CD Review – Pendejo – Toma

If you like odd, unique, thumpingly heavy music that takes you into places you’ve never been with music before, then Pendejo might appeal to you. On first listening, you might think you’ve stumbled onto a heavy metal episode of The Mighty Boosh, and you wouldn’t be the only one! One might get the feeling that Pandejo would like that dichotomy, of throwing listeners off their guard.

The word pandejo is actually a mildly offensive Spanish one meaning idiot or asshole. The band Pandejo are a Netherlands band, who sing in Urban Spanish, and blend of a kind of stoner rock- heavy rock hybrid incorporating brass instruments and rough growly vocals (though not of the diabolic honey monster kind). The overall effect is a very in your face aggression, but it all appears to be done with a good sense of humour. You’d have to have a knowledge of the Spanish language to interpret the lyrics, but good luck with that because the songs are sung in a quite impenetrable styling, battling with the grinding heaviness of the rock music on one hand and the shrill of the Latinesque screaming brass on the other.

The album features four cover songs: Iron Maiden’s Wrathchild, Narcos theme Tuyo, The Wizard from the legendary Black Sabbath, and Mari Trini’s romantic hit from the Seventies, Déjame. All done in the most bizarre of styles. Toma also includes four live tracks, Flotadores, Dos, Bulla, and Hacia La Luz recorded at the release party for an earlier album, Sin Verguenza, at the Altstadt in Eindhoven, The Netherlands in 2018.

This is a vibrant, flamboyant release that can be ferocious and merciless. It never lets up in its intensity and drives the energy straight at you. The rhythms are keen, brooding and relentless, the riffing caustic and sharp. The strident brass is somewhat colourfully cheerful and unsettling in this context, whilst the vivacity of the vocals is quite menacing. I’d hate to be in a band that had to follow Pandejo on stage at a festival!

1 Wrathchild

2 Tuyo

3 El Mago

4 Déjame

5 Flotadores (en vivo)

6 Dos (en vivo)

7 Bulla (en vivo)

8 Hacia La Luz (en vivo)

Band line-up: not given

Release date: 26th August, 2021

Available on CD/Vinyl/Digital

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