En Español Por Favor, Piyama Party
by Jeziel Jovel
Piyama Party is an acknowledgement to indolence, an ode to teenage angst, and a real testament to a youth-in-verse. It’s a band that’s substantially interested in frivolity, and they make sure to remind us that we are the last generation to feel nostalgia remembering life before computers, that we are the kids of the 90’s growing up on an age of transition: from hand-written letters to electronic mail. Life, as we knew it, going from analog to digital. Piyama Party triggers the young and naïve, but above all, those who experience uneasiness from society: the upshot from combinations of cigarettes and alcohol, drugs and television, music and porn, junk food and pop culture-hoarded bedrooms. Living the days like we’re never really asleep and never really awake. All you need is love, all you want is sex, and all you have is porn.
After the preamble and curiosity introduced on their previous installment Culipandeo, Piyama’s latest record, En Español Por Favor, is a complete collection of the Piyama Party essence. Mastermind Luis Ángel Martínez continues to record at home, this time crafting a total of 17 songs that cohesively point to the future. “El único equipo en el que mejor funciono no es otro más que mi banda de rock,” sighs Martínez in first single “Compañeros,” responding to the unease of a society that pretends to be collective but who can’t behold the weird ways of a prolific songwriter like Martínez.
It’s easy to jump on the bandwagon of not taking Piyama Party’s lyrical content seriously, but some of their vernacular should be taken seriously. When Rockdrigo Gonzalez mocked himself in his 1989 ode-to-abysmal classic “El Feo,” he blurred the lines between an audience that was laughing with him, and those laughing at him. Rockdrigo since tried to disassociate from “El Feo’s” ridicule and struggled to be taken seriously until the day of his death. I’m not saying that this is where Piyama Party’s career is heading. Not at all. But as a song of by Interpol says, “If your life is such a big joke, why should I care?” It may seem inoffensive and light-headed, but this is the album where Piyama Party mediates its future (a transitory album of sorts).
Piyama Party knows there’s a right dose of humor rock and roll music can sustain. The thing is that, a constant mocking-on-yourself behavior surely affects the thematic scope of a record like En Español Por Favor. The album is weakened when the band’s known languid attitude hits the melody and harmonies. Songs like “Anti-Yoga,” “Super Junior,” and even the title track play dangerously relaxed –so much in fact, that the rhythmic continuity of the record is put at risk. On the other side, we have really high moments like the self-resolved, album-best “Ella es un diamante,” which belongs to the newer stage of Piyama Party as opposed to most of the songs included on this record which began to be recorded back in 2010.
En Español Por Favor isn’t the best album Piyama Party has made, but it’s not a regression either. In fact, it’s a bit of an essential Piyama Party album. We can certainly say it's an album for fans. This is the one record that seamlessly blends the good, the bad and the fucked up from the PP experience. This is also a reminder that they’re one of the few great bands out there with the ability of granting meaning to the worn tag of indie rock, and the true DIY blueprint.