Ivy Violan

Hanggang Ngayon

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    3
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In 1998, veteran Philippine female singer Ivy Violan released Hanggang Ngayon ("Up to Now"). The music is mostly quiet and soft, and the material straddles middle of the road easy listening. Nine of the ten songs are slow, which doesn't make for much diversity. Compounding the problem is Violan's voice, which is weak and unsatisfying here. It sounds thin, off-key, and almost awful on such songs as "One Day in Your Life," "Panalangin" ("Prayer"), and "Ikaw Ang Aking Daigdig" ("You're My World").

She sings in a high register that sounds unnatural for her, and sounds better in the middle register, as heard on the torch song "Yesterday I Heard the Rain"; still, she doesn't sound that good. She sounds fine on the opening verses to "Muli" ("Again"), but awful on the chorus. She performs a passable torch-styled rendition of the Beatles' "If I Fell" which could be better. The one upbeat song is a rendition of "Baby I Need Your Lovin'," made famous in the '60s by Johnny Rivers. Once again, Violan's performance lacks charisma, and the song is a disappointment. It does contain an engaging rap by fellow Viva label artist, rapper Gloc-9, which livens up the proceedings. Regardless, the album is oddly out of balance, and one would expect more from Violan. The musicianship is fine, and some arrangements are interesting, but nothing can save the album.

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