Why the Eraserheads Broke Up, According to Their Producer

The internet is again talking about the Erasherheads after ex-frontman Ely Buendia told the "Wake Up with Jim and Saab" podcast that their hit "Minsan" was more about his dorm friends and not about the band as many fans think.

It's a candid confession that broke hearts, but which Buendia said was the truth. He also reminded fans that in the end, it's all about the music and that the E-Heads gave that to Pinoy Rock.

Longtime producer Robin Rivera gave a glimpse into the dynamic of the Philippines' own fab four and each one's breaking points, not just Buendia's.

There were "more tensions" than just the supposed conflict between Buendia and Raymund Marsigan, and the group's eventual split is something that its members had realized by themselves, he said.

In a Myx documentary "Gusto Mo Bang Sumama?" released on YouTube in 2020, Rivera, a University of the Philippines professor who produced many of Eraserheads' albums, said each one of the band's members had their "flashpoints" which led them to their breakup.

"There was a time Marcus [Adoro] didn't come to the studio, he just stayed away. Raymund has his flashpoint. There was a time when he just wanted to give up. He was pretty burned out. Ely had his flashpoint much earlier in which he wanted to just have nothing to do with it," he said.

"All of them had at least one flashpoint in the life of the band. It just so happened that Ely was the first one to make it stick. He said goodbye and it was goodbye," he added.


The popular 90s band split in 2002. Band member Buddy Zabala, in the documentary, remembered vividly how Buendia broke to them the news of his intention to leave the group.

"It's time to graduate, sabi ni Ely. Okay, so ganun, why force the issue? I tried talking to all of them to try to work it out," Zabala said.

Marasigan said he received a call from Zabala informing him that Buendia had "called it quits."

Buendia, in the documentary, pointed to the creative differences between the band and the people they worked with as one of the "main underlying causes" of the breakup.

"It was so hard to make creative decisions when you have to answer to a lot of expectations. Yung creative people started out wanting to be in control of the art. It was not a very good place to be in," he said.

"Sabihin na nating there were disagreements, there were fights, there were financial troubles, pero the bottomline is that ayaw mo nang ma-contain so you just want to be free," he added.

Buendia admitted, however, that his intention to leave the band wasn't a decision he made overnight. Although he did not go into details, he said there was one incident that led to another which made him decide to quit the band.

"Siyempre pinag-iisipan mo talaga when or how you're gonna do it. You could not leave that band in amicable terms. You can't sit down and say okay quits na tayo," he said.

"The moment na convinced ka na sa sarili mo, I just decided, it was spontaneous. Spontaneous pero pinag-isipan. The decision to text them was spontaneous," he added.

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Flashforward to 2021, Buendia told Eraserheads fans not to dwell too much on the reason for their breakup, but on the music the band had created all those years.

"The music is all that matters. Have you forgotten about that, and who wrote most of it?" he said.

This story originally appeared on Reportr.world. Minor edits have been made by Esquiremag.ph editors.

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