San José, Costa Rica, since 1956

Playlist: 18 songs by legendary Mexican band Café Tacvba to get you hooked on rock en español

If you love rock music, but have never ventured into rock en español, Café Tacvba from Mexico City is where to begin.

We put together a playlist of our favorite Café Tacvba songs below, starting with the opening track from their latest album. The high-energy quartet will play Costa Rica for the fourth time on Thursday at 7 p.m. (well, after the opening band, so, more likely at 10 p.m.) in the Gimnasio Nacional, in western San José’s La Sabana.

Cafe Tacvba by M Levin on Grooveshark 

Café Tacvba, named after a famous coffee shop in the group’s hometown, rose to fame in the early 1990s as a counterpoint to slow, melodramatic Latin pop. But the group popularized Latin rock by drawing from a variety of influences. With Oscar-winning producer Gustavo Santaolalla (who won back-to-back Academy Awards for scoring “Brokeback Mountain” and “Babel”) involved in every album, the band has branched out in every direction.

The first couple albums highlighted the sounds of urban Mexico. Further influences range from post-punk and ska to electronica and Tejano. The sound is eclectic to say the least, but with many callbacks to their Mexican roots. The formulas has worked. Their 2003 album “Cuatro Caminos” won a Grammy for Best Latin Rock/Alternative Album, and Café Tacvba remains one of the most popular Latin rock bands in the world.

The band just wrapped up a U.S. tour, and will perform in Costa Rica for the first time in four years to support its seventh album “El objeto antes llamado disco” (“The Object Formerly Known as a Record”).

The Mexican magazine WARP is organizing the show, and Café Tacvba will headline a weekend-long event. Costa Rican groups Cocofunka and 424 will open the concert. After the show, two Mexican DJs and a Tico DJ will play an after-party at El Steinvorth, a hipster club in the center of San José. On Friday, Cine Magaly will debut in Costa Rica the LCD Soundsystem documentary “Shut Up and Play the Hits.” On Saturday, Hoxton’s Pub will host a mixture of Costa Rican and Mexican bands to wrap up the WARP weekend.

Here is the list of tracks in our playlist (And we didn’t miscount: we consider the opening tracks to the album Sino, “Seguir Siendo” and “Tengo Todo”, as two parts of one song):

2012- El Objeto Antes Llamado Disco

2007 – Sino
Esta Vez
Volver a Comenzar
Seguir Siendo/Tengo Todo

2003 – Cuatro Caminos

1999 – Revés/Yo Soy

1996 – Avalancha de Éxitos (all cover songs)
Chilanga Banda
Cómo Te Extraño Mi Amor
Déjate Caer
Alarmala De Tos

1994 – Re
Las Flores
El Baile Y El Salón
El Aparato
El Puñal y el Corazón
La Ingrata

1992 – Café Tacuba
La Chica Banda

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