Best Ska Band (2013)

Viernes 13

Having launched in 1999 while they were still in high school, East Los Angeles ska band Viernes 13 (that's Friday the 13th to you, gringo) gained popularity over the years playing backyard shows but never put out an official full-length album. That will change later this year, when the group's as-yet-untitled debut drops. But in the meantime their star has risen, and they now can be seen at big-money venues like the Roxy and House of Blues, performing alongside better-known groups like The Slackers, The Mighty Mighty Bosstones and Manic Hispanics. Viernes 13 differ from most ska bands through their use of bilingual lyrics, their incorporation of punk and lead singer Juan Pulido's signature look — long hair, tied back with a bandanna. One thing's for sure: Viernes 13's lively stage presence and rowdy mosh pits set the tone for a party. facebook.com/V13RNES. —Juan Gutierrez

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