This is a re-post with updated info/files thanks to contributions from John Cannon.
Before Ill Niño was Ill Niño, they were El Niño. Originally fronted by Jorge Rosado of Merauder fame, the band initially featured a much more stream-lined NYHC style in comparison to the Latin-infused brand of nu-metal they made a both a career and a Gold record out of.
Thanks to the efforts of one of the blog readers, John Cannon, I have updated this post to include the EXTREMELY rare debut 10 song demo featuring Jorge from Merauder on vocals. Shit like that makes me feel like all the time I spend writing these posts is worthwhile. Recorded in 1998, I initially thought this to be non-existent but can now include this as part of the discography thanks to his contribution.
Speaking of 1998, I managed to track down a rare live video from Albany, NY from this year which features essentially the demo in its entirety. I ripped Mp3s of this video and included them in this download.
The follow-up EP was recorded in late 2000, after Cristian Machado switched from bass to replace Jorge Rosado on vocals. With original members Marc Rizzo and founding father Dave Chavarri, and the addition of Jardel Paisante on rhythm guitar, Laz Pina on bass and Roger Vasquez on percussion the band was complete. According to an interview with Chavarri at the time, "the vocals are much stronger now with Cristian Machado as a singer; Ill Niño is now making much better use of melody, Spanish guitars and Latin rhythms."
The EP was recorded and mixed at the Hi-Fi Studios in Hoboken, NJ, which is the recording studio of bassist Laz Pina, and the same studio that was later used for the pre-production of Revolution Revolucion. After a recent conversation with him I also found out that the pre-production for Madball's seminal album "Set It Off" was laid down here as well. The album was engineered and mixed by drummer Dave Chavarri, with help from Pina. The album was released by C.I.A. Recordings.
This EP was actually released as Ill Nino. The first five songs, "Nothing's Clear", "Disposed", "Rumba", "Fallen", and "Part of the Signs", were all written by Cristian Machado. The last two songs, "El Niño" and "God Is I" were written by ex-vocalist Jorge Rosado, who re-joined Merauder after he left the band. These two songs are included as bonus tracks and are simply taken from their original 10 song demo.
I'm personally a fan of everything this band has done, but unfortunately for all of you ... their entire catalog is still in print through either Roadrunner and Victory Records (who are quite adamant about keeping their albums off of Mediafire). I suggest tracking down regardless. This EP and demo, however, is quite rare and live footage with Jorge is even moreso rare. Enjoy.