Local Wire

2Mex @ Stray Cat

Alejandro Ocana — who raps and performs as 2Mex — has got more going for him than just his rapid-fire, multi-lingual flow. He's got a fanbase so dedicated that he named his most recent record My Fanbase Will Destroy You. But rather than a violent boast, the title is more a prophetic statement, as the "you" isn't tangible, but a reference to the kinds of institutions Ocana rages against: racism, greed, and bullshit. He hopes that listeners will erase them from our culture. But the record's far from didactic, and Ocana doesn't stoop to sermonizing. His voice is too fluid for that. He stutters with choppy, jazzy lines like "I don't want to be controlled" over synth squiggles that nod toward his work with Ikey Owens (Mars Volta/Free Moral Agents) and status as a member of the Visionaries crew. His politics are crystal-clear, but his sound, blending laid-back stand-up bass, electric piano, and tricky cadences, is beautifully blurry.

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Jason P. Woodbury is a music and pop-culture writer based in Phoenix. He is a regular contributor to the music blog Aquarium Drunkard and co-host of the Transmissions podcast.