PRAYERS – Chologoth

101

Artist: Prayers

Album: Chologoth

Release Date: 02/02/2022

Label: Independent

Country: United States

Prayers are in my opinion a completely unique act, I have yet to find anyone else that sounds quite like them. They describe their unique blend of post-punk, gothic rock, synthwave and electronica as Cholo Goth, hence the title of their latest offering Chologoth. The album was independently released on February 2nd.

The band don’t just blend various genres and styles of music they also blend cultures, which in my opinion only adds to how unique they are. They blend elements of the gothic subculture with the Chicano and Latino based cholo subculture. Lyrically and theme wise the band discuss the harsh realities of gang and street life, as well other topics including Mexican culture and history. Many of these influences come from member Rafael Reyes (who goes by the alter-ego Leafar Seyer) and his time spent as a gang member in the Sherman Grant Hill Park 27 gang in San Diego. He is joined in Prayers by the other half of the group Dave Parley.

Musically most fans of 80s post-punk and gothic rock will find plenty to love with this release. From the pulsing beats, catchy rhythms and general aesthetic to the vocal style, it’s all there and it’s all fantastic. However, all of these elements are presented in a unique manner, including Latin influenced rhythms and numerous parts of the album being sung in Spanish. Influence wise the band have been cited as being drawing upon acts such as Christian Death, Depeche Mode, Bauhaus, Pet Shop Boys, Xmal Deutschland and other classic acts (that I hope that most of you are familiar with). All of these influences can be felt throughout the album.

What really makes the music so special though are the lyrical themes and cultural nuances woven throughout the album. It’s not often that you see the real-life experience of other cultures expressed so openly in this style of music. This is something I would personally love to see more of as it not only makes the music more personal and real, but it brings so many unique idiosyncrasies to the table that simply can’t be forced no matter how unique they try to be.

While all of these unique elements initially drew me in to the album, what keeps me coming back again and again is how unbelievably catchy and high energy the music is. There’s a real aggression present on many of the tracks and that aggression feeds the energy and tone of the album. However, despite this aggression it never interferes with how melodic and catchy the rhythms are on the release. The Spanish sung tracks really mix well with this energy, with the language flowing (in my opinion) far more smoothly than English. This smoothness is sometimes offset by the intensity with which Reyes sings. It almost coming across at points as shouting and adds a plenty of passion and conviction to the music.

There are two types of songs on the album that seem to play interchangeably, more textured, smooth and atmospheric tracks and higher energy, more aggressive and catchy tracks. There’ also a blend of tracks that have more of an old school 80s feel to them and those that feel more modern and innovative. The group have done a fantastic job of finding a balance between the two and strategically placing these tracks on the release. As a result, things never feel excessive or boring and it allows the group to also appeal to a wider audience, not alienating any potential follower base. Having said that some of those catchy tracks are real brain worms and will have songs stuck in your headfor days after each listening, bring you back for more time and time again.

Overall, I’m a huge fan of this album have already listened to it in full at least 5 time since it dropped two weeks ago. I can see myself coming back to this album many times in the future as I feel it has a fantastic replay value. The nice thing about it too is that it can be played in multiple different settings, either alone relaxing, in the car with friends at a party, it suits those and so many more settings. If you have yet to expose yourself to the world of Cholo Goth then I encourage you to experience Chologoth in full today and to also check out some of the band’s fantastic music videos below.

Listen to and order the album

Tidal

Spotify

Band Website




Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *