Enlazando Mundos, Pipe Llorens
Delhotel Records, Mexico
By Carlos Reyes
Early this year, Pipe Llorens unveiled the trailer to his forthcoming documentary Indies, a cinematic travelogue to his persona and an assessment of what it means to be an indie artist (by Mexican standards). In that clip, he defined indies as people who “use their parents money to make songs." In the meantime, he compared himself to Simba (The Lion King) and showed footage from his appearance on Telemundo’s 12 Corazones, as well him hanging out with RBD member Dulce Maria. While this exercise of personal inquisition only seems to be as profound and serious as the cinéma vérité qualities of Joaquin Phoenix’s I’m Still Here, we are eager to watch. Llorens’ acid humor, his unmeasured love for PXNDX, his garments and overall behavior might just get him a full spread in the infamous MIRREYBOOK, but it’s his musical bravura that ultimately flowers here.
His debut album, Como Sea, No Te Creas (Delhotel Records, 2008), portrayed Llorens as an outcast and a fatalist, while his 2010 hit “Dame Un Besito” was the chillwaved manifesto of a domesticated romantic. For half a decade, Llorens has crafted an image of an exotic rockstar with hints of narcissist. Now, Coahuila’s bad boy (as we like to call him) comes at full throttle with his sophomore LP Enlazando Mundos. He’s still in exile from the wispiness that surrounds him but, as proven by songs like the heroic “Superpipes” and the gospel-like “Que Bueno Que Me Quede En El Viaje,” his lo-fi anthem-striking songs have shifted into glossy sing-along jams quite remarkably. On the negative side, some of his word choice is still pushing him into the provocateur/enfant terrible province (you can't keep using the word "joto" and get away with it). And let’s say the United Nations would not necessarily approve of his ways of "linking the world."
Pipe Llorens is a maverick in the abridgment of hip hop and rock and roll, but his melodic search is unsettling, almost insensitive. Yet this punk spirit showcases him as a sort of self-aware Mexican Jay Reatard, with all the occasional trial and error risks involved. Album opener “Sperma” is fierce and a suitable entrée in the album’s sticky essence and its masculine fluids. Album highlight “Todas Las Que Debo Ya Las He Pagado” is a campy pop piece that underlines the sagacity of Llorens’ rhymes and their interaction with fast-breathing headband '90s music. The steps of the artist are challenged even further in “Sangri,” a visceral psychedelic bolero that dares to reference Casper the Friendly Ghost, Vicente Fernandez, Juan Gabriel, and Robert Pattinson all in the same breath. Enlazando Mundos has a few bumps but is as entertaining and unforeseen as its creator. The odds are against him, yet Llorens and his songs are so likeable, almost therapeutic. A well-endowed second step from Pipe Llorens.