Joe King Carrasco y Colectivo Chihuahua Album Review
Beers Bars & Guitars
Somebody get this vaquero and his peeps a line into Beyoncé.
December 2020 full-length Mariachi Blues, as credited to Joe King Carrasco y Colectivo Chihuahua with sound design by local rock star Rick Del Castillo, thrives visually. "Lil Lobo" humbucks like metal & wood run through with electricity, foxy Patricia Vonne goosing up the voltage in a shoot iconic with cactus, ATX funk, and the star's David Lynchian cowboy airs.
Another clip, "King King," solos home the exact same conclusion: MTV-ascendant JKC still flourishes at an audiovisual nexus of Lone Star antics and Tex-Mex irreverence that amplifies the singer/guitarist's crisp resonance. This era of visual albums aligns perfectly with our Texan. Exactly of a piece, follow-up Beers Bars & Guitars is still brewing up videos (from Berlin, no less), but its future spotlights pop like a police lineup.
Opener "Carrera Larga" fuses the Panhandler's ripe, juicy twang with Latin percussion, a Mexi-fried torta of desert blues and cumbia insouciance. "Nobody Here but the Blues" lilts a Tuesday night Antone's sway: low-key, self-possessed, groovacious. The title track rattles ZZ Top gone calavera, while closer "Low Love Fever" heats up a raw cantina blear.
Proceedings can get crusty ("Goner & the Nine Lives"), and JKC's gringo gusto won't seduce chorale society members ("Born to Suffer"), but he who was once branded as Nuevo Wavo could just as easily classify as border rock: Corazón en México, sonido de Texas.