The Pin-Ups

The Pin-Ups
The Pin Ups (band)
Origin Manila, Philippines
Genres New Wave
Indie Rock
Indie Pop
Punk Rock
Post Punk
Alternative Rock
Years active 1995 - present
Labels Know-It-All Records, Sutton Music Group
Associated acts Keltscross
Tame the Tikbalang
Mass Carnage
End of Man
Ethnic Faces
Girl In Park
Crimson Daze
Squid 9
Current Members:
Mondo Castro
Ryan Nachura
Mitch Singson
Raffy Bonifacio
Tanya Singh
Jennifer Tan (On Hiatus)
Former Members:
Pamela Aquino
Noel Garcia (deceased)
Ramses Dela Torre
John Carpio
Jaja Manuel
Robby Mananquil

The Pin-Ups, formerly The Pin-Up Girls, is an independent band formed in 1995 by Mondo Castro along with Keltscross members Pamela Aquino and Jennifer Tan.[1]

Dubbed the “first Philippine-based band to sign with a U.S. Label,”.[2] The Pin-Ups are also included in a U.K. -based compilation album.,”[3]



Early years

Starting out as a garage band in 1995, the band recruited guitarist Ramses Dela Torre (Mass Carnage) and drummer John Carpio (Tame the Tikbalang, Goo, and End of Man) and started jamming at an abandoned hotel. The then unnamed band went through names that never stuck, including Ebenezzer Blue Cow, Blue Juice, Mushroom, and Bubblegum Crisis.[4]

Guitarist Ryan Nachura and musician Noel Garcia (Ethnic Faces, Eraserheads and Color It Red sessionist) eventually joined the band, replacing Dela Torre and Carpio. They were without a permanent name until Tan wore a Bettie Page T-shirt to a rehearsal at then-Eraserheads drummer Raimund Marasigan's house. Marasigan suggested they name themselves after Page, one of the most famous pin-up girls from the ‘50s.[5][6]

Hello Pain (2001)

After a few rounds of Mayric’s garage sales to raise money, The Pin-Ups wrapped up recording their debut album “Hello Pain” under their own label, Broken Records. Executively produced by ABS-CBN News Anchor Liezl Castro and actor Diether Ocampo (he loaned Castro money for CD manufacturing), produced by Marasigan and engineered by Shinji Tanaka at Sound Creation studios.[7]

The album includes Witching Hour that hit number one on NU107's Midnight Countdown for seven weeks, Broken, A Cold & Better Place, and Ride Rocket Wild.[8]

The album’s artwork was created by Filipino graphic artist Leinil Francis Yu.[9]

The music video for “Down”, directed by Quark Henares, won “Rock Video of the Year” at the 2002 NU 107 Rock Awards.[10]

Taste Test

Michael Sutton, a writer for the All-Music Guide, discovered them by accident on a random NU-107 air check mailed from the Philippines by music fan Denis Batungbacal. Sutton signed The Pin-Ups to Tacoma, Washington’s Know-It-All Records in 2002, making them the first Philippine-based band to be signed to a U.S. label.[11]

Aquino left for the U.S. and was replaced by Jaja Manuel (Girl In Park, who eventually signed with Know-It-All Records and released and album internationally) and Garcia was eventually replaced by Mitch Singson (Ciudad, ex-Sugarfree) as the Pin-Up Girls released their 6-track U.S. debut, "Taste Test," in 2003. "Caress", written and produced by Castro, hit the top ten on NU-107 number one on Flashback Alternatives in New Jersey.</ref>[12]

Also in 2002, The Pin-Up's Drummer Noel Garcia died from an accident.

In 2004, Taste Test was reissued with several bonus tracks as Taste Test: Expanded Menu, receiving reviews in the U.K.[13][14] It was during this time that Manuel left the band and was not replaced.

Take On The Weakened Sky

In 2005, Sutton took The Pin-Ups with him on his own label, Sutton Records (later renamed Sutton Music Group), which released a Philippine-version of Taste Test in the form of “Take On The Weakened Sky.[15]

All Seats Are Taken

In 2006, the band fronted for Fra Lippo Lippi at the Araneta Coliseum[16] as "All Seats Are Taken” was released in the Philippines by Sony-BMG. The 16-track album features guitarists Kakoi Legaspi (ex-Rivermaya, Peryodiko), Kenneth Ilagan (ex-Violent Playground, Mulatto, The Dawn), and the late Francis Magalona.[17] The songs were co-produced, mixed, and mastered by Angee Rozul.

Comic book writer and artist Arnold Arre was commissioned by the band to do the album artwork.

In June 2008, PULP Magazine featured The Pin-Ups on the cover.[add a citation and something from the PULP article content about why they are on the cover]

Manchester, U.K. Compilation Album

Chris Williams of Manchester, England’s Baby Boom Records contacted Castro through The Pin-Ups’ Myspace page. Williams requested for the band’s track “Jackson Pollock 9” for inclusion in the label “Baby Boom Sampler No.4.”.[18] The CD was launched at the SXSW Festival in Texas, U.S.A. and is still available in Manchester and through the Baby Boom Records website.[19]

Jeepney Records

The Pin-Ups were included in the list of 7 winners of MTV EMERGE and set to sign with Apl D AP's Jeepney Music. There are no updates as to whether this will push through.[20]

Band Members

Current members

  • Mondo Castro – vocals, guitars (1996 – present)
  • Ryan Nachura – guitars, keyboards, vocals (1997 – present)
  • Mitch Singson – drums, vocals (2003 – present)
  • Raffy Bonifacio – drums (2009 – present)
  • Tanya Singh – bass, vocals (2010)
  • Jennifer Tan – bass, vocals (1996 - ?)

Former members

  • Pamela Aquino – guitars, vocals (1996–2002)
  • Noel Garcia (R.I.P) – drums (1997–2002)
  • Jaja Manuel – guitars, vocals (2002–2004)
  • John Carpio – drums (1996–1997)
  • Ramses Dela Torre -guitar (1996–1997)
  • Robby Mananquil ( July 2009 – January 2010)

Music Video

Videos Directors
“A Cold & Better Place” Erwin Romulo
“Down” Quark Henares
“Love X Ten” Edsel Abesames
“Ingay” Ike Avellana
“The Five Minute Hallway” Flip and Hand versions Alvin Tecson
“All Seats Are Taken” Mondo Castro


  • 2001: Hello Pain (Broken Records)
  • 2003: Taste Test EP (Know-It-All Records)
  • 2004: Taste Test: Expanded Menu (Know-It-All Records)
  • 2005: Take On The Weakened Sky (Sutton Records)
  • 2006: All Seats Are Taken (Sutton Records, distributed by Sony Music Philippines


  • 1999: “Ride Rocket Wild” - Songs From NU107’s In The Raw (Sony Music Entertainment)
  • 2004:“Caress”-Jack Daniel’s - In Session Manila (Jack Daniel’s and The Gweilo’s Hour Release)
  • 2007:“Nilamon Ng Gabi” - Band Trip 2 ( Sony-BMG Philippines)
  • 2009:“Jackson Pollock 9” -Baby Boom Sampler No.4 (Baby Boom records, Manchester, England)


  1. ^ "Keltscross". Retrieved 2010-08-27. 
  2. ^ "The Pin-Up Girls: The little band that could". Retrieved 2010-08-27. 
  3. ^ "Baby Boom Records". Retrieved 2010-08-27. 
  4. ^ "Pin-Up Girls Power". Retrieved 2010-08-27. 
  5. ^ "The Pin-Up Girls: The little band that could". Retrieved 2010-08-27. 
  6. ^ "Pin-Up Girls Power". Retrieved 2010-08-27. 
  7. ^ "Sound Creation". Retrieved 2010-08-27. 
  8. ^ "The Pn-Up Girls: The little band that could". Retrieved 2010-08-27. 
  9. ^ "The Pn-Up Girls: The little band that could". Retrieved 2010-08-27. 
  10. ^ "Rock Awards Past Winners". Retrieved 2010-08-27. 
  11. ^ "The Pn-Up Girls: The little band that could". Retrieved 2010-08-27. 
  12. ^ "The Pin-Up Girls Biography". Retrieved 2010-08-27. 
  13. ^ "Taste test Expanded version". Retrieved 2010-08-27. 
  14. ^ "Taste Test EP". Retrieved 2010-08-27. 
  15. ^ "LAST FM". Retrieved 2010-08-27. 
  16. ^ "The Pin-Ups on Manila Bulletin". Retrieved 2010-08-27. 
  17. ^ "The Pin-Ups Open Discography to the Public". Retrieved 2010-08-27. [dead link]
  18. ^ "Baby Boom Records". Retrieved 2010-08-27. 
  19. ^ "Baby Boom Records Official Website". Retrieved 2010-08-27. 
  20. ^ "Emerging bands to conquer music scene". Retrieved 2010-08-27. 

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