White Ninja
Gig Seeker Pro

White Ninja

Mexico City, The Federal District, Mexico | INDIE

Mexico City, The Federal District, Mexico | INDIE
Band Alternative Avant-garde


This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos



"White Ninja on Hey, Cologne-based music blog (german)"

Posted by Philipp on 28. Oktober 2011 in Musik

Sofern man dem Internetz noch Glauben schenken darf verbirgt sich hinter White Ninja ein Mexikaner namens Leo Marz, der nun auf Abstrakt Muzak mit Sounds Like Cocoon Fever sein Debutalbum veröffentlicht hat. Das Video zur ersten Single El Alfa schaut ihr euch am besten an. Beschreiben kann ich es nämlich nicht. - Hey

"White Ninja featured in Foxy Digitalis"

White Ninja, “Sounds like Cocoon Fever” tape
October 28, 2011 By Ross Devlin

Its always a great experience to discover music from another country. Sometimes it can be easy to forget that the US isn’t the only place with independant groups creating their own diverse, eclectic sounds. And although I think we do a damn good job of it, sometimes I feel like as a state we’re walled-in on all sides. Even with the aid of the internet, there is a staggering number of scenes and micro-genres that will always be left undiscovered, so when a tape from the enigmatic mexican duo White Ninja wound up in my mailbox, I was intrigued. “Sounds Like Cocoon Fever” is the first release from the new label Abstract Muzak. Its a bold mixture of vibrant, colorful pop-art dance music and blissed out vocal croons from Leo Marz and Tavo Figueroa. Over the course of six bouncing, futuristic club jams and two spine-tingling interludes the duo manage to weave some chill pop that appears aseasonal. Aseasonal? Bear with me. If one thinks about it for long enough, most music can be classified in terms of the four seasons, weather (ha!) it be by key, mood, melody, or just general feel. White Ninja is from the future though, and not only that, another planet. Where there are seasons foreign to mere humans. On “El Alfa” and “Regrets are the Best”, dubbed out samples dominate the core of the songs, leaving the vocals to wander to and fro beneath the mix. Each time this eventually gives way to a funked up chorus, where the bass line and the bands woozy croon become the central focus. The type of emotional season expressed through “Melocotone” and “Hit and Run” is elation, and the electronic sampling techniques reminded me of Animal Collective at times. The album plays like one long song, with each ludicrously robotussin-smooth jam ebbing its way into another. I can’t help but picture Marz and Figueroa as extremely fashionable guys, crafting thick bass and intelligent, pop-minded dubstep in some wild 80s architectural nightmare. If I have one complaint, its that there are no real stand-out tracks, since the tape is a pretty focused venture. This also means that theres little variety, or breathing room to the music. Its 30 minutes of White Ninja’s signature mid-tempo funk swing. Its well crafted, and as addictive as drugstore candy, and is well worth the multiple listens required to husk away the waves of sugar to get to the bubble-gum center.

Label: Abstrakt Muzak
Rating: 7/10 - Foxy Digitalis

"Get off the Coast: White Ninja"

Abstrakt Muzak's stunning White Ninja LP, Sounds Like Cocoon Fever, is one of a handful of really special things that I delayed posting about while I got my nuptials checked out, because it's an opus that merits more than a cursory cogitation. More than anything, I'd like to think that the name is some reference to an imaginary craze for Ron Howard's 1985 sci-fi geezer-fest Cocoon, but perhaps that's too much to hope for. Like all meritorious things, Sounds Like Cocoon Fever is constantly in the throws of a bright, bouncy beat, and ultimately the entire album sounds like a focused attempt to construct different songs along that one constant - synths and stuttering tones of electronic gibberish cavort around it, giving way and changing most compellingly around the intonations of White Ninja himself. - Get off the Coast

"Beach Sloth: White Ninja – Sounds like Cocoon Fever 8.3"

White Ninja is a mixture of early 80s Bowie mixed with chillwave. A pitch of gloopy funk is thrown in and walla: you have the perfect soundtrack to a party which is designed to be wild. “Sounds like Cocoon Fever” may be the perfect shaggy dog album. Throughout it you get the sense that Leo Marz and Tavo Figueroa are probably pretty fun guys and worth seeing live, judging by video for “El Alfa”.

“El Alfa” is the best song on here. Try to get it out of your head once you’ve heard it. Rarely do I encounter a song so habit-forming. You’ll probably listen to it more times than is reasonable or healthy. Some beat bounces for a couple of seconds in the beginning. Broken up funk and fashion show music fed through light distortion sounds great in theory, in practice it is even better. Little pieces of chorus pop in and out through the casual lyrics. Part of me wishes I had heard this during the summer, I’d probably blast it as loud as I could.

That’s not the only highlight. “Patty Hearst” sounds completely different. On that track, you’re exposed to the best impersonation of early 80s soundtracks I’ve ever heard. It’s bizarre, nostalgic, but most importantly it moves surprisingly quickly. Here the Bowie influence is most strongly felt, particularly in the vocals. Glam is all over this baby. “Melocotone” is probably what Neon Indian should have had on his last album. Carefree, careening, with a great dose of funk, it’s a great song and a great infectious hook.

Glam hasn’t been heavily mined by very many, neither has funk. White Ninja throws these all in alongside a blatant disregard for what’s considered normal or logical. “Sounds like a Cocoon” is a total and complete blast of an album. - Beach Sloth

"White Ninja: Swag artsy de la vieja escuela (spanish)"

White Ninja: Swag artsy de la vieja nueva escuela



Full disclosure: la primera vez que escuché “Sounds like Cocoon Fever” de White Ninja me encontraba desvelado. Era el fin de semana, a altas horas de la madrugada. El disco estaba en repetición, así que me acompañó durante varias horas a través de mis extraños sueños.

Tuve pesadillas.

Imágenes horribles de laberintos interminables, dientes y tentáculos, con la música de White Ninja de fondo, que hicieron que despertara intranquilo y que tardara algunos minutos en recuperar la compostura.

Poco después le comenté esto al creador de White Ninja, Leo Marz, quien además de músico es catedrático, académico y artista plástico (todo eso, además de fundar una humilde y prolífica banda independiente llamada Álbum hace casi 10 años). No me quedó claro si la intención del disco era la de mover alguna fibra extraña y oscura en el cerebro del escucha. Pero lo logró.

White Ninja y su segundo disco “Sounds like Cocoon Fever” es un disco del mas macizo y enfermo electro (ill-ectro) ectoplásmico creado desde finales de los ochenta. Como su portada (y la de su predecesor, el excelente “Guácala los Modernos y su Electro”) lo indican de manera visual, la música del grupo, redondeado por Tavo en las voces, es un collage macabro que abreva principalmente de la música de los setentas y de las técnicas de cut-up de Burroughs y Gysin para crear sonidos verdaderamente conmovedores, estremecedores y con un chingo de swagger.

Mientras que Leo le da a los loops y a los ritmos rebajados probablemente por el mismo Lucifer, Tavo canta en un lenguaje inventado que definitivamente no es el esperanto y quizás, solo quizás no sea un idioma demoniaco.

Destacan temas como “Hit and Run” y “Regrets are the Best”, pero en realidad este disco, editado por el sello Records Are Dead, es uno de esos que se deben de escuchar de cabo a rabo. Constantemente.

¿Alguna vez se han preguntado que escucharía Beetlejuice en su iPod después de que le redujeron la cabeza en la sala de espera del Infierno al final de la película de Burton?

Esta es la respuesta.
- New Weird Latin America

"International Tapes: White Ninja - El Alfa"

White Ninja - "El Alfa"

With “El Alfa,” Mexico’s White Ninja has created a pop song that sometimes flows like liquid AM Gold, sometimes lashes out with heavily compressed horns and vocals swells, and always always bounces, a fact that the track’s maybe NSFW spandex-centric [hello there, SEO] vid certainly doesn’t fail to reiterate. It’s funky in the way that sampled funk can get “freaky” by pulling in disparate elements, without ever needing to fully reconcile or explain them. Not to diminish the subtleties of the mix, but the overall buoyant feel and smooth vocals make it an ideal choice for those of us who feel compelled to curate the soundtrack of our daily commutes, lunches, and bi-weekly slinky racing tournaments.

White Ninja: “El Alfa”

White Ninja’s 30 minute opus, Sounds Like Cocoon Fever, is now available on cassette and for download from Abstrakt Muzak

Written by Luke Carrell - International Tapes

"White Ninja featured in Club Fonograma"

Sounds Like Cocoon Fever,
Records Are Dead, México
Rating: 88
by Carlos Reyes

Musical and visual composition tends to respond well to otherworldly abstraction, especially when the surfer of its wavelength is in full dialogue with the human condition. Part space opera and part velvety chillwave, White Ninja’s sophmore album is a triumph of gorgeous digital sequencing, analog proverb, and individual grooving. Two years ago, Leo Marz astonished us with his debut Guacala Los Modernos y Su Electro, a spellbinding record we described as “a series of adrenaline rushes, jammed technos, and unbounded clutter.” Marz’s comeback is less militant in its execution, equally intricate in its assortment of beats, and more affecting to the creator’s well-harvested, shoegazing morph.

With sweaty grooves dripping into slow-burning acid, Sounds Like Cocoon Fever dignifies its self-descriptive title in ways that are as encouraging to the human strength as Space Odyssey’s monoliths. With little or no resemblance to the “No Retreat No Surrender” premise of his debut, Marz now finds himself fully immersed and motivated by blissed-out machinery. White Ninja’s flirtations with wavelength allocate the act as part of the exciting group of artists pulsating rhythm into faded synth-pop memories (Neon Indian, Washed Out, Toro y Moi). But unlike these contemporaries, White Ninja has the psychotropic vertebrate to travel within its own grooves. When, in the first sequence of compression, springs start bouncing in “El Alfa," you just know this will be an album about proportion and digital blossoming. This is a song that progresses from a perplexed urban number to a sort of futuristic cumbia.

Marz, who is also a member of Monterrey’s non-linear pop band Album, knows a thing or two about juxtaposing plot with space. If “PCU” and “Regrets are the Best” sound like pastiches bouncing on synthetic ropes it's because the 6-piece album practices discontinuity to recruit and retreat from its own form. When you have something as exceptionally executed as the sequencing in this album, it’s best to embrace it. Not to say White Ninja is template-dependent, but upon multiple listens one learns to recognize its patterns and motifs; an exciting moment for any technicality buff who doesn’t mind records to losing their romantic mysticism. Released digitally by Marz’s own netlabel Records Are Dead and soon to be published on cassette via UK’s Abastrakt Muzak, Sounds Like Cocoon Fever is one of the most exciting releases of the year.

While the sequencing drives White Ninja’s orbit, the emotional cues in the album arrive mostly at the clever inwardness of its vocals (by Tavo Figueroa). Particularly in “Patty Hearst,” where Marz abandons narrative as means of approach and goes straight to your soul. It’s almost as if the holy spirit of La Lupe took over with its “Fever” and poisoned White Ninja’s nervous system in the most frenzied and sweaty way you could possibly think of. Album finale “Hit and Run” resolves all the ideas of a truly whimsical, self-resolving album. It might be short in length, but Sounds Like Cocoon Fever is a profound knockout worthy of international appraisal. Six tracks and two interludes are in conversation with one another, grooving collectively in what’s bound to become one of the year’s most progressive records. - Club Fonograma

"RA Reviews: White Ninja - Sounds Like Cocoon Fever"

Album/ White Ninja - Sounds Like Cocoon Fever
Label / Records Are Dead
Cat # / RAD001
Released / July 2011
Style / Synth Pop
Rating / 4/5

There was a difficult forcefulness about White Ninja's debut Guacala Los Modernos Y Su Electro. Not a stiffness in the band's musical ideas so much as an awkwardness at their seams, a feeling that something needed to give way to allow a more colorful beast to emerge. That thing was the heavy-handed, regimented drum pattern typified by closers "Fuck B," which quickly morphs from a riff on Blondie's "Call Me" into a senses-pounding workout, and "No Retreat, No Surrender" which picks up almost exactly where "Fuck B" left off and drives it straight off a cliff in a stolen US Army jeep.

With "El Alfa," the opener here, it's readily apparent that White Ninja are cozying up to no one else's definition of "punk rock" or "synth pop" or whatever you don't want to call it. These songs are entirely the band's own, deriving from mutant strands of various global pop DNA (motorik, Brit-pop, glam, lo-fi, 70's film soundtrack, Fad Gadget) hybridized in some kind of mountainside bunker and recorded in a single, drunken afternoon. Charm and pleasure are the key elements: There's an endearingly effortless and almost comically suave attitude at play here, one that elicits a grin at even the most conventionally "sexy" moments ("Melocotone" and its robo-New Romantic humpiness) and allows one to remain skeptical when Leo Marz's newfound croon is at its most vulnerable ("PCU," perhaps a heartfelt paean to Jeremy Piven?).

For the most part, Sounds Like Cocoon Fever sticks to a common, woozy midtempo with the beats hammered out of latex and the keyboards all tuned to squelch. The theme is taken up in different iterations, each loosening up and at some point breaking down in similar fashion, bruised electronics seeping out the side, the inebriated singer wandering off to quench a parched throat. Inspiringly, things here actually get more interesting the more they reach—in the twinkling, dream pop melody of "Patty Hearst," in the almost '60s-esque, gauzy pan-American/European pop feel of closer and standout "Hit and Run," in the oddly-sung but quite enjoyable "Regrets Are the Best."

With Cocoon Fever, White Ninja have shown that they can make an album that straddles rock/pop and electronic arenas and still sound purely self-guided and unfettered by expectations. The only remaining constraint they need to untie (and this is one of the few traits this record shares with its predecessor) is their tendency to hover around the same tempo and beat patterns. With that overcome, I see no reason why Leo Marz and co. couldn't have the world at their feet. Exactly what beautiful, strange world they're actually living in will no doubt be revealed at that point.

Words /Mallory O'Donnell
Published /Tuesday, 09 August 2011 - Resident Advisor


Guacala los modernos y su electro (2009, RAD)

Sounds Like Cocoon Fever (2010, RAD/Abstrak Muzak)



White Ninja began as a one-man-band fronted by visual artist Leo Marz. Originally intended to explore plunderphonics, the band's initial sound was closer to sample-based punk. In this vein White Ninja recorded its first release entitled 'Guacala los modernos y su electro' (2009) with collaborations by several Monterrey, Mexico-based artists. This recording earned positive reviews by listeners and specialized blogs, while the live performance was noted by Pitchfork.

In 2010, musician and vocalist Octavio Figueroa joined the band officially. Previously, the duo had worked for years as part of the band Album. Together, they set out to expand beyond the premise of plunderphonics, as they incorporated different musical ideas and influences into the mix.

The result was the 2011 release of 'Sounds like cocoon fever' a mixture of funky grooves, electronic arrangements, soulful vocals and psychedelic sounds.

This recording was received enthusiastically by listeners and critics, and was awarded a 4 out of 5 rating in Resident Advisor, among many other rave reviews.

The duo is currently playing live gigs to get this material heard while working on a new album, in the hopes that the buzz keeps growing and the good response from listeners and critics lead them to a wider audience.