Gabriela Supelano can usually be found around Bogotá promoting cultural events as part of the Radio Pachone collective, like the Festejo Radio Pachone concert we covered a couple months ago. She’s also known by some for being a member of the short-lived trio Amarillo! Now, she’s back again on the scene with her new musical output, Jardín Láser, and she just released her debut album, called Esmeralda era un caballo.
The album was produced by Andrés Gualdrón (of the Los Animales Blancos fame), and his input was so important that he ultimately joined Supelano as part of the project. The songs on Esmeralda era un caballo are filled with regional folkloric references, as most of the songs were created with the charango in mind. Fittingly, on the song “Animal Muerto,” we find Supelano dealing with the fact that her beloved instrument is actually made out of a dead armadillo. And that’s how the songs flow–she delivers the lyrics like she’s telling stories, sometimes even painting very vivid pictures. A perfect example is “Amazona,” probably one of the weirdest tracks on the album, and its predecessor, “Carta a las amazonas,” a politically-charged sci-fi story about a Martian tribe of Amazon women who are killed if they fall in love with men.
There’s an experimental side to these songs that’s undeniable, courtesy of having Andrés Gualdrón and his electronic programming on production duties. The pristine acoustic sounds and vocals often clash with the abrasiveness of electronic bursts and white noise. There’s a very odd moment early in the album, on the cumbia-tinged “Miami,” were we can hear a sample of an interview with Emilio Estefan, showing the sense of humor behind these beautiful tracks.
Grab the full album over at Jardín Láser’s Bandcamp page.