Latin emo seems to have been in a weird place for the last couple of years. It appears to be trapped in a binary setting: you either go full on Screamo, or take the more instrumental, slower approach inspired by the likes of late 90’s Don Caballero and American Football.
It’s down to personal preference, of course, but I find it to hit harder when between the two, with its fair amount of loudness blended with the melodic approach.
That’s why it surprised me when I was browsing Facebook and found a band from Mexico City promoting their EP. The band´is called Recuerdos de un Sueño Perdido (Memories from a Lost Dream). And in true DIY fashion, it was only available either on YouTube or on Bandcamp.
I was very glad then to see local label Penelope Records, which has been prolifically releasing cassettes from emerging bands and old favorites for the last 5 years, pick up the EP to do a physical release.
“Valle Bravo” starts up strong with “Shiba Inu” as a presentation card, a track which does an amazing job at introducing the rest of the EP, featuring melodies carried by twinkly guitars accompained by a brutal force on drums, just to be capped of on the bridge by the screams of lead vocalist and bassist Mauricio Narvaés. Its a short, but really sweet track that carries a lot of energy that’s maintained all throughout the EP, an ode to grief. The tracks beautifully paint sunsets and late, sleepless nights throught the dynamics set between guitarists Ashel and Arturo Mascias, thrown over the roof by the sheer contrast on subtlety and brutal noise by drummer Iván Luna.
Its a short listen clocking in at just under 20 minutes, but its enough to leave hunger in those searching for exciting, loud yet subtle emo/math rock.
Sadly, this was their only release before breaking up last year, which is a shame as there was so much promise on what now it’s their only blueprint into the world.
Valle Bravo is now available on beautiful translucent green tapes via Penelope Records on an edition of 25.