I was excited when I heard that the newest release from Reykjavik’s Lady Boy Records was for the Argentinian electro-duo Farmacia, not because of any familiarity I had with their music but because I’ll be making my first ever visit to South America later this Spring, which will include some time in Buenos Aires. I haven’t started doing my music research for the trip yet, so this brand new album called Suero is a nice appetizer.
Suero starts strong with “Yello,” a track built around some very old-timey sounding beats that combines the old and the new in interesting ways. But don’t be fooled – this isn’t a retro-futuristic album, as I quickly discovered on the next tune “Adan de Adan,” which builds it’s soniscape around backwards masking. This gave me some flashbacks to sitting in my room back when I was in high school, recording Led Zeppelin and Pink Floyd albums to cassette and then manually flipping over the tape innards so I could play them backwards and look for those infamous “Satanic messages.” I’m not certain if Farmacia are trying to get me to worship the Dark Lord on “Adan de Adan,” or perhaps just encouraging me to eat more fiber. To be honest, I rather like not knowing. That and I’m too lazy to bother playing it backwards, even though technology has made that super easy to do. Too easy, really. The kids today will never understand how hard we had to work to listen to backwards messages on albums back in the day. Uphill. Both ways. The struggle was real. Stupid kids today.
ANYWAY… back to Suero. At the risk of sounding obvious, Farmacia use a lot of repetition within their compositions, and that sticks out because they utilize unusual sonic elements. Plus they seriously mix it up, bringing a broad range of styles to Suero‘s nine songs – you’ve got stuff that approaches EDM, but other pieces that are more like electro versions of the Butthole Surfers (I’m thinking “Gangrena (Versión II)” and “Sábanas (Live Only For Us)” here), and even pure ambient (“Espiral”) and an acappella track (“La Cifra”). There’s a little something for everyone.
As always with Lady Boy, Suero is available as a cassette in a limited edition of 50 copies. (♠) You can listen to the whole thing HERE for free and to your heart’s content as well.
(♠) Lady Boy has put out 17 releases so far, and while most are on laser etched cassettes in limited runs of 50 copies, they’ve also put out a couple of “records” engraved on lucite, a CD, and a tangerine with a download code etched onto it. I’m reliably told that Nicolas from the label still has one of these in his refrigerator.