26 nov. 2015

Isma Fest 2015

Todo empezó en el Trópico

"“Son of a Gun” fue la primera versión que hicimos y que adaptamos al castellano. Nos acompaña desde nuestro primer concierto, y le tenemos un cariño especial."

"Todo empezó en el Trópico
Arriba y abajo una y otra vez
Hijo del Señor, tú eres el mejor
Y nadie más te podrá ganar

El sol brilla en mi habitación cuando estás
Y comienza a llover cuando tú te vas"

¡Fanzine! 7" más info en:
- Elefant Records: http://elefant.com/disco/15620/fanzine

17 nov. 2015

Reclaiming The Colonies, One State at a Time... "Fanzine"

It's been a fairly sombre past few days as news of the horrific terrorist attacks on Paris continues to unfurl. The fact that both a gig and a football match - the two constant passions in my life - were amongst the deliberate targets is particularly chilling. But the fact is that music is a cause for celebration and enjoyment. It transcends race, religion, ethnic division and anything else mankind wants to throw in its face... Above all, music should be about having fun...

So it seems quite apt that Los Bonsáis' new EP "¡Fanzine!"  - a collection of four unique interpretations of shamefully long-forgotten gems - should have recently fallen into my possession, and I can't think of anything more appropriate at this moment to cheer me up. Indeed the press release from their label, Elefant, sums up my thoughts far more eloquently than I ever could:

"...Every time we get our hands on a new LOS BONSÁIS release we realise how much we need their songs, like some kind of medicine that gets rid of the routine and the day-to-day, and fills you with joy, freshness, and the desire to live..."

Now I first came across Helena and Nel, from the Asturias region of Spain, thanks to their insanely addictive album "Nordeste" and now the duo have raided their  7" record collection to brighten my day. 

And while they may not be heading to Rough Trade or buying a limited edition of the Lurkers pressed on red vinyl the "Punks a tiempo parcial" still look as depressingly uniform ("...siempre van igual...") as those Part-time punks "walkin' down the Kings Road" of the Television Personalities' tongue-in-cheek original.  

This is a 160 km/h tour-de-force of lo-fi fuzzy guitars, pounding percussion that whizz through Helena's sweet vocals which end up getting gloriously multi-tracked on the song's chorus. The pair's version is faithful enough to the original as to be instantly recognisable yet adds enough of a twist for the band to claim it as their own - and as befits their own musical influences, these weekend punks are searching through the racks for some choice C86 cuts rather than The Banshees or Swell Maps... 

In the hands of The Vaselines, "Son of a gun" hit you with a wall of grungy distorted guitars before it veered towards Twee (especially during Frances McKee's angelic vocals). Here as "Hijo del Señor" Helena and Nel pay homage by giving the song the full-bore fuzzed treatment - buzzing guitars, metronomic drums - and great vocal interplay and harmonies. Trust me, this pair do vocals. The Spanish lyrics are not only a faithful translation, they also resonate well in their native tongue... a resounding "Olé" from over here! 
To be honest I'd never heard of Black Tambourine - an early 90's DC-based Twee band - or their song "Throw Aggi off the bridge", but having listened to the original it most certainly ticks all the prerequisite boxes. Musically, Helena and Nel remain incredibly faithful to the original - there's the added blurring at the edges (but hey, this wouldn't be a Los Bonsaís song otherwise) - while lyrically "El puente de Aggi" may feature a small mischievous sleight of hand - I suspect this is my favourite track of the quartet, if only because even the original is new to me.

The pair bring the curtain down with "Nada que hacer" - their version of The Pastels "Nothing to be done" (from the "Sitting Pretty" album) again remains faithful to the original - if anything this version's lyrics are even more heavenly than the original. For all their mastery of low-fi, guitar wondrousness, Helena and Nel's vocals are to be underestimated at your peril.

"¡Fanzine!" is just what the Doctor ordered. 10 minutes of pure indie-guitar heaven,  sweet vocals - and as hinted by the EP's title - a home made cover and mini-fanzine insert thanks to Helena (indeed the pair have their own fanzine and blog). The EP also gave me an excuse to dig our some of my old favourites to fill my head and escape to a better place.

¡Mil Gracias Helena y Nel!

Los Bonsáis
"¡Fanzine!" ( Bandcamp), Elefant)


4 nov. 2015

Los Bonsáis Can Be (Their) Heroes Just For One 7″

"Our favourite Spanish Indie-Pop heroes Los Bonsáis released the superb Nordeste EP back in February and it instantly became one of our favourite records of the year. This week they’ve announced details of their next release, which flips the situation and tells us what their favourite records are.
The four-track, ¡Fanzine! single, is a collection of covers of some of the songs that have influenced the band, translated into Spanish and given the Los Bonsáis treatment. The tracks hark back to the C-86 era of Indie and show the bands love of all things jangling and melodic from TV Personalities to The Vaselines. This week they shared, Nada Que Hacer (Nothing To Be Done) a cover of legendary band, The Pastels, while our Spanish is far too limited to comment on the translation, we know it sounds every bit as exciting as the original.

¡Fanzine! is out on the 6th of November via Elefant Records."

For The Rabbits


3 nov. 2015

Mindies: ¡Fanzine!

Los Bonsáis versionan a sus grupos favoritos en un nuevo EP

Por -

Los Bonsáis publicaron este mismo año su nuevo disco titulado Nordeste. Un conjunto de canciones noise-pop de enorme valor en el que de nuevo mostraban temas recurrentes, que nos pasan a todos a lo largo de nuestra vida y que como siempre nos arrancan una sonrisa. Canciones de gran inspiración como ‘Los Perdimos de Vista’ o ‘Como Si Nada’, haciendo gala del sonido twee pop. Si no teníamos suficiente con este nuevo trabajo, el grupo asturiano anuncia ahora un nuevo EP que se publicará en un single 7” en vinilo de color negro. Lo especial de estos nuevos temas que estarán recogidos bajo el título de ¡Fanzine! es que serán versiones de alguno de los grupos más especiales para Los Bonsáis como es el caso de The Vaselines o The Pastels. Además, estos temas han sido adaptados al castellano de una forma muy especial. Todo ello llegará acompañado con un mini fanzine en el que estarán incluidas las letras de todos estos temas. De momento os enseñamos como queda el ‘Nothing To Be Done’ de los Pastels en la voz de Nel y Helena.

¡Fanzine! (Elefant, 2015)
Punks A Tiempo Parcial [Part Time Punks] – TV Personalities
Hijo Del Señor [Son Of A Gun] – The Vaselines
El Puente De Aggi [Throw Aggi Off The Bridge] – Black Tambourine
Nada Que Hacer [Nothing To Be Done] – The Pastels

Nada que hacer

Versión de "Nothing To Be Done"  - The Pastels