Thursday, September 12, 2002

Freestyle
Wish I could be so bored…

Freestyle
Genre: Pop, OPM
CREDITS: 1998 Freestyle, Neo Records, VIVA Entertainment
Track Listing:
  1. Goodluv
  2. Not That Easy
  3. Wanna Be The One
  4. Lover
  5. Before I Let You Go
  6. I Keep On Callin’ (Interlude)
  7. Let’s Get It On
  8. I’m Gonna Love You
  9. It’s Not Time (Interlude)
  10. So Slow
  11. Treat You So Right
  12. Get With Me
  13. Bakit Iniwan Na


For a band that was formed out of boredom in the distant South of the Philippines, Freestyle sure makes one hell of a group to be reckoned with. With this first CD, Freestyle sure made its definitive mark in the history of Philippine pop music—sounding a little too foreign yet infusing their music with romantic themes that are distinctively Filipino.

Freestyle’s self-titled album is mostly composed of love songs, the catchier of which are Before I Let You Go, a tearful ballad about breaking up performed by male lead vocalist Christopher “Top” Suzara, and So Slow, another ballad—witty and pragmatic approach to sensual awakening this time—by Jennifer “Jinky” Vidal. You don’t have to be mushy all day long, as dance tracks like Goodluv and Lover will make you want to get out there and swing your body to the groove. Remember to take a date with you because these two will definitely add a touch of sexiness and charm to your overall feeling.

My favorite track here is actually the soul rending Bakit Iniwan Na, the only Tagalog song in the entire album that speaks of a girl’s disillusioned heart after falling out of a seemingly meaningful relationship. It isn’t the language alone that makes it different from the rest of the tracks; Bakit Iniwan Na features Jinky’s powerful vocal prowess without her resorting to oral acrobatics. In fact, it is filled with soft husky crooning that brings out the best of Jinky’s falsettos. The accompaniments are led by the beautiful sound of the keyboards. Highly recommended if you want to be in an artistic, brooding mood.

Freestyle is a wonderful album. I can assure a listener that she will never forget at least two of their songs. My only gripe with it is that some of the tracks sound too closely alike. But since this is only the group’s first, I have different opinions on their other follow-up recordings. This was released in 1998, and it’s now the year 2002. A lot has improved since then.

Rating: 7/10



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