Tijuana’s minimalist garage-rock band release a new must-have single with “Whistling Song”
By Dita Quinones ••
Once you get a listen to "Whistling Song," by Tijuana’s Electric Healing Sound, you’re going to want to know: What are they whistling about? The undeniably catchy, foot-thumping track with Ricky Soltero on the vocals is poised to be the new must-have track for rock listeners. It was originally drafted in 2012, but until recently was recorded for official release in time for Record Store Day 2015. So, back to the question at hand, what’s in the name of whistling? Frontman Ricky Soltero says it’s deeper than just the act of whistling -- it’s "Breaking Bad" meets Tijuana.
DITA QUINONES: Cool song! What's the "Whistling Song" about?
RICKY SOLTERO: It’s about a friend’s experience with amphetamines and an awkward situation that led to his leg being numb and unable to move for like an hour. He was just there sitting on the floor -- trying to not look shady. You know, whistling around to not look suspicious.
DQ: I recently saw a news special on the drug-addicted homeless of Tijuana. What’s your take on it?
RS: You know, a friend of mine was just making a comment about that. Personally, I have no idea what's more prevalent over here but homelessness caused by drug addiction does not seem too far fetched. The situation in the song was an isolated incident and actually happened in San Diego. Took a little artistic license for the sake of the song, even changing San Diego to Cincinnati because it had a better sound to it.
DQ: When people think Tijuana bands, they automatically assume it will be in Spanish or they may not understand it. Myself, being from Tijuana -- I know this to be so untrue. We are totally bicultural people.
RS: EHS will always be an English-language band. Even though English is my second language, I feel more comfortable writing and singing in English. After five years, I think it's widely accepted that we are a Mexican band singing in English. Has worked out pretty well for us.
RS: We technically did not get signed as Workerbee doesn't formally sign bands but it is more of an agreement. They released our debut record and now this cassette single. We decided to release this through Workerbee because they have always supported us.
DQ: How do you stay hopeful and relevant in this local music scene?
RS: With Workerbee, it will give us more attention. Staying relevant through these new releases is pretty important. I've always believed that its necessary to have material release to keep moving forward. You can't keep recycling the same old stuff after five years.
Recently, drummer Miguel left the band, but Electric Healing Sound has the ever-elusive Julio Pillado (Orlando & the Shantelles frontman) stepping in to temp -- how cool is that? And don't fret, Eric Curiel -- the hardest working man in Tijuana's indie music scene -- is still in the mix throwing in his signature killer touches on the bass and production, along with long-haired cutie Aldair Cerezo on the electric guitar. On Thursday, the band will debut "Whistling Song," live for audiences at Mous Tache Bar as they open up for Arizona’s Burning Palms. The song can be purchased now as a collectible cassette single with accompanying B-side "Seven Year Itch," through Workerbee Records on EHS’ Bandcamp.
Electric Healing Sound perform on Thursday at Tijuana’s Mous Tache Bar. For EHS updates, visit them on Facebook. To watch the "Whistling Song" music video, go here.
Dita Quinones is a multimedia journalist born in Tijuana with a passion for Latin alternative and hip-hop music news. Her main goal is to uplift and inform so that the Latino, Filipino and hip-hop community get knitted into the fabric of American history. In addition to SoundDiego, she contributes to Latina, Fox News Latino, Poder, VidaVibrante, San Diego CityBeat and HipHopDx. She is also the founder of the infamous music and politrix blog GN$F! Follow Dita on Twitter or on Facebook.