The Guadalajara-based Aztec folk metal group CEMICAN – hailed by Revolver as “an ancient Mexican answer to The Hu or Heilung” – were recently invited to contribute a new song to the prestigious “Singles” collection curated by Adult Swim, America's most popular basic cable television network among young adults. This track, “Yóok 'ol Kaab Maya” (“our Mayan universe”), marked the first new CEMICAN music since the release of their acclaimed third album (and M-Theory Audio debut), 2019's “In Ohtli Teoyohtica In Miquiztli” (“the mystical path of the dead”).
Today, “Yóok 'ol Kaab Maya” – praised by Brooklyn Vegan for “combining indigenous instrumentation with Headbanger's Ball-worthy riffage” – makes its debut across all digital platforms, where it can be streamed alongside another new song, the instrumental “Bolóm Octé.” To listen, visit www.smarturl.com/Cemican2020
According to the band, “Yóok 'ol kaab Maya” – which features lyrics in both Mayan and Spanish – “is based on the Mayan worldview and the integration of nature into the universe. It discusses
the construction of the Mayan empire, its sacred temples and its people. There is also talk of contact with the stars and the astral journey together with non-earthly beings – the helpers of creation – who were given the power to create, die and reincarnate, dominate eclipses and walk with the jaguar. The four elements of life are mentioned – water, fire, wind and earth as part of the mystical light."
The music of CEMICAN – whose name means “the duality of life and death” in the Aztecan language of Nahuatl (spoken by 2 million people in Central Mexico) – incorporates elements of the legends, mysticism and ideologies of ancient Mexican culture. Compared by Revolver to “Slipknot scoring Mel Gibson's 'Apocalypto,'” the group combine the modern instrumentation of a metal band with traditional pre-Hispanic instruments.
After independently releasing two albums and performing alongside some of metal's top names (Amon Amarth, Korpiklaani, Ensiferum, Eluveitie, etc.) in their native Mexico, CEMICAN experienced a breakout year in 2018. In addition to receiving regular airplay on Liquid Metal, the six-piece group was invited to perform at the Paris edition of the Download Festival and Germany's Wacken Open Air, as well as Force Fest and Hell & Heaven Fest in their home country. The band's momentum continued to build in 2019, when they performed at France's Hellfest and Mexico's Knotfest Meets Force Fest in addition to an encore appearance at Wacken. (The band was also scheduled to perform at this year's Wacken festival, believed to be the first time ever that a band was to play the storied German metal festival for three consecutive years.)
Upcoming CEMICAN live performances (all dates tentative):
7/25/20 San Luis Rio Verde, Mexico – MaddXfest
9/15/20 El Salvador – Black Metal Resurrection
10/2/20 Chihuahua, Mexico- Pistoleros
10/3/20 Juarez, Mexico – Anexo Centenario Club
10/24/20 Cajititlan Jalisco, Mexico – Metal Head Open Air
11/14/20 Monterrey, Mexico – Mexico Metal Fest
3/27/21 Chihuahua, Mexico – Pistoleros House of Shows
Tlipoca – Drums
Tecuhtli – Guitar/vocals
Ocelotl – Bass/backing vocals
Yei Tochtli – Pre-Hispanic Instruments
Mazatecpatl – Pre-Hispanic Instruments
Xaman-Ek – Rituals/Dance/Pre-Hispanic Instruments
For more information: