LA’s Chicano Batman on their new album, missing summer festivals, writing music remotely

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Chicano Batman is out with a new album. Photo by George Mays.

LA-based psychedelic rock group Chicano Batman’s new album, “Invisible People,” is a breath of fresh air during the pandemic.

“A big part of this record was just making songs that are going to be catchy,” says lead vocalist keyboardist and guitarist Bardo Martinez. “We spent a lot of time trying to create hooks and not have everything be so heavy all the time.”

The four-member band was planning to go on tour after the album’s release. It was going to be their first headlining tour since “Freedom Isn’t Free” came out in 2017, but COVID-19 forced them to postpone all 26 shows.

The bandmates are trying to remain optimistic. Instead of collaborating in real time, they’re creating new music from the confines of their respective homes, sending sound files over the internet, and workshopping songs via text.

“Eventually, we're going to get on that stage and we're going to lay it down,” says Martinez. “We're going to have fun.”

Credits

Guests:
Carlos Arévalo - musician, Bardo Martinez - lead vocals, organ, guitar for Chicano Batman

Host:
Madeleine Brand

Producers:
Sarah Sweeney, Michell Eloy, Rosalie Atkinson, Brian Hardzinski, Angie Perrin, Kathryn Barnes