This Valentine’s, Filipino rock band Dilaw gave their fans (both newfound and established) an unforgettable Valentine’s treat with their live show at Glorietta.

With the use of their electrifying chords and unbridled energy, the band took center stage at Glorietta Activity Center in Makati City this Valentine’s Day for a free concert that etched its name in the chronicle of the group’s rising career. The vibrant performance marked Dilaw’s most significant mall show to date –– captivating a diverse audience with an unforgettable sonic experience. This grand spectacle not only showcased the band’s musical prowess but also served as a resonant introduction for those unfamiliar with the unique artistry of the group.

dilaw band

Courtesy of Sophia Samala

Channeling the spirit of their exclusive “Live at Teatrino” show, Dilaw’s Glorietta performance stripped down their rock anthems, allowing the raw essence of their sound (together with a stellar string quartet) to permeate the venue. The intimate take and reimagining of their tracks showcased a band at the pinnacle of their creative prowess, creating an immersive experience that resonated with both longtime fans and new listeners alike. The stripped-down nature of the set not only emphasized the band’s musical virtuosity but also highlighted the profound depth of their songwriting (which was perfectly conveyed by lead singer Dilaw Obero’s impeccable vocals), transcending the boundaries of conventional rock performances.

The choice of Glorietta 4 as the stage for this momentous live event was aptly made, as the venue’s expansive atrium provided a perfect avenue for the band to share their music with a larger scale audience. The show’s accessibility not only enhanced the beauty of their music but also acted as a beacon for those previously unacquainted with Dilaw’s spellbinding catalog. This free concert served as the perfect gateway, introducing a wider audience to the band’s electrifying charisma and cementing their status as one of the most promising artists of today’s Filipino rock scene.

dilaw band

Courtesy of Gabriel Saulog

Before the band kicked off their performance, Billboard Philippines was lucky enough to catch up with them for a quick chat to ask them all about their preparations for this show, how they felt coming in, and what exactly is it about the live setting that amplifies their performances to the peak of their capabilities.

Billboard Philippines: Walk us through the arrangements and setlist for today’s show. What was it like taking that from Teatrino to a larger-scale setting like Glorietta’s atrium?

Leon: So the entire setlist, compared to how we usually perform is more stripped down. But even if we’re sitting down, there are still added elements to the strings, which we loved from the Teatrino show. We’re hoping to bring the same vibe over here, but of course, with a bigger setting, a bigger crowd, and a different sound system, there are some things that we’re nervous about. But I think that’s what brings out the best in us.

What things make you nervous?

Leon: Well, It’s kind of like there are two bands on stage at the same time. We have a string quartet, and we have us. So being able to lock in with people we don’t play with every day because we play with each other every day, it’s a challenge. But the team for tonight, they’re pros and we had to step up to meet them at their level.

In what ways do you engage with the audience during smaller, more personal shows, such as your Balcony, Saguijo, and other gigs like that, and how will you bring that connection to the larger space at Glorietta?

Leon: When we play these smaller shows, the connection is closer to the audience. Because they’re not so loud, it isn’t big movements that catch their attention. I feel like the way we can impart our message and feelings towards the audience is to start by feeling it ourselves, translating it to our instruments, to our voice, and hopefully, it reaches the audience as intended.

Vie: Transcending. (laughs)

Considering the cultural significance of mall shows in the Philippines, how do you guys believe that performing in a mall setting contributes to the overall fan experience to your audiences waiting outside?

Leon: Well, mall shows are where you can build core memories with your fans. I know so many people who have solid memories of them being kids, going to mall shows because it was the only place they could catch their favorite band –– it was like that too for me in Baguio, whenever there was a band playing a mall show the same time I was there. As someone who doesn’t get to experience gigs at the bars and at the festivals, mall shows offer a great way to connect with people

dilaw warner glorietta

Courtesy of Sophia Samala

Do you guys remember your first mall show? What was it like?

Vie: Masaya. Kasi may mga susunod pag nag shopping ka. (laughs) (Fun, because people will follow you around when you’re shopping.)

Dilaw: Magastos kasi magshoshopping ka after yung show. (laughs) (Expensive, because you end up shopping after the show.)

Pero yung sa experience tumogtog, yun yung first-ever experience na maraming taong talaga nanood sa mall show, at pag mall show kasi, iba-iba yung nanunood. Hindi lahat ng nakininig, alam yung mga kanta namin. So doon nila, malalaman kami at yung music namin. Now you know sabi nga nila

(But with the experience of performing, that was the first-ever experience wherein we had so many people watching us. And with mall shows, the audience in attendance is always diverse and varies. So of those of them watching, not all of them know our music and that becomes their first time knowing our music. Now you know, as they say.)

Of all your shows so far, what has been your favorite performance so far?

Vie: All Ayala Malls [shows]. *laughs*

Leon: Any of our tiny bar gigs with 200, or 150 people in a cramped room, where the bar is super loud. Those are always our favorite shows. 

Dilaw: Sorry nalang Ayala Malls. 

Leon: But also –– Ayala Malls!

What are some challenges and highlights you guys have when doing a mall show?

Leon: Hmm. On the technical end, mall shows with a larger scale venue, and high ceilings, you’re gonna get a ridiculous bounceback no matter what your mix is like on stage and off stage. Um, and because of that bounceback, you’re gonna have to adjust your playing style, because the sound doesn’t travel in the same way it does in a tiny bar. You’re gonna have to adjust to that scale.

Also, when see that many people for the first time listening and watching you, it can make you s**t your pants. (laughs) Just a bit.

Vie: Pero masaya. Masaya mag mall show kasi may artista feels, kasi feel mo na artista kayo pag labas ng holding room. (But it’s fun. It’s fun doing mall shows because you feel like a celebrity, you really feel like a celebrity when you leave the holding room.)

vie dela rosa dilaw

Courtesy of Gabriel Saulog

How does the energy and experience of a mall show differ from other venues, and how do you adapt your performance accordingly?

Leon: With a mall show, if you’re not giving your all –– the audience doesn’t give you their all. Whenever you’re on stage, it’s always an exchange of energy, so you have to kick it off fully committed, and if you’re lucky, they latch on and you have a great show.

Vie: Sa mall [show], hindi mo matitikman yung pawis ng audience. (laughs) Kapag puno yung bar gig, dikitan kayo eh. (At a mall show, you don’t taste the sweat of the audience because when you do a bar gig, you’re really close to each other.)

Can you share any memorable experiences from previous gigs of yours that have influenced your approach to your performances in these settings?

Vie: Woah. Kamikazee!

Leon: I think one that the whole band shares was the first time we opened for Basti Artadi, who is like such a legendary act in the Philippines. It was our third or fourth gig together as a band, and we played our set to open the night. 

It felt good, we played well, but we were really nervous because of the venue and the whole setting. And then after we played, the whole band stepped into the bar to watch Basti kick off his tour, and it felt like we were all back in school. Seeing the way he’d move, the way he connected with the audience, and I feel that’s something we all shared and really learned from.

dilaw band

Courtesy of Sophia Samala