Review 8 KALACAS ‘Fronteras’

8 Kalacas (spoken: Ocho Kalacas), newcomer of the year? The band from Orange County is at least a candidate for such an award.

The seven guys and their music is a very exciting blend, musical caffeine. Imagine if Sepultura would team up with Suicidal Tendencies to start a project with a lot of ska-elements. If you get this thought straight, then you are close to what 8 Kalacas’ music sounds like.

The guys from California started in 2003 and created a very exciting mixture of metal, hardcore and ska, a combination we haven’t heard too often until now. 8 Kalacas is going to change this.

‘Fronteras’ is the third effort by the band and could be their break-through moment. After having signed a deal with Atomic Fire Records a door opened for the band to reach a much wider audience.

The longplayer features a twelve songs tracklist with the title track being pole position. Roaring guitars is what you will hear first and rather quickly the brass section joins the party. Trumpet and trombone don’t belong to the typical instrumentation of a heavy metal record. In this context they fit. The aggressiveness of guitar, bass and drums, together with the ‘sunshine’-sound of the brass section create a field of tension, a contrast that creates excitement and shows the band moving borders. The opener sets the scene for the album. It is an up-tempo song that fascinates right away.

‘Fronteras’ isn’t only the title of album and song; it also indicates a lyrical focus. This album is about borders, both physical and metal. Los Angeles, the hometown of the seven guys, shows these different faces of a city. There is the beach, sun, and a glamorous lifestyle. The moment you move a few blocks further, things change dramatically. Homeless people all over the city are in contrast with hundreds of empty buildings.  

Next to these kinds of more physical borders there are also borders in our heads. Blockades that don’t allow us to be happy in life and believe in ourselves and the society. All these topics are the lyrical foundation of this extraordinary album.

8 Kalacas isn’t a new band but certainly new to many of us. Their third album could be the springboard for the band and allows the guys to reach out to many potentially new fans. I can for sure recommend this very exciting band that moves musical borders too and what could fit better than an album title like ‘Fronteras’.

Rating: 9 out of 10.


  1. Frontera
  2. Pudrete
  3. Mutante
  4. Esquizofrenia
  5. R2rito
  6. Labios Negros
  7. Luna
  8. Garras
  9. Luz Y Fer
  10. Gato
  11. Flatline
  12. 1941

Label: Atomic Fire Records

Genre: Crossover

Release Date EU: March 25th, 2022




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