IbonRG, Enrike Hurtado: Accessory notes for listening to oMOrruMU baMAt

Interview with IbonRG & Enrike Hurtado


How did the idea of collaborating on this album come up?

IBONRG -This album arose in January 2018, from the death of the poet and txalapartari Joxan Artze. Then I was proposed to participate in a tribute that would take place on his first anniversary. I wanted that, at least in the part of my tribute, the txalaparta had an important place, and I thought of inviting Enrike Hurtado, since he works developing sotfwares created by himself. Among them, one dedicated to interact with the txalaparta. So, the first step was to invite Enrike and start reflecting on Artze’s texts, as well as on his way of working, in order to create different materials from all of this.

How was the composition process?

IBONRG -The album brings together works composed in two periods. On the one hand, the materials properly created for the two 2019 tribute concerts (more or less, half of the pieces were created between 2018 and 2019). And a second phase, in the spring of 2020, already with the intention of recording an album that same summer. There are 11 pieces in total.

What are the songs like?

ENRIKE HURTADO -The songs are quite different from each other. Each one comes from a different process and with different instrumentation. Some have piano and voice, others have piano and voice and txalaparta, others are collages made with the computer, piano and computer… there is a bit of everything. Each one has contributed elements and materials from his own field. We were looking for a union, a balance between both.

How was the recording process?

IBONRG -We recorded the whole album here in this place, by ourselves, with this piano, with our microphones and different material that we borrowed. We did it all during the summer of 2020, at night, in peace and quiet, and we used this piano, a txalaparta and the computer. We have also counted on the technical help and collaboration of Tzesne, who has been in charge of the mixes. On the other hand, the graphic material, the design and the booklet that comes with the vinyl has been made by the artist Jon Martin. As for the technical aspect, Estanis Elorza has done the mastering and Ibon Aguirre has left us material and helped us with the midi. But basically, all the production is ours.

What is the title of the album?

ENRIKE HURTADO -The title comes from one of Joxan Artze’s many poems in which he played with the sound, that kind of visual poetry he did, where the sound part has a lot of presence. In this case “oMOrruMU baMAt” would be ‘orru bat’ (a roar).

IBONRG -He intersperses syllables a little with the idea of the txalaparta, of that play of tenses, of that trot. That can be glimpsed in your visual poetry, especially in your works from the 60s and 70s, on which we have based this album.

What is the order of the songs?

ENRIKE HURTADO -We have tried to find a balance. As the material is so different, the objective has been to compensate the sonorous material, so that the piano tracks are not all in a row, or the txalaparta tracks all in a row.

IBONRG -Yes, the fact that there are such different sonorities has caused us headaches when it came to establishing the order. But getting this arrangement right is part of the game, since the texts are also very different from each other. We have tried to find a way out, where the vanishing point could be.

Any considerations on first listening?

IBONRG -As it happens in almost all music, more than one listening is necessary to get into the songs. As you get to know the songs you discover new things and, at the same time, the order of the songs also brings a meaning to each one. A meaning that gives the previous or the next song and that, separately, would not be identical. Not only with this album, I think this happens with all music. It is necessary to go deeper into that relationship.

Peña: Additional notes when listening to Carreiro

An interview with Peña


Where do the songs of ‘Carreiro’ come from?

TOÑO MARGARIÑOS – The songs of ‘Carreiro’ were not all formed at the same time. They do not have a single origin,
but they were composed for years instead, they are part of the bulk that was appearing during the first two, three years of the band’s formation. They were composed at different times.

How was the songwriting process?

The songs were composed independently of the line-up. We compose in a very basic way and then we rehearse them as a band together, just to prepare them for live. The songs are composed and designed in a very simple way.

How would you describe your songs?

In my opinion they are ultra simple songs. There is no intention of doing anything strange at the metric level, harmonies or structures. There is no desire to purportedly complicate the song structures. In this project the aim is to make music simple and easy, looking for that instant feeling that you can find naturally in popular music.

What does the album title mean?

We tried to find a common thread in hindsight and, well, there are several themes that are found in several songs. Basically love in all its meanings. Brotherly love, admiration, sensual love from a subject to the outside, for himself, for others, for nature… in short, there’s various ways of understanding love.

What does the order of the tracks respond to?

It is not very thought out, except for the position of some marked songs, such as the first one, which is ‘Burato’. An opening song, very gestural, which for me has an opening structure. Also ‘Renacemento’, which is the last of the second side, the last of the album. In that case, just the opposite, it is a hopeful and emotionally very positive ending.

How was the recording process?

The album was recorded mostly by us, with the help of many friends. The Cro! people, like David and Xavi, as well as many other who contributed on voices, like Laura, like Inés, don’t forget Muqui’s drums, plus other instruments that they loaned us… It took a long time, with the collaboration of many people and always in our homes. Each one by his side but, sometimes (in the times when it was allowed) getting together.

Who did you mix and master with?

We pre-mixed, we made spontaneous mixes. That material, as we are not professionals nor do we intend it, we sent it to Xavier Muñoz, who is the bassist of the singer of Stereolab, bassist of Alberto Montero as well, etc, a guy who works very well. He was in charge of making the mix. Later the master was done by Rafa Martínez del Pozo, an old acquaintance of the label (before Repetidor knew about this, we already undertook that work with him). In this type of productions, he is a person who respects the spaces and depths of the mix, something key in this type of music.

How should a first listening to ‘Carreiro’ be?

I don’t know if we are the ones who must say if the album is accessible or not but, of course, I always work with the desire that the songs will accessible. I have no interest in targeting a very specialized audience interested in one type of music. I think that what we have to do in this project is to make popular music, that’s it. Popular in every way, accessible and easy to listen to. Music that can develop its own speech from that simplicity, not the other way around. I’m not interested in making very complex music with very simple messages, but I want to make very simple music whose speeches – even political ones – appear after those first listens instead. I think this way is better or, at least, I aspire to it.

I hope you like this album. We have been doing it for years and finally we have been able to get it out, so even in this shit context that we have now, it’s a total success that it sees the light. We hope that something of what we’ve put into this album reaches you, and so that you’ll enjoy it. Thank you.

El relevo alemán: Additional notes when listening to La séptima extinción

An interview with El relevo alemán


How has the composition process of La séptima extinción been?

JC PEÑA -In fact there are some songs that came out right after we recorded the previous album, five years ago if I’m not mistaken. So, from then on, it’s been quite a long process.

CRISTINA ARROYO -Our former drummer, Zutoia, lives in Berlin and we used to take advantage of the moments when she comes. We recorded about five songs there, then we recorded another two and finished the process, if I remember correctly, last summer.

JC PEÑA -The main peculiarity of this record is that, due to circumstances, four drummers play there: Javier, who is our drummer now, Zutoia, who played with us for a long time, me, who recorded several songs of the album and well, Cristina, who made a percussion there. But that doesn’t take away any kind of coherence from the album, besides it ads a lot of grace to it because each drummer has his own personality.

JAVIER OTONES -I think that in the end what it gives is richness to the record. A whole album with the same person playing, at the end, has an own style that -no matter how dynamic the album is, no matter how dynamic the songs are- you don’t get if you put different people playing the same instrument in different songs. So, I believe it does contribute to it.

What are the songs of La séptima extinción like?

CRISTINA ARROYO -It is an album that I think reflects very well our live, our live concerts, and captures very well the spirit of the band.

JC PEÑA – I think that the songs are a compendium of what we have been doing since the first album, especially since the second one, because it is true that in the first one we were still there looking for a path, a little bit. I think that there are very dark songs. They’re very pop songs -it’s not mainstream of course-, but they are quite… In general I think that what we do is nothing experimental. There is enough melody, it is quite accessible within what we believe that a band of guitars should be, in which the electricity predominates and certain, or enough, forcefulness.

CRISTINA ARROYO – It does not have many artifices because we do not like them either and, as José Carlos said before, it has many edges.

What is the title of the album?

JC PEÑA – The title of the album is a macabre or gloomy joke, which is more macabre and gloomy considering all what we have experienced in recent months. The sixth extinction is supposed to be what is already causing human action in the world right now, in terms of mass extinction of species and such. Then the seventh would be our turn. It is a macabre joke that has been always in the tradition of the group, from the beginning.

What gear or technical configurations have you used to achieve such a sound?

JC PEÑA – Well, for us gear is very important, since the beginning, in large part due to Javier Ortiz and Estudios Brazil’s influence, because that’s where we saw and really appreciated the difference. Then, about guitars, I played basically with this Hiwatt here -it is a Hiwatt of the year 72- and with this Vox here, from year 65. With this, I basically recorded all guitars. It is true that we used in one or in a couple of songs a prehistoric amp: A Gibson from year 47 that I have home. It’s a combo and it also worked very well. About pedals. Actually I only use a Memory Man and some pedals, some fuzz Dwarfcraft that are quite martian and quite extreme. About drums we… if I’m not wrong… Well, the rest will talk about it, right? But as for drums, we recorded with a Premier Signia which Javi has there as well, although it’s not this one and, on the bass, we played with the usual Rickenbacker and an Ampeg B25, I think, which we’ve been recording with lately.

How was the recording of La séptima extinción?

JC PEÑA -We have recorded in Estudio Brazil, in Rivas, Madrid.

JAVIER OTONES – The truth is that I had never been recording in Brazil and the truth is that it was even more comfortable than I expected. Well, both Javi and his team made me feel super comfortable.

CRISTINA ARROYO -Once you’re there, everything goes a smoothly.

JC PEÑA – Because we have a good relationship with Javier Ortiz, who is the owner and the technician. Right now I think that we cannot conceive of El relevo alemán without the relationship that we have with Estudios Brazil and the sound that we have captured in the records. In fact, I can listen to the first album, the second one, and be just as happy as then and that, I believe, is thanks to Javi’s timeless approach to sound.

How do you recommend listening to La séptima extinción?

CRISTINA ARROYO – I think that in each listening, maybe, you can find a different dimension of the group and the sound, but I believe that, in general, the album is quite catchy and it captures quite faithfully what we do live.

JAVIER OTONES – I think it’s an album, knowing what El relevo alemán is about -as we’ve discussed on other occasions-, that is quite accessible.

JC PEÑA – I think it’s an album that has a lot of edges but is generally quite accessible. It has a lot of melodies and it’s true that it has a lot of electricity and a lot of force, otherwise it wouldn’t be us, but I think it’s actually quite melodic in a good way. Obviously we don’t do mainstream music, but I think it’s perfectly enjoyable for anyone who is interested in what alternative rock is, whatever you name it.

CRISTINA ARROYO -I recommend to lock yourself up at home and to enjoy the album at full volume please.

Tilde: Additional notes when listening to Algae

An interview with Tilde


How has the composition process of Algae been?

MATI PANDO – I usually take the ideas worked on in the form of lyrics and melody.

CARLOS SÁNCHEZ -Mati is not very fond of making choruses, so the discourse of the theme… You have to turn that idea, which was an incipient idea about a melody, into a song. Then you have to listen to a lot of what happens to know where you want to go, because you don’t have a chorus that says ‘OK, let’s go here’ and then the chorus ends I’m going to… No, it depends on what’s happening and it takes you to one place or another.

CARLA SUZART – Searching, experiencing, form, thing, sonorities, tonalities, rhythms and understanding, feeling, what was the best thing for this song. What it asks for.

MARIO VÉLEZ -On metrics we never worry about saying ‘come on, this song is going to be 3/4, this song is going to be 5/4’. No, we simply develop the song and what is best for it.

CARLA SUZART – I think the lyrics were directing us a little bit to explore different regions and different tonalities and different metrics. We tried different metrics within the same song and also on the record, in the overall picture there is a rhythmic diversity, a timbre diversity, a tonal diversity.

CARLOS SÁNCHEZ -The melody of all this is what drives us to make the songs. What often happens is that Mati is in a… he stays in a melodic motif and, meanwhile, the harmony moves. Therefore that melody works differently in one chord than in another. And this happens quite a lot on the record.

MATI PANDO -Harmonies are full of colour and full of nuances and full of… well… They take you to many places with harmonies.

CARLA SUZART – We tried and tried and tried every piece of the song, every part ‘And that, what do we do? Well we can change here because this calls for a change. The lyrics talk about that so we can make a turn here to get closer to what the lyrics say. How can we do that? Come on, an atmosphere more like this, more like that’. So it was a very detailed work.

CARLOS SÁNCHEZ – There are chords with tensions, quatrains, there are things… It’s not a group of… There are harmonic subtleties, let’s say. And also, another thing that I personally like about Tilde, is that there are also atmospheric moments that we could harmoniously call ‘manners’, which have colours. Technically speaking, I really like the Dorian mode which, well, is a minor but has a sixth major and that generates an atmosphere and some colours.

MATI PANDO – For me they are like a journey because they have like their landscapes, like colours. The harmonies give a lot of colours, a lot of richness there and also the stories are very intimate or very rooted. Very winged and very rooted.

What does the title of the album respond to?

MARIO VÉLEZ -The title of the album, ‘Algae’, basically is that in almost all our discography nature is quite inside and, in this album especially, the sea is quite present. So, among the elements of the sea we finally found ‘Algae’. The seaweed is a curious element since it seems something simple even that… it is not that it is despised but that it does not have much value and within the marine world it is fundamental.

MATI PANDO – This album has a lot of sea, the sea appears a lot in many songs on this album.

CARLA SUZART -The feeling that there is a lot of water was unanimous. The sea is very present there, very strong.

How were the recording and mixing?

CARLOS SÁNCHEZ – We were very clear that we wanted to record all of them together, live.

CARLA SUZART -We recorded at the Hukot Studio with Milo. Milo is a love, it’s been incredible for us to record. We went to the studio for a whole week.

CARLOS SÁNCHEZ -In this case the production starts in the studio.

CARLA SUZART -We had rehearsed so much, we had played so many songs that in one day we recorded them all, the bases.

MARIO VÉLEZ -It was recorded by Milo. It was mixed by Carles, the guitarist, who has a very clear idea of the sound the record needed.

CARLOS SÁNCHEZ – I ended up mixing it myself because I already came with that work done. I was very clear about how I wanted things to sound, which was how Tilde sounded.

How do you recommend listening to Algae?

MATI PANDO – I think that Tilde’s album should be listened to several times because it is an album that has many nuances, many details, a lot of dynamics.

CARLOS SÁNCHEZ -You need to listen to it several times and, for example, if you are prejudiced against flamenco sounds, maybe the first time you listen to it you don’t. But maybe you do fall in love after… it opens you up even to that kind of sonority.

CARLA SUZART – I think that there are multiple auditions of the album so that you can capture the sensitivity in the details.

CARLOS SÁNCHEZ – It’s great that it’s not accessible on the first listening because, at least for me, when a record enters my head, I usually burn it very quickly.

MARIO VÉLEZ – I think it’s an accessible record, within its limits. Man, you have to listen to it. They are long, dense songs, many changes, little chorus… but I believe that it is accessible because, as much the melodies of Mati as the harmonies of the guitar and the bass or the rhythms, let breathe much each part. It’s not that it’s crazy about changes, but each part has its own space and I think it’s quite well conducted and pleasant. It’s not super weird.

CARLOS SÁNCHEZ -In the end, yes. With the elements that you have, you do what you can do aspiring to the best, that’s how it’s been.

CARLA SUZART -I wish everyone an excellent listening.

Salva Alambre: Additional notes when listening to Electromagnetismo

An interview with Salva Alambre


¿De dónde surgen las canciones de ‘Electromagnetismo’?

Las canciones del disco surgieron a partir de un concierto que di en diciembre de 2018 y que consistió en bucles de sintetizadores analógicos y, partiendo de ahí, fui improvisando con más sintetizadores. Después del concierto me di cuenta de que a aquello se le podía dar forma y conseguir una estructura más de canción. Ese es el origen de las canciones. Me dediqué a ir perfeccionando las estructuras, a buscar los sonidos que quería, y ya me metí en el estudio a grabar.

¿Qué material has usado?

Para este disco he utilizado sobretodo sintetizadores analógicos. También hay sintetizadores digitales, algún sampler, alguna guitarra ocasional -aunque de manera muy secundaria, en comparación con el primer disco-, cajas de ruido, alguna batería y cosas de percusión.

Sobretodo he intentado utilizar bastante un micrófono electromagnético, que básicamente capta las ondas electromagnéticas. Capta señales de cualquier aparato que esté funcionando por allí, por el estudio, y eso lo utilicé como una amalgama, como un pegamento que aglutinase las distintas canciones. No aparece en todas pero sí en algunas, es un elemento que me ha gustado bastante utilizar.

¿Cómo son las canciones?

Las canciones de este disco son bastante distintas a las del primero porque son más oscuras, tanto en la propia configuración de las canciones, los sonidos, como también en las letras.

Con respecto al tipo de estructuras que aparecen en este disco, yo diría que hay de dos tipos. Por un lado están las estructuras más clásicas de pop con su estrofa, su estribillo, etc. Por otro lado están también otro tipo de estructuras que son más libres, donde van entrando y saliendo sobretodo sintetizadores o ritmos o bucles. Ahí lo importante es, sobretodo, la textura que se va creando con cada entrada y cada salida.

¿A qué responde el título del álbum?

Electromagnetismo, el título del disco, responde a una de las cuatro fuerzas de la física. El electromagnetismo está presente en todo. En la materia, en la luz, en el sonido, en la propia electricidad. Es algo que los humanos hemos aprendido a manejar, a intentar controlar, pero creo que todavía desconocemos muchísimo. Esa idea fue la que me interesó y me pareció bonita.

¿Hay algún concepto argumental?

Yo no me atrevería a decir que es un disco conceptual, porque suena como muy serio, pero sí que es cierto que el disco tiene una unidad. Las canciones se han ido construyendo a partir de la idea de electromagnetismo desde una u otra faceta, y la cara A y la cara B creo que tienen bastante que ver la una con la otra. Creo que el disco ha quedado bien articulado, ya es cuestión del oyente juzgar.

¿Cómo lo has grabado?

El disco se grabó en los estudios El Miradoor, entre febrero y marzo de 2019, siempre con Marco Velasco como productor, que es una persona con la que me entiendo muy bien y con la que me lo paso muy bien grabando. Fue muy divertido de grabar, había cosas que yo ya tenía muy claras y cosas que fuimos improvisando.

Una de las cosas quizás para mi más interesante en cuanto al sonido, es que los delays que utilizamos eran delays de cinta. Eso le da una calidez también al sonido analógico de los sintetizadores que es muy interesante.

¿Cómo recomiendas escuchar ‘Electromagnetismo’?

No creo que sea un disco demasiado fácil a la primera. Es un disco en el que, para entrar, hay que darle varias escuchas y a ser posible con un buen volumen y un buen equipo. Creo que hacerlo así vale la pena, porque vas entrando en la cantidad de sonidos o detalles. Algunas cosas no son obvias o no aparecen en una primera escucha, hay que ir dándole un poco más de espacio al disco.

Espero que disfrutéis escuchando el disco y que el electromagnetismo os acompañe.