Amplifer Magazine # 46
January 2005
by Tom Semioli

Ariel Aparicio with the Hired Guns
Frolic & F***


Welcome to the pleasure dome! You can feel the sweat and excitement of gritty live performance on D.I.Y. pop iconoclast Ariel Aparicio’s go-for-broke sophomore outing. And that’s the way this Brooklyn-via-Miami, openly gay, multi-ethnic Cuban intended it. This guy can belt out the blues, as evidenced in the Led Zeppelinesque “All My Life” (check out the “Kashmir” orchestral references). He can take the piss out of Bob Marley via “Get Happy” (check out the Hendrix-like wah-wah licks). The Bo Diddley-meets-Frank Zappa & The Mothers of Invention mojo gets a thorough workout in the thrash insanity of “Punk Rock Girl,” a could-have-been hit for the late great Joe Strummer or later greater Ramones. Covering “Unsatisfied” as homage to his hero Paul Westerberg, Aparicio ups the ante on the author’s pathos and suffering with sincerity and passion. You also get your money’s worth from the Hired Guns who rattle and hum with authority in support of their fearless leader. Frolic & F*** is all about breaking down barriers, and in an increasingly monopolized record industry, that’s a big, welcome breath of fresh air.

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