14 OPM Rock Albums You Can Get On Vinyl

The perfect gift for OPM music fans.

If you’ve ever listened to cassette tapes, CDs or vinyl records back in the day or recently, then you'll agree that it's quite a special experience. There’s nothing quite like settling in to absorb an entire album from start to finish while leafing through the sleeves and inserts, reading the lyrics and names of people being thanked by the artist, and appreciating every little detail on the package.

Despite the popularity of digital music streaming platforms, the resurgence of vinyl in the last decade or so has created a market for old and new pressings of both past and recent album releases by local and international artists. We’ve been forced by this pandemic to try new things and rekindle old passions just to stay afloat, and what better way to nurture an addiction to OPM and support local artists than by buying their records?

Below is a list of OPM rock albums that were released in CD, cassette or even vinyl format previously, and that have recently been re-issued or pressed as brand new records. If you missed these albums when they first came out or you’re just keen on owning physical copies while you still can, then here’s your chance.

1| Scenes From Inside

Barbie Almalbis

(Backspacer Records)

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Previously released in digital format in July, the album includes some of the singer-songwriter’s pre-pandemic work as well as songs written and recorded during the course of the health crisis—hence the album title. The record, which was released in November, includes tracks that were not in the digital release. It’s an experimental record—from the songwriting down to production, with co-collaborators from inside and outside her home all contributing to bring to life the songs in the album despite pandemic restrictions. 

Barbie’s most personal track: “Peace Where We Go.” Sounds familiar: a cover of “Umagang Kay Ganda,” originally popularized by Ray-An Fuentes and Tillie Moreno.

2| Baliktanaw

Ebe Dancel

(Polyeast Records)

This is a must-have for Ebe Dancel fans who have been following him from the time he was still the frontman of the band Sugarfree, playing gigs in places like 70s Bistro and Mayric’s. The album includes timeless favorites, such as “Burnout,” “Telepono,” and “Mariposa” arranged differently and some with the addition of horn and strings sections.

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3| Peryodiko

Peryodiko

(Backspacer Records)

Another Dancel, also musically gifted, is Ebe’s brother, Vin, the former frontman of now-defunct band Twisted Halo and after, of Peryodiko.

Peryodiko launched their self-titled album in 2009. And while it has been over a decade, the tales interwoven into the songs still resonate with the changing times. “Pikit,” “Tayo,” “Huminga,” and “Lihim” are laudable, memorable tracks. Dancel’s inspired songwriting and ace guitar playing by Kakoy Legaspi and rhythm section by Simon Tan and Abe Billano, make the Peryodiko LP an album for keeps.

4| Sentimental

True Faith

(Backspacer Records)

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Originally released in 2018, True Faith’s 10th album offers emotion-laden lyrics set against the band’s smooth, easy, steady signature sound. “Dyaryo’t Kape” is as sentimental as a Filipino ballad can get, while “Uwian Na” uses lighthearted, reminiscent storytelling to talk about falling in love. The album also contains “Ako at is Michael,” True Faith’s Taglish version of “Me and Michael” by American indie rock band MGMT. 

5| The Dawn

The Dawn

(Polyeast Records)

The Dawn’s eponymous debut is one of only two albums that were released before the demise of founding member and guitarist Teddy Diaz. The album is a reminder of the band’s New Wave aesthetic that made their music easily popular and relevant in the ‘80s. The track list includes the hit “Enveloped Ideas” and “Dreams,” both co-written by Diaz. 

6| Halang

The Purplechickens

(Backspacer Records / The Grey Market Records)

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A word of caution: After listening to this album, you will most likely want to listen to it again, track after track. It’s addictive; the ingenious chord patterns, contemplative songwriting, and tightly knit musical arrangements all just blend together into one satisfying aural experience. Alt-rock collective The Purplechickens have proven to us that yes, you can get high on music and on “Dayami.” 

7| Humanidad

Dong Abay Music Organization

(Backspacer Records)

Humanidad is arguably one of, if not the, most important landmarks of Dong Abay’s journey as a recording artist beyond his accomplishments as the frontman of seminal ‘90s rock ban Yano.

The album, which was originally released in CD format in 2017, manifests Abay’s poetic narratives and cynical but witty reflections on life. It contains 14 tracks touching on varied themes, from issues of socio-political relevance to something more universal, such as love, hope, and longing. A handful of the songs were inspired by existing literary pieces.

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“Dasal” was adapted from the satirical writings of Mark Twain; “Vulgares” was adapted from “Vivir,” a Spanish poem; while “Bahaghari” was inspired by poetry by journalist, writer and poet Pete Lacaba.

8| Five On The Floor

Sandwich

(Polyeast Records) 

If you ever found yourself rocking it out at a Sandwich gig sometime in the mid-2000s onwards, then you truly need to have this album. Five On The Floor, the band’s fourth studio album released in 2006, includes crowd favorites “Sugod,” ”Walang Kadala-dala” and “Sunburn.”

9| Ultraelectromagneticpop!

Eraserheads

(Offshore Music)

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If you were one of those who lined up and successfully got a copy of this coveted LP when it was made available to the public in 2019, then you are one lucky fella. The Eraserheads’ debut album, first released in 1993 on CDs and cassettes, is a landmark in OPM history. Who would ever forget—or get tired of—“Pare Ko,” “Ligaya,” “Toyang,” and “Shirley,” all indelible hits that continue to leave a mark in the hearts and minds of generations that followed? The LP is now valued online at roughly up to six times its original selling price. 

Vinyl-only releases

The increasing popularity of vinyl paved the way for album releases exclusively on vinyl, and in no other physical format. 

10| Remuda Triangle

Pedicab

Don’t you miss dancing your feet off and letting go during live Pedicab gigs? Remuda Triangle includes songs that are a bit heavier, more textured than the band’s early releases, such as “Walang Maramdaman” and “Alipin;” as well as infectious tracks “What’s the Algorithm” and “Meet Your Right.” 

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11| Twelve Point One

Slapshock

(Polyeast Records)

Slapshock was originally formed as a nu-metal act back in 1997, and although the band had shifted towards a much heavier sound later on, OG fans have always had a place in their playlists for the band’s earlier anthems, such as “Agent Orange,” “Evil Clown,” “Get Away,” and “Madapaka.” These songs, among others, are part of Slapshock’s legacy. And now that Jamir Garcia’s gone, you may want to get yourself something to remember him by. 

12| The Singles

Bamboo

(Polyeast Records)

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With members such as Bamboo Mañalac on vocals, Nathan Azarcon on bass, Ira Cruz on guitar, and Vic Mercado on drums, Bamboo was nothing less than a superband. And when you have a superband, you can expect a series of monstrous hits: “Noypi,” “Hallelujah,” “Probinsyana,” and “Tatsulok,” to name a few. Sadly, the members went their separate ways a decade ago, so if you weren’t able to indulge in the band’s earlier releases, then this is your chance.

Available for pre-order 

13| Bawat Daan

Ebe Dancel

(Backspacer Records/Star Records)

True-blue Ebe Dancel fans—up to the time he began writing and recording songs as a solo artist—will definitely want to get a copy of this album on vinyl. Ebe’s collaborators for Bawat Daan include Pinay sirens KZ Tandingan, Yeng Constantino, and Regine Velasquez, as well as rapper-songwriter Gloc-9.

14| Kitchie Nadal

Kitchie Nadal

(Backspacer Records)

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In 2004, “Huwag na Huwag Mong Sasabihin” became the national anthem (we’re only half-kidding). Seriously, it was getting airplay in every radio station and you could hear it everywhere you went: your office cubicle, the canteen downstairs, the convenience store across the street, the fastfood joint beside it, and on the jeepney you were riding on the way home. It became a monumental hit and Kitchie Nadal’s self-titled album, then in CD format, was soon awarded seven-time platinum recognition.

Here are some of the other songs you loved back then and you’ll love listening to again, this time on vinyl: “Same Ground,” “Bulong,” “Run” and “Fire.”

 

 

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Jill Tan Radovan
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