Monday, June 26, 2017

DAY 2437 - D & Hecho en Brooklyn REVIEW

Painting by Motohiro Hayakawa

Hecho en Brooklyn REVIEW
by John Coulter

After listening to Hecho en Brooklyn, you may feel that all other music is missing guiro.  Speedy latin drums seem to be a perfect match for hardcore punk licks. The infectious scratch now seems absent from classic songs by Motorhead or the Clash. 

The group appeals to a variety of audiences as they blend heavy metal, Latin dance, and independent genres.  Their work stands on the shoulders of genres from the past without belonging to any.  The band makes international music from an older generation accessible and more palatable to another, while creating something entirely new.  Each member brings a unique voice to the group creating an unparalleled line up. 

Leopoldo de la Cruz glues disparate ideas together with his solid and foundational bass lines.  The agile bass in merengue goes well with the aggressive tempo of punk and metal.  Oscar Chulex provides a contemporary voice for the band.  Chulex succeeds in taking on the challenge of blending eclectic styles while singing bi-lingual tunes in an experimental genre. 

Their tracks are filled with classic Carlos Santana style guitar progressions that are complex and tell a story.  Hecho’s song La Tuerca is great to see live and their recording is clean while capturing the energy of their performances.  A catchy, airy lead guitar builds over the gritty harmony.  El Can boasts a progressive, echoey synth that hovers over the the upstroke guitar rhythm.  This element clarifies the competing styles and gives the track a lot of depth.  

At the end of the day, Hecho provides great high energy rock and roll.  If you live near Brooklyn, New York, consider yourself lucky and go see a show.  If not, check them out online on soundcloud and youtube

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

DAY 2417 - REVIEW - Space Battles Series 2 #8

Artwork by Motohiro Hayakawa

Review by John Coulter

Japanese artist Motohiro Hayakawa creates hypnotizing paintings of far-flung space creatures in battle.  As if opening a time capsule, the images seem frozen in time.  Drawing inspiration from the styles of Transformers, He-Man, and Space Sheriff the paintings are sure to inspire nostalgia in many.

They have the charm of school age drawings taken to an extreme.  The often white backgrounds remind one of drawing on notebook paper as a kid.  The scenes have the harsh color palette of retro arcade games and 16 bit processors.  Precision line work and masterful combinations of fluorescent colors bring the otherworldly beings to life. 

Hayakawa’s work’s feature faceless creatures on stilts visiting a zoo, brutish, bipedal crustaceans guarding their eggs with laser guns, and tiger robots battling dinosaurs in a foggy castle.  His robots, monsters, and humanoids are unique.  In a storm of testosterone, muscular parts are connected to clunky machines and weaponry.  Often engaged in an unknown conflict, the figures occupy a intriguingly ambiguous world.  One must wonder what is going on in this alternate universe.

Hayakawa’s paintings embrace the loud and the kitsch, similar to Álvaro Izquierdo’s or Kristen Liu-Wong’s work.  Utilizing imagery usually reserved for action figure packaging and VHS cartridges, Hayakawa’s painted beasts find refuge in the fine art world.

If you’re a fan of the magazine Heavy Metal or Saturday morning cartoons give Hayakawa’s work some love and head on over to his website.