IV of Spades on performing live: It’s not just about the music

IV of Spades on performing live: It’s not just about the music

They may have a limited (though very well-received) discography at the moment, but we understand it now: the continuing love and admiration for IV of Spades stem from seeing them performing live.

We’re pretty sure that’s not the only reason, of course. After all, Blaster Silonga, Badjao de Castro, and Zild Benitez have proven time and again that their talent on the guitars and the drums are exceptional, recorded or otherwise.

But listening to them in person is totally different. With their musical chops come bright lights, funky outfits, passionate energy, and unbelievable stage presence — a mind-blowing experience overall. So it’s no surprise that when the funk-rock trio went onstage during their mall show a few Saturdays ago, the screams just got louder and louder, rivaling the heavy downpour that day.

IV of Spades take us back to the crazy fun world of Filipino mall shows

We came, we saw and now, we totally get it. Like any good performer, the boys are totally committed to giving their audience a great time. Through their black and red lined eyes, IV of Spades recognize that music experienced in the flesh is something special. And last Saturday, we sat down with the boys backstage and got the chance to explore their thoughts on this some more.


How do you prepare for shows, given that you have go live a lot? Do you have some sort of ritual?

Blaster: Walang ganun eh. Get enough sleep, 'yun lang talaga.

Zild: Basic. Mag-vitamins, enough sleep…saka enjoy. 'Pag tumugtog na kami wala na yung pagod eh. 'Yun talaga. Masarap, masarap tumugtog

Badjao: Always take care of your health.

Blaster: Yeah. Vitamins and Berrocca and…Berrocca.

Which bands or musicians do you enjoy sharing the lineup with the most? Why?

Blaster: Ben&BenSaya nila panoorin eh. Kasi andami nila. (laughs)

Zild: Saka iba yung variation nung music. Pag nag-back to back kami, parang…layo. Hindi pa pagod yung tenga mo.

IV Of Spades, Ben&Ben, Parokya Ni Edgar, Sandwich, and more to perform at Pinoy Music Jam in Dubai

Badjao: Favorite ko rin Sandwich. Grabe yung energy ni Raymund Marasigan lagi.

Blaster: Bullet Dumas. Para siyang pag makita mo mag-isa, pero pag andun na siya sa stage parang andaming nangyayari. Isa lang yung gitara niya, pero ang kapal niya magpatunog.

What about musicians from other parts of the world? Are there any musicians whom you admire in terms of performing live? Why?

Zild: Medyo matunog si Phum Viphurit ngayon, pero ‘di ko pa siya nakikita live or nakakapanood ng live performance. But nakaka-curious [siya] na pwede ako pumunta ng live show para ma-experience yung live music. Twenty One Pilots. Dalawa lang sila pero grabe yung live music. From lights to sound to performance. Kasi 'pag live performance, not just about the music. Parang yung connection mo sa galaw mo: yung lights, sound, everything, display sa LED — everything makes sense when it comes to live performance.

What’s your most memorable live performance so far?

Blaster: MOA Arena. ‘Yung Penshoppe (FanCon for Sandara Park and Nam Joo Hyuk).

Badjao: Sinoak in ko muna yung moment bago ako tumugtog. Parang ‘Oh, damn’ tas 'yun.

What’s the best thing about performing live?

Zild: You get to enjoy the music with the audience. Ito yung nangyayari since then, since wala pa yung digital recording or analog recording na nae-experience lang yung music [through] live. So siguro yung best way to express music for me is still live. Kahit nasa studio kami, iniisip namin kung anong mangyayari kung live ‘to.

Check out what went down backstage before the show started:


Kasi 'pag live performance, not just about the music. Parang yung connection mo sa galaw mo: yung lights, sound, everything."

- Zild Benitez


Here's a peek into what happens backstage at a IV of Spades show:

IV of Spades are slated to perform on Day 1 at All of the Noise 2018 this November at Century City Mall in Makati. Get tickets here. The band is currently working on their debut album. For updates, follow them on Facebook.