Mexico is renowned worldwide for a lot of different things: beautiful landmarks, Corona and tequila (and drunken people all over the world), among others. Mexican pop and rock music is also very popular, but it’s been hard for math rock bands to get the same recognition. Nothing to worry about though, we math rock lovers are well aware that this kind of music is not for everyone. Bands like Austin TV launched a wave of a math rock-like bands in the mid-2000’s, but it was short lived and soon died out due to the lack of press and label support. Since the early 2010’s, however, there has been a slow but impressive math rock revival, becoming what I refer to as math mexa. Here are ten releases to get you into the spin of things over here. Enjoy yourselves.
La última noche del mundo (2003)
The pioneers of Mexican instrumental math rock. It was hard to describe a band like AUSTIN TV back in 2006. A five-piece band playing sweet angular guitar melodies, clean drums, wonky synthesizers, and perfectly timed samples. In addition to this, they really committed to the extent of an art project. Watching them live was quite an experience, unfortunately, they broke up in 2010, but their legacy is undeniable.
Yo Triceratop! EP (2014)
Simple, angular, raw. Three words that describe this band from the southern state of Oaxaca. While some bands are disciplined and technical, YT! members started from scratch and you can notice the lack of technique in some songs, and I’m not saying this is a bad thing: it’s the passion that makes this album beautiful. Not particularly into voices, but they wouldn’t be the same without them, you know.
Canis Allegro (2018)
These guys simply rock the house wherever they play. One of the youngest bands in the Mexican scene, they started playing in 2015, and they play like a beast. Five friends playing with the only purpose of making you head bang. They are often compared to CHON and the resemblance is uncanny. “Gregor” is my personal fave.
Ciudad Dormitorio (2018)
Close your eyes and let this band from Pachuca (my hometown) invade your spirit. If you like Alarmist, Tangled Hair or Good Game, you will definitely like Joven Bosnia. A soft burst of perfectly coordinated songs, along with lyrics that add much to the whole experience.
Randoom Process (2017)
Originally a three-piece, experimental math rock duo located in the State of Mexico Ikiatari try to keep things simple: a guitar and a set of drums just to go back to basics. The proof you don’t need much gear, but love, to perform beautiful music.
Underground Communication Centre
Haikai EP (2014)
Whoa! You won’t believe your ears. Underground Communication Centre are ahead of their time, or maybe they were born too late. You can notice the early 00’s metal and experimental influence in both their EPs. I had to go through a 5-year process of listening different genres to understand how virtuous these guys are. They’re cooking their third piece, most likely to be released next year.
Listening to this album is such an experience. Five songs full of wild technique, aggressive riffs and punk-ish tendencies. Not exactly a math band, but to understand the Mexa scene, we must go through bands like these. Formed in the heart of the country, the band gives it all on the stage. One of my personal favourite bands. They played alongside Totorro in their 2017 Mexican tour, and that’s something to be proud of.
¡Cazamos Cometas! are a 4-piece band in Mexico City. I love this album just for how beautiful its songs are. It’s good to see how DIY artists are more passionate than anyone, especially in Mexico, where pop is everywhere, and rock is believed to be dead.
FRDZ – Fernández
Fernández EP (2017)
The boys in FRDZ were just born for this. Fernández EP is a solid math rock piece that reminds you of Jardin de la Croix. Perfectly balanced riffs and drums, and the use of voices for ambience, perfect for a long bus ride or your daily commute to work or school. Do the songs as a whole make a Breaking Bad reference or is it just me? ¡Viva Fernández!
Run Golden Boys
The 4-piece band from Mexico City are a fine example of how Latin American math rock should sound like. I believe every region in the world has a stamp in the music it produces, and I must say Run Golden Boys just stick with that. This is an album with ups and downs. It doesn’t matter how you feel, these guys will make you feel better every time.
Once you’ve checked these mexa albums out, be sure to check out our World Of Math interactive math rock map, where we have even more Mexican bands listed!