Not much is known about quixotic L.A. outfit El Sportivo & The Blooz. What we do know is that the band is fronted by Lewis Pesacov from Fool's Gold and Foreign Born (and producer of Best Coast) and it offers up some tightly-wound, smoky grooves. Their story is unbelievable, or at least barely plausible, but possible*. We suspect it is a conglomeration of the fantastic muscians of the White Iris collective/label. But who they are doesn't matter if the songs stand on their own. And they do. They will play Spaceland (or is it The Satellite?) on December 13 with Dead Trees, Sweaters and Superhumanoids, if you want to investigate men behind the mystery.
Until then, El Sportivo & The Blooz has offered LA Weekly a chance to listen to their entire debut EP (released Oct 25th) for your listening pleasure:
*Now, we're not ones to simply cut and paste a bio. We're not. Really. But every time I try to put El Sportivo & the Blues' story into words, I start laughing. Of course, all sorts of publicity experiments and stunts end up on my desk (a fortune cookie with a download code inside? Yes.) but this seemed too weird to be true. But perhaps this is not too weird for Pesacov. I met Pesacov last year while shopping for tapes in Little Ethiopia, and later ran into him at the airport in Oslo back in August. The man seems to be everywhere at once. So here's the story, believe it or not:
The Pacific Surfliner traverses the train tracks along the edge of the California coast between Los Angeles and San Diego eleven times a day, back and forth and rarely delayed. Lauded LA Producer and musician Lewis Pesacov found himself on the Surfliner not too long ago, following a mysterious series of phone calls and cryptic postcards.
These communiqués were from a gentleman man calling himself only “El Sportivo.,” He directed Pesacov to take the first train out of Union Station on any Thursday he saw fit assured assuring him that no matter which day Thursday he chose there would be someone waiting to greet him. Pesacov closed his eyes and pointed at a week on the calendar, and when that week came, he went.
Pesacov was met on the train not only by the enigmatic “El Sportivo”—,” a bearded gentleman sporting the Dogtown uniform, replete with tattered plimsolls and dimestore sunglasses—, but also by a motley crew of his cohorts, who he came to know as The Blooz. After making polite introductions, this bedraggled band of musicians invited Pesacov to join them in their car, where the seats were littered with half-empty bottles of homebrewed wine.
Due to the strange nature of the experience at hand, Pesacov didn't notice that when they arrived in San Diego the train turned right around and headed back to Los Angeles. In the morning, he awoke splayed out on a bench in Union Station with nothing but a screeching hangover, a reel of tape and a note of thanks, signed El Sportivo. They had taken his guitar, wherever they had gone.
Pesacov returned to Black Iris Studios to uncover what had happened over the past hours. After a pot of Ethiopian brew, Pesacov began listening to the tape he had been given. What he heard was a voice he recognized from many hazy midnight phone messages-El Sportivo-over the mournful din of those marauding grifters and unmistakable hum of his own guitar.
That hazy train ride would not be the last meeting between Pesacov and El Sportivo & the Blooz. There were others-sometimes at Pesacov's Echo Park studio and sometimes after hours at El Chavo, a Mexican restaurant on the corner of Sunset and Hillhurst. It was from these meetings that Pesacov created an EP, beginning with the single, “All My Alibis,” a smoky, slow-burning, guitar driven blues number about regret and self-destruction.