Formed in their entirety in 2000 five piece Latino dance funk band KINKY have emerged from relative obscurity in the desert city of Monterrey, Mexico to a phenomenal worldwide success. With two triumphant albums under their belt and many more tours, soundtracks and award nominations (including not one, not two, but three Grammys) to date, the boys begin 2005 on a very high note indeed.
The original KINKY line-up comprised of Gilberto Cerezo, Ulises Lozano and Carlos Chairez who experimented with alternative genres. Three became five when Omar Gongora and Cesar Pliego joined in early 2000 and everything clicked into place. With such diverse influences as traditional Samba beats to techno and rock 'n' roll, KINKY tapped their resources of rich talent and varied musical styles, to create their distinctive new sound.
By mid 2000 they were gaining a reputation for their unique blend of Latin rock and when Chris Allison, British record producer of Coldplay and the Beta Band, heard them, he decided to sign them to the his Sonic360 group of labels. The deal lead to a licensing agreement for the U.S. and Canada through Nettwerk America and BMG Mexico for Latin America. The rest, as they say, is history.
Aided by the production skills of Chris Allison, by 2002 KINKY had recorded and released a fine self-titled debut album, received by critical and public acclaim. Following the band’s effervescent SXSW appearance, critics from highly respected International press described KINKY’s music as “feverishly danceable,” “groovy electro-pop” and even going so far as to proclaim their unique blend as the “future of music.”
As an album, ‘Kinky’ combined the stylishness of discerning American and European dance grooves and straight-ahead rock ‘n’ roll, with traditional rhythms from throughout South America. Their fresh new sound and extensive touring attracted fans and supporters all over the U.S., Latin America and U.K. With live performances so well received, KINKY played over 180 shows in the year, travelling the world while working on their next album ‘Atlas’.
Following Chris “wise old owl” Allison’s advice, KINKY changed location for the recording of ‘Atlas’, heading to a secluded ranch in Quintana Roo, Mexico. In the serenity of the isolated jungle, they found both creativity and productivity, composing seven of the album’s eleven songs. “It was vacation and hard work at the same time,” remembers Gil, “and when we were in the jungle we were surrounded everywhere by insects and animals. One time as I was recording vocals, a bug came directly in to my mouth .... It was fun to have that kind of interaction!”
For the remainder of the album, KINKY travelled to Los Angeles to work with venerable engineer Thom Russo (System of a Down, Audioslave). Russo helped the band bring out a more raw and rock-driven sound in comparison with their electro-pop dominated debut; “The approach for this album was different from the first in that on this one we wanted to focus on a live, organic band sound,” says Ulises. “In the first album we recorded ourselves and made loops. On this record we didn’t use as many loops or samples. It was more like a live session where we’d record the whole track on tape [too], rather than just digital. You can hear all the organic sounds like guitar, drum, bass and vocals all sounding live.”
’Atlas’ has enjoyed huge success and confirmed KINKY’s status as the Mexican demi-Gods of the music world. With singles ‘Presidente’ and ‘Headphonist’ A and B listed on radio playlists worldwide and many high profile performances, including the MTV Latin Music Awards, and supporting the almighty Vasco Rossi on his Italian arena tour, KINKY are in an amazingly good place right now. To keep up to date with all the exciting KINKY news as and when it happens, keep your eyes and ears open and alert on the Sonic360 web site.