I want you to get into queer female Filipino via Toronto ensemble Pantayo, who are making some absolutely radical pop with heavy emphasis on working in traditional southern Philippines musical style called Kulintang, similar to that of Indonesian Gamelan. Percussive metal gongs chime along with modern electronic instrumentation, adding a timbre rarely ever heard in most western music at all. One thing similar that I can remember is Danny Brown sampling Gamelan on “Pneumonia”, which to this day stands as one of my favorite and most adventurous sampling decisions I’ve heard.
The one streaming track the group has on their Bandcamp, “Divine”, doesn’t show off their full breadth of kulintang in their sound, but hearing the warm, hanging-drum-esque tones in the background amongst more metallic sounding gongs and traditional electric bass + drums + mellotron combo is a lovely combination. Gamelan has been one of my favorite sounds for a while now, so hearing more similar styles of music from the same region incorporated into more digestible formats is super inspiring to hear. Hopefully there will be more like it in the future. Not just people sampling it – but like Pantayo, actually playing the dang instruments. Their new, self-titled album is out NOW via Telephone Explosion!