VIDEO PREMIERE: TROPA MAGICA “LSD ROMA”
Tropa Magica is the new band by brothers David and Rene Pacheco of thee (mighty) Commons, whose psychedelic punk-cumbia magically and cosmically connected at least three continents and as many generations. Now with thee Commons discography triumphantly concluded, Tropa Magica is set to take flight, especially with this new song “LSD Roma.” This video is the visual counterpart to the single premiered on One Reporter’s Opinion on dublab on Wednesday. Tropa Magica describe this song as something like “psychedelic norteno,” but there’s something cinematic happening here, too. It’s a song built around negative space, and the echo of itself into that space, and the video’s slow-motion speed only underscores its half-in-a-dream feel. “LSD Roma” was written and mixed by Tropa Magica and recorded by Los Hermanos Pacheco, and engineered by Soul Station #1 at “One Take Studios” in San Pedro, and mastered at Mysterious Mammal Studios. You can visit Tropa Magica here, and you can read the story of this video—told by David Pacheco, and it is definitely a story—below:
“The film was recorded in a small town called Chiuatla de Tapia, Puebla, Mexico. The idea to make this film came to me as I noticed the peculiar mannerisms the bull riders would use to hype themselves up before the bull ride. They have a charisma that is unparalleled, as can be seen in the video. None of it was scripted. What I did as a director was to focus on the moments of intensity: death waiting at the gate of the bull pen, strangers wishing each other luck, heart-wrenching attempts to keep an audience entertained and a heightened sense of living.
I knew I would make the film in black and white, as I first began filming on my iPhone. I also knew I would slow the shots done to create a dramatic effect. The narrative was simple: create a psychedelic drama about hype in the rodeo.
If you’ve ever been to a rodeo it usually takes about at least 15 or 20 minutes to get a bull ready and then the bull ride only lasts about ten seconds or less. Usually while the crowd is waiting there’s a clown or two entertaining people, hence our dancing superstar in the video.
Clowns have always beem interesting character archetypes to me. There’s the Shakespearian jester who uses his role as a fool to speak truth, a truth that is laughed upon by the higher elites and disregarded as nonsense. There’s the clown whose smile is a facade for his sadness, who is held captive by melancholy. There’s also clown types such as the joker, who just want to create chaos and shake people up. The ‘clown’ in our video was a bit of all of them.
As I began editing the film I started working out different elements of symbolism that I wanted to focus on but couldn’t figure out how to hold it all together. Ultimately, I took Hemingway’s iceberg metaphor as my inspiration and left meaning to be found by the viewer. This means that the video would be presented in a fairly simple manner—the tip of the iceberg—but the symbolic meaning could be found beneath the surfaceÆthe bottom of the iceberg).
I edited the video at home initially on Windows Movie Maker but it was too ‘cheap’ looking. I then reluctantly taught myself to use adobe premiere and edited the video in two days.”