Concert Review: Cuco’s “Los Shows de San Valentin”

Cuco brings the love to San Diego.

Dream-pop Chicano boy-wonder Cuco arrived in San Diego on Feb. 13 just in time to save Valentine’s Day from the damp forecast and make us once again believe in the power of love (at least for those of us who weren’t so eager for the most amorous day of the year). With this being his second stop on his tour “Los Shows de San Valentin,” 20-year-old Cuco returned to share his music after a period away from the stage. An unfortunate accident back in October 2018 hospitalized him and several of his teammates, forcing him to cancel his tour. It seems, though, that Cuco is back on his feet (literally) ready to perform again and to release an album later this year.

Dreamy beats and romantic Spanglish lyrics have propelled Cuco’s stardom, forging him into a Chicano icon in the music industry, especially because of the support he’s received from the Hispanic community. Even without a record label, Cuco came to sway us with his music and help his community along the way. It’s clear that he has his style locked down and knows what his people want. Hopefully the Los Angeles native will continue to grow and show us “lo que siente” (if you know you know) with his upcoming music.

Supported by Los Retros and Kwest, Cuco chose the perfect time to kick off his comeback. During the five-day mini-tour through California, the three talented artists spread the love by creating a cheerful environment at their shows. Los Retros hit the stage first, playing some smooth tunes and acclimating the room for what would be a delightful evening. Kwest, the second act, brought out all his energy and shifted gears by lighting up the stage with his trap tunes and electric persona.

The crowd went wild as our headliner hit the stage with music that the fans instantly recognized. By the third song, Cuco revealed that he had been working on an album, and he began to play an unreleased track that seemed to be a very honest composition about his personal struggles.

Throughout the night Banos played some of his popular romantic hits such as “Lo Que Siento,” “Lover is a Day,” and what he considers to be one of his favorite songs to play, “Sunnyside.”

Picture this: a soothing melody begins to play, and instantly the crowd recognizes the song. In unison, fans begin singing with Cuco, “Cuando veo esos ojos … ” (“When I see those eyes”). “Amor de Siempre” has been one of the singer’s most successful songs, and maybe the fact that it’s completely in Spanish has to do something with that. Looking around the venue, you see couples hugging and friends belting out the lyrics to each other. People who were alone (like myself) helplessly swayed with the music falling in love with the moment. To top it off, Cuco brings out the trumpet and flawlessly nails the solo, and everyone’s eyes (and phones) are on him.

Apart from the romantic tunes, our favorite young Chicano musician closed the night with more upbeat songs like “Lucy,” bringing out Kwest once again, and finishing off (with what should be) Honda’s anthem “CR-V” after the crowd cheered, “Otra! Otra!” (“Another one! Another one!”) when he pretended to leave the stage. All around it was a great show; from the music to the environment to the people, Cuco and friends made pre-Valentine’s Day as lovely as it could be.

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