Walking Down Memory Lane: Hush Self-Titled EP Review

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The current trend of Y2K has sparked a wave of nostalgia, leading to a resurgence of 90s genres. Both younger and older bands have emerged in mainstream and indie music scenes, reintroducing grunge, 90s hip-hop, and, most notably, shoegaze.

Among all the bands that have emerged, HUSH stands out as a unique and integrative group based in Davao City. Formed in 2009, the members of HUSH came together to create another Davao-based supergroup, united by their love for ZWAN.

Like ZWAN, the members of HUSH hail from renowned bands in the Davao music scene. Vocalist-guitarist Prix Pondoc is from Plastic Butter, vocalist-guitarist Zlaw is from Quasar Project, bassist Jopri is from Gravity404, and drummer Josh is from Long Yellow Bond Papers. Since their formation in 2009, HUSH has seen several lineup changes, with members coming from various Davao bands, including Baloi from Quasar, Knock from Eleven, Jad from Azimuth, and Anne Mendoza.

I got a chance to listen to their first and self-titled EP, and it truly is a walk down the memory lane. According to the group, they were heavily influenced by Hum, Teenage Wrist, Smashing Pumpkins, Sonic Youth, David Pajo, and of course, Zwan. These influences have helped shape their sound, making it both nostalgic and innovative.

“Our musical influences were always rooted in the 90s, and we don’t wanna lose track of it. However, we added new flavors to the songs, which might probably surprise you when you hear a little something from other genres besides the 90s grunge and alternative,” Prix said.

Hush EP cover. Art by Francis Maria Regalado.

The four songs on the Hush EP are indeed reminiscent of their stated influences, but they also bring together elements of alternative, grunge, and even some post-hardcore and emo. While these tracks reflect the definitive sound of Davao music from the early 2000s, they also offer a more elevated and sophisticated vibe.

“25” is an instrumental track that blends raw energy with intricate musicianship, reminiscent of Hum’s ethereal soundscapes. “Baltimore” and “Dissonance” are both alternative rock pieces, but the vocal style pleasantly reminded me of James Iha. The guitars and instruments also echoed the sounds of Smashing Pumpkins, Hum, and Teenage Wrist. However, “Dissonance” has a surprising infusion of emocore and post-hardcore sensibilities. “Nice Try” is another Hum-infused tune, enriched with emo and post-hardcore influences.

This instrumental piece showcases Hush’s ability to seamlessly integrate genres, resulting in a sound that is both familiar and innovative. The band definitely pushes the boundaries of their sound either timeless tunes. Hush is a band to watch, so stay tuned for the release of their EP in August.

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