddy to sing solo; he mocked the audience by singing the first line of “Fabulous Baker Boy” -> “They come for me for doughnuts….”

There was a few minutes break. The Eheads were seen being lifted by a hydraulic stage. It was a ‘homie’ production set up with Ely seated at the sofa, Marcus and Buddy seated on high stools and Raymund of course with his acoustic drum kit.

Ely Buendia during the acoustic set

2nd set (the Acoustic/Unplugged set)

Julie Tearjerky
Wishing Wells
Fine Time
Pare Ko
Back2Me (Plugged)
Trip to Jerusalem (Plugged)
Spoliarium (Plugged)
Overdrive (Plugged)

Highlights of the 2nd Set:

  1. Raymund entered the stage with his skateboard.
  2. Ely asked the audience “How do you like our new home?”
  3. At the end of “Fine Time”, Ely gave Buddy the cue to sing the last line “Basta’t kayakap ka ay okey”
  4. Ely joked “kung may gusto kyong i-request isulat nyo lang s 1/4 sheet of paper lengthwise tapos pabigay s waiter”.
  5. Ely changed some lyrics of “Pare Ko” into “Yun pala, magaling na siya sa kama. Akala ko ay dehins pa”. Again, they’ve done this way back.
  6. Ely stood up at frontstage right and sang “Kailan” with Jazz Nicholas playing the Stickerhappy piano in the background. This is the first time that Ely sang only with the accompaniment of a piano. Good job! While Ely was at the middle of the song, a guy near me shouted “I love you Ely” and Ely replied on the mic “I love you too pare”.
  7. At the end of “Overdrive”, they played the outro of “Trip to Jerusalem” which goes like this.. “Spin, spin, gonna spin it around”. Again, this was never done before. Yipee!!
  8. Ely threw his Puma sneakers to the audience. No, it wasn’t me who got it. haha.

There was a 6 minute break before the Encore Set. This was the tribute to one of their closest friends in the industry, Francis M. Kiko was supposed to appear during “Superproxy”. As we all know, this was the song they collaborated for Cutterpillow.

Encore set 1: (Tribute to Francis M)

Kaleidoscope World (sang only the Chorus)
Ang Huling El Bimbo (The Finale)

Highlights of Encore Set 1:

    1. Raymund stood up from his drum kit holding a folder with “Man from Manila” written on it. Obviously, that already hinted the audience that this will be for Francis.
    2. Ely and Raymund sang the rap parts that was originally done by Francis. I still remember the rap part by heart.
    3. Alapaap was rearranged. Ely was singing “Masdan mo aking mata” for about 8 times with the sound of sitar playing in the background. It was a mellow version; the other guys came in on the last chorus. This was the best Alapaap version I have ever heard before. Wow.
    4. They sang Kiko’s song “Kaleidoscope World” but only the chorus. I remember they sang the whole song, together with Kiko, way back during the “Electric Fun” concert at the Folk Arts Theater.
    5. They were finally able to sing the final song “Ang Huling El Bimbo”. To tell you honestly, I cried in the middle of the song. I didn’t anticipate the tears but it just fell down my cheeks. I think Buddy saw me crying. It’s really unexplainable. I know that I have already moved on. Maybe I cried because I finally saw that Ely is back. All throughout the show, he was enjoying himself and didn’t seem to be forced on doing something that he didn’t like. This was the Eraserheads that I saw way back when they were still together: joking around, didn’t care if they made a mistake on a certain part, etc. If i will be comparing it to the first, I like this one better because I know they were all enjoying.
    6. The song ended and Ely said “ITO NA ANG HULING EL BIMBO”. During the instrumental, The unexpected happened. Ely lit up a piece of paper using a lighter and threw it on the Stickerhappy piano. It became a symbolism of the end of the Eraserheads. I don’t know if the other guys knew that he would be doing that. I think he just wanted to say to the fans to move on and apppreciate the present. I suddenly remembered Elton John as he did that too with his piano. Another famous singer I remembered was George Michael as he lit up his jacket to symbolize that the end of the “old” closet gay George Michael and the start of the out and proud George Michael.

Ely lighting up a paper

Raims shocked in front of Ely

(oh yeah, Karla took a picture of me crying. wahhh!!!!)

  1. Almost a group hug

    There were fireworks again after the final song. They all bowed (and semi hugged 🙂 ) and Ely said “We ARE the Eraserheads”. If you will notice, it was used in the present tense.

Encore 2:

Highlights of the Encore 2:

    1. Raymund came back onstage and asked the audience “Ano, gusto niyo pa?”. He asked the audience to call the others. Ely, Buddy and Marcus came back. I was able to read Raymund mouth, he said something like “Sorry…”. He was apologizing maybe because they weren’t prepared for anything for this set.

Ely asks the crowd to sing

  1. Ely changed the lyrics of “Ligaya” into “Gagawin ko ang lahat pati ang misis mo”…
  2. Ely forgot some lyrics of Sembreak and immediately proceeded towards the last verse. Then he asked Raymund “tapos na?”. haha.
  3. Ely went down to the audience and gave the mic to some people in the VIP section. Unfortunately I wasn’t one of the people who sang “Toyang” but I was able to hold his hand.
  4. Ely gave Tim Yap the opportunity to sing “Toyang”, apparently, he wasn’t prepared. Lots of fans hated him because of that because it was a very common song. Well give him a break, he’s there to cover the event and was probably one of the ‘friends’ of Ely’s entourage.

Remember Ely’s jacket?? Here’s the documentation on how we divided the jacket. hehe. This is to be fair and square to everyone who got involved in this rowdy incident. haha. I have now realized that Levi’s is really good quality. A lot of effort was made to cut the seams dude!!

Close up of the jacket being cut

Ely's jacket divided among us

(This is my share; still have to decide what part to give Karla 🙂 )

By the way, here are some additional videos or blogs you can view about the event:

Schizo’s You tube video- “Ang Huling El Bimbo” live stream

Karla ‘s blog post

Karla’s blog post 2

Nielsen’s YouTube video- Ely singing “Kailan” with piano accompaniment

Jake Yrastorza’s blog post

(if you have blogged about this one, just comment below and i’ll add it here 🙂 )

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