The fall and rise of Philippine music

AT THE University of the Philippines Fair early this year, April Hernandez had the lucky role of opening for the popular band IV of Spades. Under the stage name “TheSunManager,” she has just around 3,000 monthly listeners on Spotify while IV of Spades has a following of over a million.

Klandestine

SO GET this -- Ron Stallworth becomes the first black police officer in a large largely white town (the “Jackie Robinson of the Colorado Springs police force” as his superior puts it). He is consigned to the records room, requests a transfer to undercover; sees a recruitment ad for the KKK, dials the number, gets an unexpected voice at the other end, improvises a racist rant, is invited to join the group.

Outstanding addition to survival horror games

By Anthony L. Cuaycong NIPPON Ichi Software (NIS) has been known to push the envelope in terms of offerings for popular genres, so it’s no...

A Taste of Creativity

What in the world is this nebulous construct called creativity, anyway? The mere mention of the buzzword can make even the most erudite tongue-tied. Vastly cited Italian behavioural scientist Paolo Legrenzi describes creativity as a justification of artistry. In his 2013 publication, Creativity and Innovation, he cites architect Vittorio Gregotti: “Every work of architecture seems to be justified by the term creativity, which by now is used to define every aesthetic act (diffused aesthetics has overwhelmed us) with which designers, advertisers, stylists, architects and many other professions justify their ‘artistry.’”

Two women

LAST October my mother died.

A superb addition to the franchise

WHEN noted video game producer Keiji Inafune left Capcom at the turn of the decade, not a few quarters figured the Mega Man franchise, to whose success he contributed much, would grind to a virtual halt. And, for a while, those from the outside looking in were right; longtime developers in the company understood that the responsibility of taking on a successful intellectual property required following in giant footsteps. Only until Koji Oda of Resident Evil fame decided to do so last year did longtime followers entertain hope for a revival of the series.

Spreading unity through music

A HARMONIOUS string instrumental of “Habanera” from George Bizet’s opera, Carmen filled the living room of the Gaston Mansion in Silay City, Negros Occidental — considered as “the seat of arts and culture in Western Visayas.”

A good man with a gun

SAY THE name “Jacques Tourneur” and the first word come to mind for most folks is “horror” (the second is possibly “cat”). Tourneur had been directing since 1931, mainly shorts, finally made a splash early ’40s working for producer Val Lewton in Cat People (low budget, eerily beautiful) and I Walked With a Zombie (despite the pulpy title, my favorite adaptation of Jane Eyre). Say “Tourneur” and the word “westerns” rarely pops up -- but some of his westerns do in fact represent his finest work.

An easy recommend for all and sundry

MOST GAMERS are familiar with the modern dungeon crawler, with the likes of Diablo III, Torchlight II, and Path of Exile proving to be critical and commercial successes. That’s not to say that every release in the category follows the same formula; such notables as Class of Heroes, The Dark Spire, and The Lost Child are superb takes on turn-based exploration and fighting in elaborate milieus. They’re not for everyone, though; while compelling, they generally rely on the slow burn of an interesting story to keep players hooked, and their often-complicated battle systems can be a doozy to navigate through, especially for newcomers to the genre.

An unforgettable city

“STOP MASS TOURISM.” The bright red letters were stencilled on a tourist map sign near the Roman Wall ruins in Barcelona’s Ciutat Vella (Old Town).

SPOTLIGHT