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After 25 Years, Legendary Punk Band Los Crudos Is Still As Hardcore As Ever

The iconic band reunites after 25 years. 

When the Latinx band Los Crudos exploded onto the Chicago punk scene in 1991, they created a unique sound that would garner them fans all over the Americas. The hardcore punk group's unapologetic harsh and gritty lyrics set them apart as a premiere political Latinx band, detailing the realities of violence and immigration struggles in their communities in the United States and abroad. After more than twenty years of not performing with the breakthrough band, Martin Sorrondeguy, the band's vocalist, is still as punk as ever.

"I still go to basement shows and I’m still pissed off," he told Remezcla, with a laugh. "I never left that. I don’t do many lectures in universities. I see that they invite a lot of scholars who study punk but often they don’t invite punks…If I get invited, I’m glad and honored and I do my best to give a true sort of representation of what punk is. I also don’t have a problem with challenging these ‘punk scholars’ because I think sometimes they’re wrong and need to be challenged before it gets written down in their books."

Los Crudos were not a band that relied on political performance; the band's distinctly anti-authoritarian sound was influenced by troubling political events south of the border. As a child of Uruguayan immigrants, Sorrondeguy knew directly about the social unrest created by the dictatorship in his parents' home country. He channeled this into writing material for Los Crudos, prompting discussions about the fight for democracy elsewhere on the planet. "It was one thing to write a song about El Salvador from a U.S. perspective—and that was cool, I think there were some great bands who did good stuff—but when you have people coming from certain places and have dealt with these ugly realities and they go writing songs, then it’s a little different. It got to a point where we needed to write our own songs about these things that were important to us.”

While the military dictatorship of Uruguay came to an end in 1983, the band's front man argues that the songs that were a result of that troubling time in Latin American history is still pertinent in the millennium. "The thing about the lyrics that we wrote 25 years ago is that they are completely relevant today. For me it’s not hard to scream these lyrics and still feel very strongly about them. It’s all still happening. The U.S. is very anti-Latinx and the world is very anti-immigrant, and that also includes us.”

It's this dedication to originality that Sorrondeguy wants to maintain in punk, rather than political posturing in order to be perceived as radical by the punk audience. “I want to see some totally freaky queer person doing something that has nothing to do with queerness as political…I’m curious about what people bring to punk or take or give to punk. I get bored easily when bands do the same thing over and over and over. I think kids are afraid to take risks, to look different from their peers and their scenes. When they step outside of their peers and scenes, te critican, but si te están criticando, maybe you’re doing something f*cking cool, you know? I said to people in the past who have interviewed me that I don’t believe all bands should tell me all their politics, after which they tell me, ‘But that’s what you do!’ Yeah, that’s what I do and what I have done, I don’t expect everybody to follow in my footsteps.”

Sorrondeguy's openness about his queer identity has challenged the aversion to queerness in the punk scene, particularly in the evolution of the genre in Chicago. In 2010, black and brown punk show (lovingly nicknamed B&B), a DIY concert dedicated to showcasing punk talent from people of color who were marginalized in the city's predominately white punk spaces, was on the city's south side. The show, conceptualized and hosted by black punk veteran Monika Estrella Negra, created workshops for deconstructing anti-blackness, machismo, xenophobia, state-sanctioned violence, and very explicitly provided a safe space for queer folks who were constant targets of disparaging attitudes and comments about their identities. The movement's last show in 2015 was organized around the reunion of Los Crudos, a farewell to the space that created a new haven for the city's black and brown queercore punk rock scene.

"Over the years, there has been a much larger presence of queer punk and people coming out or being more visible. I’ve seen that there’s a lot more trans kids that are part of the scene and I think that’s amazing. You wouldn’t see that sort of thing in a hardcore punk setting 15 or 20 years ago. People were so afraid because punk and hardcore had a very macho exterior, and to a certain degree I get it, because you have to fight a lot, to be always ready to battle. Because you were a weirdo y la gente te veía raro and they would f*ck with you, " he explains. "You’re fighting to create your own space within punk, to say, ‘I like punk too and I like to suck dick—that’s who I am—and I don’t give a f*ck if you don’t like it.’ That’s the true spirit of punk, to challenge within it, especially once it became more codified and [adopted] more rules. We need the rule breakers.”

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Ozuna And Darell Travel Through An Industrial Conquest Denouncing A Bad Love In "Vacia Sin Mi"

Gloomy cloudy skies are looming over an industrial like setting dotted with huge heavy duty trucks, as beautiful young ladies clad in yellow jumpsuits surround Ozuna in the visuals for his new single, “Vacia Sin Mi” featuring Latin trap artist Darell.

The new track is centered around the plight behind a romance gone wrong, and Ozuna is denouncing the love interest that did him wrong.  Through a hypnotic slow beat, he sings on beat about wanting nothing to do with her. He’s moved on and so should she. Darell assists the singer with brash vocals, which sound like the Spanish version of rapper Future’s signature raspy syrupy drawl.

“We want to show people a completely new concept, always looking to surprise the fans that have always supported my artistic career,” Ozuna stated in a press release.  

“Vacia Sin Mi” is the 27 year-old’s latest single off his forthcoming project NIBURU, which will be released under the record label Dimelo Vi. Just recently, the reggaeton artist made history by garnering 23 nominations for the 2019 Billboard Latin Music Awards.

We’re curious to see what new music and sound his forthcoming project will bring. Last year, he told VIBE VIVA about his previous album, Aura and what it represents for him. "Aura" is what one reflects in the heart, what you bring into the world, and what people want to learn from you,” he said. “In this situation particularly, it reflects what I have learned from fame, from all this going around my life. I interpreted all that in this album. I made international collaborations, which is something that didn’t exist in the past.”

Watch the video for “Vacia Sin Mi” above.

 

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Two Former Cops Arrested For Murder Of Brazilian Politician and Activist Marielle Franco

Brazilian activist and councilwoman Marielle Franco was murdered almost a year ago on March 14 2018, along with her driver Anderson Gomes. Now almost a year since Franco's brutal murder, suspects have been named and arrested in the case.

"Two police officers were arrested for direct and effective participation in the crime," said Rio de Janeiro's state police secretary, Marcus Vinícius Braga. "With these arrests, we get close to solving the crime."

Franco was a well-known activist in Rio de Janeiro and she used her platform to speak out on police brutality and on the behalf of Black Brazilians who have been fighting the rampant racism in their country. Just a day before her death Franco had attended a discussion titled "Young Black Women Moving [Power] Structures" and just a couple of hours later was allegedly shot by the arrested suspect retired military officer Ronnie Lessa with the assistance of the expelled cop, and another suspect, Élcio Vieira Queiroz, who was driving the car.

Franco was clearly targeted given her candidness when speaking about the corruption that plagues the Brazilian police force and the color of her skin is what convinced the men that their actions would go unnoticed. Brazilian prosecutors have stated that Franco's assassination was planned three months in advance by the two individuals, however, they are also now looking into whether Lessa and Queiroz were hired to kill Franco by someone else.

Following the arrests Gomes' widow, Ágatha Reis spoke out. "It is a weight that is starting to lift off my shoulders," Reis said. "I cannot be completely at peace. They still have to tell us who ordered these killings. It doesn't end here." Reis sentiments were echoed by supporters of Franco as #WhoOrderedMariellesMurder trended on Twitter soon after the arrests as well.

This is the first step towards justice for Franco and Gomes and it must not be the last.

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Bronx City Councilman Unveils Street In Memory Of Lesandro "Junior" Guzman-Feliz

Honoring the victim in the tragic and fatal case of mistaken identity, a New York City street has been renamed in tribute to Lesandro “Junior” Guzman-Feliz, CBS New York reports.

Guzman-Feliz was killed by members of the Trinitarios gang in the summer of 2018 after a group of its members mistakenly thought he was somebody else. He was 15. His story gained nationwide media coverage after footage showed multiple men attacking him with machetes.

It was announced that the Bathgate Avenue block would be renamed on July 25 and now nearly eight months later, the street sign has officially been unveiled. With both the family and city council members of the revel in tow, Councilman Ritchie Torres delivered a beautiful speech honoring the late Bronx native.

 

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A Picture Is Worth A Thousand Words❤️🙏🏼😩 . . . Cr: @justice4junjun #justiceforjunior #justiceforjunior💔 #lesandroguzmanfeliz #juniorsworld #happybirthdayleandra #happybirthday #ripjunior #e4j #j4j #llj #longlivejunior #flyhighjunior #forever15 #restinpeacejunior

A post shared by 👼🏽JUSTICE FOR JUNIOR👼🏽🗣 (@rip_junior15) on Feb 27, 2019 at 12:49pm PST

 

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The Crowd Sang Happy Birthday To Leandra😩😭❤️ Btw THE SIGN IS UP ITS OFFICIAL😭 . . . #justiceforjunior💔 #justiceforjunior #forever15 #juniorsworld #longlivejunior #stoptheviolence #justice #e4j #j4j #flyhighjunior #lesandroguzmanfeliz #ripjunior #restinpeacejunior #restinheaven

A post shared by 👼🏽JUSTICE FOR JUNIOR👼🏽🗣 (@rip_junior15) on Feb 27, 2019 at 7:48am PST

 

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A Bittersweet Moment😭❤️🙏🏼🤴🏽 Long Live Junior👼🏽 . . . Cr: @camaro_clutch #justiceforjunior💔 #justiceforjunior #forever15 #juniorsworld #longlivejunior #stoptheviolence #justice #e4j #j4j #flyhighjunior #lesandroguzmanfeliz #ripjunior #restinpeacejunior #restinheaven

A post shared by 👼🏽JUSTICE FOR JUNIOR👼🏽🗣 (@rip_junior15) on Feb 27, 2019 at 8:01am PST

“It is Junior’s memory that inspired the governor of New York to invest over $18 million in new funds for youth programming right here in the Bronx. It is Junior’s memory that inspired both the mayor and the City Council to bring new gang violence prevention services right here to the 48th Precinct," Torres said. "And it is Junior’s memory that inspired the Bronx borough president, partnering with New York State’s parks and the Fresh Air Fund, to create an upstate summer program for Bronx youth known as Camp Junior. These commemorations of Junior’s memory represent only the beginning. Junior’s impact will last as his spirit lives on.”

He went on to say, “we should remember Junior not only for the tragic loss of his life in an unspeakable act of violence. We should remember him for the lives he has saved and the lives he will save because of the legacy he leaves behind—a legacy that I am honored to memorialize right here on Bathgate and 183rd. This street will forever be the home, will forever tell the story of Lesandro ‘Junior’ Guzman-Feliz.”

 

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