Sugar Hiccup to return with fourth and last album
by rick olivares
Shoegazer and dream pop band Sugar Hiccup who scored huge hits and was a critically-acclaimed band during the alternative 90s is returning with their fourth and possibly last album.
“You can say that this is unfinished business,” said Czandro Pollack, Sugar Hiccup’s guitarist and chief songwriter who is currently pounding the skins for indie rockers Prank Sinatra. “We put out three albums – ‘Oracle’ in 1995 and ‘Womb’ in 1998 with original vocalist Melody del Mundo and ‘Of Tongues and Thoughts’ with second singer Beatriz Alcala in 2006 – and ideally, we should have done more. But we’ve had all these start-stop things changing vocalists and people leaving – and I quit the band after a rift with our former bassists and manager -- so it was tough.”
However, a chat session with Del Mundo three years ago led to a couple of reunion performances – minus their former bassist and now with Prank Sinatra singer-guitarist Iman Leonardo who also played with Goth band, Dominion – led to the huge reunion concert in Cebu last January that generated a lot of excitement among local music fans. It also served as an impetus for the new album that is due in a few months’ time.
“It was supposed to come out this April but as we’ve all got our lives to live, it got sidetracked,” explained Pollack last Saturday evening while jamming with Alcala’s new and Singapore-based outfit, Narcloudia, and performing with Prank Sinatra at Tomato Kick. “But it should be out soon.”
“We’re doing this because we love it but if you ask me, it is possibly our last album,” added Pollack. “As I said, it’s difficult because for one, Melody lives in the United States and we’re all busy with others things. Iman and I are with Prank Sinatra, while our drummer Mervin Panganiban is with Imago. There too are our family lives too. But we’ll see what happens. Really? Did you ever think Sugar Hiccup would record a new album?”
Pollack says the album has a working title but he refused to divulge it until it has been finalized. Furthermore, there are plans for the album to be put out in vinyl. “Yeah, that’s the plan. We’re not ditching the CD format because it is still popular. Vinyl though is a preferred choice.”
The new album will still have that Sugar Hiccup feel and sound – lush sonic landscapes that wrap themselves around ethereal vocals that take you on a slow cruise of fertile lands of the imagination – but with noticeable changes. “The music is different now. We’ve matured both as people and musicians. But we aren’t forgetting who we are. It is a 90’s project but with a modern-day sensibility.”
Sugar Hiccup reminded fans of English shoegazer bands like the Cocteau Twins, Slowdive, and Ride but more than the effects-laden wall of sound and airy vocals that characterized the genre, the band wrote more melodic music. “It’s good that we have influences who inspire us and we may even sound like them, but at the end of the day, it is good to find your own voice,” enunciated Pollack.
When the unnamed album is released, Sugar Hiccup plans to perform a few shows to promote the record as well as their eventual return.
“It’s gratifying to see the interest in the band,” concluded Pollack. “We’re looking forward to releasing something new for the old fans while making new ones.”