03/08/2017 Culture

The best kept secret of Argentine rock

Loquero one of the most creative and personal bands of rock in Spanish, born in the post dictatorship of Argentina, possessors of a cursed poetry in their lyrics that ride impossible melodies, with more than 25 years of career will present their seventh studio album, reason why we interviewed its singer "Chary".


Loquero "De la ruta"

I'm going to tell you a good story / a dead newborn on the sidewalk / Mom had it in a box of plates / breakfast lunch and snack for rats.

With the end of the military dictatorship and the arrival of democracy, the '80s in Argentina were a decade of cultural explosion, opening to new artistic expressions, but still with latent repression and a police formed in the lead years, that went out in search of young blood.


The political class, during the Presidency of Raúl Alfonsín, didn´t know or couldn´t accompany the new airs of freedom with a political and economic program that would restore rights, guarantees, and an improvement in the poor economic situation in which was the country.


Finally, in '89, everything would explode in the air, with a market coup that led to hyperinflation, the president resigning, and assuming a student of the Washington Consensus, whom applied a neoliberal plan that implied definitively ending the productive apparatus Argentina, submerging half of the population in poverty and unemployment, and young people in despair, in the "No Future", in families that succumbed to the destruction of the social fabric.


Thank you for the AIDS friend / I am no longer afraid of this paradise / thank you for giving me my hand / and for cold needles / furrowing my skinny veins


Courtesy El Cambio Music/LANA


The meeting with Chary is in Manolos, a historic place of hot chocolate and churros, from his native Mar del Plata city, while his wife and daughter sit at the table next to ours.


The place of the meeting and seeing him as a family father surprised me, specially for those who grew up like him, in the punk environment. But from my surprise I felt identified, "if I hadn´t mutated like this I would be an idiot, or I would be dead", says Chary.


Chary is considered "a survivor" to that dark time of the country and of a generation."All my friends died, I don´t have anyone of that time, maybe to normal people doesn´t happen that when you´re 20, your friends bite all (injected of drugs) and at 30 there is none. "


Maybe that sadness that Chary transmits in his lyrics "now there are other people in my life, but there is an empty, now I have to continue, all that generation of the `No future´, I think we had it incorporated, which is more logical, if you have no future, if you don´t see it, then we break, the subject of drug abuse was logical."


Chary also has for drug abuse a very particular "negative" look, which is comprehensive, for someone far from the excesses that carries their current with the love of their children "I consider drugs to be a good thing in my life, I didn´t have a bad time, maybe it hasn´t been good for my people, but it helped me a lot at some point to have my drugs, because at least I had something, it was a lifesaver in a moment, I'm lucky to be able to tell it, I'm not going to be angry with my past, with what I did, the time I lost drugging is over".

To go to paradise being dead / to seek glory by being alive


Camila Gavieiro/LANA


The songs of Loquero can be classified: we are talking about rock, punk, pop, in its new album there is hip hop, cumbia "lysergic" and even a waltz, but it´s its concept that surpasses all category, entering the world of Loquero can be a deep journey, a dark tunnel, where there is always a light at the end.


"We are true to ourselves," says Chary, for whom the unforeseeable part of his musical proposal "is part of the punk idiosyncrasy of unexpected betrayal, which isn´t what you bought, I´m already reading the fanpage comments of Loquero with the advances of the new album: 'treason! What's this?! ', and that's because they listened to the hip-hop song... when they hear the cumbia will burn the computer," Chary says, laughing, talking about "Winter", the rapped theme that the label "El Cambio Music" launched as an advance. Chary explains, "Winter has a very radical letter, but in a friendly, bourgeois context, because I´m a bourgeois, I have become one, things have been mutating"


But it isn´t from now, if you review its discography you may doubt that it´s the same band "we always kept out of stereotypes and trying to avoid the clichés of the genre, always open musically, the head has to be open, in this album (new album called "Fabulous Creators of Paranoia") there is a waltz of the decade of the '20, played with creole guitars and there is a psychedelic cumbia, passed by peyote... we can compose a love song, but mixed with a large cocaine line like this table, in fact the cumbia is called `A line and a Tequila´".

I wanted to make a pop group / to sell many records / but I came out this beggar / damn and sick


Camila Gavieiro/LANA


The second generation of punk bands from the late 80's and early 90's in Argentina, after the pioneers Los Violadores, Alerta Roja or Los Baraja, who were born in the midst of the dictatorship singing to repression, has been one of the most creative and spontaneous musical movements of rock in Spanish. Bands like Attaque 77, 2 minutos, Flema, Mal Momento, Todos tus Muertos, Fun People, No Demuestra Interés y Pensar o Morir, to name a few, were unique and absolutely different.


In that scene was Loquero, a band of cult that surpasses the stylistic barriers of the punk, that lives in the margins of the mainstream. For Chary "we don´t enter within the conventionalism of the punk or the hardcore".


Loquero with the running of his records proved to be a cyclic band, almost bipolar. It´s no coincidence that its first concert was in El Borda, an emblematic neuropsychiatrist hospital of Buenos Aires, in times of cassette demos, where music still maintained its mystery, where the bands were discovered by talk to talk, and the shows spread by flyers.


They went from a first dark, claustrophobic album, an ode to rats, to marginality, an extreme punk record, like "Temor Morboso a la Exposición Pública", to an album of soft and dreamy melodies like "Club de Solos" but with a melancholy in its music and mostly in its lyrics that only has of paragon in this country to the tango.


With their third album "Fantasy" deepen the turn of his proposal, Chary describes it as "a clean thing, cute happy, but it was a terrible moment, at that moment everything was bad in the country, it was 2001, we were like outside of this world, I think that's a good thing of the band, not to go with the herd, or at same side where everyone goes".

If I can get out of the real world I will be a militant of utopia.


Camila Gavieiro/LANA


After a record hiatus with a 6 years material, with a double live album and a DVD, the reissue of all its discography on CD, and the first edition of its classic vinyl records, Loquero launches its new album "Fabulous Creators of Paranoia", which caused our talk.


Chary said that the delay is "a product of gentrification, you're letting yourself be, and this album was like that, we had music of 15 or 20 tracks and we didn´t have the lyrics, and I thought I said everything, I have nothing more to say, let's do another band, let's do something else, change the name, and the guitarist insisted, and I was sending the songs by message, and they accumulated, until the time to rehearse came. The lyrics were made in the rehearsals, and while we were recording I didn´t have them all, and recorded the base with a reference voice, so a week before when I had to record the voice I put and finished the lyrics".


Chary continues with the gestation process of the new album, "there isn´t much study of the songs, it came out like that, the waltz came out like this, this is it, we recorded it like this, and if this doesn´t like, bad luck. The cumbia guitar is a guitar such like the Pixies, which has nothing to do with cumbia; then there are pop songs, kind, as if it was something that makes you very disgusted, like Estelares (an Argentine band of soft pop rock), came out like that, and then there are songs spicy, more explicit, in terms of content, a little bit of poison, and there is a sadness in the songs, that I can not avoid it".


Does the passage of time change the topics of Loquero´s songs?


I listen to the new album and I see many things from my adolescence. My biggest daughter writes and I told her "do you want to do a song?", because the truth is that I have no more songs, and from there came "Crudeza" (another of the new album's advances), and it's not very different from anything I wrote at my 18 years old, I like how she writes. It's my daughter and I love her. Maybe punk rock itself will always take me to the same place. So I don´t know if I could avoid the totality of the clichés of my adolescence, maybe I´m an eternal teenager as my mother says.


Now you are going to play in Groove, possibly the biggest show in that you have done in Buenos Aires, is the most important date in the history of Loquero?


No, I don´t give a shit about Loquero, I'm not interested, everything has been done. I lived in a place where everyone told me that food had to be put at the roof of the house because the rats ate it. My mom and dad were just workers, so they told me `Music? What music? If you don´t study you have to go to work´, on the outskirts of Mar del Plata, a poor neighborhood.


I break all those things, with my mistakes, with my madness, I did what I wanted, and I'll always do what I want to do. Loquero is good, I like to travel, I love all the people who want Loquero, I don´t have Facebook, I don´t have a cell phone, I don´t want to communicate with anyone, only with her (pointing to her wife) and my daughter, and also I have a son in Buenos Aires, and my older daughter, but nothing more.


Loquero presents his new album "Fabulous Creators of Paranoia" on Saturday 5 in Groove, Av. Santa Fe 4389, Palermo, Buenos Aires, Argentina.


* The subtitles belong to Loquero's lyrics from several of its albums.

Juan Manuel Fonrouge/Camila Gavieiro/LANA