The lineup for the Latinx-oriented Ruido Fest came out Wednesday afternoon. Headliners include 90s norteño icons Intocable, reggae-rockers Cultura Profética, Mexico City rap-metal group Molotov, and singer Julieta Venegas. Further down the lineup you’ll find Bomba Estéreo‘s electro-inflected cumbia, Alex Anwandter’s agitpop Chilean house, Lucybell’s shoegazy alt-rock, and the agitated techno-punk of Titán. Ruido Fest spans generations, including artists already on revival tours and others just getting off the ground—it’s a compelling reminder of the oft-underserved scope and depth of Latinx music.
Most exciting might be the dance-oriented acts, among them Titán, El Guincho, Anwandter, Buscabulla, and Sotomayor—all of whom are carving out their own spaces to fuse the rhythmic foundations of Latin music with futurist sounds from clubs across the States and Europe. Sometimes the result is explicitly political: Anwandter’s “Siempre Es Viernes en Mi Corazon” addresses queer discrimination in Chile. In other cases, such as Buscabulla’s synth-based psychedelia, it’s more a gesture toward the question of how to appreciate your musical roots through the lens of Western cultural dominance.
The rock ‘n’ rollers of the fest bring plenty of heat too. A Band of Bitches broke onto the Latin alt-rock scene with The Pre-End of the World Soundtrack in 2012, and since then the mask-wearing group have only tightened their grooves and sharpened their invective—last year’s 4808 Chingadazos Musicales, Vol. 2 is a reminder of the power of outsize rock in troubling times. Ruido Rosa’s straight-ahead garage-pop provides serving after serving of crunchy guitar nuggets, which seem to be an endlessly renewable musical resource. Adan Jodorowsky (son of experimental filmmaker Alejandro Jodorowsky) most recently released Ada, a dive into glam rock that wouldn’t sound out of place next to Let’s Dance-era Bowie. And Las Piñas fuse surf rock with the down-to-earth posturing that keeps underground punk feeling fresh.
The hardest-working musician at the festival is probably Jay de la Cueva, whose bass graces three acts on this year’s lineup—Molotov, Fobia, and Titán. Godspeed to him, and here’s hoping he remembers to bring enough strings.
Ruido Fest starts Friday, July 7, in Addams/Medill Park. Three-day general admission tickets currently cost $129.98, and they’re set to rise to $149.98 and then $169.98. VIP passes, meanwhile, start at $199.98, then ratchet up to $229.98 and eventually $249.98. Get em while they’re hot.