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Eastern Bloc Disco at Centrala (Playlist for Feb 3, 2017)

4 Feb

Generic Sleeve [Pronit, Poland, 1960s]

The second Eastern Bloc Disco event took place yesterday evening at Centrala, Birmingham, as part of the monthly Digbeth First Friday, and this set ran from around 8pm until 10.40pm (after which a pre-prepared short mix featuring a few other songs, also listed below, saw the event through to its end, more or less). A further collaboration with Centrala, on an archival exhibition and series of events exploring the history, ephemera, design, film and wider political and cultural contexts surrounding some of these artists and sounds, is currently in development for the Summer of 2018. [Watch this space].

Grupa 220: Negdie Postoji Netko (Yugoslavia, 1968)
Koncz Zsuzsa & Illés Együttes: Fáradt Vagyok (Hungary, 1967)
Izomorf 67: Barwy Dzwieku (Poland, 1967)
Karel Černoch: Snídaně v Trávě (Help) (Czechoslovakia, 1971)
Marta Kubišová: Balada o Kornetovi a Divce (Czechoslovakia, 1969)
Blackout: Powiedz Swoje Imie (Poland, 1967)
Polanie: Dlugo Się Znamy (Poland, 1968)
Karel Kahovec & Flamengo: Poprava Blond Holky (Czechoslovakia, 1968)
George & Beatovens: Lez Blazniveho Basnika (Czechoslovakia, 1968)
Sarolta Zalatnay: Betonfej (Hungary, 1968)
Koncz Szusza: Visz a Vonat (Hungary, 1970)
Petr Spaleny & Apollobeat: Kdybych Ja Byl Kovarem (Czechoslovakia, 1969)
Vaclav Neckar & Golden Kids: Goo-Goo Barabajagal (Czechoslovakia, 1969)
Breakout: Pozlabym za Toba (Poland, 1969)
Illés Együttes: Nehez Az Ut (Hungary, 1968)
Janko Nilovic: Xenos Cosmos (Yugoslavia/France, 1974)
Czerwono Czarni: Lot na Wenus (Poland, 1969)
Hana & Petr Ulrychovi: A Co Ma Bejt (Czechoslovakia, 1970)
Angelika Mann: Wenn Ich Mal (DDR, 1974)
Hana Zagorová: Svatej Kluk (Czechoslovakia, 1968)
Chris Doerk: Glaub Nicht (DDR, 1974)
Czeslaw Niemen & Akwarele: Baw Się W Ciuciubabkę (Poland, 1969)
Josef Laufer & Their Majesties: Útěk z Hladomorny (Czechoslovakia, 1969)
Grupa ABC: Za Duzo Chcesz (Poland, 1970)
Jana Kratochvílová & Discobolos: Kyvadlo (Czechoslovakia, 1978)
Bemibem: Podaruj Mi Trochę Słońca (Poland, 1973)
Alibabki: Slonce w Chmurach Lazi (Poland, 1969)
Drugi Nacin: Zuti List (Yugoslavia, 1975)
Olympic: Tobogan (Czechoslovakia, 1970)
Emil Dimitrov: Scherazhade (Bulgaria, 1972)
Arp-Life: Baby Bump (Poland, 1976)
Walter Kubiczeck: Tentakel (DDR, 1979)
Grupul Stereo: Coloana Infinită (Romania, 1984)
Marta Kubišová: Tak Dej Se K Nam A Projdem Svet (Czechoslovakia, 1969)
Eva Pilarova: Ohen a Led (Czechoslovakia, 1970)
Izabela Trojanowska: Jestem Twoim Grzechem (Poland, 1981)
Grupul Stereo: Plopii Impari (Romania, 1984)
Manaam: Stoję, stoję, czuję się świetnie (Poland, 1980)

Prepared Mix:

Olympic: Ikarus Blues (Czechoslovakia, 1968)
Sarolta Zalatnay & Metro: Fekete Beat (Hungary, 1973)
Filipinki: Nie Ma Go (Poland, 1967)
Halina Frąckowiak: Wodo, Zimna Wodo (Poland, 1974)
Kovács Kati: Add Már, Uram, Az Esőt (Hungary, 1972)
Marta Kubišová: Svlikam Lasku (Czechoslovakia, 1969)
Czeslaw Niemen: Enigmatyczne Impresje (Poland, 1971)
Omega: Gyöngyhajú Lány (Hungary, 1969)
Locomotiv GT: The Worlds Watchmaker (Hungary/Poland, 1974)
Tadeusz Woźniak: Zegarmistrz Światła (Poland, 1972)

Various Artists: Privni Pantoniada (Panton) [7

Eastern Bloc Disco Playlist (Nottingham Contemporary, 16 Jan 2016)

16 Feb

Generic Sleeve (Pronit)

Last month, to celebrate the opening weekend of Monuments Should Not Be Trusted (curated by Lina Džuverović) and expand on the display of Eastern Bloc 7” records included in Behold! The Markets Shall Erase Our History! (both exhibitions remain at Nottingham Contemporary until 04 March), an Eastern Bloc Disco was staged, featuring soul, rock, psychedelia, pop, folk and more, all released by the official state record labels of Poland, Czechoslovakia, Hungary, Yugoslavia, Bulgaria, Romania, East Germany and the USSR between the early 1960s and mid-1980s. The session also included a live set from UrBororo, Pil & Galia Kollectiv’s new venture into “skewed filing cabinet swamp blues for corporate inflight listening” – an “objectively boring” band whose songs are made from an unlikely merger between the sounds of surf, grunge and punk, and whose lyrics are borrowed from a 1970s Management Self-Help guide.

The all-vinyl playlist for the night ended up looking something like this:

Marek Grechuta: W Pochodzie Dni I Nocy (Poland, 1974)
Raimonds Pauls/Margarita Vilcāne: Līgotāji (Latvia/USSR, 1974)
Izomorf 67: Barwy Dzwieku (Poland, 1967/8)
Raimonds Pauls/Nora Bumbiere: Divpadsmit Asaras (Latvia/USSR, 1974)
Blackout: Powiedz Swoje Imie (Poland, 1967)
Grupa 220: Negdie Postoji Netko (Yugoslavia, 1968)
Vera Spinarova: Andromeda (Czechoslovakia, 1972)
Krystyna Pronko: Po Co Ci To Chlopcze (Poland, 1973)
Czeslaw Niemen & Akwarele: Baw Się W Ciuciubabkę (Poland, 1969)
Josef Laufer & Their Majesties: Útěk z Hladomorny (Czechoslovakia, 1969)
Flamengo: Kure v Hodinkach (Czechoslovakia, 1972)
C&K Vocal: Generace (Czechosolovakia, 1974)
Omega: Gyöngyhajú Lány (Hungary, 1969)
Romauld & Roman: Pytanie Czy Haslo (Poland, 1970)
Drugi Nacin: Zuti List (Yugoslavia, 1975)
Piotr Figiel: Dyplomowany Galernik (Poland, 1974)
Olympic: Ikarus Blues (Czechoslovakia, 1969)
Locomotiv GT: Ringasd El Magad II (Hungary, 1973)
Hungaria: Koncert a Marson (Hungary, 1969)
Blue Effect: The Sun Is So Bright (Czechoslovakia, 1969)
Olympic: Everybody (Czechoslovakia, 1969)
Breakout: Gdybys Kochal Hej (Poland, 1969)
Illes: Nehez Az Ut (Hungary, 1968)
Karel Kahovec/Flamengo: Poprava Blond Holky (Czechoslovakia, 1968)
George & Beatovens: Lez Blazniveho Basnika (Czechoslovakia, 1968)
Martha & Tena: Boure (Czechoslovakia, 1969)
Atlantis: Don’t You Break It Again (Czechoslovakia, 1968)
Petr Spaleny & Apollobeat: Kdybych Ja Byl Kovarem (Czechoslovakia, 1969)
Sarolta Zalatnay: Betonfej (Hungary, 1968)
Halina Frackowiak: Wodo, Zimna Wodo (Poland, 1974)
Stan Borys: Wyplakalem Oczy Niebieskie (Poland, 1969)
Koncz Szusza: Visz a Vonat (Hungary, 1970)
Emil Dimitrov: Scherazade (Bulgaria, 1972)
Marta Kubisova: Tak Dej Se K Nam A Projdem Svet (Czechoslovakia, 1969)
Hana & Petr Ulrychovi: A Co Ma Bejt (Czechoslovakia, 1970)
Angelika Mann: Wenn Ich Mal (DDR, 1974)
Arp-Life: Baby Bump (Poland, 1976)
Walter Kubiczeck: Tentakel (DDR, 1979)
Grupul Stereo: Coloana Infinită (Romania, 1984)
Izabela Trojanowska: Jestem Twoim Grzechem (Poland, 1981)
Grupul Stereo: Plopii Impari (Romania, 1984)
Chris Doerk: Glaub Nicht (DDR, 1974)
Vaclav Neckar & Golden Kids: Goo-Goo Barabajagal (Czechoslovakia, 1969)
Czerwone Gitary: Coda (Poland, 1970)
Grupa ABC: Za Duzo Chcesz (Poland, 1970)
Marta Kubisova: Cervanky (It’s Not Unusual) (Czechoslovakia, 1968)

Generic Sleeve (Supraphon)

Through the evening, a muted playlist of videos also ran on a large screen, and everything shown at the event can be seen in the Eastern Bloc Disco playlist compiled here – between 2 – 3 hours of visuals in total, now available with their soundtracks intact.

Wedding Playlist: Britannia Boat Club, Nottingham (4 June 2011)

12 Jun

In case anyone was there and wondered what the hell was going on behind the decks, here’s a list (in order) of what came out of the record boxes and found its way to the turntables during a short but (hopefully) sweet set on the night:

Breakout: Poszlabym Za Toba (from Muza EP ‘Opole 69’)
Breakout: Gdybys Kochal, Hej! (Pronit 45)
Blue Effect: Sun Is So Bright (from Panton EP ‘Sen Neni Vecny’)
Petr Ulrych/Atlantis: Wine Or Love (Supraphon 45)
Karel Kahovec/Flamengo: Poprava Blond Holky (Supraphon 45)
Atlantis: Don’t You Break It Again (Nepierusuj!) (Supraphon 45)
Vera Spinarova: Den a Noc (She’s Not There) (from Panton LP ‘Andromeda’)
Hana & Petr Ulrychovi: A Co Ma Bejt (from Supraphon LP ‘13HP’)
Viktor Sodoma a Girls: Vysoka Hra (Supraphon 45)
Martha & Tena: Boure (Panton 45)
Illes: Nehez Az Ut (from Qualiton LP ‘Exmusic/Nehez Az Ut’)
Olympic: Ikarus Blues (from Supraphon LP ‘Ptak Rosomak’)
Alibabki: Slonce w Chmurach Lazi (from Pronit LP ‘Kwiat Jednej Nocy’)
Petr Spaleny/Apollobeat: Kdybych Ja Byl Kovarem (Supraphon 45)
Vaclav Neckar/Golden Kids: Goo Goo Barabajagal (Supraphon 45)

Vaclav Neckar: Nautilus (Supraphon, 1970)

6 May

This is a song that appears in several formats, given different credits. The version used here comes from a 7″ single issued in 1969/1970 under Vaclav Neckar’s name, with backing from Golden Kids and orchestration by Josef Vobruba: the same rendition also appears – credited to the group rather than Neckar solo – on the Golden Kids 1 LP (Supraphon, 1969). There are later recordings by Neckar with other bands: a version with a synthesisizer arrangement replacing Vobruba’s strings and more progressive instrumentation overall is represented here, and probably hails from the mid-to-late 1970s. The most beautiful arrangement remains the original version’s, though, and while this German version offers a later arrangement, the song as issued on the Golden Kids LP, and under Neckar’s own name on the 1969 single pictured here, is the best of the various incarnations available . The Czech lyric can be read here.

Nautilus

(after Otakar Petrina/Zdeněk Rytíř, 1970)

Who knows where Nautilus is stranded ?
Who knows where its journey ended?
Who knows where Nemo’s treasures are gone?
Who knows where Nautilus went down?

Perhaps twenty-thousand leagues deep in the ocean,
where no human eye can look at its hiding place,
the realm of the Nautilus is to be found
now Nemo has abandoned its course to the sea.

Nautilus lies resting among dark blue weed
with bright fish swimming in and out of its hull.
I imagine it – a fairytale cottage in a coral wood
that only hunters might ever stumble upon.

Who knows where Nautilus is stranded ?
Who knows where its journey ended?
Who knows where Nemo’s treasures are gone?
Who knows where Nautilus went down?

Nautilus could bring gold and pearls to light,
chains draped in the jaws of treasure chests.
Beams of white sunlight might break clouds of kelp,
sparkle on diamonds and silver chalices.

Yet if these treasures came within my grasp
I know I’d leave them undisturbed.
As a child’s eyes always open on wonder
I’d forsake wealth to see all that shining drowned.

Who knows where Nautilus is stranded ?
Who knows where its journey ended?
Who knows where Nemo’s treasures are gone?
Who knows where Nautilus went down?

I would find riches, but yearn to take nothing.
certain that Nemo, in Jules Verne’s tale,
might live on in my mind as it sleeps each night –
may he forgive any avarice this song invites.

For it is good that no-one knows the island
where Nemo lived and the Nautilus drowned.
Let us preserve the memory of the Nautilus,
keep its treasures unknown, for everyone.

Who knows where Nautilus is stranded ?
Who knows where its journey ended?
Who knows where Nemo’s treasures are gone?
Who knows where Nautilus went down?