Art Forms


Podcast March 2013
Podcast March 2013

CATALAN MUSIC - MARCH 2013

Hello and welcome to Catalan Music’s March 2013 podcast which, as every month, will be keeping you up to date with all the latest news and events on a happening Catalan music scene, and presenting new albums and international concerts by Catalan artists. Catalan Music is the brand name specially created by the ICEC (The Catalan Institute of Cultural Enterprises) for a wide range of musical genres produced in Catalonia, ranging from Pop, Jazz, Folk to World and Electronic Music, with a stress on international projection.

We begin this month’s podcast with a selection of new albums from Catalonia’s Electronic Music scene, which, in recent years has given rise to creators such as the unorthodox tropicalist El Guincho and futurist craftsman John Talabot, and has now been blessed by a band called Bruna, fronted by the Barcelona-based producer and musician Carlos Guajardo. Bruna released their debut album in 2009 a disc entitled 'And it matters to me to see you smiling' on which Guajardo constructed an intimate, atmospheric and emotional electronic soundscape, and have now released their second album 'Thence’, with a greater emphasis on rhythmic components. Guajardo pays tribute to his sources of inspiration when he was a teenager: intelligent techno, acid house and 1990s eurobeat, on an album with a distinct aura of melancholy, which was designed both for dance-floors and home-listening. Bruna will be performing at the next edition of the Sónar festival in Barcelona, from June 13th to 15th.

The next Sónar festival will also be hosting the minimalistic electronic pop trio Bradien, who have joined forces with poet Eduard Escoffet. In 2007, Bradien released a single in tandem with the Scottish band Dosimat, and in 2009 they released their debut album 'Linden', which included a track entitled 'Everyone gets lighter’ featuring verse recited by American poet John Giorno. Tha band have now repeated the formula, an encounter between electronics and a poetic voice, which breaks away from the more customary role of singers in the field of pop, and have released this new album entitled ‘Pols’ (Dust) in collaboration with Eduard Escoffet, a young poet from the Costa Brava town of Cadaqués. A highly poetical and seductive product.

R'n'B is not a deeply rooted genre in Catalonia or Spain and this makes the powerful emergence of Barcelona singer-songwriter IreneB all the more surprising. IreneB grew up listening to Babyface, Boys II Men and Michael Jackson and she is currently based in Orlando, Florida, where she is working with producer Frankie Biggz, who has worked with top international artists such as 50 Cent, Eminem and Kanye West. IreneB collaborated on Jeff Lorber’s album ‘Now is the time’ and now she’s released her second solo album entitled 'Welcome back', on which she’s recovered the R’n’B spirit of the 1990s with a lush production featuring powerful and sensual vocals.

As you know, Catalan Music is constantly present at the world's most important music festivals, such as the Midem in Cannes a few weeks ago. From March 21th to 23th the team will be manning a stand in Marseilles, at a new edition of the Babel Med Music festival, one of World Music’s major international showcases. Catalan Music will also be hosting a number of Catalan companies at the stand. In parallel, a performance not to be missed is Coetus, a band fronted by Alex Tobias, who take us on an ambitious journey through traditional Iberian music with a particular stress on percussion instruments. At the Babel Med Music festival, Coetus will be presenting their second album, entitled “Entre tierras” (Between Lands)', which features top guest vocalists such as Eliseo Parra and Sílvia Pérez Cruz, on March 21st at the Salle des Sucres in the Docks des Suds section.

With Coetus’s performance at the Babel Med Music festival, we open this month’s concert agenda, in which we’ll be filling you in on the international tours and concert dates of Catalan artists. Dorian, a band specialising in indie-pop with electronic ingredients, will be presenting their fourth album entitled ‘La velocidad del vacío’ (The Velocity of the Void). During the coming weeks, Dorian will be giving three performances in France; on March 1st in Paris, on the 3rd April in Lyon and April 12th in Valence, and three concerts in Mexico, on March 14th in Querétaro, on the 15th in León and on the 16th at the Vive Latino festival, in the Distrito Federal capital, which will also be hosting one of Catalonia’s most acclaimed pop bands, Love of Lesbian.

From March 6th to 9th, the fourth edition of the Spanish Rock Invasion festival, an initiative focussing on alternative Spanish musical products, will be held in Berlin,. This year, the festival will be presenting three top Catalan bands, the rock 'n' roll and vintage surfing sounds of Los Tiki Phantoms, the garage rock and soul of Mujeres and the psychedelic pop of Sidonie.

Rik Van Den Bosch, a Dutch singer-songwriter who lives and works in Barcelona and specialises in the raw and moody sounds of Country and Blues music, will be continuing his European tour of the 'Sea side mountain side' album. Rik Van Den Bosch and his band, The Dandies, will be giving six concerts in Germany this month: on March 10th in Duisburg, on the 11th and 14th in Dortmund, the 12th in Essen, the 13th in Bonn and the 15th in Hannover. And he’ll be back in Germany in May for the Gera Sonntage Festival.

On the fusion scene, characterised by the cross-over of different musical genres, we have international performances by three bands: Lenacay, Amparo Sánchez and La Pegatina. Lenacay, a band formed by two ex-members of Ojos de Brujo, guitarist Ramón Giménez and Dj Panko, will be presenting their debut-album ‘Ryma’, an unorthodox product fusing flamenco and Electronic Music. They’ll be performing on March 6th at the Expo Musik festival in Göteborg.

Amparo Sánchez, the former lead-singer of the band Amparanoia, is set to present her second solo disc ‘Alma de cantaora’ (Flamenco Singer’s Soul) in Australia and New Zealand. The album also features collaborations by members of the American band Calexico. Amparo will be performing on March 9th and 10th in Adelaide, Australia, and on the 16th and 17th in Plymouth, New Zealand, as part of the Womad festival.

La Pegatina, a young band with a large and loud group of followers in Catalonia, fuse rumba and Latin rhythms in their infectiously festive concerts. They’ll be performing in Schijndel, Holland, on March 31st, and will be presenting their new album, their fourth to date, entitled 'Eureka!'.

Another band specialising in unorthodox fusions are Las Migas, with their fascinating blend of new-flamenco and other multicultural influences. Las Migas have released their second album, 'Nosotras somos' , a feminine “We Are”, with the recording debut of the band’s new lead-singer Alba Carmona who took over from Sílvia Pérez Cruz. They’ll be presenting the album in Belgium on March 15th in Welkenraedt.

Also in Belgium, in Brussels, we have three consecutive appointments with charismatic figures from the Catalan jazz scene who will be performing at the JazzStation venue. On March 21st, we have a date with pianist Albert Bover and the double-bass player of Argentinean origin Horacio Fumero who, for two decades, accompanied the late great Tete Montoliu. The band will be reinventing jazz standards and also presenting home-grown material.

The following day, March 22nd, the venue will welcome the vocals of Carme Canela, a prestigious and highly experienced singer who’s worked with many of Catalonia’s most prominent musicians such as Perico Sambeat, Carles Benavent and Agustí Fernández. Carme Canela will be presenting, together with pianist Joan Monné, a concert entitled 'Nom de dona” (A Woman’s Name), featuring songs inspired by women’s names such as The Beatles’ 'Julia', Wayne Shorter’s ‘Ana Maria and Joan Manuel Serrat’s 'Marta'.

Finally, on March 23rd, the JazzStation in Brussels will be presenting saxophonist Martí Serra, who’s collaborated with musicians such as Raynald Colom and Giulia Valle, and will be presenting his new album, 'Tea Time', which includes eight original compositions and also features pianist Sergi Sirvent, in addition to his customary trio-members Rai Ferrer (double bass) and Xavi Maureta (drums).

We close this month’s concert agenda with two noteworthy performances in the field of Classical Music. The OBC, the Barcelona and Catalan National Symphony Orchestra, in the final straight of their Central European tour featuring works by Robert Gerhard and Isaac Albéniz, will be performing in Maribor, Slovenia, on February 27th, on the 28th in Villach, Austria, and on March 2nd, in Zagreb, Croatia. And, a regular performer on French soil is the internationally renowned viola da gamba virtuoso, Jordi Savall, who’ll be performing on March 24th in the south of France, in the so-called capital of Northern Catalonia’s, Perpignan.

In the final straight of this month’s podcast, we present you with a selection of fresh and exciting pop and rock products. To begin with, we have a new album by Eric Fuentes, who was the lead-singer and guitarist of the acclaimed alternative rock band The Unfinished Sympathy and began a new phase in his career in 2011 together with the band El Mal. But now he’s back with a new change of direction and a solo album, accompanied by singer, guitarist and keyboard player of the band Mine! The result is an impressive and surprising album entitled 'Copper & Gold', on which Eric flirts with the figure of the crooner through a theatrical and dramatic repertoire with a predominating piano.

The fusion of pop and folk music continues to inspire many of Catalonia’s emerging bands. The latest example of this is a debut album of a band named Bremen, who have supported top bands such as Antònia Font and Mishima. The album, which is entitled ‘Les cançons que vindran’ (The Songs To Come), has been produced by Arnau Vallvé, the drummer of one of Catalonia’s most popular bands, Manel, and is a well crafted, meticulous and highly attractive musical product.

To close this month’s podcast, we have a new album by Senior i el Cor Brutal, a band from Valencia specialising in incisive and exciting folk-rock sounds. The band’s leader, Miquel Àngel Landete, has homed in on another Valencia, located by the Pacific Ocean, close to Los Angeles, and has accordingly entitled the new album ‘Valencia, California’. A symptomatic wink, you might say, as, on their new album, Senior et al have unplugged their instruments and come up with a highly sensitive and narrative acoustic repertoire reminiscent of the most placid songs of the great Neil Young. There is however a storm within the calm, and the lyrics of these serene and inviting songs are filled with social and political anger.

So, with the melodic but powerful sounds of Senior i el Cor Brutal, we close this March 2013 podcast, in which, as always, we’ve tried to fill you in on all the latest news and productions from the Catalan Music scene, ranging from Electronic Music, pop, rock, folk and fusion to jazz and classical, and, as always, we’ve highlighted the dates of some of the most interesting international performances by Catalan artists abroad. We hope our suggestions will accompany you in the weeks to come and that you’ll be back to join us next month on Catalan Music. Moltes gràcies i fins la propera!

TRACKLIST

Bremen "Liliana"

http://www.myspace.com/els_bremen

Bradien "Fred"

http://www.bradien.net/

OBC "Impressions camperoles"

http://www.obc.cat/

Coetus "Vengo de moler"

http://www.coetus.tk/

Carme Canela "Avui ho veig tot clar"

http://www.carmecanela.com/

Los Tiki Phantoms "Bala de plata"

http://www.facebook.com/lostikifans

Las Migas "Dime que sí"

http://www.lasmigas.com/

Lenacay "Tangoranto"

http://www.lenacay.com/

Amparo Sanchez "Pulpa de tamarindo"

http://www.amparosanchez.info/

La Pegatina "Non è facile"

http://www.lapegatina.com/lapegatina2013/

Rik Van den Bosh "Just for one day"

http://www.reverbnation.com/rikvandenbosch

Albert Bover "Au privave"

http://www.albertbover.com/

Dorian "Please do come in"

http://www.webdorian.com/

IreneB "Ride"

http://www.ireneb.com/

Eric Fuentes Brotherhood"

http://www.facebook.com/ericfuentesbarcelona

bRUNA "Forgiveness"

http://www.myspace.com/brunasounds

Senior i el cor brutal "Flor de maig"

http://www.facebook.com/seniorielcorbrutal