Places in Gernika It is a festival that began its journey in 2014 with a particular philosophy that continues to be maintained almost ten years later. As the center of its ideology, the valuation of all artistic expression and concern that its creativity finds in the associative spaces of Gernika, through an event organized by volunteers and voluntarily devoid of sponsorship, which brings a variety of open musical genres closer to Busturialdea to all public, age group and space of the municipality. The groups that are added to the agenda become partners in the project, collaborating in carrying out a concept of a local and international festival that is emotional and enthusiastic, choral and harmonious at the same time.
We attended the appointment on Friday the 24th, a day curated by the Pantx! Records de Bilbo, which promotes Jamaican music based on political struggle and which brought Bizkaia closer to the only performance in the Basque Country by the legendary Dennis Alcapone. To whet our appetite, we were summoned to Aterpe Taberna, a regular place for local bands, for a barrage of different calibers by the skinheads that emerged from planting the seed of Jamaica in punk England in the late 70s.
The Oi! In recent times, EH has been experiencing a golden era, under the protection of labels such as Mendeku Diskak or Tough Ain’t Enough Records and sharing stylistic borders with Catalonia and the UK, with labels such as La Parca Te Busca or La Vida Es Un Mus of references. Endorsed by a powerful and very young scene heir to RRV and street punk, and framed in the midst of the 80s revival, the genre seems to have a fondness for the Urdaibai area, concentrating much of the talent in bands related to the Bermeo Skins movement and spaces like La Kapilla or the Iparragirre Rock Elkartea from which the first protagonists of the evening come.
knocking They barely have a demo and a three-song flexi to their credit, but with ages between 18 and 20, they are by far the youngest, and therefore, one of the groups with the greatest projection among those located in their coordinates, especially if we stick to the qualitative leap between its two editions to date. “18 minutes of pure brutality, the way you like it”, Anso assured me before getting behind the drums to complete the quartet and undertake a repertoire without respite between each of its eight songs, including a revealing cover of Killing Time. Revealing because they drink more from NYHC than from UK82, comfortable in that hardcore crossover, whether it’s bordering Boston or New York, or Tampa Bay or the Bay Area. They crush us with “Nagusikeri Faltsue”, with a Katxi unable to sit still, as if not knowing where to unleash his rage in the form of guttural rumbles that bring them closer to thrash and even death, outstanding students of the new old school of theirs. “Siempre Rudo” is a declaration of intent as is his version of “Backtrack”, and “Escape” and that declaration of his own war that appeared on the compilation “Chaos in Basque Country” sponsored between our borders cannot be taken together. “You have nowhere to run.” A rhythm section that borders on the tribal of pre-Roadrunner Sepultura and Madball or SOIA phrases, without giving up skate punk guitars and solos from sunny Venice Beach that could well come from Mike Ball or Scott Ian, to end with the punch which is “NSP”: “I can’t stand the peace of cowards!” Little more to add.
the bermeans Wait. cruz They have a short discography that can be summed up in a 7”/K7 and two songs included in two separate compilations, “Kaosa Euskal Herrian” (Mendeku) and the previously mentioned “Chaos in Basque Country” (Tough Ain’t Enough), which It doesn’t prevent their concerts from turning into massive drunkenness that brings together sailors from other ships (such as Tatxers’ drummer or Andoni VULK) together with crews faithful to ships in which their members also work, such as Revertt, Ogre and Aŕesi. They don’t row as much towards the hardcore skinhead as one might assume, and the Oi! It is still another influence of bare-knuckle rock’n’roll that turns into pub rock between rivers of zerbeza and raised fists. “Forget your sorrows by drowning in seas of alcohol.” They attack the hi-hat with the classicism of AC/DC, but fired by their guitar and bass cannonades they are a locomotive, a drifter that only moves forward and knows no more ziaboga than the speedy turns of the drums. A “Constant Siege”, without a doubt. Eneko (Feline) is a greaser possessed by the camaraderie that music exudes from him, half Bon Scott, half Iggy Pop; a troublemaker impossible to contain on the tables, always looking for a confrontation with his own microphone in hand, either to hit them with it spitting hooliganism and fraternity, or to give it up to the troops and take a breath for the next assault. The sea and the saltpeter are inherent to his proposal, as demonstrated by that Bermian (“Erregie zaldidxe”) that they articulate in lyrics that seem to come out of marine songs and that turn their concerts into drunkenness on dry land after returning from the high seas. “La Muerte Por Babor” comes to us, and on the back of death (“sendo!”, they roar) also the end of the gig, with that hymn that is “Bermio 1939” and its “MA-TXI-TXA-KO!” partying in the mosh. Like a shot.
Kult Parnaso are the inevitable inheritance of the extinct Trinkete Antitxoko in an attempt to continue forming a cultural triangle that they have always established in Gernika together with Iparragirre and Astra, but they are differentiated by a rogue point that can be felt in their way of doing things (for example, the music podcast “Jazz con Papada” that they perform in their space) and that is not even painted to the two proposals of the evening.
Pelomono (header photo) were complete strangers to me, beyond knowing that they are a duo formed by Pedro de Dios (Guadalupe Plata). Highly recommended by Ander (Les Pedantes), I approached the industrial building without any preconceptions to find the strangest drum kit I’ve ever seen: a garbage can as a base kettledrum, a paint bucket as an aerial , and kick drum, a leather suitcase held upright with a wedge, as if it were one of those bucket drummers that are exhibited on the corner of Madison Square. Grenadians, however, seem to have more frequented the dusty crossroads where Robert Johnson sold his soul to the Devil, and decked out in a Mexican wrestler mask and gorilla mask, they take the stage to buy ours in their dark surf blues. Primitive and primitive, cinematic, as if the guitar came from a desert that mixes the aridity of “Paris, Texas” with the beginning of Kubrick’s “2001”, only that the ape is not armed with a femur, but with drumsticks, maces and maracas. They’re hypnotic as Iron Butterfly, endless as the scroll Kerouac wrote “On the Road” on, and turn Parnassus into a sort of underground jazz club, like Ry Cooder playing at the Mos Easley tavern but with more smoke. Circular drum patterns captivate us, like The Ex Afrikaans (“soon all cities will have the same monuments”, but Gernika has its own) or the motorik of Pony Bravo playing in the Alhambra. Andalusian and from the border, they have been presenting their appropriately titled “Gibraltar”, music for surfing without waves in the Sahara, and they handle the tension like some narcotic Tortoise led by Dylan Carlson, with punctual arrangements of synths that sound the same as arabesques, as dub, that to Devo. They encourage us to dance with ragtime, but without leaving the sand and entering the sea; liturgical and earthly like David Eugene Edwards or Mark Lanegan, but with pop cracks through which Brian Wilson escapes. They end up adding to the set a homemade instrument between the ocarina and the flute, as if revealing that they are actually snake charmers who have manipulated us at their own pace and whim. If that’s the case, another day we’ll talk about speaking at concerts.
After the aperitif, Sonic Trash They came out with the atmosphere of the joint at the right point for their recipe, and they put all the meat on the grill from the starting gun. If you have seen them at any of the gigs on the “King Kong Party” tour, you already know what they have and how they spend it, but despite the apparent precariousness of playing a foot above the ground, at Kult Parnaso they managed to Great sound that made us enjoy to the core the compositional talent behind those songs. They make the place a personal Studio54, sweat and tobacco, and they take to the road lysergic and garaged, like LSD and speed but with more school than a desk. They are the bad boys who stole your sandwich at recess or your jantoki money, the Patio/Parnaso Band: Ekaitz with a Beach Boys cap and shirt acting as Ray Manzarek and David in front as gang leader, a Morrison crooner constantly relying on the microphone on the know-how of his lieutenant Juanjo on the guitar, while Lander acts as a bully capable of anything on the four strings and the recently incorporated Danel (Dead Bronco) brings a physicality to the patches that the contribution of the previous Mario or Marina was lacking. A punch that brings them closer if possible to Lagartija Nick, with the vice of El Columpio Asesino, but from Bilbao. Inevitably botxeros, they vindicate clubs in the town like Gure Txoko, High or the one that welcomes us, because to be a txirene, you can be born wherever you want. “Bilbao Speed City” or “Ez Dago Anfetarik”. Nightlife and treachery. “Ahoaz bagoaz”, but without bragging. “Tick, tock, tick, tock”, the time to return home will come, but for now the curtains hide the sunlight and the perversions. Let’s keep dancing. The great sound of the room allows us to perceive nuances of 90s alternative rock such as Smashing Pumpkins or Screaming Trees, comfortable in that curse and cult band status, but also luminous as in the Brit pop of Ocean Color Scene, Pulp or Suede with a Brett Anderson rogue in front. By the time “Hey Girl!” we seem to be in a bathroom where everything that happens is cloudy, cloudy with steam but sounding crystal clear like shots of vodka. Coffee, drink, cigar, and “Acelerado” shoots us from the vertices of the Triángulo de Amor Bizarro plus noise rock to end with applause from the respectable. Long live Lekuek and his people.