Review Summary: A sound that came to change Galician music panorama, this burning tribute to youthful fun is always a good laugh.
The son of a musician becoming a musician himself. That's the case of Xurxo Souto, the main man behind Os Diplomáticos de Monte Alto. After learning to play accordion with his father in the working class neighbourhood of Monte Alto, in A Coruña, he decided to start his own band, mixing his folk playing with the music he enjoyed the most: punk and ska.
Influenced by the basque band Kortatu
, Siniestro Total
, and Os Resentidos
(whose bandleader, Anton Reixa, produces this first effort), his band will soon become the first of a broader short-lived avant-garde whose effects are still being felt today in the Galician music panorama: bravu: a fiery mix of folk music, punk and many other music styles characterized by its good humour and popular thematic.
In this first album, almost entirely without distortion, Xurxo's accordion is the main driving force behind the frantic ska beats with invite to pogo, to drink wine and to eat roasted meat till the end of times. Yeah, this is distilled fun. Any of this album's songs its suitable to be a drunken party soundtrack.
The lyrics are the funniest part of the album, but they're sung entirely in Galician, so a big part of the fun is lost if you don't know what they're singing about. Transvestite prostitutes looking forward for a sex change operation, tired workers playing card games, mystical exotic doctors which develop powdered wine, drivers addicted to race in rural roads or commandos assembled just to party are some of the cartoonish characters developed by Souto's lyrics, with his usual proletarian rhetoric.
So what Souto had to offer was a lively soundtrack of working class environment and enjoyment. And it works, but if you're not from Galicia some fun will be lost in translation. Anyway, if you like easy, funny music or folk punk you could give this a try, at least for the sake of historical significance.