Meet Las Piñas, An Argentine Surf Rock Duo Swapping Sunshine for Murkier Waters

Née: Sofía Cardich fronts on vocals and guitar (and sometimes bass), while Antonela Périgo pounds out percussion and backs up on choruses.
Raíces: La Plata, Buenos Aires, Argentina
Sounds like: Ramsay’s encroaching circle of soldiers during the Battle of the Bastards in Game of Thrones, except you’re in the water chilling.
You should listen to Las Piñas because…they cull from the dark side of surf rock, and add a little punk bite, too.

Espanto Caribe is the debut album from Las Piñas, a Buenos Aires duo whose surf rock is rife with gloom, making for a blasé cool that’s better served by dusk than sunshine. Released last February, the LP is too murky and too guitar-heavy to be considered pop, yet it’s sticky with unforgettable tunes — perfect for chill hangs and perpetual head bopping.

The Beach Boys’ early works gave the genre the gleeful, summertime connotations understood by the mainstream, but anyone who’s truly into surf knows they’re by no means the end-all, be-all archetypes. Hello, Dick Dale, Link Wray, The Ventures, Duane Eddy, the Safaris, the Chantays, and tons more. A lot of those sounds were inherently dark, guided by riffs like the impending doom of a behemoth wave poised to knock a surfer silly. Las Piñas clearly identify with these more fearsome waters rather than the crystalline feel of the smiley, beach-party jams.

Still, a lot of these tracks are catchy — in a slowed down, sorta lethargic way, but they linger nonetheless. “Panteras” and “Hawaii” are nonchalantly enthused, and the magnetic bass line of “Olas Asesinas” cuts out a crevice in your memory from the get-go. “Pizza” is an appropriately fun one, too – duh, it’s about pizza!

They’ve just dropped a new single, too: “Crucero Caribe,” released on June 15. There were tinges of punk in Las Piñas’ music all along, but here we get an extra dose in the repetitive chorus and the punchy percussion. And, of course, the surf rock motif remains an audible foundation.