“R Rules is not your ordinary [pop] group,” says Tiny Corpuz, A&R for UMG Philippines and co-producer of their new single. Now, listeners can hear what makes the Japanese-Filipino quartet of Ruri, Riyo, Reina, and Risa different with their distinct sonic blend. Their new track “Girl Gang” is out now on all music streaming platforms. Along with Corpuz, Kevin Yadao and cursebox composed and produced the single, with the group providing some Japanese lyrics.
Ruri says that “Girl Gang” highlights the strength of someone who has faith in oneself, and also the added boost when “sisters have each other’s backs,” something that makes them even stronger. R Rules’ take on a musical trope common to female pop groups combines a strong hip-hop flavored rhythm with a full-bodied and confident singing style, one which can be described by the Filipino word maangas. Indeed, “Girl Gang” makes the case that they “aren’t the same thing,” a feat of wordplay that will keep this song playing in listeners’ heads.
Apart from the wordplay and its musical elements, “Girl Gang” is a celebration of collaborative music-making, one that reflects what R Rules values as a group. “I’m really grateful to have this gang who always accepts who I am and I love how we always motivate each other,” says Reina, “and I think this really makes us powerful and confident!” She says that working together on the song was not easy but fun, and found the process of coming up with and exchanging ideas very interesting.
So where can we expect to hear a song like “Girl Gang”? Riyo says that it’s not a typical dance-pop song but it’s sure to get people dancing. She envisions it being the sort of song that gets played in a bar or in a major event. Its message of strength and confidence is a great energy boost.
“Girl Gang” isn’t the last thing R Rules has up its sleeve. Risa says that the group is working on songs in a different genre and hopes to record and perform them live for their supporters, who they call RRULERS. Their musical growth, fueled by their camaraderie and collaborative artistic work, is what makes these four women the ones to watch in Philippine pop music.