Des De Leon (vocals),
Rob Uytingco (drums),
Terry Nicolas (acoustic/electric guitar),
Jay Averilla (bass guitar)

ATTENTION FANS!! Julieplug is opening for Cornershop at
the Fillmore San Francisco on May 25th, 2002!
Don't miss it!

Review by

Vocalist and songwriter Des (a.k.a. Julie) de Leon and guitarist Terry Nicolas created Julie Plug in 1992, following their desire to begin a girl-fronted band. A drum machine and Terry's friend completed the original four. But the string of drummers that joined and left Julie Plug from 1993 to 1998 finally ended when Rob Uytingco joined the band in the summer of 1998. Jay Averilla, a friend of Des and Terry, became the band's bass player in November, 1997.

A teaser of Julie Plug's music grabbed the attention of Classified Records' (their recording label) president, Kormann Roque when he heard their tape playing in the background as he was talking on the phone with Chris Miguel, a friend from his days when he was still with a DJ outfit called Spintronix. The accidental discovery began the process that would lead Julie Plug from a developmental deal to a recording contract with the record label.

"Their songwriting was already polished before they even signed to Classified Records," according to Ed Mabasa, project manager for the group. "This is a band whose future endeavors will bring some of the most memorable of tunes, songs that will have a listener reminisce about the most pleasant times of his or her life."

"I took piano lessons when I was 7 or 8 but I gave up after a year because I hated reading notes," says Des. "My father bought a new keyboard and- Alas! I have been writing songs ever since. I think my first song was a gospel song."

These days, each band member adds their influences to Julie Plug's music. Des's voice is reminiscent of the mellow cascade of the Sundays, whereas Terry's distorted guitar echoes Oasis. Jay's bass strums are influenced by the Beatles and the Stone Roses, and Rob's beats groove from the soulful sounds of classic motown and the distinctive rhythms of Ride. If you throw all these bands into a blender, you get Julie Plug.

These influences can best be seen in "Dolphin In Me." According to the band, Dolphin sounds most like Julie Plug with its blend of guitar riffs and melodic vocals, backed by a solid drum set. For Des, the song has special meaning. It is her tribute to her grandfather, the late Clod Delfino, a big band composer and major musical influence.

Despite the abstract and varying names of the album's songs, titles like "Starmaker," "Hang to Dry," and "Everything Behind" share the common threads of personal experience for Des. One should not be mislead by the music, however.

"I think at times, when you think Julie Plug's songs are happy and danceable, read the lyrics and you'll see that it's the total opposite," Des said in regard to people's first impression of the band's songs. Her use of hidden daggers embedded in lilting melody lend an ironic tone to otherwise upbeat tunes: " always fooled around / you fool your own senses/ I think you're such a social stereotype/ in their eyes..."

Their formula of a successful band is simple: "We're friends, we write songs and we have fun. We actually like hanging out with one another."

And now, as Julie Plug, the band is discovering a new identity.

"It's funny how some people come up to me after our gigs an tell me, 'Hey, Julie, you guys were great,' because I feel like I am Julie now," Des said.



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