Before being irreverent became synonymous with cool, and the slang word naco served as a Mexican vanguard term, and long before mocking and criticizing became the inspiration for lyrics, an alternative group called Plastilina Mosh (born in the cradle of the Spanish-language movement in Monterey, Mexico) already existed and had incorporated all these elements into its music.
At first sight, Alejandro Rosso and Jonaz may look like a couple of inoffensive rocker kids. There are no signs of tight leather pants, skulls, or even long hair.
For those who have never heard them, the Plastilinas are like sushi, or the Eiffel Tower, a taste you acquire. It takes time to digest them, but there’s a reason why they’re frequently compared to the Beastie Boys and Beck, worshiped icons of their generation.
That is why we bring you an exclusive interview with these performers who are the real McCoy of Mexican electronic music. And also because their new album All U Need is Mosh feature stellar artists like Adrián Dargelos (Babasónicos) and Ximena Sariñana, likely the best that Mexico has exported since Natalia Lafourcade, and the kind of medicine needed to heal the RBD fever.
How do you define Plastilina Mosh’s music?
Jonaz-Basically, we both like to joke around. We were one of the few bands that truly applied humor to their work. We wanted to do something light, but purely creative. I believe that’s why people got to like Mr. P. Mosh some 12 years ago.
What kept you away from the stage for so long?
Alejandro– We had problems with the label that handled us. It just slipped through our hands and we lost the track. We were amateurs and, though we joke a lot, when it comes to work, we do take it seriously. Well, not too serious, but we really work hard.
Do your mothers listen to your records? What do they have to say?
Jonaz– Well, better rephrase that: What did they use to tell us? “Son, don’t waste your time. How are you going to eat?”
Do you resent being compared to Beck or the Beastie Boys?
Jonaz– Not at all. Hey, they’re the Beasties. I’m honored. I like them a lot, they’re pioneers in what they do and have done well.
How was the album “All U need is Mosh” born?
Jonaz– It took us only two months to record and mix this disc, but we had problems with the label and with our handler, and it took us two more years to finish it. We did it very independently. It was never our intention to do it all in English, but it turned out 70 percent in English. Later, in the process, we realized that it was too commercial, though we really didn’t plan that, it just came out that way. The disc has 12 tracks and includes the performance of Ximena Sariñana, a very talented girl, and Adrián Dargelos of Babasónicos, among others.
You’ve been nominated for a Latin GRAMMY before. What do you think of awards and reviews in general?
Alejandro– We don’t care, really. For us, the support of the people is much more important.
Jonaz– Before we played together, we were in bands that had much demand but that were really bad. We thought it was what we had to do to please the labels and become full-time musicians. But it gave us a lot of stress and it defeated the purpose, which was to come up with good songs. When we got started in Monterrey, people used to tell us that our concept was not going to work, that our music had to be more commercial. In the end, they didn’t do anything and we ended up signing contracts.
Do you have a story to share about an obsessed female fan?
Jonaz– Yeah, something interesting happened to us. Not exactly with a female fan, but with a male fan. Some time ago, this kid we ran into everywhere became our friend, though at the time we didn’t know he was a groupie. In fact, he’s right here. He’s our bassist. Just look at him.
What are all the things you demand to have in the dressing room when you are on tour?
Jonaz-Not much. Nothing really.
Who has the last word in the recording studio, Jonaz the rocker or Rosso the classic?
We’ll have to see that.