Independent rock and alternative music groups have overcome the pandemic by moving their music to social media, streaming platforms and with virtual presentations. Self-management and collaborative work are part of the strategies to keep musical projects afloat.
Although the pandemic has crippled much of the events and productions in the music industry, there are emerging groups on the local scene who have adapted to the circumstances to continue to make and broadcast music.
Pablo Andrade, singer of Silvestre Skalón, assures that, on the one hand, the pandemic has forced them to cancel the trips and presentations they had planned for this year. On the other hand, the ska punk group has supported its international projection as guests of virtual festivals in Colombia, Peru, Argentina and other countries.
Silvestre Skalón has been on the local scene for almost a year and a half, as a project that seeks to share a positive ska punk message. Andrade calls the musical style pogo-trip shaped by the 10 musicians who make up this Ecuadorian group.
“The idea is that the lyrics get to those who need it,” the singer says of songs that address issues of drug use or suicide, but also self-esteem and motivation. In less than two years, they recorded three songs and produced eight videos, in quarantine version, for the festivals in which they participated.
Video: YouTube, account: Silvestre Skalón Oficial
The need for “nurseries” and dissemination spaces for new sound projects are two of the needs that have become more evident since the onset of the emergency, says Andrade.
Casa 29 is an Ecuadorian indie rock band formed in 2018 who have released two new videos over the past five months, as well as a virtual home show to share their music with audiences.
Other bands such as Army Tin, Estación Deev, Yamingo Caraban, Manzana Mecánica, Inverted or Restricted have shared live broadcasts, concert files, interviews and videos that keep their musical work on the audience’s radar at the search for new proposals in the field of music. experimental rock, postpunk, hardcore, indie, ska and other genres.
Manzana Mecánica is a psychedelic rock group founded in Quito in early 2017 by four former students of the Andino school. Influenced by bands like Pink Floyd, The Doors or Black Sabath, The Clockwork Apple maintains a proposition that “seeks to bring back psychedelic rock from the 60s and 70s”, but with new nuances of modern indie.
Video: YouTube, Account: Mechanic Apple
Édison Peñafiel, guitarist of the group, assures that because of the pandemic, the production capacity has been complicated and the broadcasting spaces for emerging groups have practically disappeared. The three singles circulating on digital platforms and the five videos published on its YouTube channel are the result of the group’s self-management work.
While awaiting the resumption of live performances in the country, members of emerging national rock groups are appealing to audiences on social media and digital channels as their main stimulus to keep performing.