Panteon Rococo. SXSW 2017

Even though they have toured extensively through Europe, Panteón Rococó has traveled less in the United States. Until now. This wildly popular rock-ska Mexican band will be in Austin for the first time, playing at the SXSW festival Alt Latino concert on Thursday at Lady Bird Lake. Ozomatli and Residente (formerly of the Calle Trece duo) will share the bill.

“We’ll see you in Austin, it’ll be a great show,” said Francisco Barajas, the trombone player. Last year, Panteón Rococó celebrated 20 years of existence with a concert before an audience of 22,000 in Mexico City, he said.

The group, which melds rock with ska, cumbia and ballads, will get hips moving to their sound. Some of their influences began in the 1990s with Latin American groups Mano Negra, La Maldita Vecindad and the Fabulosos Cadillacs.

Panteón Rococó has seven studio records and two live records to date, including the one they recorded live in Mexico City last year. They are preparing songs, talking to their producers about their next record.

“Last year was very good for us, we played a lot,” Barajas said.

In terms of Mexico’s political climate, he said, “it’s bad. There’s a lot of inflation, the price of the (U.S.) dollar has affected us a lot, the price of gasoline, people are very angry with the political leaders we have.”

Their songs talk about “the issues we see everywhere, from love to politics, to social issues, as well.”
However, people should not feel overwhelmed by problems in both countries (the United States and Mexico), they should instead, “remember that we are all united as humankind. It’s not a time to separate ourselves from the Americans, or from anyone,” he said.

If you go: Panteón Rococó is scheduled to play at 6 p.m. Thursday at SXSW Outdoor Stage at Lady Bird Lake. Free with guestpass

And also: Panteón Rococó plays at 11:30 p.m. Friday at Half-Step.