10 Rock en Español Albums to Listen to Before You Die

Categories: Albums we like

7. Hola/Chau, Los Fabulosos Cadillacs


I was never into the Argentine group as much as I was supposed to, if only because I caught them at the end of their career, when they were going through the motions. And I'm actually a bigger fan of lead singer Vicentico's solo efforts. But when they were on, they were on, and the proof is in this live double-album, a recording of their final concert before breaking up--that is, before the incessant pleas of nostalgia by fans had them reunite a couple of years ago, to middling results. You just don't get the greatest hits (like "El Matador," perhaps the first rock en español song to cross over when it appeared in Grosse Point Blank) but the rush of tens of thousands of fans and a rejuvenation of the war horses, if only for a night.

6. Clandestino, Manu Chao


This album is the Exodus of Latin alternative, spun to annoying death by by progressive gabachos who think they're down for la causa because they once attended a Chao concert in Europe, or because they once had a Chicana girlfriend who introduced them to it. Clandestino is so overplayed at this point by pendejos that I have a visceral reaction to it of nausea, just like I did to the Beach Boys for years because K-Earth spins them so much. And this sucks, because Chao's 1998 effort (damn, 1998 was a banner year for the genre, ¿qué no?) is a bona fide masterpiece: a pastiche on the underclass underscored by reggae, comedy (this song, "Welcome to Tijuana" bashes Mexican politicians and American imperialism, all with Herb Alpert brass) political rallying points, seemingly random audio excerpts, annoying voices, and all other sorts of music and philosophies absorbed by the gypsy-esque Chao. Honestly, this album should be higher on the list--but I still need to be deprogrammed from hating it.

5. Hijos del Culo, Bersuit Vergarabat


I maintain that Bersuit is the most underrated rock en español group of them all, an anarchic collective ala Ozomatli except raunchier, better, wilder and smarter. Their live shows at the late, great JC Fandango were the stuff of legend, almost always ending with lead singer Gustavo Cordera commanding all the honeys to join him on stage and strut their stuff while their guys remained on the dance floor, slamming into each other silly. So why didn't they get more exposure ala Soda Stereo and Los Fabulosos Cadillacs? It's because they were stubbornly provincial, sticking to Argentine lingo and musical traditions that the rest of Latin America never bothered to learn, then smash them silly with punk and metal. Even more crucially, their song subjects are almost universally about Argentina in the 1990s and early 2000s, a Grand Guignol of a collapsing economy, corrupt government officials, the destroyed society that arose as a result, and the never-disappearing legacy of los desaparecidos of the Dirty War always lurking in the background. Their most famous song, "Señor Cobranza," essentially accused then-President Carlos Menem of being a drug dealer; their best song, "La Argentinidad al Palo" (which translates as "Hard-Core Argentinian" but literally means "A Boner for Argentina") is as great an indictment of patriotism as Paths of Glory.

But their best album? Hijos del Culo (Sons of the Asshole--yeah, that's not going to cross over into Good Morning, America...). The tracks represents Bersuit at their most varied and playful, like "La del Toro," a ska-punk-flamenco mashup that imagines the band taking on the role of a bull and, um, sodomizing the bullfighter--the ultimate revenge of the 99 percent? In the Bersuit world, yes! And if you don't believe me, the album is dedicated to "the 70 percent of the Third World that has been born through the asshole--those who were shitted out."


Advertisement

My Voice Nation Help
21 comments
Keoniana
Keoniana

@OCWeeklyMusic What about 'Mana Unplugged'? I'm not a huge Mana, but the sound production quality was great......

gera_r1979
gera_r1979

 "Cancion Animal" de Soda Stereo? "Clix Modernos" de  Charly Garcia? "Senderos de Traicion" de Heroes del Silencio? Shakira es Rock???

claudiacamvaca
claudiacamvaca

Well, a lot to say here. First of all--what is wrong with a spanish version of Rolling Stone. Did you not know that this is sold throughout latin america? Why shouldn´t they offer one in spanish to the latin american public?

Secondly--practically none of this is "Rock en Español". Most of it is pop ( shakira for example) or some other alternative type of music such as Ska or a mix of things.  Rock en Español or Rock en tu idioma as it was know,  was a rock movement, inserted within a political time frame ( 80´s and 90´s) that reflected a need for classical rock in spanish. it was born mostly from the beautiful brain of  Gustavo Cerati and his band Soda Stereo ( shame on you for not mentioning them!)

in L.A. and Miguel Rios in Spain. Both were born from political censorship and a need to express their ideas through music.

So this list should be topped by Soda Stereo and Miguel Rios, closely followed by Charlie García, Miguel Mateos, orquesta Mondragón, Caifanes, Keny y los electricos, Botellita de jerez,Joaquin Sabina,Cecilia Toussaint, Jaime Lopez without whome much of everyone else´s music wouldn´t exist since he¨s mexicos most prolific rock composer--incluiding music for Café Tacuba). others can include: azul violeta, el profeta del nopal, maldita vecindad, Eli Guerra, Nacha Pop. If you´re going to write about Rock en Español, you really should do some research first. At least you didn´t include Maná in the list.

hrondon48
hrondon48

Where is Zurdok's Hombre Sintetizador..¿? 

Jesus Olvera
Jesus Olvera

But since you ask. 1. Naco es Chido (BMG) de Botellita de Jerez 2. Vagabundo (Sony) de Robi Rosa 3. Clics modernos (Polygram, 1983) de Charly García 4. El Hombre Del Traje Gris (Sony) de Joaquin Sabina 5. El Silencio (BMG) de Caifanes 6. Urbanistorias (Pentagrama) de Rockdrigo Gonzalez 7. En Esta Ciudad (Sony,) de Cecilia Toussaint 8. Descanso Dominical (Sony) de Mecano 9. Jaime Lopez (BMG) de Jaime Lopez 10. Leche (BMG) de Fobia

Jesus Olvera
Jesus Olvera

As soon as I saw Shakira I realize this list was bullshit.

diazdelnorte
diazdelnorte

Well, technically they're rap, but they were also parte of the 'avanzada regia' rock attitude: I think you missed Control Machete's Mucho Barato. 

Also, where's 'El Circo' de Maldita Vecindad? (also, they're esentially ska, but they might be defined as a mix of punk WITH ska).

And this one is a no brainer... how could you forget '¿Dónde Jugarán las Niñas?' de Molotov? That album broke so many paradigms in its heyday that you shouldn't have missed it!!

GustavoArellano
GustavoArellano

@CupcakeCardio ALWAYS was annoyed by them--although "Mariposa" is a badass song!

GustavoArellano
GustavoArellano

@JDKun That's the expected choice, though! "11 Episodios" highlights all the Soda genius in its proper setting! Hope you're well!

Raintes
Raintes

@GustavoArellano @JDKun @ELopetegui Fobia's first album should be top 3. Idk about Amigos and El gran silencio. They're not really "rock."

EddieAsWell
EddieAsWell

@GustavoArellano and I used @jdkun and Ernesto's books for my thesis!

EddieAsWell
EddieAsWell

@GustavoArellano and Nacha Pop, Mikel Erentxun but that's to advanced for the gabbas.

Now Trending

Anaheim Concert Tickets

From the Vault

 

Events

Loading...