Peru’s metal electronic pioneers Time Cero chat to NSE about their new release ‘Time Cero’

Time Cero are a rock/alternative/metal band based in Lima, Peru and fronted by their creator Carlos Li Carrillo who moved to Boston USA when he was 18 years old. During his teenage years in Lima, Peru in the mid 80’s, Carlos was the bass player and co-writer of Thrash Metal band “Curriculum Mortis”. Their first material was recently released on a U.S. vinyl edition and sold out 1000+ copies in the first year of release.

During the early 90’s Carlos was in the Progressive Rock band called ‘Avispon Verde’ and recorded 2 records while gigging regularly across the Lima alternative rock scene. In the late 90’s Carlos relocated to Hong Kong where he was influenced by numerous music genres and sounds from different parts of the world delving into digital recording and electronic sounds.

In 2001 while Carlos was travelling around the world, he created Novalima an Electronic collective band. The band mixed different grooves and singers from the around the world with Afroperuvian vocals and percussions.

Novalima became a big success with its first self-titled album on the Lima music scene and they soon signed their ” Afro” album with Mr. Bongo Records based in the U.K.

The song Machete was licensed to the world famous Robert Rodriguez “Machete” movie starring Danny Trejo and Robert De Niro. Later on Novalima released the album Coba Coba which was nominated for the 10th Latin Grammy as Best Alternative Record.
It was after producing one more album in his previous band that Carlos decided to move into different directions and started his current solo project called Time Cero.

Time Cero mixes a combination of styles ranging from Industrial Metal and Rock sounds to tribal and dance percussion. The project was recorded in Lima, Peru and was mixed and mastered by Kevin Paul in London.

Kevin Paul was the head engineer of Mute records and has mixed known bands such as Nick Cave, David Bowie and Depeche Mode. In June 2016, Kevin Paul joined Carlos in Lima,Peru to mix the Surround 5.1 version of the Time Cero album which will be released worldwide on DVD a few months after the digital Stereo release this November.

N.S.E Rock interview – Time Cero

How would you describe your genre ?

Time Cero has a wide variety of different genres such as Rock, Pop, Metal, Industrial, Gothic and Dance combined in a unique style. The lyrics contain powerful thoughtful messages and metaphors with a dark but positive direction

What is your new single about  ?

The single TIME CERO gave way to the album concept and band name. Time zero is really the first instant of our universe as we know it, however without really knowing the physical meaning, I wrote the song intuitively referring to a new beginning for myself; the time to start realizing my own thoughts and ideas.

Where do you see yourself in 5 years time ?

In 5 years I see myself with Time Cero doing more and new exciting music, maybe here in Peru or possibly back in Hong Kong.

Any bands in Peru you can suggest to our readers ? 

Currently I am based in Lima Peru, where I recorded all the musicians that participated in the Time Cero recordings. Many of them we have known each other and played together in different bands for the last 3 decades. Typically, the music scene in Peru is mainly Creole Music, Salsa and Latin. However, since the late 60’s, when a military coup closed up the country for a full decade, an important rock scene started to form and grow, and was used to channel some of the rebelliousness sprouting from the repression during those times. The 80’s was the real time for rebel music when Metal, Punk, and Hardcore bands started appearing everywhere in the Lima underground scene.Nowadays in Peru there is also a big DJ Dance and Rave scene with most international music festivals and DJs coming here all year round.

Worked with any big names ? 

Yes. I have worked in the 90’s with mixing engineer Tom Uzzo in New York who worked in the Michael Jackson box set; Masterizing engineer Tom Coyne in Sterling Sound, New York (Madonna, Police, Aerosmith..) who masterized most of my previous band albums before Time Cero. Right before this project, I also worked with Toni Economides in London (Nitin Sawhney, Café del Mar) mixing and producing several records from my previous band. For the Time Cero production I mixed and mastered it with Kevin Paul in London who worked with Bowie, Depeche Mode, Nick Cave, Moby, etc..

Do you ever play any covers ?

Not now. However in the early 90’s we had with Pier (Time Cero drummer) a cover band called “The Flesh” which played Pink Floyd covers for a couple of years. While doing so, we really learned a lot of advanced techniques for our live sound.

What are the main themes or topics for most of your songs ?

It really varies, but it is mainly personal thoughts, opinions and life experiences mixed with metaphors that give way to different interpretations depending on who is reading.

The brand new single off the album is “Time Cero”.

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