Halik Ni Gringo - The Call Of Booty
by Halik Ni Gringo
"Some bands take themselves too seriously. Some bands just don’t give a fuck. Halik Ni Gringo may fall into the latter category but then again, maybe not. Take their debut album for example. Though its title may not instantly evoke deep philosophical musings on such favorite hipster topics such as, well, the human condition yet on a closer listen you’ll sense something more beyond the squalid auditory landscape. In an age where irony has long become a jaded if not a totally dead scene, it is easy to dismiss HNG as just another one of those satire acts in the tradition of Frank Zappa and The Mothers, Dread Zeppelin, Green Jelly, or closer to home, local pranksters like Giniling Festival and Kiko Machine. Though comparisons may not be completely shunned, HNG, as The Call of Booty demonstrates, seems to attempt in taking their brand of sleazy stoner humor to unchartered sonic territories.
The spoken-word introduction of which narrator, in suave sotto voce, will remind one of Junee Gamboa’s iconic narration on Batas Militar, sets a deceiving tone to the tumult that is to come. The title track kicks-off the phallic, I mean, epic saga with its bastardized prog-rock styling fused with a pervasive mood of no holds barred sexual debauchery. Served in a chaotic cauldron of musical styles namely post-punk, metal, contemporary rock, synth pop, folk, reggae, and even RnB/hip-hop, every track exhausts all means to grab the listener’s attention by the scrotum. The Call of Booty is concocted as if the band anticipates this generation’s attention deficit disorder. It’s a concept album for the iPad kids who prefer listening to their playlist in shuffle mode.
“The After After Party” is down-and-dirty disco with elephantine balls while the heady The Cars-meet-The Blood Brothers synth rock of “I Believe It Was So He Could Get A Clean Getaway” is something that you would play loud while driving drunk as fuck 100 kph along South Luzon Expressway. The rest of the tracks, except for “Lubog sa Laro” which pokes fun at the online addiction of the Facebook-YouTube generation, reek of sex but to say that the album is merely about unbridled lust and pure unadulterated copulation is like labeling Sasha Grey as just another porn star. Beyond the healthy servings of lovely poetic language such as twat, pussy, and fuck, lies the central motif of The Call for Booty which is the commodification of love and sexual relationship in a monopoly-capitalist, semi-feudal, semi-colonial setting.
Okay. Fuck that crap. Whether HNG’s debut is a high concept album disguised under a thick gooey surface of filth and fury or not, the far more important question is can you dance to it? The thing is, it’s kinda hard to shake your booty with an excruciating hard-on."
- Elmer Ramos / Vandals On The Wall