Pinoy electronica act Tarsius sets new international release

Rick Olivares

Posted at Jul 24 2017 07:53 PM

Tarsius performs a live set. Photo provided by author

MANILA -- A few hours before he was to spin some records at the quarterly Kagatan vinyl record sale at Cubao X, Diego Mapa set up his small stall to sell second-hand records, compact discs, and a portable Fonzie (from "Happy Days" fame) turntable. 

And he also discussed the new Tarsius record that is coming out in the next week or so.

Tarsius features Mapa on laptop (samples, synthesizers, sequencers) and Jay Gapasin (Radioactive Sago Project) on drums. They released their debut album “Primate” with its mesmerizing debut single, “Deathless Gods” in 2012 through Numberline Records.

In our last interview with Mapa, he hinted at what was to come. Now, one of the busiest people in the local music scene (Pedicab, Monsterbot, Eggboy, and Tarsius) is ready to talk and well, his excitement could not be contained.

The new extended play album “Igado” will feature four tracks and will be released by Bangkok-based More Rice Records only on vinyl. “Igado” was mastered in Germany with the record pressed in the United Kingdom. 

“Three of the tracks will be new songs, while the fourth one will be a remix by Swiss DJ and EP producer Manuel Fischer,” clarified Mapa. “There will be only 300 copies of this record with only 50 available for sale here in the Philippines. So if someone wants to get a copy, they should message us on our Facebook page. But since they are limited stocks, they have to get them right away.”

“The new EP will have those rumbling bass lines and rolling drums on danceable tracks,” added Mapa of the new music. “We had a lot of fun on this. We wanted the live feel of our music to translate into the record. What More Rice Records wants to do is feature Asian acts with that crossover international appeal.”

Each More Rice release will be by a native Asian artist, and will be complemented with a more electronic focused remix by friends of the label from around the globe. 

Why the limited release?

“From what I understand, the label wanted to keep the print run small. Not too many stocks out there; maybe less overhead. And it’s to enhance the collectability. We all like the physical releases of music. It adds to the listening pleasure. Now, if people like the music, then they’ll get it. If there’s a demand for it, then maybe for future releases, there might be bigger numbers. Right now, that’s the run. It’s rather small so this is for the serious music fan and those who like Tarsius.”