Hocico

Live at Catch One

Los Angeles, CA

September 27th, 2019

Review and photos by Travis Baumann

Bringing their perverted gospel from the ghettos of Mexico City come the duo known as Hocico. Their rotten mouthed verse and haunting synths layered in with dance-able beats and powerful messages are turning dance clubs into churning displays of modern electro-industrial advocacy around the world.

Since their inception in 1993 Hocico have remained true to their vision and their sonic signature, building a global following and being one of the founders of the Mexican industrial scene. Consisting of long-time band mates Erk Aicrag handles vocal and lyrical duties while the music is composed and performed by the enigmatic Racso Agroyam.

Tonight Das Bunker is presenting a showcase performance with Hocico putting on nearly an hour and a half show. They recently released their twelfth full length release, "Artificial Extinction" and the venue was packed wall to wall with fans anticipating the performance.

Hocico started off the show with a moody, cinematic introduction leading into the single from the latest album, "Dark Sunday". The audience was ready for the new material and reacted with hands in the air, a building mosh pit, and people dancing throughout the venue.

They moved two releases back to the "Ofensor" album for two in the row with "Sex Sick" and the crowd-pleaser, "In the Name of Violence".

Billowing clouds of smoke pumped out to build a hazy atmosphere that beam splitters pierced with lasers moving through out. A screen behind Racso flickered through rapid changing images of relevant imagery; everything from industrial landscapes, to skulls and gore.

They did the fan-favorite "Bite Me!" from their 2010 album "Tiempos de Furia" which led into a really moving version of "In the Name of Violence". Erk rapidly moved about the stage while he sang in contrast to the more stoic Racso working his synthesizers and effects.

They treated us to another song from the latest album with "Psychonaut" and followed up that with one of their many songs that deal with self loathing due to circumstance of birth or class, "I Abomination". A lot of their subject matter comes from their upbringing in near third world conditions and the struggles of life in an unjust and inequal society.

"Poltergeist" has been a main-stay of their live sets since it came out nineteen years ago. The crowd reacted with a renewed vigor, the mosh pit growing and pushing people out of its wake in all directions.

"Dead Trust" came from their 2012 album "El Ultimo Minuto" with another jump back in time to a decade earlier with "Forgotten Tears" from the amazing "Signos de Aberración" album.

They concluded the main set with two final songs, "A Fatal Desire" from 2008's "Memorias atrás" album and then left the audience with the title track from the "Tiempos de furia" release.

The crowd was sweaty and some of them quite battered but they were not done yet. They chanted the band's name and stomped their feet until the duo re-emerged.

They played a two song encore with highly anticipated tracks from the die-hard fans in the audience, "About a Dead" from the "Memorias atrás" album followed by the evening closer; "Twist the Thorn" from "Tiempos de furia", which saw the most songs played out of any of their albums tonight.

It was a great show, and really packed. It was nearly impossible to move about the venue, even the bar area was densely populated.  It is also great that both members were present as the current visa situation in this country has prevented many artists from touring these days and Racso has had issues in the past so I was excited to see them both on stage.

They played a huge eighty-two minute set stretching across their entire back catalog of material. One of my favorite albums is "Wrack and Ruin" so I was a little sad not to get to hear any favorites from that, but with so many releases under their belts, I am sure they have a hard decision on what to include.

It is great to see Hocico going strong after all these years with another great album out this year and still touring the globe so extensively.

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