Manila, Philippines – 15 years ago, PULP Summer Slam started out at a purely local band festival. Built upon the foundations of Pinoy rock, it has grown through the years to become an internationally recognized festival and is now considered as one of the biggest gatherings of heavy rock music in Asia. This year’s foreign line-up includes Killswitch Engage, Word Alive, Escape The Fate, Carcass, Suffocation and Cradle of Filth, but it was once headlined by our favorite local rock bands, most especially the Big 3: Greyhoundz, Queso and Slapshock.
One can say that to see our favorite local acts perform on the same stage as these international bands is a privilege, but on the contrary, the Summer Slam crowd grew over the years out of love for Pinoy rock. This year’s 25,000-strong crowd made the show. The heat was no match for extremely determined loyal rock fans who make it a point to attend every year. To perform in front of such a crowd is THE privilege.
Everyone described the event as a homecoming for a lot of these local rock bands. This year’s festival celebrates its roots. Partnering with Red Horse Beer, it brings back to the stage the bands that have grown with the festival attendees. Prior to the event, the ambassadors of Pinoy rock, Kjwan, Razorback, WilaBaliW, Greyhoundz and Slapshock have expressed their excitement over performing in front of the Summer Slam crowd, some of them feeling their absence for half a decade.
The Pambansang Muziklaban 2014 Grand Champion, Nobela, was lucky enough to perform in such a prestigious event. Red Horse takes pride in its Muziklaban champions, giving the opportunity for young bands to realize their dream. Aspiring Muziklaban finalists should take note: To experience the big league may be the stuff of dreams but here is one example that it can happen.
It’s one thing to see your favorite band for the first time, and another to see them perform in front of the crowd they helped build. When you see the bands and the audience in their element, you know they’re right where they belong. In these moments, Pinoy rock has elevated even higher, making this rock institution bigger and stronger.
Photos by Niña Sandejas
To join the 2015 Muziklaban competition log on www.redhorsebeer.com