From the moment Chupame El Dedo’s second album, No Te Metas con Satan starts, you can tell this is gonna be one strange ride. And it is. This is weird music. For weird people. This is not everyone’s cup of tea and that’s ok. Some people prefer coffee, and coffee is exactly what they give you. No Te Metas Con Satan is that extra shot of espresso to jolt you right out of your daydreams. Thick with danceable rhythms, cartoonish vocals and satire, Chupame El Dedo continue to keep listeners on their toes, which is good, you’ll need to be light on your feet in order to keep up.
Originally meant to perform just one concert, Chupame El Dedo, formed in 2014 by psych cumbia master Eblis Alvarez (Meridian Brothers) and Pedro Ojeda (Romperayo), the man who found the perfect cocktail mix for acid + folk + tropical beats, are ready to mess around with Satan on this release. No Te Metas Con Satan is a surprisingly intelligent project mixing intense laughter with equally intense headbanging. I have to admit, I’ve done a lot of both to this album. The first night I listened to it I played it about 12 times in a row and just jumped around my apartment in my underwear (because let’s face it, if we’re gonna mess around with Satan it’s gotta be done in our underwear).
The inspiration behind Chupame El Dedo was to recreate a death metal group with influences of tropical music, both staples in the Colombian music scene. Joining the two cultural currents as they do plays like a joke. However, No Te Metas con Satan, for all its eccentric and extravagant production offers a clever critique of the reliance on clichés used in both tropical and metal music. For its part, “Mi Ancestro Berraco” pokes fun at the reliance on ancestral rhythms and conventions in tropical music. Colombia is one of the hot spots for music inspired by folklore and tradition; both Alvarez and Ojeda are deeply involved in the scene. While I don’t think they’re trying to make any statements I do think they’re laughing at themselves and their peers who are all capitalizing on different forms of the same thing.
No Te Metas con Satan is also really validating. Alvarez and Ojeda give you so many ideas of where to place blame for all the things that are wrong in your life. We’re all trying to be better versions of ourselves right? But sometimes it’s just so hard. Don’t worry it’s not your fault, it’s probably Satan. Not getting good grades in school? Satan. Can’t seem to hold on to your money? Satan. Can’t keep it in your pants? Definitely Satan!
Satan is also what’s getting you out on that dancefloor. For all of its hilarity and strangeness I can see several of these songs working at the club. It definitely had me dancing all over my apartment. Dancing and laughing as I made strange and hilarious shapes with my body. “Amo a mi Familia” feels like the musical equivalent of doing the escalator behind your couch. It’s funky and experimental and wild, all without losing you. As the song winds up so do you, as it slows down you do too, allowing your body’s creativity to take the lead.
I heard this album called repetitive and, while I don’t entirely disagree, I rather enjoyed that because the songs flowed right into one another. I didn’t have to stop moving to wait for the next song to get started. I could just keep my sexy cabbage patch going. It reminds me of the best nights of my youth. The ones on the dance floor with my best friends, maybe one drink too drunk, oscillating between dancing and laughing our hearts out.
The one downside of the album is “Alexandra Candelaria”, an erotic techno-infused subversion of Little Red Hood, featuring a conversation between a girl who’s looking forward to a round of bullerengue, and the devil himself. It’s hilarious and definitely worth the occasional listen but it’s the most skip worthy song on the album. And after about two listens, skip it you will because it kind of breaks up the flow you just got into. Ultimately, though, it does little to detract.
With No Te Metas con Satan, Chupame el Dedo advises you not to mess with Satan, but after a couple listens I’ve got my black candles out because I just might have to.