“Los Polacos” is an idiosyncratic winner—an edgy crooner with a stuttery heart, a guitar-driven soul, and the capacity to make an unexpected amount of noise. There is no doubt a bass player in here too, and obviously a drummer, but everything I hear works in support of the guitars and the singing, and centers around the pining drive of the cycling melody.
Similarly to “Rivers” (see previous post) but in an entirely different-feeling song, the melody here offers a long hesitant journey through an unresolved chord progression. When we finally end up on solid ground, we don’t really get to rest there—listen, for example, at 0:40, to how the melody resolves but then instantly resets itself back to the beginning. Or, in another case, we arrive at resolution only to have our minds are scrubbed clean by a wall of guitars (1:17). And if the ongoing lack of resolution leads the ear on, the earnest playing is what engages the soul. No doubt there are cultural influences at work that go beyond my understanding, but I get such a strong sense of a group of actual musicians interacting in real space, with their instruments and their voices, in a way that feels ancient and true, transcending the rock’n’roll setting entirely. Musicians making music, as they always have and always will, long past the time anyone remembers what a laptop was.
Orquesta de Perros (“Dog Orchestra”) is a five-piece band from Buenos Aires. “Los Polacos” is the lead track from Roles y Oficios, the band’s first full-length album, released this month on Buenos Aires-based Uf Caruf! Records. MP3 via the band. The entire album, worth a listen, is available for free, from Bandcamp.