6 JUNE 2013
"This is a 7-piece Puerto Rican music band, but they hail from Pittsburgh. They play the most incredibly catchy and dance-worthy music you’ll hear this side of the Allegheny, or any other river of your choosing. I caught them a while back (opening at 1,2,3‘s album release show) and it was incredible. They exude energy, elation, and infectious enthusiasm. If you show up for the first five minutes and aren’t totally hooked, I’ll let you punch me in the nose. Or, I’ll buy you a beverage of equal or lesser value. (Prices and participation may vary.)" -Brendan
5 FEB 2012
"...Machete, a "rebel, rock and riot salsa" band. Drawing from their Latin roots, the group resembles everything Geña exudes- energy, passion, life and love." -Chelsey Engel p.14
26 OCT 2011
"Machete Kisumontao: This six-piece is Geña's best-known band; she collaborates here with members of the prog band Chaibaba. The band mixes traditional Puerto Rican music and African influences; originally, it was an educational venture to teach Puerto Rican culture, but now it can be found playing rock clubs, too." -Andy Mulkerin
12 JULY 2011
"... I am somewhat at a loss for words with this group, because I’m un-versed in the subtleties of traditional Puerto Rican dance music and Afro-Caribbean rhythym drumming, but who really cares, this band was amazing. This quartet featured lead singer/dancer Geña and three gentlemen on various percussion instruments. They all started out seated in a row of chairs set in front of the stage, but not too far into the first song, Geña was on her feet and dancing all around the front of the room, shaking her hips and twirling while belting out her tunes with some amazing melodies. I couldn’t understand a word she sang, but the music and vibe somehow spoke to me (and made me wish I knew how to dance, or at least not feel like a drunk squirrel whenever I do try). The guys played some drums with their hands and sang some backing harmonies, and one of them had an assortment of shakers/gourds that fleshed out the percussion-heavy sound. This was definitely unlike any other set I’ve seen and, in particular, not what I expected before two indie pop/rock bands, but I was seriously pleasantly surprised by Machete. Check out this video of them playing in Mellon Park to get a sense of how fun and exciting they are to see in person, and head to their Reverb Nation page to download a set they performed on CMU’s WRCT station (the source of the above mp3, too). I’ll be on the lookout for future performances by them, that’s for sure." -Brendan
30 JAN 2010
"...the astounding Machete: a seven-piece ensemble that blends Puerto Rican music with Afrobeat via horns, African drums and guitar. Tying it all together was the earth-mother like Geña: a sheer life force who sang and danced like a gypsy, occasionally conducting the scoreless ensemble. It was hypnotic, psychedelic - and impossible not to groove to. Clearly, this Geña was tapping into something well beyond our immediate understanding, which she attempts to describe on the band's website:
"Machete is the sound of your soul, the root of your heart beat, the respect for our Great Foremother, the laugh of a child, the silent tear of a mother, the love of gods, the strength of un CICLÓN, the peace of the dead and alive like the ocean."
Took the words right out of my mouth." -Peter Matthews
An article on the lead singer of Machete Kisumontao South by Steel City
24 APRIL 2014
Filmmaker Chris Mason discusses the making of the documentary Machete Kisumontao.
2 DEC 2014