Kimono Kult Fight the Pain in 'Todo Menos El Dolor' - Song Premiere

New experimental-rock supergroup blurs boundaries on first EP

Kimono Kult
Nicole Turley
January 16, 2014 8:00 AM ET

Kimono Kult count current and former members of the Mars Volta, Red Hot Chili Peppers and Bosnian Rainbows to their rosters. The new group is set to release a four-song debut EP, Hiding in the Light, on March 4th, and now you can get an exclusive first listen to their song "Todo Menos El Dolor."

The experimental track, which translates to "Everything, Anything but the Pain," fuses the backwards string arrangements of member Omar Rodriguez-Lopez (Mars Volta, At the Drive-In) with the sharp bilingual vocal line of Teri Gender Bender, plus a bevy of drum machines overseen by Swahili Blonde drummer Nicole Turley.

Why the Mars Volta Broke Up

"The Spanish language is so beautiful that it has the right to be approached in any way possible," Gender Bender, of Bosnian Rainbows fame, tells Rolling Stone. "There is so much left to explore – pronunciation, etc. Because Spanish-speaking singers are strict with so many unspoken rules, I approached my mother language as if I were an alien from outer space. That was the mindset."

"Kimono Kult approaches the music in a completely original way, allowing for the imagination to flow," she adds. "The lyric to 'Todo Menos el Dolor' is for the listener's imagination. Spanish speaking or not, it goes way beyond language and [is] more about atmosphere. To me it could be a story about an alien that wanted to eat cats but it caused the critter so much pain [that] he became a vegetarian. Every interpretation is valid. "

The album was recorded and produced by Turley, who also operates the EP's issuing label, Neurotic Yell. She touts the collective's initial EP in press materials as "four songs of electro/dub/afro-beat/avant-freak/jazz-like conversations of instrumental ecstasy."

Aside from Rodriguez-Lopez (who is also of Bosnian Rainbows), Gender Bender (Le Butcherettes) and Turley (WEAVE!), the troupe includes contributors John Frusciante (formerly of the Red Hot Chili Peppers), string musician Laena Geronimo (Raw Geronimo) and guitarist Dante White (Dante Vs. Zombies, Starlite Desperation).  

To read the new issue of Rolling Stone online, plus the entire RS archive: Click Here

Music Main Next

blog comments powered by Disqus
Around the Web
Powered By ZergNet
Daily Newsletter

Get the latest RS news in your inbox.

Sign up to receive the Rolling Stone newsletter and special offers from RS and its
marketing partners.


We may use your e-mail address to send you the newsletter and offers that may interest you, on behalf of Rolling Stone and its partners. For more information please read our Privacy Policy.

Song Stories

“Try a Little Tenderness”

Otis Redding | 1966

This pop standard had been previously recorded by dozens of artists, including by Bing Crosby 33 years before Otis Redding, who usually wrote his own songs, cut it. It was actually Sam Cooke’s 1964 take, which Redding’s manager played for Otis, that inspired the initially reluctant singer to take on the song. Isaac Hayes, then working as Stax Records’ in-house producer, handled the arrangement, and Booker T. and the MG’s were the backing band. Redding’s soulful version begins quite slowly and tenderly itself before mounting into a rousing, almost religious “You’ve gotta hold her, squeeze her …” climax. “I did that damn song you told me to do,” Redding told his manager. “It’s a brand new song now.”

More Song Stories entries »