With a band name that was inspired by a man they saw smoking opium in a store one day, El Opio (Opium) were a Peruvian psych-rock band that formed in the early 1970’s. Active for only a couple of years, the band were defined by their fusions of Latin and folkloric rhythms from Peru.
Hailing from Lima, El Opio were made up of Luis Bonilla (drums and voice), Augusto Bravo (lead guitar), Manuel Verástegui (second guitar/vocal) and Beto Pineda (bass). Their repertoire only consists of a few 45’s on the Odeon label, but their music was pioneering! Together with many other bands of the time, El Opio pushed forward the sounds of huayno (Andean musical genre), whilst combining it with modern fuzz-rock. This was a time of military and social conflict in 70’s Peru, but this new sound shone through regardless!!
Backed with the acid-drenched Dejame Solo on the b-side, Pusher was the band’s first 45…..and what a way to make your debut! Fuzzed-out psych-rock with an organic soul..I love the psych scene that broke out of Peru (and, indeed, many places over the world) in the late 1960’s and 1970’s!! Enjoy!!