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Interviews

There’s hope – an interview with experimental math emo hardcore band FIESTA BIZARRA

In the digital era of music discovery apps, Spotifies and all kinds of sophisticated algorithms and highly addictive solutions, there’s still some room for music writers and explorers like the webzine you’re just looking at. IDIOTEQ listens to hundreds of new vibes from all around the world, goes through hundreds of press releases and submissions every single week, seeks new inspirations in the online jungle and puts them to the test the best way we can. This newest discovery we’re rolling out today is a living proof of the danger of often failing to slow down sometimes and notice underrated artists ad their impressive works. FIESTA BIZARRA‘s debut LP “Sadness Sorrow Imathinagion” is surely one of such efforts. The Peru based experimental cross-genre emo/screamo/math rock band has crafted an adventurous album that  just may be the best thing similar acts have attempted since the 90s. “Sadness Sorrow Imathinagion” is a categorical win over those claiming modern music has nowhere left to go. For such an experimental and vital band maybe they could have pushed these their boundaries a bit further instead of taking a break and going on hiatus this year. Let’s just hope they will return to this challenging territory and will be back on tracks in the nearest future. Meanwhile, dive into this complete, meaningful and epic record and scroll down to read the full interview with FIESTA BIZARRA!

Hello there! Welcome to IDIOTEQ! How are you? How’s Peru at this time of the year?

Hi, I’m great. We’re on summer here and I’m trying to survive the heat.

Cool! Thanks again for taking some time with our readers. Can you please drop us a couple of introductory lines about the band, how you started this project and perhaps some other projects you’re involved in?

Well, this project started in January 2013. Mateo (our drummer) had this whole idea. I met him in November 2012 at a show and became really good friends since, so that’s where it all started. Our debut show was on February 8th 2013.

The band is formed by me (Yosefu) as the vocalist, Sebastián at first guitar, Oswald at second guitar, André on the bass and Mateo on the drums.

What was the first punk record you bought and the first hardcore show you attended and when? How did they form your current approach to this movement and form of expression?

The first álbum I ever bought was DESCENDENT’s Milo Goes to College when I was 15. Now I’m 25. My first hardcore show was the first time I saw COMEBACK KID. This movement has influenced us a lot because we follow the DIY idea.

FIEESTA BIZARRA band live

I’m really in love with your idea for blending math rock with screamo, all spiced up with this smart poppy twist. What was your initial idea for this new record and how are you proud of the final sonic spectrum you’ve managed to create here?

Well, as we mentioned before our album follows around the mixture of math rock with screamo. But it also has pop, shoegaze, post-rock and emo. Basically it has influences from each of our members. We try to mix all of that, like when you put a lot of things in a blender. We did that, sort of, and boom, it became Sadness Sorrow Imathgination. We’re very happy with the results. We feel it was worth it. All of our efforts. We practically were living together the whole summer of 2015 while recording the álbum, looking for our own sound, which now you and everyone knows.

What do you think has been the fair’s recipe for an engaging, yet independent record?

We really focus on getting a good sound. Most of all, each member puts in all their influences and we try to work around them. That’s our way to work. We never thought our album would have such success. It surprised us. But we’re satisfied with the results.

Does “Sadness Sorrow Imathgination” follow a concept or a specific theme?

The album’s concept is based on those stages people have when they think everything is lost and there’s no better, but it’s not true, because it can get better and there will always be at least someone who will give you hope, support and relief. That’s what the album is about. Becoming a better person than you were before. As the first track アン says “embrace my wish to hold on” (abriga mis deseos de seguir en pie).

FIEESTA BIZARRA live!

How has FIESTA BIZARRA adjusted its approach and musical profile in recent years to differentiate itself? Do you even think that way? How important is to reach for more and more in composing music and presenting something slightly different than hundreds of other similarly labeled bands?

We’ve tried to discover our own sound. We want people to think “ah, that’s FIESTA BIZARRA” when they listen to us. We’ve always had in mind to innovate, to find new sounds as I mentioned before. And of course the band tries to get better, we always do that. We focus on our live sound, even though there are always mistakes. But you learn in little steps. You have to be patient. We try to transmit a lot of feelings and emotions while playing live. In my case as a vocalist my main goal is to connect directly with our public whether by sharing the mic with them or crowdsurfing. Most of the times I’ve been carried without noticing. It’s amazing to receive such love from fans, even in places we’re not sure people hear us. They also know most of our lyrics and sing the with passion.

Is Trujillo a good place to perform such music? Tell us a bit about your local scene, how thriving it is and how much shows and other DIY undertakings it has going on these days?

Trujillo is a small city and you wouldn’t believe that we are the only band that plays this genre. The music scene here is very small, we all know each other, but keeps growing in small parts. The thing is very few people have that DIY attitude so they wait until someone notices and recognizes them. They wait for someone else to call them to play. That’s frustrating. So what’s better than make your own shows, your own merch. Lately there have been bands from Lima performing here. We’ve also played in Lima last year. We’ve played there more times than in our own city and that’s good. It makes our music scene grow progressively and makes it feel like a big community. That’s awesome. We’ve made really good friends in all of our trips.

FIESTA BIZARRA live

As fans, other bands’ followers and attendees, do you think attending shows is essential for DIY movements to gain exposure? How supportive are you towards other local projects?

We think it’s very important to support the local bands, buy their merch, their albums, share their music. With the internet is more easy to do that but the problem is that sometimes the people who like those bands don’t go to their concerts which causes loss in investment. We can’t get our investment back and lose money paying for the sound equipment, the place and other things. Even though you have to keep going with this craziness.

In my case I have a friend, Gabriel Marmanillo, with whom we try to bring bands from Lima and try to make the young people know them, especially since there’s a lot of people who are closed with other genres. We try to bring that barrier down. It’s of no use.

Do you travel a lot? Are there some plans to hit the road with FIESTA BIZARRA and perhaps play some American, or even European shows?

We’ve been on tour in Lima, Arequipa, Chiclayo, Piura. We would LOVE to be on tour in the US and Europe, I mean, who wouldn’t. That would be an enormous step to our band. We were surprised when we found out that our music was listened a lot in Europe. We also made a Four-way split titled Making Waves with the bands CHUCK BASS, URAGANO and URUGHAI edited in cassette by Chloromethane Records and Tief in Marcellos Schuld Records.

Ok guys, so what are you working on now? Apart from touring, what can we expect from the band?

In the meantime we’re on hiatus, taking a long break. We hope to be on stage soon with new material in our hands. Although in February we’re planning to release our album in cassette, CD and Vinyl (we hope so haha).

FIESTA BIZARRA live band

Lastly, IDIOTEQ and its featured artists have discussed tons of political and sociological issues through hundreds of interviews. Do you follow politics? Do you have any particular concerns about the current state of your local political environment?

As a band we don’t follow politics or try to give a political message to our public. It’s not our field. But as individuals we’re in a strange situation here in Peru. We’re electing a new president in April this year and all the candidates (except for a very few ones) are either prosecuted or total incompetents. For instance, we have Keiko Fujimori with 30% in the polls, the daughter of Dictator Alberto Fujimori (currently in jail), who has had a bad record while she was in congress and with a high chance of making her possible government the one of her dad’s. Then we have César Acuña, our ex-mayor (and one of the worsts we’ve ever had) who is currently prosecuted for links with the drug mafia and accusations of plagiarisms in his Ph.D. thesis and so on. We could talk about it all day and take a whole magazine to account his accusations. Anyway, then we have Alan Garcia, who was president during the 80’s and in the 2006-2011 period. Easily the worst president Peru has ever had. Not long ago he was involved in the narco-pardons and prosecuted because of his links with the drug mafia. And the list goes on.

Thanks so much for your thoughts! Is there anything else you would like to comment on before we sign off?

Thanks to you! We didn’t expect so much interest in our band.

You should! Thanks! Cheers from frosty cold Warsaw!

FIESTA BIZARRA logo

Art by Ioke.

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