Beirut…with a proudly familiar sound.

Knowing that the expectations are probably growing for the upcoming Beirut’s performance in Mexico, here is a thought for the lucky ones planning to attend….

Beirut’s new EP, March Of The Zapotec has of course a personal significance to me. I can proudly say now that after multiple parties with my wife’s family, I have now come to terms with the music from Oaxaca. Seeing all the colorful rituals and traditions behind their dance, food and music, I have learned to appreciate it and truly enjoy it. And in a very special, almost subtle manner, I have tried my own way to become part of it.

Though their music in particular was something I struggled to understand. Their Sones Tehuanos in spite of their beautiful lyrics from the beginning they appeared to me as “musical over-complications”. For an extremely organized guy like me it was very difficult to accept that these songs were planned this way. In some cases, they even sounded like natural consequences of lack of practice, lack of coordination or the result of multiple leading musicians trying to play a song together. At the end though, especially when you think nothing is going to work, everything starts falling into place and all these songs progress beautifully to the end, capturing you more and more…almost in a romantic way.

Having said that, I should be honest and recognize that the idea of these songs playing a major role in an alternative music album in 2009 never crossed my mind…. Beirut’s new album has proven me wrong…

After their release of The Flying Club Cup the band focused on his new album, which is surprisingly influenced in a very heavy manner by a variety of Mexican pieces from Oaxaca. In a recent interview for La Blogotheque, Zach Condon’s describes this music as “…definitely not "mariachi"…” after asked about the not so common Mexican influence. He continues with what I think is a perfect description of Oaxacan music “…It’s wedding and funeral and festival music, played by a large, barely rehearsed local brass band... That’s kind of the fun of it. Its pretty thrilling when the band sounds like its about to go off the rails and lose everything but are pulled together by bright trumpets and loud drums….”

During this interview, he specifically talks about “Dios Nunca Muere” a beautiful song written by a Oaxacan composer, which as he says “..hides more than it shows…” after hearing it played live to him as a parting gift from the band he recorded with in Teotitlan del Valle, where he also fell in love with Mezcal.

At the end March Of The Zapotec is a beautiful album. No doubt about it. And I am sure that much more can be said about Beirut’s music and their almost perfect execution...

But after all, in this particular case, it is the album’s main influence that makes me immensely proud…

For those going to the concert,… bring a bottle of mezcal with you…it will make the whole experience more authentic…


Here is a link to Beirut’s piece on La Blogotheque entitled “Beirut : du mezcal pour la route”

No hay comentarios:

Publicar un comentario