Tajak is a drone rock/shoegaze band from Mexico. In 2017 they released their second album ‘Amsterdam 211’. Their influences range from krautrock, psychedelic, drone, punk, ambient, dub etc. . On December 2nd they will be playing at SpaceFest! at B90 in Gdańsk, Poland. Meanwhile…
Tell us a few things about Tajak. When did it all begin?
Tajak began around 4 years ago when we met in school studying audio engineering in Mexico City. Coco (bass) and Carlos (guitar) are originally from Ensenada, Baja California, and Alvaro (drums) is from La Paz, Baja California Sur. We started to get together to jam because we had very alike tastes in music. After some jamming sessions we decided to put a name on it, because we felt we had something very good going on. We named the band Tajak, which means “skeleton” in kiliwa, a dialect from an ancient culture from Baja California
Early this year you released your second, if I am correct, album ‘Amsterdam 211‘. You actually created this album in Amsterdam. Do you live there or were you just visiting? How did that city inspire you for this album?
We created this album and all of its songs around 2013-2015 in an apartment we used to live in which was located on the street Amsterdam number 211 in Mexico City. These times were very important for us as a band, we lived many crazy things that happened in this place, so this album means all of this way of living we had around those days we lived in Amsterdam #211.
Which are your main musical influences?
We are highly influenced by krautrock bands like Can, Neu!, Faust, etc. We also listen a lot to spiritual jazz like Alice Coltrane. The three of us love bands like Bardo Pond, Bowery Electric and My Bloody Valentine. Also a big influence from our early beginnings would be Darkthrone, Sunn O))), etc.
if you could describe your music with one word, what would it be?
On December 2nd you will perform at SpaceFest! in Gdańsk. What will the Polish audience expect from you in this live?
You will have a very powerful sounding live experience, full of layers and ambience, from the lowest to the highest, and great repetition that will cause take you in a severe trance.
Have you also performed in other European countries?
It’s our first time in Europe!
How is your music received in Mexico? Would you say bands like Tajak belong to the “underground scene”?
We have a very specific audience that somehow it all belongs to the underground. People that have responded very well since the first time we played live and have supported our music and our label keep spreading the word. We are growing and evolving along many other bands in Mexico inside the psych and experimental scene, and we see every time more and more people interested in our music. We’re definitely an underground band, but we have managed to gain attention in both the avant garde and psych rock movements in and outside of Mexico.
We are among the few local bands confirmed for the Aural Festival in Mexico City along experimental and indefinable figures like Roscoe Mitchell, KK Null and Godspeed You! Black Emperor, yet we also get invitations to perform at numerous psych and rock events with bands like Holydrug Couple and Acid Mothers Temple. We’re very happy with the way different scenes and movements have embraced our music.
Apart from the technical part of your music, what are the main concepts or themes you get inspiration (movies, literature, etc)?
The three of us are big fans of movies. A big inspiration for us would be the works of filmmakers like David Lynch, Kenneth Anger, etc.
Are you already working on new material for a future release?
We recorded our next full-length album titled ‘Ciclos‘ two months ago with Beto from Llorelle Meets The Obsolete. Right now we’re on the mixing process. We hope to have it finished later this year or beginning of 2018. We’re very happy with the results, we think it’s a whole new level for Tajak and we also feel we have achieved a more mature sound, exploring new frontiers. You will hear some new material in SpaceFest!.
Thank you for your time! Add anything you wish to close this interview.
We are very happy to be part of SpaceFest! 2017.