Some nasty business with a promoter (see Kamikaze, August 22, 2007, for all the details) forced them to cancel a scheduled S.A. appearance last year, but supernova rock-en-español-ers Jaguares are trying again. Though they were originally scheduled to play at White Rabbit this time, the show has been moved to Club Rio, the intended site for last year’s misfire. But founding member and former Caifanes frontman Saúl Hernández famously named the band after a dream he had about playing inside a jaguar’s mouth, so it’s probably safe to assume Jaguares isn’t all hung up on venues.
The band is, however, notably hung up on political and social activism (their website, jaguaresmx.com, contains a news feed labled “amnistia,” right next to the one labled “jaguares,” as well as links to VotoLatino and Amnesty International), and their recent deal with EMI Mexico hasn’t changed that. Though some longtime fans decry latest album 45’s move to a stripped-down but polished mainstream sound (think post-grunge Police) as a sellout, the album is titled for the 45 million Mexicans Hernández estimates are currently living in poverty.
The album, Jaguares’ first since 2005, is definitely not as heavy as some of their early releases, but the progression toward greater accessibility was one of many possible paths anticipated by their schizophrenic previous release, the appropriately titled Cronicas de un Laberinto, and the move seems to have paid off: 45 is currently the number-three seller on Amazon’s Latin rock charts, an indication that the group has only added to its loyal international and multigenerational fan base. Considering Jaguares shows are reportedly madhouses in U.S. cities with large Spanish-speaking populations, even when the band isn’t touring on the strength of a hot new album, you’re probably going to want to arrive early.
$35, 18 and up, 8pm Thursday, Oct 2, Club Rio, 13307-A San Pedro, (210) 403-2582. club-rio.net.