4th April 2018: Aguaviva – Dos Cuchillos

Artist: Aguaviva
Title: Dos Cuchillos (Two Knives)
Language: Spanish

When I previously wrote my blog (on the other WordPress site), I posted a different song by Aguaviva. But because they are one of my favourite bands, here is another of their tracks!

I bought an album by them in Malaga while there once on holiday in a record shop that sadly is no longer there. I purchased the record, unheard, purely because there were about ten people (I think…a *lot* of people, anyway) on the cover all wearing jumpers and looking (sorry!) slightly nerdy, so that automatically appealed to me. Once back home, I could not have been happier to discover the beautiful sounds and harmonies contained within that record. A little research helped me discover that the band were renowned for using the poems of Spanish poets like Federico Garcia Lorca, Rafael Alberti and León Felipe, which they set to music with the most amazing harmony vocals.

The band were seen as politically progressive in a Spain still under the rule of Franco, and as such they were not necessarily loved by all Spaniards. But to have some of your songs banned by his regime…well, I reckon they were doing something right! This track is based on the poem of the same name by Fernando Merlo:

Dos cuchillos en mi pecho,
uno blanco y otro negro.
¡Ayúdame!
Que el blanco se está muriendo…

Which translates as:

Two knives in my chest,
one white and one black.
Help me!
That white is dying …

This is apparently a poem about good versus evil, from a 1972 work called ‘Escatófago’ (Skirmish), which I suppose could also be a reference to Spanish politics at the time this song came out.

I heartily recommend you check out some of their other tracks (I also particularly like ‘Cantaré’, ‘Rolling Stone’ and ‘Creemos El Hombre Nuevo’).

Having listened to this song many times, I can hear a noise that sounds like knives being sharpened…is that just me?  It starts a few seconds in, and carries through the song as a percussive sound…if so, that’s really clever!

Links here and here to articles about music being banned in Spain during the reign of Franco.

DJ Esperanto

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