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Molotov set the Fiestas de Octubre ablaze

October 17, 2012

Fresh from a recent tour of Russia, Mexico City’s notorious rap-metal outfit Molotov played a huge free show at the Fiestas de Octubre in Guadalajara this week.

Rebellion and controversy have been staples of popular music for well over half a century and Molotov are no strangers to either. Mixing hard rock and hip-hop with politically conscious “Spanglish” lyrics and a heavy dose of crude humor, they emerged in the mid-1990s as Mexico’s more party-friendly answer to U.S. group Rage Against the Machine.

Now 15 years on from the release of their explosive debut album “¿Dónde Jugarán Las Niñas?” Molotov have become veterans of Mexico’s alternative rock scene. Having soundtracked the adolescence of a generation, their popularity remains sufficient to draw over 16,000 people to Guadalajara’s Benito Juarez auditorium on a Tuesday night.

Unsurprisingly, the aforementioned album’s most accomplished track “Gimme Tha Power” commanded one of the biggest singalongs of the night. Denouncing police extortion and government corruption and incompetence, the song has been adopted over the years as a kind of alternative and more apt national anthem.

Other crowd favorites included the profanity-laden “Puto” and “Chinga Tu Madre” and the racist-baiting classic “Frijolero.”

While the sound was somewhat distorted, the band’s energetic live show was every bit as incendiary as their name suggests. As the concert reached its climax, small pockets of the packed out crowd were even throwing what looked like burning clothing into the air.

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