Puerto Rico is better known for its vibrant hip-hop scene these days, but urban beats are not the only things P.R. musicians are interested in. They, like many others throughout Latin America, the U.S., and Spain, use the retro sounds of garage rock as an excuse to fuck shit up in the best possible way. Los Manglers stand as supreme candidates for the title of the contemporary boricua rock experience.
Los Manglers are not a new band; in fact, they’re veterans of other outfits. Last year, we wrote about their sweet track “You Can Call,” the first hint of their debut album Between Worlds. The record was a long way coming since it saw the light about a month ago. “Before The Mirror” is another cut from the album that you can hear if you’re not yet acquainted with the band.
“Before the Mirror” features a surfy guitar riff that will send you straight to a 60s spy movie or TV series. It perfectly encapsulates the band’s ultra melodic approach to rockabilly that has won them many fans, thanks in no small part to Laira Díaz’s flawless vocals. But that doesn’t mean they slack off or come off as too polished. You can picture the mosh pits going off when they play live. In fact, they call their style “tropicalia brutalia,” joining the club of Latin American groups aligning themselves with Os Mutantes and other 60s-era bands from Brazil, but their repertoire might be more pure early rock ‘n’ roll than anything else. They also have room for a burning guitar solo and a long instrumental section with a bit of noise to keep things exciting.