What do you get when you cross Mexico with Morrissey? Mexrrissey! Camilo Lara leads this Mexican super group and their album No Manchester: Mexico Goes Morrissey is a tribute to the English singer Morrissey who is absolutely adored by the faithful in Mexico. The album recreates the iconic music of The Smiths front man. Camilo gives a short insight to Mexrrissey through a quick Q&A with Hi Fi Way: The Pop Chronicles.
When did you discover the music of Morrissey/The Smiths? Do you remember the moment?
Of course. It was at home. My older brother use to own a bunch of kick ass new wave vinyl’s when I was a kid. I loved the albums by the cover. So I was kind of obsessed with The Queen is Dead album artwork. I sneak into his room and play it over and over. It was totally my children soundtrack.
Which album had the biggest influence on you and why?
I guess it was Viva Hate. That was my very first CD. I feel he was inventing something unique. A crooner for the outsider. A guy who liked the same literature as me and was not impressed by the current state of things. A free thinker…
Mexico has had a long appreciation and love for Morrissey, why do you think he is so popular in Mexico?
Well, he connects on so many levels. Especially with the Mexicans in the US. He connects from fashion level to a deeper one. He is a migrant as we are. He loves melodrama, we love Telenovelas. He has a real twisted sense of humor, we have it too!
Was it a long and challenging process re-interpreting his songs?
Yes. I really want to re-interpret the songs as if Moz was Mexican (from Mexico City in particular). What if we get all these Mexican references to his beautiful songs and we re-interpret those songs in Spanish. That was the main and most fun thing to do.
For someone who is debating about buying tickets to Mexrissey how would you describe the Mexrissey sound?
The live show is a punk rock experience (with mariachi horns). It is super energetic and wild, we have a lot of Cumbia, Mariachi, Mambo. You kind of know all the songs but you don’t know how they sound in a Mexican style. It’s fun! I love to play with the rest musicians . They are la creme de la creme of Mexican indie scene. You cant get better than that.
What can they expect from the show?
People getting naked. Jumping, mothers giving birth, tons of sex…mambo!
Is the band always learning new Morrissey songs to include in the show or do you stick with the more popular songs?
We try to change from one tour to the next. But we love the hit singles. They are always bullet proof.
Do fans shout out a lot for the Morrissey classics?
Yes. They even sing them in English. Its a fun non-communication experience (hehehe)
Have you been overwhelmed by the audience support?
Well…it is therapy. Never overwhelmed. We love what happens in a show. I’m an electronic musician inmy project (Mexican Institute of Sound) so I love the kind of things that happens with a full band.
Naming the band would have been interesting? Any thoughts to the name Moz-arichi?
Hahaha probably for my solo -tribute project!
Interview by Rob Lyon
Mexrissey is on at the Adelaide Festival at the Riverbank Palais on Friday 10 March at 8.30pm. Tickets from the Adelaide Festival website.
Learn more by checking out the Spotify playlist…