Enrique Jimenez is a man about town -- if you've been to more than a handful of local shows over the last several years, chances are you've crossed paths with him. His own band Altas (formerly Panal S.A. de C.V.) is an experimental instrumental rock band par excellence and can be caught at Eslinger Gallery tonight, July 25th, at 10 p.m. and at Mutiny Information Cafe on Saturday, July 26 at 6:30 p.m.. Because of his expertise (born of his natural curiosity about the local music scene), we caught up with the affable guitarist about his own top picks for the UMS this weekend. He provided a rather extensive list, but we asked him about ten of his favorites as a kind of shortened user guide for anyone attending the festival.
Friday, July 25th
Tjutjuna - 6 p.m. - Hi-Dive: They're just super intense. Last time I saw them they opened for Acid Mothers Temple and the entire show was just driving. It kind of pummels you when you watch them. And Fernando Guzman on drum is intense. It's a bigger sound than you expect from three guys. I really like psychedelic rock and noise.
StaG - 8 p.m. - Hi-Dive: I was introduced to them through the guys in Kevin Costner Suicide Pact. Their music and the way they compose it is well thought-out melodically. I like their use of vocals with the electronics with a live band. That's very appealing to me because we do kind of the same thing but on a different level. They have more melody with the vocals and the way they've gone about it is impressive.
Bud Bronson & The Good Timers - 9 p.m. - 3 Kings Tavern: I saw them at the Skylark after they got off tour about a month ago. They had just set up and started playing and I was blown away by their intensity and they are showmen. They are technically-proficient musicians and they get the crowd involved. It reminds me of a more intense Jason Anderson kind of thing.
People Under the Stairs - 9 p.m. - Main Stage: They don't play that often and I've been wanting to see them for a long time. I like their lyricism. They're from a different time in hip-hop. When I was growing up I would listen to that era of hip-hop and I want to see what they're all about. Hopefully I'm not disappointed. With hip-hop shows I'm either blown away or unimpressed.
The Knew - 11:55 p.m. - 3 Kings Tavern: They're still an interesting band to me because they find new ways to keep things fresh with their sound. It's not the same thing every time. Obviously it's a continuation of what they're doing. They're also a very lively, crowd-involved type of band and fits in with old school rock type of stuff. Almost along the lines of stadium rock.
El Toro De La Muerte - 9 p.m. - Illegal Pete's: They're a straight ahead prog rock kind of thing. Their delivery is really good. Plus I really like their name. That's an awesome name. This is a headlining band's name right there. It means "The Bull of Death." Sometimes band's names are misleading. You go see a band and they sound super heavy, their name anyway, and you get there it's not the same thing. There's no correlation. Sometimes that's a surprise, sometimes that's a disappointment. We played with them a couple of years ago and they're from Colorado Springs and I don't get to see them that often.
Echo Beds - 11:59 p.m. - Eslinger Gallery: I think mostly I like them because they don't give a fuck. They do what they do and it's frickin' brutal. It's an experience. It's not like a listening experience, per se. It's more like a visceral experience that you have to be there and feel the loudness, feel the tension and feel everything that's going on with those guys because they pour themselves into it. You see the emotion and it translates immediately because it's so in your face. It's not for everybody but if you let yourself experience stuff that musically, you'll be better educated.
Sunday, July 27th
Prism Waves - 5 p.m. - Hi-Dive: I haven't seen Prism Waves before. If I recall correctly, it's very atmospheric and Zale Hassler has this vocal ability where he sings high and it's very melodic. It's pretty straightforward but with all that ambient sound it melts together. I like that kind of stuff like Boards of Canada. It's reminiscent of that but it's not exactly the same.
New Ben Franklins - 8 p.m. - Gary Lee's Motor Club and Grub: They're just old school. They have their sound and have been doing it a long time and they're good at it. It's a more country rock type of sound. I don't really see much of that going on mixing the two and bringing that part of Colorado into the kind of indie scene represented at this festival. It's very non-traditional but hearkens back to that old country sound. I like the tonality of it all. When you can strip something down to its core sound and get something good out of that it's a very difficult thing to do well. Hundreds of people try to get that tonality.
Izcalli - 11:59 p.m. - Eslinger Gallery: They're different. They have lyrics in Spanish. They have a newer rock sound that's mixed with an old school Mexico City rock sound which is a rock urbano type of thing. They're influenced by that. If you're familiar with that, you can hear it. If you're not it sounds like a mixture of old school blues with a gritty city sound. Rock urbano was a style of music in Mexico City in the late 60s and early 70s when people in Mexico City started taking American music and making it their own and coming up with this sound that's very garage rock and stripped down. Of course Izcalli's arrangements are very pop rock as are their vocal delivery and lyrical content. That gives them that edge and they put on a great live show.
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