Icaros are medicine music. The songs and incantations taught by elderly shamans and utulized to aid ayahuasca visions and heal the sick. Power disguised as hymn. The wails of the possessed. An attempt to drill toward the supernatural, via means accessible to anyone with a willing larynx and proper proximity to the proper psychedelic panaceas.
Mexicans With Guns hail from neither Mexico nor the Peruvian Amazon, where ayahuasca grows on unruly vines. Ernest Gonzales, who is Mexicans With Guns, calls San Antonio home and does graphic design while running the stellar Antipop imprint. But Los Angeles might as well be his second home, considering his most recent releases have been with the local Stones Throw-affiliated Innovative Leisure and Friends of Friends.
I once described Mexicans With Guns as Gonzales' "a luchador-mask-sporting alter ego who makes adamantine beats that sound like dubstep remixes of Baltimore club tracks made by a man who may or may not have assassinated Herb Alpert in a fit of rage." The Free the Robots remix of "Icaros" supports that assertion. Gonzales' Latin influence is muted in favor of FTR's punushing quicksilver attack, a monocrome medley of sky-is-falling snares and synths that wobble like Bay Area bridges.
It's an icaro, all right, a heavy, disorienting potion that speaks well to the skills of both artists. Mexicans With Guns play the Low End Theory on Wednesday for the release of the latest FoF Gem, FoF Presents Volume 3.
It's a good idea to bring your chakapas and your most powerful Andean potions.
Download: (Pop & Hiss Premiere)
-- Jeff Weiss
Photo: Mexicans With Guns logo; Credit: Antipop