Interview: Bam Bam, May they Rest in Peace [MEX]

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It’s hard to imagine a band like Bam Bam existing in today’s world of creatively challenged, precociously hyped bands. For more than half a decade, the Monterrey psych-rock band furtively carved a niche for themselves, gathering as many fans as good press along the way. This led them to be regarded as one of the best rock outfits of their generation, yet they never quite seized their role as the underdogs of the scene. They were that rare breed of band that grew organically out of a local scene, developing a fanbase merely out of playing good shows and putting out some finely crafted songs. Eventually they partnered up with indie label Arts & Crafts, who provided some of the material necessary for the production of their magnum opus, Futura Vía, widely regarded as the best rock album to come out of Mexico in the past few years.

But as is often the case with bands in Mexico, a flimsy infrastructure, coupled with internal friction, caused the band to eventually topple, though not before securing their position among the pantheon of Mexican (nay, Latin American) rock legends. I sat down with surviving member Mou to discuss the band’s disintegration, their final video, and the possibility of future projects.

Is Bam Bam really over?

Yes [laughs].

Bam Bam has been dead for about 6 months or so. Now it is time to cremate it and spread its ashes all around. The corpse has started to smell funny.

You guys seemed to be at your peak, why quit now?

That is not true. Our peak was before we started recording Futura Vía, when we were doing those songs inside an old pesticide warehouse. Those were the (Bam Bam) days: three to five guys with no job, no girlfriends, no children.

Will Arre Krishna be your last official record?

I guess. I can’t foresee what is going to happen in the future but for now there will be no Bam Bam in quite a long time.

What’s that thing burning at the end of the video?

Bam Bam’s head. We made those heads out of paper around the time when we first started the band. We made them out of paper, cloth, and some balloons. And then some friends wore them on their heads and danced while we played. The cover of our first album is a picture of Luxor (Selma Oxor) wearing that head. We did lots of things with the heads. Then one day—anticipating the imminent death of Bam Bam—I decided I wanted to burn it.

Can we look forward to any new projects by you or any of the other band members?

Leo is playing with Pijama Party now. René is supposed to have this band Hypnomango where I play, too, but I don’t know if that band is still alive or what. I am playing by myself doing some ambient and noise, but that is getting a little boring. I think I will start singing again. And playing with Animación Suspendida, which is the closest I am to doing a non-rock band. Also doing comics and zines. I wish I can quit music some day and focus on being a really good cartoonist.

[insert-video youtube=aCyTasGS7xU]

Download Bam Bam’s Arre Krishna below: