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Dorso comprising: Rodrigo "Pera" Cuadra, Alvaro Soms, Gamal Eltit, Fran Muñoz
Background information
Origin Santiago, Chile
Genres Speed-thrash metal, death metal, black metal, progressive metal, goregrind
Years active 1984–present
Labels BMG[citation needed]
Inferno Records[citation needed]
Website official website
Members Rodrigo "Pera" Cuadra
Gamal Eltit
Álvaro Soms
Fran Muñoz

Dorso is a heavy metal band from Chile.[1]

While initially a speed metal band, its musical style has been variously described as progressive metal, grindcore and jazz. Common themes in band's music are horror film creatures, hyperbolic sexual fetishes and Chilean myths.[2]

Its frontman, Rodrigo Cuadra, became a TV presenter in the 1990s.


Early years (1984—1988)[edit]

Dorso was formed in 1984 by Rodrigo Cuadra, who was 17 at the time. His vision for the band was for it to be a musical synthesis of extreme metal and progressive rock, drawing extensively from dark fantasy literature and gore films for inspiration.

Dorso made its first public gig in a Ñuñoa gym in 1984, with a setlist of heavy metal covers and original songs.

By the time of the release of their first demo, Parajes de lo Desconocido (1985), Dorso was a trio led by its original frontman and two new hires, Gamal Eltit in guitars and Jaime Palma in drums.


Their first album, Bajo una luna cámbrica, was released in 1989. It featured an eclectic blend of prog rock-inspired thrash metal, retrospectively described as progressive metal, odd time signatures and traditional speed metal.

The second album, Romance (1990) is considered by many as one of the best of the band.[2]

Romance was a moment of great pretension. We wanted to do something long and conceptual. We took advantage of the fact that we were signed with BMG at the time, which gave us very few restrictions. We wanted this album to be symphonic, yet metal.

— Rodrigo "Pera" Cuadra[2]

Eltit and the newly hired drummer Eduardo Topelberg left the band citing musical disagreements after recording Romance.[citation needed] Two new members joined the band, ex-Nimrod Marcelo Naves in drums and guitarist Alvaro Soms. This line-up went on to record Dorso's best-selling album to date, El Espanto Surge de la Tumba (1993). The album's heavy use of Spanglish, black humor and bilingual puns, as well as Soms' distinctive riff-writing became the defining characteristics of the band's sound.

Their next album, Big Monsters Aventura was released to some success in 1995, with the eponymous song being featured on MTV's Headbangers Ball. This album featured more goregrind elements than its predecessor.[citation needed]

Dorso now (since 1998)[edit]

Following the release Disco Blood in 1998, the band went on to release 2 live albums followed by a short hiatus and the return of Eltit in guitars.

In 2008 the band released Espacium, and in 2012 Recolecciones Macabras del Campo Chileno, featuring for the first time some doom and black metal elements, with lyrical themes revolving around Chilean myths and legends.

Band members[edit]

Current lineup[edit]

Former members[edit]

  • Mauricio Castillo — lead guitar (1984)
  • Alvaro Cuadra — rhythm guitar (1986)
  • Claudio Alfaro — bass (1984)
  • Juan Francisco Cueto — bass (1995)
  • Marcelo Castillo — drums, percussion (1984)
  • Gonzalo Lara — drums, percussion (1984)
  • Jaime Palma — drums, percussion (1984-1989)
  • Rafael Alfaro — drums, percussion (1989)
  • Juan Coderch — drums, percussion (1989)
  • Eduardo Topelberg — drums, percussion, background vocals (1989-1991)
  • Marcelo Naves — drums, percussion (1991-2008)
  • Bernardo Riquelme — percussion (1984)


Main article: Dorso discography

Other albums[edit]

  • Gallinazeous Death SQVAD (pronounced Squad) (1989)
  • Sangre Eterna (2002)
  • El Huésped (2005)

Note: Both items are included as bonus tracks on Espacium (2008).