TO RELEASE FREEDOM IS FREE ON MARCH 3 VIA ATO RECORDS
PREMIERES “FRIENDSHIP (IS A SMALL BOAT IN A STORM)” VIDEO WITH NOISEY
“With their blend of Brazilian Tropicalia and lavish ’60s psych groove, Chicano Batman have established themselves as a genre of one”
– ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY
“Their sets are serious business: You can climb into one of them and follow it a long way”
– THE NEW YORK TIMES
New York, NY (December 7, 2016) – Chicano Batman came out of L.A., four young men in vintage formalwear, playing songs that blended Brazilian Tropicalía with early ’70s psychedelic soul and the romantic pop of bands like Los Ángeles Negros. It was an immediately addictive sonic brew, and their reputation grew fast. Now, they’re making their boldest statement yet with Freedom Is Free, their third album and ATO Records debut, out March 3, 2017.
The first single, “Friendship (Is a Small Boat In A Storm),” is an organ-driven soul jam with buzzing, psychedelicguitar and the Alan Del Río Ortiz (Solange, Major Lazer, St. Vincent, Blood Orange) directed video premieres today at Noisey. New York’s all-female Mariachi Flor de Toloache have featured vocals on the song and in the video.
“This is a song of betrayal in the most mundane sense,” says frontman Bardo Martinez. “Its about the trials and tribulations of friendship and also a personal reflection on the painful realities of human relationships.” The video follows a series of documentary style tableaus that relate to friendship and betrayal, each scene highlighting the aftermath of a friendship, or depicting the moment a friendship begins to sour.
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Chicano Batman’s look has done as much to set them apart as their sound or their name. Since the beginning, they’ve performed in matching suits and ruffled shirts; Bardo explains, “We’re making a particular reference that some people understand—Los Ángeles Negros, Los Pasteles Verdes. In the ’70s, it was a big thing where all these cats were playing romantic ballads, but they were funky as hell.”
Freedom Is Free reflects Chicano Batman’s decision to foreground the soul and R&B elements of their sound. To achieve their ambitious sonic goals, the quartet worked with producer Leon Michels (El Michels Affair, The Arcs) in his Diamond Mine Recording studio in Long Island City, NY. Michels, a veteran in the New York soul scene, has performed in Sharon Jones & the Dap Kings, The Black Keys and The Menahan Street Band. In addition to tracking the album to analog tape, Michels contributed keyboards and his trademark horn arrangements (he’s been sampled by Jay-Z and Ghostface Killah). The partnership between Michels and Chicano Batman truly captures the band’s live energy and brings their aesthetic goals to life.
Outside the studio, Chicano Batman have built a stellar reputation through heavy touring across the country. They’ve played major festivals like Coachella and Bonnaroo. Opening for Jack White, Alabama Shakes, The Claypool Lennon Delirium and Gogol Bordello on recent tours has given them the chance to win over thousands of rock fans, night after night.
Freedom is Free Track Listing:
1 – Passed You By
2 – Friendship (Is A Small Boat In A Storm)
3 – Angel Child
4 – Freedom is Free
5 – La Jura (Prelude)
6 – Le Jura
7 – Flecha Al Sol
8 – Jealousy
9 – Right Off The Back
10 – Run
11 – The Taker Story
12 – Area C