Multi-Platinum certified and critically-acclaimed Filipino band Ben&Ben have finally released their highly-anticipated sophomore album, Pebble House, Vol. 1: Kuwaderno via Sony Music Philippines.
OFFICIAL AUDIO TEASERS | Pebble House Vol. 1: Kuwaderno— Ben&Ben (@BenAndBenMusic) August 28, 2021
12 new songs that capture our collective experiences during these volatile times.
It's almost here. Pre-save: https://t.co/s1ljBIXfbA pic.twitter.com/YZgJccD9q7
Expanding their sound with rewarding experiments and thematically bolder songwriting, the 13-track album marks an important chapter in Ben&Ben’s history as it captures the songs, stories, messages, experiences, learnings, and insights that accompanied them through their self-reflecting but fulfilling journey.
“Each song, much like an entry in one's personal journal, encapsulates something uniquely special to represent something in a certain point in time,” the nine-piece collective shares in a statement. “We felt it would be important for our second album to be a work that brings us closer to our listeners and introduces them more to the wide spectrum of what we are capable of and of who we are as people.”
Pebble House, Vol. 1: Kuwaderno surpasses expectations in terms of musicality and production, giving way to an exquisite piece of pop songcraft that feels more like a natural progression from their equally compelling debut album, Limasawa Street rather than a retread of the comfortably familiar. Since working on Kuwaderno, Ben&Ben have been more open to collaborations that venture beyond the confines of their early work.
When asked about the rational for the albyum's title, the band said, "There are a lot of reasons and a lot of levels. At the most basic and surface-level, the street that we live on is Pebble, so parang 'Limasawa St., Pebble…' Eh kung ulitin pa naming yung ‘St.' ang repetitive na, so (instead we settled on) Pebble House. Of course, this was also the time we decided to move in together and we really wanted this series of albums, Volume 1 and Volume 2 to be these albums na looking way down the line, we remember these albums to be those na nagawa naming nung magkakasama kami sa isang bahay. I think the deepest reason why it’s Pebble House is because Keifer always says dati nung nagla-live show kami na each show is we’re building something in every little thing that we do. And these little things are very much like pebbles and it’s like we’re building a house out of it, one pebble at a time na sobrang liliit ng mga piyesa, pero ‘pag pinagsama-sama mo sila makakagawa ka ng bahay.
And yung reason kung bakit naman Kuwaderno is because if you listen to the songs, they’re like a collective journal, so to speak, of our thoughts and our feelings and our memories during these months. And alam mo yung parang journal ng isang high school or college student na parang kung anu-ano ang mga nakasulat, tapos ‘pag binalikan mo later on parang 'Huh? Sinulat ko pala ‘to…' Pero isang kuwaderno lang sinulat naming siyam, kaya magkakaiba talaga mga nakalagay."
On being asked what makes Pebble House different from its predecessor, percussionist Andrew de Pano said: ": I think one of the biggest differences is how we were able to…Well, I think when a group or a person makes their first album, it’s always a best foot forward sort of thing na you want to show your best side, and for this album, we also want to show a great wonderful side but I think this album is more rooted in truth of what we see. Parang mas naging in touch kami or we became a little bit more honest with how we see the world, how we choose to share what we’re experiencing as people who are alive in this particular time, which is very, very weird, difficult, challenging times. Definitely a big difference is puro Tagalog mga kanta. May mga collaborations kami. But the biggest difference is the weight of the themes that we chose to tackle here and the depth with which we chose to tackle said themes and I hope na when our listeners get to hear all of these songs, (we hope na) maano sila...They feel like these songs likewise accompany them sa pinagdadaanan nila na ang dami-dami talaga and we as people can feel so many different things at the same time. So we wanted this album talaga to be that embodiment of how we are as people na we are capable of feeling so much at the same time."
On their second album, they have teamed up with the biggest names in the Philippine music industry on six of the songs, including “Swimming Pool” featuring Chito Miranda of Parokya Ni Edgar, “Pasalubong” feat. Moira Dela Torre, “Lunod” feat. Zild and Juan Karlos, “Sabel” feat. KZ Tandingan, “Kapangyarihan” feat. SB19, and “Sugat” feat. Munimuni.
“We've always wanted to collaborate with these artists, but we were also always a bit too shy to ask,” says lead vocalist and guitarist Paolo Benjamin. “When working on the second album however, our songs and the arrangements gave us confidence to reach out in hopes that these collaborators would likewise believe in our music enough to work with us. Thankfully, they did, and we are immensely grateful for their generosity in sharing their hard work and talent with us.”
"Swimming Pool" sounds exactly like Ben&Ben and Parokya Ni Edgar jamming on a song together, while "Pasalubong" expectedly brings on loads of feels. "Lunod", the women empowerment anthem "Sabel", and "Kapangyarihan" unlocks an angst-ridden social commentary side in doses of wisdom and eloquency of Ben&Ben's best lyricism.
Pre-production for the album began in the latter part of April 2021 when Ben&Ben recorded their first two songs “Upuan” and “Magpahinga.” The former will have a music video featuring He’s Into Her stars Donny Pangilinan and Belle Mariano to be released on August 29, 6pm (Sunday) via Ben&Ben’s official YouTube channel. Directed by Niq Ablao, the visuals take us into a simple yet timeless story about prom, and the jitters that come with finding the courage to ask someone out.
We heard you, Liwanag and Bubblies! We've been keeping this a secret but it's finally happening. Nagsimula sa posts niyo, andito na tayo. The Upuan MV comes out on Sunday, 6PM.#DonBelleandBenFINALLY#UpuanMVonSunday pic.twitter.com/4wUgo0GSft— Ben&Ben (@BenAndBenMusic) August 26, 2021