Bournemouth is a town to die in. This not only applies to the phalanx of pensioners who go there for 24-hour a day auditions as extras in a zombie movie that will never be cast, but also to the people who grow up there, taking part-time jobs in cafes and shops, selling cream teas, tea towels and other tea-related products. One can either submit to the inevitable or try to escape. Doing an exceptionally good job of the latter is new band (and Bournemouth residents), Perico, whose 6 song demo I have been listening to obsessively for the last two months.
Imagine a musical landscape full of romance, with flamenco-style acoustic guitars and trumpets; with sudden bursts of passion and slow interludes of implicit tragedy. The only other British indie band I can think of who likewise cultivate their fertile garden without a care for a world of fashionable facsimiles is The Tindersticks. Second song, Moonbathers, shares the same melancholy resignation, but without the obstacle of Stuart Staples’ club singer voice.
But it is their magnificent incorporation of flamenco motifs – so subtle – that makes Perico so essential. No Resistance takes one outside of grey London to the Plaza Mayor in Madrid where people sing flamenco for their lunch. And yet, somehow Matt Cameron’s vocals have a resolutely British lineage, more Paddy McAloon than Camaron. The latter songs, To the End of the World and For This veer a little close to Gomez territory for comfort but overall this is great stuff.