Lapso [Lapse] is an alternative rock band that hails from my hometown, Montevideo. Its sound has been nurtured mainly by bands such as the Red Hot Chili Peppers and Incubus. The first CD by a Uruguayan rock band that I ever bought was this one, actually, mainly on the strength of the single “Volver Atrás” [Turn Back]. It remains my favorite rock song by a Uruguayan band even after all this time.
“Días Lúcidos” [Lucid Days] was to be their second (and so far latest) album. It was first issued in 2006 by Bizarro Records. The band comprises Andrés Bianco on guitar, Guido Boselli on drums and Andrés Miranda on bass. The singer is Gonzalo Bouzout.
The album has 12 songs that are characterized by a focused view on human beings and the way they relate to each other as a ramification of the way they can (and can not) cope with themselves to begin with. This theme is announced by “Humano” [Human], the first track, and songs like “Mediocre” deal with aspirations and the lack of them in terms that some might deem a bit prosaic but which are effective nonetheless.
The single “Más Que Ayer” [More Than Yesterday] is certainly a high point, with a great arrangement and compelling dynamics that turn it into the most likeable moment on the whole CD.
This song goes hand in hand with “Me Viajé Una Idea” [A Trip With An Idea], and the last lines “que bueno que hoy sea siempre” [it’s such a good thing that today is always forever] would have worked as the best way to close the record. Still, the closing numbers (“Espiral” [Spiral] y “40 Años” [40 Years]) recap the disc correctly enough, with the latter song in particular studying the difficulty of letting go even when we are aware of the troubles that we will cause both to ourselves and to the ones we love. Human, indeed.
Besides “Volver Atrás” (which was the first single) I am very keen on “Mejor Soñar” [It’s Best To Dream], a song that truly anchors the album and that bears the most realized vocal performance from Gonzalo. The lyrics capture the overall mood of the record with lines dealing with “distancia entre el creer y lo que es” [the distance between what we believe and what there is] and “de lejos es mejor, no hay decepción / si cuando alcanzo el sol me quema la illusión” [from afar it is best, I am never let down / for when I reach the sun, illusion burns me whole].
The down side is that there is a certain tendency for the compositions to be slightly formulaic in terms of structure, as the vast majority of cuts feature two-line choruses. In a certain way, that streamlines the message but it also makes some song bear too much of a passing resemblance. A couple of cuts did never really sink in for that reason, and I have trouble remembering the melody of compositions like “Si Me Ves Pasar” [If You See Me Go By] and “Desangrando” [Bleeding].
That is only a minor complaint, though. The disc is quite sterling in the way an atmosphere is established and developed until the conclusion is reached. The sound is lucid, and the message is lucid. “Haciendo el mismo golpe una vez más caerá el mural” [throwing the same hit yet once more the wall will fall down], Gonzalo sings on “Volver Atrás”. Making the wall of apathy fall down is something each and every Uruguayan artist tries to do, be them Laspo, NoTeVaGustar, Buitres, La Vela Puerca, La Trampa or Trotsky Vengarán. But personally, I find this particular attempt at tearing down that wall as one of the most compelling I have listened to so far in the Uruguayan scene.
Lapso’s MySpace profile is found here.