Los Plantronics Share New Single ‘Red Hot’
File under: Vikings Invading Mexico!
New album due out 27th July 2015
via Jansen Plateproduksjon
The new album from Norway’s Los Plantronics, “Surfing Times” (an adventurous surf-related concept album), is a head spinning trip from berzerk surf-rock to crooning mariachi tunes. On “Surfing Times”, the Oslo based raucous 9-piece orchestra are using their surf foundation for exploration -seeking unknown destinations. The result is a magical musical ride, from the “roots of surf” including wild 50’s rock’n’roll, instrumental passages and frantic R&B, via the Surf-Age and 60’s garage and Tex Mex, all the way to a place where surf meets psych, latin-exotica and hot swinging movie soundtracks. There’s even a mariachi version of Gene Clarks masterpiece So You Say You Lost Your Baby in there. It’s comparable to a soundtrack for a psychedelic exploitation surf movie set in Mexico – If that comparison is even possible.
The concept behind the album is an interesting one: Los Plantronics didn’t think they could play like an authentic surf band even if they wanted to but when a UK artist called Josh Stingray sent over a Rick Griffin-esque piece of artwork (the album art), the band instantly decided that this needed to be the artwork for a new album They even decided to keep the title of the art work (‘Surfing Times’). The only thing the band had left to do was to record 12 songs that would suit it, therein completely reversing the recording process. On the concept the band said, “We really put our heart & soul into it; sat down on their Mexican beach blanket and re-arranged six tunes from the golden area and wrote six new ones to fit the project.”
The album is full of many different sonic inflections and calls to mind a multifarious cocktail of influences, tracks such as ‘Golden Dawn Surf Patrol’ blend surf-psych guitars with Tijuana Brass and flamenco, whilst El Jeffe heads towards a more fuzz driven garage sound. Then there are tracks like the bands own take on ‘Shortnin Bread Pt II’ which brings all of these influences and sounds together in what the band describe as “pure demented surf trash”. Sure you can draw similarities to bands such as The King Khan & BBQ Show or Flat Duo Jets, but what this really is, is a band taking the golden oldies and giving them a raw no-nonsense edge.
Stream ‘Red Hot’ track here
Recording an album full of instrumental surf rock style guitar, is completely different to what the band had previously experienced and indeed than most music out there, you need a certain production. To achieve the authentic tribal sound, the band moved to a small cabin in the middle of the woods to record live to 2,5” tape at Snaxville Recordings (which is possible as far as you can get from any surf environment – being 50 miles away from Oslo, in the wilderness).
A creative storm was brewing during the recording of this album, and the effect is nothing short of impressive – if you’re in the mood for traveling to Trashville to get yourself lost in some surfadelic twang, be sure to listen to “Surfing Sounds”.
View the last video here
Los Plantronics Is:
Eivind Staxrud – (electric lead guitar & flamenco guitar)
Kjetil Jakobsen aka Slim Slammer – (“Lucha Libre” mask, standup drum kit, percussion and lead vocals)
Lars Erik Larsen – (bass & Fender VI bass, sitar, backing vocals & lead vocals on “So You Say”)
Didrik Lund – (piano, electric-piano, organ, Hammond organ, Theremin-effects, spaghetti western whistling & perc)
Bendik Brænne – (alt-sax, baritone-sax, horn arranger, flute, piano, harmonica, percussion, and vocals)
Signor Havn – (fuzzy & crunchy guitar, concept maker/”producer”, sound-effects, vocals & percussion)
Tijuana Brass: Eivind Solheim & Sindre Blostrupmoen (trumpets) and Hans Foyn Friis (trombone