It was a tough call. Amsterdam Klezmer Band with Yury Gurzhy Djing the after show or Dubioza Kolektiv at Festsaal Kreuzberg. I opted for Dubioza – and I didn’t regret my decision (though I am sure AKB rocked the house just as hard). Dubioza Kolektiv is a kind of Bosnian goodtimes party band, whose English lyrics surprisingly make sense, even ...

Gino Srđan Jevđević is the lead singer and founder of Kultur Shock, a multicultural Balkan-style rock band that blends certain Bosnian oriental melodies and folk elements with a hard-rock and punk sensibility. Kultur Shock, which celebrated its 25th anniversary last year, and has 11 albums under its belt, is commonly described as a Seattle based “Gypsy punk band”. The label essentially ...

Kolektif Istanbul haven’t changed all that much since their first album Krivoto, which came out nearing the peak of the Balkan hype in 2008. These 13 mostly infectious dance tunes are still keeping to the same Turko-Balkanic territory, though French sax player and totally Turkified  band leader Richard Laniepce prefers the term “progressive wedding music” to describe what the band are all about. ...

The guy that worked the hotel reception desk looked at me, as if to make sure he had heard correctly. “Tallava? You want tallava?” he said, like I wanted a dose of the clap. “Are you sure you really want to hear this shit? I know of a place on the edge of town. But I’m warning you, it’s a bit ...

The new Balkan sound departs from the clean, straight, beat-laden Balkan club tracks of yore, insofar as the new stuff is looser, fuzzier, deeper, more distorted, less distinct - subtler even, trafficking less in Balkan clichés. “Ethno psychedelia”, you could call it.  Balkan Taksim group members Sașa-Liviu Stoianovici and Alin Zăbrăuțeanu have known each other for more than a decade, ...

FIVE-MAN LA CARAVANE PASSE, led by multi-instrumentalist, multi-linguist Toma Feterman, returns with Nomadic Spirit, their sixth album, a dizzily euphoric, Babylonian  mix of Balkan Gypsy, flamenco, hip-hop, gnawa and Oriental excursions. As with the previous albums, a burlesque mood pervades these eleven very different songs. Toma Feterman sings in Parigot French with a liberal dose of English and some Spanish and Serbo-Croatian ...

    In Vladičin Han,  the South Serbian town, where Marko Marković hails from, nearly everyone plays brass . “Growing up I didn’t have a choice,” says Marko. “The trumpet chose me.” Marko Marković (30) is the son of Balkan brass legend Boban Marković, five times winner of “Best Trumpeter” award at Guča, Serbia’s annual summer-time brass music blow-out.   Almost before he ...