Get in the Christmas spirit with Lilystars Records’ compilation album, IN REVERIE

Philippine indie music label Lilystars Records brings festive warmth to music listeners all around the world with the release of IN REVERIE: A Lilystars Christmas Compilation.

In keeping up with the tradition of spreading Holiday cheers, the 11-track album offers heartfelt music that evokes the reassuring comfort of home and togetherness even in the unlikeliest of circumstances.

According to Clem Castro, the CEO of Lilystars Records, the compilation release is more than just a reflection of longing, hope and love. “It’s a call to keep our spirits alive no matter what we are facing. There are also tracks about celebration, optimism, loneliness and even dismay.”

While Christmas can mean a lot of things to different people, IN REVERIE: A Lilystars Christmas Compilation isn’t afraid to explore themes that indirectly address the current pandemic situation. “We can’t say if this release will have an impact for those who are having a difficult time with the pandemic, but we are hoping it does make a difference, Clem shares. “This serves as our gift to music fans this holiday season.”

Helmed with Hallmark-inspired melodies, vibrant arrangements, and intimate songwriting, the songs in Lilystars Records’ IN REVERIE offer an alternative listening experience for discerning music fans who want their Christmas jams a little bit on the obscure side. It covers a diverse selection of tunes with genres spanning pop, folk, blues, jazz, indie rock, twee, electronic pop, post-punk, and alternative music.

Clem admits that there was no selection process for the compilation album. Instead, he challenged some of the artists in the roster to write and produce their own original Christmas songs. “We have a high regard with the capacity of our artists and their contribution exceeded our expectations. We commend their commitment to produce the tracks on their own, either recording at home or with help of friends or people they work with to bring life to their record.”

Eleven artists from Lilystars Records participated in the call for submissions, which is more than enough to complete a proper album. The result is a unique collection of songs, defined by the sound of each artist and their own personal sentiments about the season. The track list includes:

  1. Christmas Daydreams – Orange & Lemons
  2. Blue For Christmas – Meagan Trees
  3. The Kids Are Out – The Bloomfields
  4. 1225 – Project Orange
  5. Feliz Navidad (I’m Falling Apart) – Dey Rose
  6. This Christmas Time – Dustybuns
  7. A December Afternoon – Parasouls
  8. Yo! Santa! – The Charmes
  9. Christmas Mourning – The Geeks
  10. Xmust – Kubra Commander
  11. Good Night – Starry Eyed Cadet

IN REVERIE: A Lilystars Christmas Compilation is now available on all digital platforms worldwide via Lilystars Records.

Them Bloody Royals dance the pain away on “We Children Of The Night”

Them Bloody Royals revisit the glory days of ‘80s synth pop with the release of their new song “We Children Of The Night.” Bringing effervescent joy back to the dance floor, the Filipino four-piece band’s new single struts confidently around pulse-pounding rhythms, sparkly synthesizers, and angular guitars in an effort to knock the walls down—at least for the entire party run.

Outside of its jagged spirit and blissful retro appeal, “We Children Of The Night” is more than just swagger and sweat; it’s an attempt to capture the feeling of losing one’s self in the moment, drunken and ready to dance the pain away. Lyrically, it showcases “the excitement of meeting new people, flirting with strangers, and having fun,” as vocalist Sib Sibulo puts it.  “The song dances around with the idea of falling love, the thrill of it, but also not wanting to fully commit to anything.”

Behind the incessant groove that repeatedly thumps on ‘We Children Of The Night” is a common sentiment shared by broken people trying to escape from their personal horrors. Sibulo has a better way to describe it: “You can be so broken and jaded with the idea of getting into serious relations, that you just wanna say, “fuck it, I just wanna have fun.” 

On the happy-sappy chorus, the lead singer even pleads, “Here we are / Wishing this night would never end / We fall in love, we fall apart,” as if finding refuge ephemeral romance would make you forget about your struggles in life and love. 

Production-wise, the song in general – the entirety of it – is the result of Them Bloody Royals’ attempt to reinvent and outdo their previous work. “We wanted to see if we could come up with a legitimate banger, and set a good pace for the next things down the pipeline,” Sibulo shares.

Written and produced by Them Bloody Royals, and recorded at Pointbee Multimedia, “We Children Of The Night” is out now on all streaming and digital platforms worldwide via Lilystars Records.

Image and details provided by Lilystars Records in a recent press release.

Filipina singer-songwriter Meagan Trees inhabits wisdom beyond years on “Take Me Away”

Meagan Trees has always brought an understated sense of spontaneity into her storytelling approach, leaving plenty of room for both personal awakening and introspection to take off and not miss a mark. On her latest single, “Take Me Away,” the Dumaguete-based singer-songwriter reflects on the importance of being vulnerable and taking risks—something that most of us aren’t willing to become.

Delicately produced and delivered with heart-stopping quietness, “Take Me Away” inhabits wisdom beyond years. There’s nothing messianic about it; no platitudes to feed the ego, and no gatekeeping of moral ascendancy to prove a point. What makes the song truly human is that it’s willing to embrace every bit of the experience—be it good or bad, and that there’s beauty in wanting to wake up your inner child and be open to possibilities, no matter where it takes you.

According to Meagan Trees, the song was based on a late night adventure with a friend. “We went to the beach at 3am and I thought that was such a cool, wholesome, happy experience which then led me to write ‘Take Me Away’ the next day,” the folk songstress shares.

In terms of the production details, “Take Me Away” doesn’t feel like an intuitive concept or a meticulous foray into sound design. “This song was pretty much free flowing,” Meagan Trees points out. “A few good friends, Simon and Jorbas, pitched in their ideas, I explained how I wanted this song to feel, and we came up with something very simple yet euphoric. My brother then added the guitar parts which I think made the song very youthful.”

Its impulsiveness birthed an ethereal folk ballad that’s lovingly spare but filled with emotional resonance, a song that values the ‘journey’ more than the destination itself.   

Meagan Trees’ “Take Me Away” is now available on all streaming and digital platforms worldwide via Lilystars Records.

Image and details provided in a recent press release.

Electro-pop band Dustybuns offers reassuring comfort on new single “Seasons”

Dustybuns, an electronic pop duo formed by Charles Baltazar and Jok Oloquina, has finally released their second single “Seasons”—out today on indie record label, Lilystars Records.

Expanding the eclectic pair’s sonic palette with delicate harmonies, bright keyboard tones, and subdued arrangements, “Seasons” delivers an effortless, almost slick sound pulled from vast music resources that range from indie pop to chillwave, electronic music to ‘80s pop.

Despite its incredible mélange of influences, the song remains confident in its delivery and intent. In fact, “Seasons” stands out as an anthem that offers reassuring comfort and warmth. It packs a punch, while also inspire listeners to stay strong even when the going gets rough. 

“The song is about being there for the people you care about no matter what, and reassuring that you’re never alone and there’s always someone out there ready to lend a hand when you need them,” Charles Baltazar shares.  

To date, Dustybuns is currently busy writing songs for their debut EP to be released soon. “We’re not yet sure if Seasons will be included in an EP, but we have some songs already made that will sit well along with it. We’ll just see when the time comes,” multi-instrumentalist Jok Oloquina says. 

Seasons” is available on digital and streaming platforms worldwide via Lilystars Records.

Kubra Commander debuts first official single “The Now” under Lilystars Records

Kubra Commander joins Lilystars Records’ impressive roster of music acts from the Philippines and beyond.

Prior to signing up with the indie record label, the Cebu-based psychedelic rock outfit has been making waves online since the release of their breakthrough track, “On Your Left,” which made it to CNN’s 8 New Local Releases for your Listening Pleasure and earned a glowing review from indie music website, Flying Lugaw.

Kubra Commander’s “The Now” lyric video

To mark their debut on Lilystars Records, the band has finally released their latest single “The Now”—a brooding, post-punk number about “gaining a new perspective on things through experience, and having an inclination to share the experience with other people in hopes that they can gain something new in return.”  

Propelled by Kubra Commander’s inherent brand of disaffected cool, “The Now” starts off strongly with glistening synths straight from the ‘80s pop playbook, and builds up into an anthemic chorus at a brisk pace. Music-wise, it sounds more indebted to the band’s post punk and new wave influences, as well as the escapist, modern indie rock anthems of music acts such as MGMT and Empire of The Sun.

“I believe the chiming synth riff was what nailed it for me, playing it over the chords and beat gave a danceable feel to the track which I really liked,” vocalist and guitarist Bobbi Olvido shares the details about the music arrangements. “Everything just followed through from that point. It’s the first song where in all the members we’re able to contribute in the recording process, and it was quite easy to have everyone be on the same page production-wise. I also wanted to try to play with the idea of singing all the verses first and having all the choruses after.”

“The Now” will be part of Kubra Commander’s upcoming new album, Rhythm Tourists to be released in 2021. 

Image and details provided by Lilystars Records in a recent press release.

Indie pop trio Parasouls drops debut single “Can We, Can We”

Indie pop trio Parasouls deftly captures the frustration of romantic yearning on their debut single “Can We, Can We”—released today via Lilystars Records.

A brisk but engaging alt-rock number that brings to mind the likes of The Cranberries and Frankie Cosmos, the band’s latest release is a tribute to a beloved sci-fi character from one of the longest running TV series in the world. 

“This is a funny story: Can We, Can We is actually the first song I’ve ever written back when I was seventeen,” guitarist and vocalist Dani Dimaano says. “I wrote about one of my favorite TV shows, Doctor Who. This song, in particular, is an ode to Rose Tyler and The Doctor in the TARDIS.”

The song was originally recorded in acoustic form, and was written way back in high school by Dani and bassist Joshua Gaces. “We tweaked the rhythm a little bit so it would fit theband setting better,” Dani shares. “Also, fun fact: I really wanted to put in a dotted 8 delay somewhere in the song, so I spent so much time trying to learn that just to make sure it makes it to the record.”

The final version of “Can We Can We” is indicative of the band’s combined music influences, which touch on a more playful but deceptively simple arrangement and anthemic pacing. It sets the tone for their future releases, where the music is written and produced with the right mix of inherent rawness, melodic sheen, and pop sensibility. 

Parasouls’ “Can We Can We” is now available on all streaming and digital platforms worldwide.

Image and details provided by Lilystars Records in a recent press release.

Dey Rose debunks conformity on new EP, Panting Heart

Vancouver-based Filipina singer-songwriter Dey Rose maintains a gripping sense of vulnerability on her debut EP, Panting Heart—released on all digital platforms worldwide via Lilystars Records. 

Intricately written and produced to capture a sound of lasting resonance and warmth, the 6-track record blends jazz-infused pop with folk, country, blues, prog rock, ’70s soul, and R&B, while exploring fascinating new directions in terms of arrangements and lyrics. With an eclectic selection of songs grounded in evocative storytelling, the Baguio-born musician presents a snapshot of confessional intimacy in the time of restlessness and paranoia, freeing herself from the conformity of others and social expectations.

The EP’s focus single “Di Mo Lang Alam” is inspired by the stories of new friends Dey Rose met in the Philippines. Its smooth, jazzy runs and suave rhythms swoop and slide effortlessly in the background, while the Filipina-Canadian artist’s mesmerizing vocals take the center stage in a rejuvenating light. It’s easily one of the best songs in the record, a balm of sunshine that conceals its very brooding narrative with a tale of caution and hope. 

Other must-hear gems include the throwback-sounding jam “Puzzle Piece,” the bluesy ballad “Paulit-ulit,” the vocally arresting tune “When I’m With You,” and the title track “Panting Heart.” The EP’s signature sound feels like a hodgepodge of influences that range from Lolita Carbon to Etta James, Amy Winehouse to Lorde, seamlessly rendered to capture a wide range of emotions strengthened by both experience and technique.

Musically diverse and engaging, Panting Heart serves as a testament to Dey Rose’s incredible maturity as an artist of characteristic composure. It delivers moments of earnest beauty and restraint in equal stride, inhabiting a sense of balance for good measure.

Dey Rose’s Panting Heart EP is now available on all digital and streaming platforms worldwide via Lilystars Records.

Image and details provided by Lilystars Records in a recent press release.

The Bernadettes stage a comeback with new song “Worthless Beautiful”

After more than a decade of absence in the local music scene, The Bernadettes return with a new single under Lilystars Records.

Their latest song “Worthless Beautiful” is another fuzzy, garage rock anthem in the similar vein as their breakout 2009 single “Let’s Make Babies,” but this time, the band documents life under the old normal, reminiscing about drinking the night away with like-minded individuals and enjoying freedom in the best way possible. 

Music video for “Worthless Beautiful” by The Bernadettes

Lead vocalist Paolo Angeles shares, “Worthless Beautiful deals with freedom in doing the things you want, the way you want it; no matter how wrong it might feel. The result may be worthless, but there is beauty in its pursuit.”

With the uncertainty of the pandemic affecting the way people lead their lives, “Worthless Beautiful” may come off as a distillation of nostalgia, joy, and helplessness, all rolled into a party that never was. But things are different now, and the sentiments in the song only serve as a figment of a distant memory, a rallying cry in our self-imposed quarantine, a gut-deep wallowing in self-pity.

Taking into account the current social context, The Bernadettes’ latest track functions as both a pre-pandemic recollection and a bittersweet reminder of those years that held promises of eternal youth and fun—snotty punk rock and all.

“Worthless Beautiful” is the first of the four songs that the band has already finished recording with producer Dok Sergio at JNR Studios. According to Paolo, the alternative rock outfit is slated to release a full-length album next year. “The plan is to have the other 3 songs remastered and have them released intermittently,” The Bernadettes’ frontman reveals in a statement. “Of course, we would need to go back to the studio to record more songs. Maybe after the pandemic.”

 “Worthless Beautiful” is now out on all digital platforms worldwide via Lilystars Records.

Image and details provided by Lilystars Records in a recent press release.