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Experience the Thomasian nostalgia in UST Minecraft

Whether you’re a freshman or a senior Thomasian, we all long for the day that we get to experience campus life once again. For now, here are some of the ways you can relive that nostalgia through the UST Minecraft server. 



For the past six months, the coronavirus pandemic has distanced us from our friends, classmates, and most of all, from our dearest campus. From taking care of plants to going viral on TikTok, we’ve all tried many ways to cope with our current situation. But for some people, staying indoors helped them to harness their creativity.

What started out as a simple suggestion on Twitter turned into a full-scale project composed of more than 80 Thomasian creators and builders headed by sophomore Charles Nobleza. Every building, facility, and landmark found inside the university was meticulously built by the team from scratch. After months of hard work, the UST Minecraft server was finally unveiled to cap off the Freshmen Week 2020. 

Whether you’re a freshman or a senior Thomasian, we all long for the day that we get to experience campus life once again. For now, here are some of the ways you can relive that nostalgia through the UST Minecraft server. 

1. Commuting!

Julius Estolano/TomasinoWeb

It’s no strange fact that commuting to campus is the most stressful part of the day as a consequence of living in the metro. But at the same time, we can all admit that being in quarantine made us miss that daily adrenaline rush. If you’re one of those people, then you’re in for a treat. 

UST Minecraft not only features a digital replica of the campus itself, but also the numerous ways you can get there. After entering the server, you will have to take an LRT to Legarda where a jeepney will be waiting to take you to the UST campus. Rather than hours, the travel time will only take a few minutes. And don’t worry about the payment for the fares as they are included in the list of items you will have upon entering the server. 

2. No ID, no entry.

Julius Estolano/TomasinoWeb

Entering the virtual campus is much like the experience in real life. Although we’re used to entering campus through the different gates surrounding it, the server only admits students through Gate 10 in front of the Arch of the Centuries, where you will be greeted by the UST Yellow Jackets. Before setting foot inside campus, the server will require you to wear your ID along with your college or faculty uniform. In true campus culture, you will be required to tap your ID before entering any building. Also, changing your character’s skin while inside the campus will temporarily not allow you to move from your spot. 

3. Don’t be a stranger. Say hi!

Arden Esmile/TomasinoWeb

Since the sandbox video game itself was built to be interactive, the UST Minecraft server allows you to chat with other Thomasians on campus. Your college or faculty appears alongside your username in the chat box.  

4. Step inside the buildings.

Julius Estolano/TomasinoWeb

The detailed structures in the server are more than just an eye candy, you can actually enter and take yourself on a tour inside them. From the staircases to the tile design, the UST Minecraft team got all the interior and exterior details to a tee. However, there are some areas which are off-limits to students exploring the server. 

While moving from one building to another, take some time to appreciate some of the popular areas in UST like the Quadricentennial Park, which is complete with a fountain that has water coming out of it, and Lover’s Lane. Who knows? You might also come across some of the UST’s adorable cats. 

5. The UST Museum but with a twist!

Julius Estolano/TomasinoWeb

Being the oldest Catholic university in Asia, UST also houses the oldest museum in the Philippines. The UST Museum located in the Main Building displays many taxidermied animal species, historical paintings, artifacts, and religious statues. 

Louise Lampa/TomasinoWeb

Since most of the museum items are quite small, it would be almost impossible to recreate every single piece. Instead, pictures of the buildings in the UST Minecraft server were created in its place. It is also worth mentioning that a room in the museum was dedicated for the statues of the server’s creators and builders. 

BONUS: Paying homage to UST’S roots.

Louise Lampa/TomasinoWeb

Before finding a permanent home in España, UST was originally located in Intramuros, Manila. In fact, it is where the half of the Arch of the Centuries facing the main building was first erected. 

While venturing inside the UST Minecraft server, you might occasionally find yourself teleported to another world which seemingly resembles the present-day Intramuros. This is almost correct as it is, in fact, a replica of the original UST campus built in in the walled city during the 1600s. The surroundings are complete with all the details found in sketches and pictures of the original campus. There’s even a traditional kalesa to complete your historical experience.  

Arden Esmile/TomasinoWeb

The accuracy, detail, and scale of the project speaks volumes for the effort and dedication that was poured in by the creators and moderators to make a simple idea possible. It is not only an answer to the concerns of new Thomasians who wish to familiarize themselves with the campus, but also a gift to all those who simply want to reminisce about the experience of being on campus. Albeit virtually, it’s one of the ways we can interact and feel closer as a community especially in these times. 

You can check out all the details on how to access the server here. In any case that you might encounter problems while exploring the campus, don’t hesitate to ask for help from the server administrators and moderators.



April 2021: Inadequate progress brings us back to last year

The way the pandemic is being handled seems unchanged, resulting in a feeling where it seems like we are reliving the nightmarish 2020 all over again.



Photo by Adam Nieścioruk on Unsplash

The way the pandemic is being handled seems unchanged, resulting in a feeling where it seems like we are reliving the nightmarish 2020 all over again. Our progress in getting over the pandemic seems stagnant compared to our neighboring countries. We can always try and hope for the best, but with some of the events that transpired this month, our once glimmering hope is gradually losing its luster.

Here is a rundown of the major events that occurred on April 2021. 

1. NCR Plus goes through ECQ again

Photo by Wander Fleur on Unsplash

On March 29, NCR and some of the surrounding provinces, coined as the ‘NCR Plus,’ were put under ECQ until April 4, following the advice of the IATF. On April 3, however, it was announced that the quarantine for NCR Plus was to be extended until April 11. If we recall, it was also April of last year when a memorandum was released, stating that ECQ was extended up until April 30, 2020. 

Community quarantines like these surely severs the income of some Filipino households and bruises the economy. What does this really have to say about our country’s progress in trying to manage this pandemic if a year has already passed and we are doing the same things all over again?

2. Netizens weigh in on lugaw dispute

Photo by Mae Mu on Unsplash

Is lugaw essential? The PNP clarified last April 1 that food products, with the inclusion of lugaw are considered essential, thus, not warranting a need for reprimanding when delivered despite the ECQ status of a place. This issue stemmed from a viral video where a food courier personnel was reprimanded by authorities saying that he is not allowed to deliver lugaw in that village due to the imposed ECQ. We are one year into this pandemic, and yet, minute regulations like these aren’t still clear. The Grab driver reprimanded in the video is also seeking help because he still gets threats from barangay officials in Bulacan.

3. VP Robredo launches mobile COVID-19 testing facility

Photo courtesy of the Office of the Vice President’s official Facebook page

Vice President Leni Robredo’s COVID testing facility on wheels called ‘Swab Cab’ was initially launched last March 29. This program aims to test a target community in places considered as COVID hotspots, or where incidences of transmission are very high. It started off stationing around the streets of Malabon and, this April, it was brought to Cavite. The Office of the Vice President aims to expand their reach as well, hoping to bring the Swab Cab to other areas under the NCR Plus bubble to be able to test more citizens. An initiative like this from the vice president also made #LetLeniLead trend this month. 

4. Attack on Titan releases its final chapter

'Attack on Titan' Final Season New Teaser Image | HYPEBEAST

Screengrab from ぽにきゃん-Anime PONY CANYON’s TVアニメ「進撃の巨人」The Final Season PV video

The events of the first part of Attack on Titan’s final season kept us at the edge of our seats. As both Isayama and MAPPA leave us every week both in tears and in awe, the story finally comes to its final chapter. For manga readers, Chapter 139 was already released last April 9 and has seen how the story ends. For those who solely watch the anime, maybe after months of patiently waiting, all our questions will be answered and we can only hope for the best for the fate of our favorite characters, whose lives we have avidly followed in the last eight years. 

5. Ivermectin conflict

Photo by Adam Nieścioruk on Unsplash

The information that Ivermectin, an anthelmintic drug for veterinary use, was the cure for COVID-19 (despite not having indications for it) spread like wildfire this month. The Food and Drug Administration of the Philippines also released a statement discouraging masses to self medicate with Ivermectin due to lack of scientific evidence proving its efficacy against COVID-19. Drugs naturally intended for animals pose severe adverse effects to humans and spreading information like these could only make things worse.

6. #ABSCBNTraydor trends amidst partnership announcement with Chinese media

(Photo by Jire Carreon/Rappler)

The ABS CBN News Channel announced that they will be airing Chinese News TV on cable television to regularly report Philippine headlines in Mandarin. They claim that this aims to promote the enrichment of the Filipino-Chinese culture. This announcement then garnered backlash from masses, claiming #ABSCBNTutaNgChina. Eventually, ANC cancelled their partnership with Chinese News TV. Additionally, days before the first launch of CNTV on air, armed Chinese vessels chased out ABS-CBN news crew out of Ayungin Shoal. 

7. Secretary Nograles insists the government is listening

Photo courtesy of Manila Bulletin

Vice President Robredo called out the government for failing to recognize their shortcomings when it comes to coming up with an effective COVID response plan. In response, Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles claimed that it is not fair for people to say that the government does not take the citizens’ grievances when coming up with a plan in trying to address the pandemic. He stated, “Nakikinig naman kami. Nakikinig naman ang gobyerno at lahat naman ng dapat at kailangang gawin ay tinutugunan naman namin at binibigyan naman natin ng pansin.” Scrolling through the bird app, the people also shared their sentiments about this statement. 

8. Filipinos initiate community pantries

(Photo by Gerald Carreon/Rappler)

Magbigay ayon sa kakayahan, kumuha ayon sa pangangailangan. This tagline has been posted up on community pantries all over the country. What started off as a small cart along Maginhawa has ignited a ripple effect that continues to help countless Filipinos. The initiative stemmed from the growing need of some Filipinos for some food and basic necessities because the pandemic certainly took a toll on their source of livelihood. With this, a collective effort somehow alleviates the daily struggles of those who need assistance in trying to get by — those who have an extra hand to give now have a medium to extend their help and compassion. 

Patricia Non, the spearhead of the community pantry in Maginhawa and inspired other districts beyond Metro Manila to set up a pantry of their own, was red-tagged. After her initiative became viral, armed police men showed up to her house and started interrogating her, questioning which organizations are she a part of. A post on the Quezon City Police Department’s Facebook page also claimed that these pantries were a recruitment hub to enlist people to join the New People’s Army. After a series of red-tagging, some community pantries also suspended their charity work, in fear of being red-tagged, and with the controversial Anti-Terror Law, the fear only grew deeper.

9. Online registration for National ID now open

Photo courtesy of Tempo

In August of 2018, Republic Act No. 11055 was signed into law to have a unified identification system for Filipino residents to provide valid proof of identity. On April 30, 2021, it was announced that Filipinos can now get registered online to acquire the National ID, in just three steps. The Philippine Statistics Authority announced on the first day of online registration that their system has encountered technical difficulties. This incident raised concerns of privacy and inconvenience to those who tried registering for this on its pilot day.

Lack of progress in terms of addressing the problems at hand makes us feel like we’re reliving the same year over and over again. As months pass by, our optimism may start to waver. We, too, are not a fan of toxic positivity and we all yearn for concrete plans and change. Patricia Santos


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How ‘Fearless (Taylor’s Version)’ celebrates self-growth and freedom

Listening to these songs as adults hits differently not only because we’ve loved and lost, but also because it serves as an anthem of freedom and a celebration of women in music.



Photo grabbed from Taylor Swift's official Twitter account

I was only 7 when Fearless came out in 2008. But it was only about 2 years later when I came to know about Taylor Swift’s existence. Back then, YouTube was a luxury and Spotify was still nonexistent. I remember almost being late to school because I waited for her music videos to come out on MYX’s Daily Countdown. Our version of streaming was paying P30 to patiently watch her music videos in computer shops, and not to mention the laborious process of buying her physical CD, importing it to our computer, and then to our phones and iPods. Thanks to Taylor, we get to relive that nostalgia today and open our eyes to so much more. 

Taylor’s sophomore album Fearless (2008) debuted at number one on Billboard Hot 200, with all her five singles peaking at number one on the Billboard Hot Country Songs. It won her Best Country Album and her first Album of the Year at the Grammys in 2009, making her one of the youngest artists to receive such accolades. Needless to say, it was the record that catapulted her to become the country and pop icon she is today. 

Contrary to the magic and stardust that Fearless embodied, events weren’t so enchanting after Taylor’s departure from her former label and the sale of her master recordings to Scooter Braun, who later sold it to an investment fund. Two years later, quoting one of her songs in reputation, she “got smarter, got harder with the nick of time” and pulled one of the greatest UNO reverse cards in music history. On April 9, Taylor came back stronger than a 90s trend with the release of the first of six albums she plans to rerecord but, this time, with full ownership of her masters and publishing rights. 

Fearless (Taylor’s Version) revisits the nostalgia of experiencing love and heartbreak for the first time. The 2-hour walk down memory lane showcased rerecordings of the same 19 songs from the original, the 2010 single ‘Today was a Fairytale,’ and six unreleased songs from the vault, which admittedly had us all reminiscing memories of our younger days and 2008 Joe Jonas. In this review, we dive into the similarities and differences between the two versions, break down Taylor’s lyricism in the new songs, and discuss what lies ahead for the young artist.  

The same record 13 years later: What changed and what stayed

Decoding the meanings to Taylor’s songs is one thing, but dissecting the differences between the two versions is another. Musically, the 2021 version does not greatly differ from the original recordings. It features the same key and tempos, the same instruments, the same musicians, and the same Taylor, but now with a richer, deeper, and more mature sound. However, in terms of sound quality, the rerecordings are undoubtedly crisper and cleaner than the originals, making the instrumentals more prominent as opposed to the 2008 version where they sounded a bit muffled. The banjo lines and fiddle riffs in ‘Fearless (Taylor’s Version)’ and ‘Love Story (Taylor’s Version)’ sound so crisp and clear that even a casual listener would easily notice and find very satisfying. 

Taylor in the Fearless era had the country twang to her songs, which somehow got lost in the pop mix following the birth of the 1989 era. As someone who religiously listens to Speak Now, I was manifesting hard for a comeback. Lo and behold, Fearless (Taylor’s Version) pays homage to her country roots and reincarnates her country twang from the depths of Pennsylvania. It’s subtle and not as strong and prominent as the one she had on her first few albums perhaps due to her more pop-inclined vocal tone and range, but it’s there. On the bright side, her enunciation was evidently better in the current version. The way she sings with clarity makes us realize how many lyrics we had been singing wrong all this time. 

During the production for this rerelease, Taylor revealed that she went “line by line” on every track and improved upon some parts. True enough, there are subtle differences on how she sings the rerecordings, but these neither makes Taylor’s version less better nor takes away the character of the songs. Rather, it shows how her vocal technique has improved throughout the years. The belting in ‘White Horse (Taylor’s Version)’ and ‘Tell Me Why (Taylor’s Version)’ showcases her wider vocal range. The sharp breath that every Swiftie sang like a lyric in the ‘You Belong With Me’ bridge is also nowhere to be found, which only shows how much her breath control has improved. The changes in the ad libs also gives a new personality to her songs like how the laugh in ‘Hey Stephen (Taylor’s Version)’ brings in a more mature Taylor and how the silence that comes after she softly sings “Here’s to silence” in ‘Forever & Always (Piano Version) (Taylor’s Version)’ delivers a more painful stab in the heart. 

A modern retelling and reimagining of letters from the past 

The six songs off her vault stay true to the motif of Fearless by encapsulating the growing pains of young love and giving listeners an introspect on 18-year-old Taylor. Though originally written 13 years ago, most of the tracks are musically reminiscent of her recent releases. The muted ballads ‘You All Over Me’ and ‘When We Were Happy’ did not tread far from the alternative, folk-pop core of folklore and evermore, while ‘Don’t You’ and ‘That’s When’ felt like the long-lost parents of ‘Clean’ in 1989. After all, Jack Antonoff and Aaron Dessner, who each had a hand in the production of these albums, were also called by Taylor to work on the vault tracks.

The never-before-released catalogue also features country artists Maren Morris, who she once shared the stage with on her reputation tour, and Keith Urban, who she opened for when she was just starting out in the music industry. Harmonies from Maren and Keith laced with Taylor’s deep and rich tone enhance the emotional delivery and impact of the songs, which allows each word to truly resonate with listeners. 

Besides nostalgic melodies, it’s not surprising that each track had lyrical and thematic parallels to many of her songs, while still having their own character. Like Marvel, Taylor has her own emotionally and mentally stimulating universe built from her discography. 

In the ‘You All Over Me’ chorus, Taylor and Maren sing, “I lived, and I learned, had you, got burned / Held out, and held on / God knows, too long, and wasted time.” These words seem like a response to her 2006 hit ‘Picture to Burn’ that touched on a painful breakup: “Watch me strike a match on all my wasted time / As far as I’m concerned, you’re just another picture to burn. 

This is not the first time Taylor has used fire as a metaphor for relationships as heard in many of the songs like ‘Red,’ ‘Dress,’ and ‘ivy.’ The vault track ends with, “But no amount of freedom gets you clean / I’ve still got you all over me,” which is later echoed in ‘Clean’ from 1989: “You’re still all over me like a wine-stained dress I can’t wear anymore.” 

The fan-favorite ‘Mr. Perfectly Fine’ that embodies the classic Taylor Swift breakup anthem we all missed singing along to also has its fair share of lyrical similarities. In one of the 28 repetitions of “mister” in the track, Taylor sings, “Hello Mr. Casually Cruel.” Every Swift disciple would be quick to point out how it alludes to the climactic bridge of ‘All Too Well’ in Red: “You call me up again just to break me like a promise / So casually cruel in the name of being honest.” It is also interesting how the line, “Mr. Looked me in the eye and told me you would never go away,” is lyrically related to excerpts from ‘Forever and Always’ (“You looked me in the eye and told me you love me”) and ‘Last Kiss’ (“You told me you loved me / So why did you go away”). Well, it goes without saying that hearing these gut-wrenching words triggers our fight-or-flight response towards 2008 Joe Jonas.

On ‘We Were Happy,’ Taylor reminisces on memories of a seemingly perfect relationship that sadly ended. The imagery used in “We used to watch the sun go down on the boats in the water” is later mirrored in ‘Mine’ from Speak Now: “Do you remember all the city lights on the water?” Despite this similarity, it’s worth noting how both songs are a contrast of each other. ‘We Were Happy’ talks about a future that two people dreamed of having, while ‘Mine’ recounts memories of two lovers living out their happy ending.  

The deep dive into the Fearless rabbit hole continues with Taylor and Keith contemplating on the what ifs of a past relationship in ‘That’s When.’ This seems to have been the precursor to other duets in her succeeding albums like ‘The Last Time (ft. Gary Lightbody)’ in Red and ‘exile (ft. Bon Iver)’ in folklore, which followed the same structure of back-and-forth conversations between two lovers going through the aftermath of a breakup.  

‘Don’t You’ describes the early stages of acceptance. Taylor’s storytelling in this track is similar to ‘You’re Not Sorry,’ which talks about rejecting the other party’s desire to get back together. The moral of self-healing and moving on in ‘Don’t You’ is thematically carried in ‘Clean’ from 1989, giving us the therapy we all need after a painful breakup. To make it even more devastating, this track would perfectly fit the summer love affair narrative in folklore either told from Augustine’s perspective after James chose Betty over her or from Betty’s perspective after finding out about James’ affair. 

All the tears are finally swept away with ‘Bye Bye Baby’ that talks about bidding goodbye and fading into the memory of a great love. Taylor describes the breakup as how “It wasn’t just like a movie / The rain didn’t soak through my clothes, down to my skin,” which thematically relates to ‘If This Was a Movie’ that contrastingly talks about a lost love coming back. Shen then sings about getting “lost in the gray” and trying to “grab at the fray” encapsulates the heartbreaking emotions of holding onto pieces of a crumbling relationship or one that was bound to end. The line “And all the pages are just slipping through my hands” foreshadows the book and page theme later described in ‘Story of Us’ in her next album, Speak Now. 

The themes of love and heartbreak have become mainstream in pop culture. But what sets Taylor apart is her innate brilliance as a writer and artist to capture a range of emotions and refine it into simple words that resonate with many people yet still hold so much meaning and depth. On top of that, the parallelism of her past and present writing demonstrates how her understanding of the human experience of love has evolved and matured. 

Are we out of the woods yet?

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When Taylor first announced the release of Fearless (Taylor’s Version), everyone was looking forward to the six new tracks. From her fans’ point of view, it was heaven on earth. But from a business standpoint, this was a lucrative decision as additional songs on the rerecorded version would draw more listeners and licensing deals to her songs and, as a result, further devalue the earning potential of her old recordings. 

Legally, Taylor can rerecord 4 (Taylor Swift, Fearless, Speak Now, 1989) out of the 5 remaining albums she released under Big Machine Labels (Sadly, reputation has to wait until 2022). Nothing has been confirmed yet but following her cryptic clues on Instagram and the snippet of a ‘Wildest Dreams’ rerecorded version in a movie trailer, fans speculate that 1989 would be the next to roll out. If she decides to do the same strategy as she did with Fearless, then it’s checkmate on the business moguls that bought her old masters. 

More than that, Fearless (Taylor’s Version) is her first step to regaining creative control and full ownership of her life’s work and legacy that brought her to where she is today. It’s no strange fact that Taylor has been caught in many celebrity feuds throughout her career, but this battle is different. It is monumental for the music industry as it may lead to changes towards artists’ rights. As she continues to take bold steps to take back what is rightfully hers, Taylor serves as a lesson and an advocate for aspiring artists across all industries waiting to sign their first contract. 

13 years ago, these tracks left us feeling like an emotional train wreck (and it still does today). It’s a memoir of our youth and a reimagining of our past because fan or not, her songs have impacted our lives in some way. But Fearless (Taylor’s Version) is more than just nostalgia. Listening to these songs as adults hits differently not only because we’ve loved and lost, but also because it serves as an anthem of freedom and a celebration of women in music. So the next time you hear that “hallelujah” in ‘Change (Taylor’s Version),’ allow yourself to feel empowered and free just as Taylor is now. 


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Thomasian musicians to add to your playlist

With all the new takes on OPM, let’s not forget about our fellow Thomasians who are persevering to let their craft be known in the mainstream media. Support local, support Thomasian artists.



The rise of Spotify, Apple Music, SoundCloud, and other music-streaming platforms paved the way for more artists to share their craft with a broader audience. It is now easier to promote your material through social media, while people can seamlessly listen to your music through different audio platforms on-demand without splurging too much cash. A basic subscription plan lets anyone stream all the music they want and play your songs on repeat. With this boom in the music industry through technological advancements, artists are inspired, now more than ever, to produce more music and give sick beats to avid listeners.

Here is a shortlist of Thomasian musicians you can stream on your music platforms.

1. Al James

(Photo courtesy of Jilson Tiu)

Before he was front and center in most gigs and before his music was blasted through the speakers of bars, Alvin James Manlutac, famously known as Al James, also sat in the rooms of Beato as a student under the College of Fine Arts and Design. In launching his first hit, he also doubted himself because he knew his style did not follow hip-hop norms. But fast-forward to today, his crafts are among the most famous songs played in the nightlife scene, as well as in casual get-togethers with your friends.

Manlutac permeated the fine line between underground and mainstream when he released his song ‘Pahinga,’ gaining more than 7.3 million views since its release three years ago.

Screengrab from Presko Life PH

2. Migo Señires

(Photo from DBTK)

Like Al James, Migo Señires also spent his college days in Beato, studying Advertising Arts in the College of Fine Arts and Design. They are both a part of the Baryo Berde crew, a multi-talent collective that fixates on culture and art. 

Señires released his song, Kara,which garnered more than 141,000 views since it was posted on his channel. He claims that he wrote it for the younger people who forgot their roots and the older ones who get frustrated when they can’t keep up with modern times. 

3. Schumi

(Screengrab from YouTube/Schumi)

When he is not walking around the halls of Ruaño, he may be singing center stage. Albert Guallar, famously known as Schumi, has been catching ears in the local hip-hop scene. He first started producing music and uploading it to SoundCloud, which then garnered the attention of people who had an interest in hip-hop. In an interview with TomasinoWeb, he said that his Schumi persona — writing music and such, is his gateway to express his emotions. It was an effective venue to vent out feelings of heartbreak and sadness, which, in this instance, was his breakup with his girlfriend. 

Schumi’s hit song ‘Bakit Why Not’ talks about breaking norms and protesting against some stereotypes like gender roles. Its music video has amassed more than 10 thousand views within two months of its release.



4. Himig Borhuh

(Photo from Himig Borhuh’s official Soundcloud)

From walking around the halls of the Albertus Magnus to being in the spotlight of #USTPaskuhan, Himig Austin Borja, a Music Technology student from the Conservatory of Music, has been making a name for himself. In an interview with UST Tiger TV, he said that he didn’t really envision himself to major in music since he was inclined to sports and was a basketball varsity player during his high school years. He also did not expect his hit song, ‘Watawat,’ to become well-known and was surprised that lines from his song became widespread after its release.

Himig Borja’s ‘Watawat,’ featuring Schumi, was a song that garnered attention during the last UAAP season. The line ‘ang medalya at korona ibalik na sa España,’ reflected the community’s yearning to secure another championship and showed the support Thomasians have for all our sports teams as well as the pride we have for our school. 

5.  Adrian Aggabao

(Photo from Adrian Aggabao’s official Instagram account)

Adrian Aggabao, popularly known as ‘Don Bao,’ is a Raymund’s local from the College of Commerce and Business Administration. Like Schumi, his music career also began when he started publishing his music on SoundCloud. Since then, he has secured multiple gigs during his downtime. Most of his music speaks about social realities and what’s nice about it is that he has his family as his inspiration. 

Don Bao’s song ‘Pasanin’ emphasizes on the lessons that a life filled with struggles and obstacles brings. Having dropped this first video on his Youtube channel about a year ago, it has garnered more than 2.3 thousand views. 

6. BarbaCola

(Photo from BarbaCola’s official Facebook page)

From UST Musikat’s band pool, the band BarbaCola was formed with Renz Jerique from the Faculty of Arts and Letters on vocals, Raja Rayas from the College of Education on bass, Cedrick Santa Cruz from the Faculty of Engineering on lead guitar, and Raemonn Petr on drums.

BarbaCola’s song ‘Senseless’ runs along with the themes of alternative and indie genres, mainly focusing on the ups and downs of love and how it is a war that one might not survive.

7. VFade

(Photo from Patrick Valentine Cabanayan’s official Facebook account)

Patrick Valentine Cabanayan, more commonly known as VFade, hails from the College of Science under the Department of Mathematics. In an interview with UST Tiger TV, he stated that his interest in music developed when he was in Senior High School, specifically during an apprenticeship under the Music, Arts, and Design track. He tried out music production and also ventured into rapping. 

His song ‘Andito Lang Ako’ expresses love and affection for a significant other. The song itself embodies the wide array of emotions one might feel when in love and how some minute details in the world seem brighter in the presence of strong feelings of attraction.

8. OMEN, Carty and Ballen

(Screengrab from YouTube/OnlyOneOmen)

All coming from the same Advertising Arts class in the College of Fine Arts and Design, third year students OMEN (Ron Flores), Carty (Zack Garcia), and Ballen (Allen Agulay) recently made their brainchild available to the public. The trio, who consider themselves brothers from another mother, has collaborated to release a new song entitled ‘Karma Comeback.’

As a collective, they claim that they made the song ‘Karma Comeback’ for fun since quarantine made it hard for them to bond and share their sentiments. By collaborating, they delved into their passion, music, art, and dumb sh*t, as they say.

Thomasians have always been present in every field, more prominently in the music industry. Their growth as artists and musicians will be exponential if we continue to support them and their work. With all the new takes on OPM, let’s not forget about our fellow Thomasians who are persevering to let their craft be known in the mainstream media. Support local, support Thomasian artists. 


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