Pinoy musician Tony Razon, a jazz music veteran of over two decades, is still in the midst of a long-standing, intense love affair with music. Promising a stirring experience for contemporary jazz fans, Razon and his band, Kiss The Bride, releases the sophomore effort “Subway” – an album inspired by his many travels.
“As the title suggests, it is very much like riding a subway or a train where, every stop offers something different – a different sight, a different smell, a different sound – each stop as unique and as interesting and exciting. That’s what we are aiming for with this album – to take listeners for a musical journey,” said he in a conversation with Bulletin Entertainment recently.
According to him a tighter-sounding album that its precursor, “Stories,” Razon notes that, “The songs are better arranged and better played… we are more confident here as well.”
Band guitarist Joey Puyat – yes, the same Joey Puyat of the legendary groups Mother Earth and Blue Rats – agrees.
“With ‘Stories’ you might say that we were just kind of testing the waters, finding our way through the studio,” he said. “With ‘Subway,’ it’s like we already know where to go and how to get there.”
Not that Kiss The Bride veered away from the contemporary jazz leanings of “Stories.”
A quick listen to “Subway” reveals much of the same, albeit with more depth – with each song seemingly more stylistic, each movement hinting to a cornucopia of moods; in fact, some of the tracks call to mind the works of several jazz greats.
Puyat could have easily lorded over the album with his virtuoso guitar playing but he didn’t.
“I just speak through Ton’s music. The focal point of the album is his music, his compositions. I just add color but it is his canvas,” he said.
For that, Razon is thankful.
“For a musician, it’s always a welcome thing to have people around you who support your music, your vision,” He said. “That’s why I’m so happy to be surrounded by people like Otep (Concepcion, drums), Kingsley (delos Santos, bass) of course, Joey and Cecile (Rodgers, second keyboards) whose heartfelt contribution always help make my music soar. They just let me go wild, I feel so lucky. What more can I ask?”
Unbeknownst to some, Puyat and Razon are cousins. That said, even though they have known each other and for so long, Kiss The Bride is their first-ever musical collaboration.
“It’s just the right timing I guess,” said Puyat. “Of course, we used to jam back in the day but in terms of actually doing a project together, it just never happened. I had my thing, he had his thing and we just didn’t have the proper material back then.”
Indeed, it was only after hearing some of Razon’s original compositions that Puyat’s ear finally perked up to the possibility.
“I used to hear Ton play covers but never his originals…when I finally heard his original work, I was like, ‘Why are you playing covers?’ I was really impressed. It moved me. That’s when I said let’s do this,” Puyat shared.
Razon explained that Kiss The Bride is composed of guys that “came from different bands, different musical backgrounds…but all of us have this idea of wanting to play original music and now we are doing it so, it’s like finally being able to marry our dream: music, original music.”
He added, “When we play (music), it’s like when the priest says, ‘You may kiss the bride…’ That’s how we got the band name.”
Clearly, this is a marriage made in (musical) heaven, and they’ve only just begun.