Seminal and highly influential 90s punk band. Often noted for their highly unique and inspirational message: namely, for Latinos to stop putting up with shit. All the members of the band came from a Spanish background and all their lyrics were sung in Spanish. Name translates to "The Crude Ones" (roughly).

They formed sometime in the early 90s (93? 94?) in Chicago, Illinois. Initially, their idea was just to spread their positive message to the people of their own community. Apparently they never expected to get any bigger, but soon they were taking the punk scene by storm. Their music was fast-paced, energetic hardcore punk, sometimes compared to classic Italian bands like Raw Power. There were many people involved in Los Crudos over the years, but the only constant members were vocalist Martin Sorrendoguy and guitarist Jose. There were several bass players and a host of drummers, the last of which was Ebro of fellow Illinois hardcore legends Charles Bronson. They released almost all of their records on their own DIY label, Lengua Armada (which remains active today, although its releases tend to be notoriously limited and thus, highly collectible - see the Charles Bronson LP).

Crudos were together almost six years, and during that time they toured North and South America, Europe and Japan. I'm not sure what the rest of the band is up to now, but Martin can be seen singing for another highly thematic hardcore band, New York's own gay straight-edge standard-bearers Limp Wrist. For my money, Limp Wrist is okay, but I find their message (while very positive and refreshing) to be a little too gimmicky and not nearly as powerful and moving as the fire that was Crudos. To each his own.

Crudos' influence on the punk scene can't really be overstated - they were important in so many ways. They came out blazing, with a great message, playing music that VERY much out of fashion at the time of their inception (described once by either MRR or Heartattack as the "post-Ulysses wasteland" or something like that, in reference to mod suit trailblazers Nation of Ulysses, whose schtick the joke known as The (International) Noise Conspiracy bit HARD, if you didn't know). But as much as all that, they should also be remembered for their music, which was classic punk: fast and furious, but still loaded with hooks and stellar songwriting. Crudos can be credited with helping to kick-start the "thrash revival" currently dominating hardcore, but sadly many of those bands are just going after a retro sound - specifically, trying to come off like a Flex Your Head-era Dischord band. Many of them (but not all, see Tear It Up and DS-13) seem to have forgotten how to write songs. Thankfully, Crudos never did. "That spic band" (their own words) has an influence that stretches quite far indeed: they've been name-dropped by everyone from underground icon Felix Von Havoc to indie rock taste-maker Steve Albini.

Since most of these records are impossible to find, and you should definitely check out Crudos if they sound cool to you, keep an eye out for the recently released Discografia CD (complete discography). It just got reissued in a split release between two Spanish labels, Difusión Libertaria La Idea and Beat Generation. I can't remember if Lengua Armada put out the first run of the CD (which had slightly different cover art - an outline of north and south America with the band logo, where as the new one has the same thing with a cool collage of activists and whatnot over it), but it very quickly became impossible to find. So if you see it, snatch it up!

Crudo soy!


(All releases on Lengua Armada except where noted. Compilation appearances not included)

- Split 7" with Manumission
- 'Las injusticias caen como pesadillas'
- 'La Rabia Nubla Nuestros ojos' 7 "
- 'Nunca nada cambia...' - Los Crudos/Huasipungo split 7" (split release with Discos San Juanito)
- 'Viviendo Asperamente/Roughly Living' - Los Crudos/SpitBoy split LP (Ebullition Records)
- 'Canciones Para Liberar Nuestras Fronteras' LP
- 'Los Primeros Gritos 1991-1995' LP