Née: Julián Vega, Miguel Van Monster, “El Frutas”, Joe “El Doc”
Raíces: Chihuahua, Mexico
Sounds like: Banda musica a la 90s Café Tacvba mixed in with Los Master Plus
You should listen to Los Vikingos del Norte because…when else have Vampire Weekend and Peter Bjorn & John made you want to put your cowboy boots on?
Mexico is filled with bands making parodies and cross genre covers of popular hits, but Los Vikingos del Norte are one of the few doing it right. They deconstruct indie songs, adding a cool naco touch that ingeniously makes you want to dance and laugh at the same time. Some of the covers have new humorous Spanish lyrics – taking a page out of Los Master Plus’ book – while others are kept in English with great banda & norteño arrangements. The end result: songs that somehow fit perfectly on a traditional Mexican radio station as well as a hipster’s ironic playlist.
Standouts include a brilliant cover of Peter Bjorn & John’s duet hit “Young Folks,” which replaces the iconic whistling in the catchy tune with an accordion and an accompanying tuba. A female counterpart pokes fun of the simple ranchero lifestyle with lyrics like “ …y tu sonrisa me provoca… subete a mi troca” that will forever change the way you hear the song. Likewise, their cover of Vampire Weekend’s “Cousins” (“Tu y tus Primas”) offers a refreshing take that will remind you that punk and banda music are really bastard cousins. (No pun intended…).
Los Vikingos del Norte have an original song, “Sin Censura,” and other clever covers like RHCP’s “Scar Tissue,” Foo Fighters’s “Best of You,” Molotov’s “Himno Nacional,” and Sir Douglas Quintet’s “She’s About A Mover,” that have a great Tex-Mex vibe but none of these songs are quite as sublime as the two mentioned above.
This is the kind of music that right from the get-go will make you want to get on the dance floor “a quemar chancla” as they say in Mexico.