Toncho Pilatos

Toncho Pilatos - 1973

This little slice of Mexican psychedelic rock sounds like Jethro Tull, Can and Os Mutantes rolled into one; and that's just the first song. With a flute, a Wurlitzer piano, incredible hard rock guitar work, heavily reverbed vocals and wild time signatures that change on a dime, the most amazing thing about this album is that nobody seems to know about it. Released back in 1973 this LP gathers up all the great elements of psychedelic rock up to that point and puts them all in one place. As an added bonus, most of the vocals are in Spanish, so you don't have to hear all that hippie drippy crap about goblins, wizards and gnomes - because you know that's what they're singing about.
Fine, fine music.


savoadaki said...

Very interesting album -- and you're right, though I know some Spanish, it doesn't distract me to just listen to the music without thinking of the content of lyrics.
Nice blog, with the international touch that expands our experiences.

Anonymous said...

this shit is thoroughly amazing. thank you! mexico certainly produced its share of excellent bands in the 70s. 5 gold stars right here.

Enio B:. said...

I had the pleasure to meet Toncho Pilatos band members back in the late sixties and seventies. I witnessed their formative years. Indeed, this album still sound fresh and alive today. Toncho had the vision of incorporating indigenous rhythms as well as mariachi sounds into his music. Unfortunately, both he and his brother Rigo died at a young age. However, their legacy will always live with us.
Enio B:.

Anonymous said...

hi.hey i was intrusted to read the article becouse it says that you had the pleasure to meet toncho,well,i'm happy to know that u did,however my frien,i will tell you that only one of theme died at a young age,i am from Mexico and friend of one of them,peacefully in Aguascalientes.

enio b said...

Hi Anonimous,
I wasmore than a friend with both Toncho and Rigo, was like a brothem to them. I grew up with Rigo, as well as we attended the same middle school (secundaria) in Guadalajara. For instance, Rigo, Pastel and I, played together in La Banda del Viejo Pastel, before Toncho organized his band, Toncho Pilatos. It may be a semantic interpretation of what it is considered "young age" to you. However, to die at the early forties, as Toncho did, to me, is not "old". On the contrary, for me, "early forties" is still considered a young age. Both of them were way ahead of their time, creatively and musically. Fortunately, their legacy will be around for us as long as they are remembered. I am sure --whenever they are-- that they are dancing La Ultima Danza and rocking with Beto and Winnie. Greetings from California.

JR Heat Warp said...

Thanks for dropping in, Enio. It's a pleasure to read about your friendship with Toncho and Rigo, as so little is known about them outside of Mexico. I've found myself listening to this album a lot recently, loving every note and wishing I knew more about the guys who made it. I can't thank you enough for dropping by and sharing your memories. Take it easy.


enio b said...

Hi JR,
I have fond memories of El Pastel and Rigo. We grew up together. We used to practice on cheap acustic guitars and bang on tin cans. We realized that music was our life. So we decided to form La Banda del Viejo Pastel. Afterwards, we discovered the three Kings: B.B., Albert and Freddie, as well as John Mayall and other great bluesmen.
By the way, I went to GDL last July. Pastel is playing with the new and reformed Toncho Pilatos. They are playing some old ones as well new Pastel's compositions. He seems quite happy to be doing Toncho's staff.
Bluesy greetings,
Enio Blues