Morrissey gets a Mexican makeover as Mexrrissey head to Norwich
PUBLISHED: 14:40 19 January 2018 | UPDATED: 14:57 19 January 2018
Heaven Knows I'm Mexican Now: band featuring stars from both sides of the US-Mexico border will breathe Latin life into the former Smiths' singer's back catalogue at Waterfront gig.
After sell-out concerts in New York, London and Los Angeles, Mexrrissey, the band who give Morrissey songs a Mexican makeover, are to play a gig at the Waterfront in Norwich.
The seven-piece band, representing the crème de la crème of Mexico’s music scene, have made a name for themselves by re-imagining classic songs of The Smiths and Morrissey entirely in Spanish, using vibrant Latin rhythms.
At first glance, the association might seem surprising: songs from a country Morrissey himself bewails as “silent and grey” being sung by musicians from one of the world’s most famously vibrant places.
However, Morrissey has a fervent Mexican fan base and draws huge crowds amongst Mexican-American crowds who seem drawn to the drama, romance and poetry inherent in The Smiths’ outsider anthems.
Mexrrissey, who will be in Norwich on May 1, was founded by DJ Camilo Lara, the founder of the pioneering electronic band Mexican Institute of Sound, a project that adapts traditional Mexican music with beats and synthesisers. Led by Lara, the vibrant band rotates three vocalists to perform Morrissey’s oeuvre with Latin rhythms of ranchero, mariachi, danzón, mambo, norteño, and cha cha cha. The band also features composer Sergio Mendoza of Arizona-based bands Calexico and Orkesta Mendoza.
Together they translated the text and composed new arrangements before getting together with influential Mexican musicians from both sides of the US-Mexican border.
Girlfriend in a Coma gets a cha cha cha makeover with a lively mariachi trumpet and First of the Gang to Die has Sergio Mendoza playing the guitaron, a gigantic acoustic bass. Other tracks they have given a Mexican makeover include a mariachi version of The More You Ignore Me the Closer I Get, whilst Everyday is Like a Sunday “Cada Dia Es Domingo” goes ranchero with a roof raising performance from Ceci Bastida of the The Last Famous International Playgirls gets a tweak in the translation with a mention of Guadalajara drug lords instead of London’s Kray twins.
They are back in the UK with their latest show, La Reina is Dead, promising new arrangements, new mariachi suits, new films and a complete ‘mexterpretation’ of The Smiths’s seminal album The Queen is Dead.
• Mexrrissey play the Waterfront, King Street, Norwich, on May 1, 7.30pm, £17.50, 01603 508050, ueaticketbookings.co.uk