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Carlitos Nino / Press Release  in Worldwide
Latinos in London Magazine  on 2017-05-09


Jenny & The Mexicats : Mar Abierto

After two sell out dates in the UK back in February, Jenny (Beckenham, UK) and the Mexicats (DF, Mexico) release their third album bringing their whirlwind-crazy story full circle after an eight year grand tour that has seen them amass tens of millions of You Tube hits and go gold in Mexico. Having become a pop/ska/flamenco/ sensation in the US, Mexico and Spain, the band returned to the UK, where they performed their very first concert together in 2008 under the name of Pachucos y la Princesa.


With their third album set for UK release on May 12th having released the single "La Diabla" on February 10th, the 'never say die' attitude of Jenny and the Mexicats burns ever bright having gone from performing at open mic nights in crusty London pubs to the enviable position of having their first ever single 'Verde Mas Alle' hit Mexico's top spot for 9 weeks and now selling out multi-thousand headline venues.
 

It was 2008 when singer and trumpet player Jenny Ball was visiting Madrid doing some low-key performances and happened upon a flamenco club, the Tablao Las Carboneras.  Enjoying her evening, she realised she had cut her heel and found help from the waiter, Alfonso Acosta, who brought her a plaster to relieve her woes. At this point Alfonso and the club's sound technician Luis Diaz were already jamming and gigging in rocksteady, ska and punk bands at local Madrid hangouts. So when they realised Jenny was also a musician based in Beckenham, London they eagerly swapped contact details and that, they thought, was probably that.

Like most occurrences in the Mexicats regalia of 'unbelievable' stories, this unplanned event would lead to the most unlikely partnership. The band have lived and upped sticks across three different countries, been swindled by record industry managers and been banned by UK immigration all of which would provide the perfect underlay for the group to deliver their debut album in 2012 from Mexico City - which would later go gold in Mexico after selling 30,000 copies. No mean feat in 2012! 

Madrid and flamenco have always been an on-going love affair for the band. The meeting place, a rehearsal space and their first European home. Flamenco floats around their music so naturally with Pantera's Spanish guitar always interplaying with Jenny's trumpet solos and David's cajon. Jenny's vocals swim gorgeously through the mix, sometimes high-octane ska/rockabilly jaunts, other times more melodic ballads, often with the band joining in vocal procession. The 'cambio' between Spanish and English language is an on-going theme of all the Mexicats albums which goes some way to explaining how they managed to break the USA in 2016, performing at SXSW and a string of top class festivals in front of thousands and amongst some of the band's most revered heroes.

It is now nine years since their first concert together at the Wonderland Festival on the UK's south coast. The band have become near performing veterans despite their young age having toured exhaustively in the past three years – hundreds of shows in Mexico, USA and Spain.

 

Mar Abierta is the group's third album and whilst it doesn't deviate stylistically off-course from the tried-and-tested Latin pop approach from previous records, it does delve further into the bi-lingual with tracks jumping between Spanish and English. The album's lead single 'La Diabla' perhaps best encapsulates the group's targeting of the proverbial jugular with its harmonised screaming and cumbia grooves. 'Born in the City' takes a jazz-swing, high tempo mould led by handclaps and Jenny's skatting whilst 'Boxes' adds a breezy, happy-go-lucky pop-flamenco theme which sets the stall out for the album that follows.

 

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