Chicano Batman makes music of American blood born in LA. They ride a thin line betwen soul, funk, and a conglomerate of border sounds tinged with tuxedo-psychedelia. They toss magnets out to all Americas, all corners of the room. They bring old definitions to the stage and smash them like Gallagher and some watermelons.
Style getting lost in directive is a good thing, especially when so many groups in the wake of Ozomatli's mash have lacked either one important thing or the other in an attempt to be something
. Chicano Batman doesn't appear to be striving towards one of those dead ends.
These guys do a good job of reminding us that music is not only the best way to learn about a new culture, but it's the best way to bleed them all together. There is a sense of freedom in genre, and lead singer Bardo Martinez's unhinged affect on stage reminds us that freedom is indeed free. Their new album is called that: Freedom is Free
While not always lyrically commanding, Chicano Batman brings something new enough to be charming, and relieving. You can tell they are committed because the luster of their outfits falls away when they're on stage. The look becomes secondary to melody, harmony. What's left after the sheen is hi-hat, wah, ebullient bass and Bardo Martinez's glorious hair.