Alex Gimeno must have Quentin Tarantino’s direct line, because it’s pretty apparent he knows what would have been on Vincent Vega and Jules Winnfield’s iPods – likely playing in the background during some heated debates on fast food. Also known as Ursula 1000, Gimeno slings his brand of retro-riddled electronica like a bartender at a Mad Men party with his latest release, Mondo Beyondo.
Songs like the opening title track, “The Elegant Oracle” and “Tropicadelica” make good use of acid jazz grooves, spaghetti western-style surf rock and bossa nova. Gimeno throws it all into one big bag that the Black Eyed Peas wished they owned back in 2008.
Gimeno’s more electro-based pieces aren’t as satisfying as the loungier stuff, but still showcase his love for retro sounds. Songs like “Baby Laser Love” deliver fun dance pop a la Tom Tom Club, while “The Fly” makes good use of vintage synths and latin percussion; it’s like Gimeno saw Beat Street and Breakin’ one too many times. Always a good thing. “Don’t Get Your Panties in a Bunch” is an all out ’60s dance party, with the old Italian Farfisa organ at full blast, just calling for a “riot on the Sunset Strip.”
And what’s a ’60s party without he novelty Halloween selection? “Graveyard Stomp” is no “Monster Mash,” but it gets the job done with the overly fuzz-toned guitars, heavy bass and dissonant hammer-ons. Gimeno covered all of his tracks. He has the heart of a London mod. Maybe the album title is actually a reference to the ’60s teen exploitation movie, Mondo Mod.
Like the pop culture junkie Tarantino himself, Gimeno just knows what’s hip enough to mix and mash in his records. It’s like this: listen to good music, and you’ll make good music. Simple.