In the wake of the devastation of Typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan), Filipino rock music icon Rico Blanco dedicated his entire performance at the annual Sundown Festival held at the Marina Promenade in Singapore (as well as 100% of his talent fee) to his native Leyte. Clad in ati-atihan-inspired armor and face paint, Blanco unleashed his fierce “Fiesto Bandido” persona and dished out hits from his solo second album as well as well-loved Rivermaya songs.
Although the tracks were mostly in Filipino, Blanco’s songs and sentiments were warmly received by Filipinos who came to watch and the mostly Singaporean crowd present. The set reached an emotional high when he performed a timely medley of uplifting Rivermaya anthems “Posible,” “Liwanag sa Dilim (Kaya mo ‘to),” “Hinahanap-hanap Kita,” and “Awit ng Kabataan."
He also sang a meaningful intro from “Bangon,” then capped off his set with the sweet serenade “Your Universe” from the 2008 solo album of the same name.
Ten Asian sensations from all over Southeast Asia also performed a rich and diverse set list that cuts across musical genres, from glam metal and alternative/punk rock to bubblegum pop as well as bittersweet balladry. Filipino alternative band RockSteddy kicked off the festival .