It’s Time We Recognize SB19’s Tilaluha As The Masterpiece That It Is

SB19 singing a heartbreak ballad is everything that you want and need.

Even though Tilaluha received a lukewarm reception in 2018, time and repeat listens has shown that the song is one of SB19’s best ballads.

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SB19 may just be a few years in the industry, yet they have risen to be not only the biggest P-Pop group in the country, but one of the biggest Pinoy acts in the Philippines to date. They’re also on this quarter’s cover of NYLON Manila looking red hot. SB19 is showing the world that Filipino boy groups can release music and give performances on par with K-Pop and global acts while breaking records along the way.

Their current success then is surprising considering that their debut was less than stellar. In October 2018, the group debuted with their first single Tilaluha and it had a muted reception. Their lack of initial success actually nearly broke up the group. But as time went on and the group gained more fame and attention, more people are realizing that Tilaluha is actually underrated and a great song that deserves praise.

Rocky Start

ICYMI: SB19's debut single "Tilaluha" MV reached 2M views on YouTube -  Annyeong Oppa

Josh, Justin, Stell, Pablo, and Ken came together under ShowBT Philippines and trained to be the next big P-Pop group. They received the same training as what K-Pop idols would go through and trained until they were finally ready to debut. But for their debut single, SB19 did not release the expected up-tempo or hard-hitting pop song. Instead, they released a ballad for their debut called Tilaluha. On October 26, 2018, the group had their official debut when the song dropped along with its music video.

To say that a P-Pop group would release a ballad as their debut single, the first song people will get to hear from them, is bold statement in itself. The song didn’t only deviate from the expected radio-friendly pop single, the music video for the song didn’t even feature the boys in it. It was filmed in South Korea and features Korean idols instead. The first impression people got of SB19 was not their moves, production, or visuals—it was their voice.

At the time, P-Pop groups were not so hot in the Philippines, so their debut was met more with crickets than applause. They were not an overnight success story. When they would promote in malls and schools, they would get small audiences and little fanfare. The boys have said in the past that they were nervous about their debut since they were doing something different in the local market. They were also aware of the fact that when they would promote during this time, they were not the center of attention.

It reached the point where the group was ready to break up. Of course, Go Up arrived and changed everything. And while most people may know SB19 for their songs Go Up, Alab, and What?, Tilaluha remains one of, if not their most underrated song.

Tilaluha, An Underrated Bop

SB19’s first single is an emotional, heartfelt, and soulful ballad. Pablo wrote the lyrics for Tilaluha and has said that the song is about heartbreak and unrequited love. He was inspired to write the song based on something he saw in a book or movie. The boys sing about a love that they will never get because the person they are singing to is in love with another person. Reportedly, the song was chosen for their debut because their management wanted a song to show SB19’s vocal skills, and they succeeded in that.

Tilaluha is a beautiful song with a deep meaning that hits straight to the heart. Each member sounds great in the song and their vocals are on point. With harmonies so smooth, no member gets left behind, with each one getting their time to shine. They really bring out the emotion of the song. It’s only a matter of time before it gets used in a local drama OST. And when SB19 sings the song live, it’s just as good, if not better than the studio recording. It’s like they ate the CD for breakfast.

New Lease On Life

Luckily, the years have been kind to Tilaluha and more and more people are realizing that it’s an amazing song. The song was included in their Get In The Zone album in 2020. On the week ending December 5, 2020, Tilaluha debuted at number one on the Billboard LyricFind Global chart. This made it the group’s second number-one hit on the Billboard chart.

As of this writing, the music video for Tilaluha has received over 2.6 million views. The video also has a lopsided positive reception with over 151,000 likes and less than 1000 dislikes. There are over 23,000 comments on the video with most of them saying how great the song is. With SB19’s recent release of MAPA, it just goes to show that ballads really do suit the group so well. If you haven’t listened to this song yet, do so and be ready to be swept away in emotion. Trust us.

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