Wassup Rockers

Babasónicos @ Highline Ballroom, 6/26

My current Fbook status: “Elizabeth totally wants to think that she and Adrián Dargelos had a moment of hot eye sex at the Babasónicos show.”

I just came back from seeing Babasónicos in concert for the first time, and it was the first show I saw at the Highline Ballroom. It may also have been the first time I saw a show without an opener–and boy was that exciting.

I was fucking stressed out because my feet hurt something awful and I didn’t have no dinner, which made me cranky as fuck, pero al final everything worked out fine, tuve mucho ánimo durante el concierto y bailé mucho y Babasónicos were fucking fantastic. I’d seen some of their live footage before and it was so wonderful to experience their show live.

Psst, you wanna know a secret though? For all the fucking stereotypes of Latinos knowing how to dance, lo que sea, the crowd near me sure broke all those expectations by not really moving around. A select few were, but many weren’t. Couldn’t figure out what it was. Of course, for some, it’s just not their style. For others, though, I feel like they were stunned by the group.

I was fucking stunned, too. I’ve mentioned it before; the reason I was stunned is cos, honestly, I don’t know that much about the people behind this music, so it was really cool to get a good look at the band. The only band member I coulda recognized on the street would have been the singer, and only because he has the most incredible nose. Seriously, it’s unforgettable. He was kinda… gloriously hilarious, wiggling his hips all over the stage in this super-sexy, borderline scandalous manner. But the other members, oh Lord, they’re actually quite handsome, esp. the guitarist who was near me on stage left. (He did backup and some lead vocals on a few of the songs.) I thought the bassist was cool but I did feel a small pang knowing that Gabo died so recently, but if I remember correctly, he’s been with them for a bit, since Gabo had been sick for a while and had to quit touring when he was alive. The band interacted well together, the chemistry among them shows and it’s a testament as to why they’ve stuck together so long.

I was fascinated by the fact that half of them had ‘fros going on top of their lovely heads. It kinda reminded me of the Strokes. Maybe it wasn’t a random comparison, since Albert Hammond, Jr.’s mama, after all, is argentina. Anyway, thinking about the Strokes actually made me sadder than thinking about Gabo, since I hardly knew anything about him, whereas I used to be a huge Strokes fan so I’m so disappointed these days with how much the Strokes have declined in quality.

I thought the band’s relationship to us, the audience, was really interesting. They’re not much for stage banter and they were more into more physical showmanship. Like the singer, Adrián, was totally posing for us and the (many many) cameras and shit, singing directly to specific people, etc., pero para mí pareció demasiado “show.” Quiero decir que, aunque verdaderamente divertido, I felt like they (not just the singer) were hiding behind this performance, protecting themselves. It’s like, “Here, let us give you a bit of titillation and sass and you can leave us in peace.”

I’m not sure if that makes sense. I don’t mean it as a bad thing. I think it’s actually really good to set limits as to how much access the fans should have. Speaking of fans and access, a number of girls ran up to the front and tried to jump on stage. At first I was annoyed by them, even though they were dancing, and the reason is this: they seemed to be more focused on getting on stage and, I don’t know, groping the members of the band instead of just enjoying the music and being with friends. Just felt like a lot of attention hogging. All of them took too long climbing on stage and by the time they were up, the security people were escorting them back down. The truly hilarious thing is that each time a girl (I can only recall one boy) tried to climb up, it was when Adrián was actually doing his thing on stage right, so he hardly even noticed the people on stage left climbing up and (theoretically) ready to pounce on him. The guards tackled the people before he even knew what had happened. In the end a girl did make contact, but with the drummer.

I admit, though, as soon as the kids came back to the floor, they weren’t keen on jumping on stage again and just enjoyed themselves. And I appreciated that a lot more than the people who seemed frozen in place. I also appreciated them way more than the (mostly) boys moshing. Damn. I will never understand why people would want to bump and grind against other sweaty smelly people in such an aggressive manner. (Unless we’re talking about people in a relationship just having a sexual encounter, ¡pero eso es otra cosa!) I didn’t mind them too much at first but halfway through the show I had to give up my spot and ended up much closer to the moshers which was annoying. The reason I had to give up my spot was to make room for an audience member who was in a wheelchair. I wasn’t so baffled by his presence, since disabled people are perfectly capable of enjoying music and I guess he took an elevator up to where the ballroom is located in the building. PERO. (1) I can’t understand why the disable person and his caretaker couldn’t reserve a spot in the front before the set started and (2) I was actually worried that the person would get hurt by being on the floor with the rest of the crowd instead of at a table on the side or something. Oh wells. He really seemed to enjoy it, and I totally loved the set, too. In the end, even though I was closer to the moshers, I also found myself around dudes who were attentive to the show and I was able to dance along as I had been earlier.

It’s just that. The concert.. it all went in a blur! The band went on stage a bit past 9 pm and the set lasted, what? 80 minutes? Algo así. Wasn’t even 10:30 when it was all over, encore y todo. The dudes have been around for so long and they have so much back catalogue so I was so so disappointed by the relatively short set. They did play some amazing jams. Even the new stuff sounded lovely. I was really happy to hear “Microdancing,” which is begging to be released as their next ~*HIT SINGLE*~. Oh, and there was this huge singalong during “Putita” which is such an extraordinary song, both melodically and textually.

Not to make it sound like I’m an ungrateful bitch, but once they left the stage for real and the light went up, I couldn’t help thinking, “That’s it?” Me encontré jangueando close to the stage, not ready to give up the night, and suddenly I saw one of the techies tear off a set list. The techies are used to people asking for the set lists, claro, so he immediately downstage to give the set list away. I reached. And I got it. It’s the first set list I got! I don’t have photographic proof because, to be frank, I don’t know how to work my camera (I HATE CAMERAS!). But here is the list, as it was written on the page:

– RABIOSO [ = “Estoy rabioso“]
– DIABLO [ = “Sin mi diablo“]
– PIJA+ [ = “Pijamas“]
– COMO ERAN [ = “Como eran las cosas“]
– MICRO [ = “Microdancing“]
– Y Q’ [ = “¿Y qué?“]
– CARISMA [ = “Carismático“]
– IRRESP. [ = “Irresponsable“]
– ASI [ = “Así se habla“]


I’m pretty sure they followed the set exactly. They put on an excellent show, they rocked so hard. If only they could have played some more of their older shit. Man, didn’t even realize how new all the songs were until I looked at the set list. Bueno, a lo mejor la próxima van a tocar “Los calientes”…

Please forgive all my grammatical and factual errors. I’ll try to fix them if I notice them.


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