Art Forms

Podcast April-May 2013
Podcast April-May 2013


Hello and welcome to the Catalan Music podcast which will be keeping you up to date with all the latest news and events on a happening Catalan music scene, covering a wide range of musical genres produced in Catalonia, ranging from Pop, Jazz, Folk and Classical to World and Electronic Music. Catalan Music is the brand name specially created by the ICEC (The Catalan Institute of Cultural Enterprises) for Catalonia’s music industry. Our podcast, which from now on will be offered on a bimonthly basis, will, as always, fill you in on new albums and international tours and concerts involving Catalan musicians.

The fusion of pop and folk, and urban languages with root music marks one of the most popular trends on the new Catalan music scene with artists such as El Petit de Cal Eril, the stage name of singer and guitarist Joan Pons. El Petit de Cal Eril revolves around forest-like, free-thinking psychedelic sounds and, as a follow-up to Pons’s atmospherically gloomy previous album ‘Vol i dol’, he’s now back with a more extravert disc entitled, ‘La figura del buit’ (The Figure of the Void), with collaborations by other top creators of the moment such as Mau Boada, from the band Les Aus, Joan Colomo and the members of the band Mates Mates.

Another example of this meeting-point between modern and ancestral musical languages, is a bold debut album by two pop singer-songwriters, Isaac Ulam and José Domingo, ‘Temple d’aigua i llum’ (Temple of Water and Light), on which they broach traditional genres such as the jota and the havanera, which are not generally associated with musical modernity. Ulam and Domingo have brought the genres into their unique personal terrain and have come up with a sound that is anything but anachronistic, and, far from merely adapting traditional pieces from such genres, they have composed a series of homegrown songs for the occasion.

Under the auspices of Catalan Music, the most outstanding musical products from Catalonia are regularly published on a series of compilation albums based on three different genres, pop-rock, world music and jazz, a selection which is made by specialized music journalists. The latest compilation launched by Catalan Music is ‘Pop-rock from Catalonia 2013’, which features a highly representative selection of 20 songs by both up-and-coming and consolidated artists from the Catalan music scene. The disc is an exuberant reflection of the diversity and creativity that characterized the current music scene in Catalonia with indie pop sounds, dialogues with folk, electronic music and singer-songwriting, a stimulating showcase in which we can find prestigious creators such as Sílvia Pérez Cruz, Pau Vallvé and Maria Rodés. And don’t forget that this ‘Music From Catalonia’ compilation, like its predecessors, will be distributed by the ICEC (The Catalan Institute of Cultural Enterprises) at international fairs and that you can also request your own free copy simply by sending an e-mail to

One of the fairs at which the ‘Music from Catalonia’ series will be distributed is Jazzahead, one of the jazz world’s most prestigious and consolidated events, which is held annually in Bremen, Germany. The new edition of the fair will take place from April 25th to the 28th, and, as usual, Catalan Music will be there with our own stand, F-08 to be precise, and will also be hosting eight Catalan music agencies: Àngels Mas Music Productions, Central Art Process, Cercle Sonor, Distrijazz, Estruga Artists, Galbany Produccions, Pierre Bechet Artists and Taller de Músics.

Just a few weeks later, Catalan Music will also be travelling to the Austrian capital, Vienna, where from May 29th to June 1st the next edition of Classical: Next will be taking place. Classical: Next is a professional fair dedicated specifically to the world of classical music, and last year it held its first edition in Munich, Germany. Catalan Music will also have its own stand at the fair, which it will be sharing with six Catalan music agencies: Dínsic Publicacions Musicals, Mito Concerts, Musiepoca Produccions, Neu Música Contemporània, the Per Poc Puppet Company and Tritó.

With the coming appointments of the Catalan music industry at international fairs, we begin our concert agenda section of the podcast and the sounds of two Barcelona bands who’ll be giving concerts in France this spring. Firstly, we have Dorian, who’ve released their fourth album to date, ‘La velocidad del vacío’ (The Velocity of the Void), with solid pop sounds pepped up with electronic textures, sung in Spanish, and produced by Phil Vinall, who has collaborated with British bands such as Placebo and Pulp. Dorian will be giving two concerts in France to present their new album: on April 3rd in Lyon and on the 12th in Valence.

Ninette and the Goldfish, a duo formed by the French singer Nina Thomas and the Catalan musician Francesc Mayor, will also be performing on French soil to present their E.P. ‘Words from the deep down’, with atmospherically languid folk-rock and root sounds. The concert will be held in Dijon on April 12th.

Love of Lesbian are as active as ever on the international front. After their much acclaimed 2012 tour to present their double-album ‘La noche eterna / Los días no vividos’ (The Eternal Night / The Unlived Days), the Barcelona band, one of the most popular and acclaimed outfits on the current Catalan music scene, have performed in Mexico and have just announced a concert date in Europe’s pop capital, London. The band will be performing there on October 19th at The Coronet Theatre. And, in the next few weeks, the band fronted by Santi Balmes will be travelling to Vienna, where from the 8th to the 10th of April they’ll be on a special mission, recording a promotional video for the Austrian capital commissioned by Vienna’s Tourism Office.

La Pegatina a band famous for their unabashed festive spirit who attract large and predominantly young audiences in Catalonia are on tour with their latest album entitled ‘Eureka!’, with a renewed fusion of Latin genres, ska and rumba. La Pegatina’s live concerts are truly explosive musical feasts and you can experience this for yourselves in the coming months at any of the numerous performances they’ll be giving in Europe. They’ll be presenting ‘Eureka!’ in Schijndel, in Holland, on March 31st, and towards the end of April they’ll be performing in Italy: in Bologna on the 24th and in Florence on the 27th. On May the 3rd and 4th they’ll be on stage in Belgium, in Borgerhout and Brussels; on May 14th in Frankfurt, Germany, and on July the 5th at the Les Feux de l’Été festival in Saint Prouant, France.

Still on the fusion scene, we can inform our French listeners that they’ll shortly be visited by a unique artist called José el Chatarra, a singer and showman from the city of Reus, in southern Catalonia. José de Chatarra, who offers a very personal fusion of rock, flamenco and rumba combining unorthodox forms, complicity with Andalusia’s most renowned musical tradition, a certain punk attitude and distinctly accessible street-based lyrics sung in Spanish. He will be presenting his second album, ‘Mira la que s’ha liao!’, a highly idiomatic Spanish expression denoting a “shit-hitting-the-fan” scenario, in Mont-de-Marsan, from April 25th to the 28th. Later, on July 6th he’ll be back in Mont-de-Marsan to participate in the Arte Flamenco festival.

France is a second home to Paco Ibáñez, a veteran singer-songwriter who lived in Paris during the 1960s and 1970s, while Spain was under Franco’s dictatorship. Paco Ibáñez, a singer and composer who is especially renowned for his adaptation of great literary figures such as Federico García Lorca and Miguel Hernández, and the voice of powerful anthems, as relevant as ever, such as ‘A galopar’, will be returning to France in April for three concert dates: on April the 5th in Unieux and on the 19th and 20th in Ivry-sur-Seine.

We close our concert agenda section with Le Tendre Amour, an Early Music group from Barcelona who have adapted the oratorio ‘Esther’ by the 18th century Austrian composer Christian Joseph Lidarti. The oratorio is sung in the original Hebrew and, in May, Le Tendre Amour will be performing the piece at four different venues in Germany: on May 9th in Kempen, on the 11th in Osnabrück, the 12th in Münster and the 13th in Hannover.

Yacine Belahcene is a Catalan singer born of an Algerian father and has been involved in different fusion projects together with Cheb Balowski and Nour. Now he is fronting the multicultural Yacine and The Oriental Groove, with top instrumentalists such as the Greek lute-player Yannis Papaioanou, a band who have released a powerful second album entitled ‘L’estima venç la salvatgia’ (Love Conquers Savagery). An album which fuses influences from the shores of the Mediterranean, from North to South and East to West, with rock and funk structures and rhythms, featuring electric guitars, oriental percussions and a string quartet. A highly ambitious operation with a solid and exciting soundscape.

Zulu 9.30 are one of the most experienced Catalan fusion bands with 12 years of activity and five albums under their belts. Their new disc, ‘Para todos los públicos’ (For All Audiences), shows us more intimate registers that have not however renounced the reggae and Mediterranean sounds that have characterized the band to date. Once again under the auspices of Parisian producer Stéphane Carteaux, a veritable institution in the field of Catalan fusion music, who has recorded with the likes of Peret, Color Humano and La Kinky Beat, to name but a few, the album features collaborations by Txarango and Canteca de Macao. The result shows us a band who have gained in maturity and nuances with their fusion of festive spirit and melancholic reflections.

To close our April-May podcast, we have a band who’ve celebrated a decade of frantic activity with performances at a wide range of different venues both national and international. We’re talking about Tokyo Sex Destruction, a passionate band who draw their inspiration from Detroit rock sounds, essences of garage and also from classic soul and psychedelic sounds. They began the year as guest band for Jon Spencer Blues Explosion’s Spanish tour, and now, Tokyo Sex Destruction have released their fifth album, entitled ‘Sagittarius’, which has already been acclaimed as a work of great maturity, a work that transmits vitality and passion.

So, with the passionate rock sounds of Tokyo Sex Destruction, one of the most active Catalan bands on the international circuit over the past years, we close this April-May 2013 podcast, in which we’ve aimed to fill you on new albums by Catalan bands and artists specializing in pop, folk, fusion, rock and classical music, and their international appointments. Catalan Music’s podcast will be back again two months from now and hope you’ll join us again. Moltes gràcies i fins la propera!


El Petit de cal Eril "Com un plom"

Isaac Ulam and Jose Domingo "Lluna ballarina"

Pau Vallvé "Un gran riu de fang"

Gorka Benitez "Good life"

OBC "Suite intertonal"

Dorian "Los amigos que perdí"

Ninette and the Goldfish "Brave guy"

Love of lesbian "Si tu me dices Ben, yo digo Affleck"

La Pegatina "Non è facile"

José el Chatarra "A las penas...puñalas!"

Paco Ibañez "Coplas por la muerte de su padre"

Le Tendre Amour "Le naufrage de pharaon"

Yacine and the Oriental groove "Ya Delali"

Zulu 9.30 "Suele pasar"

Tokyo Sex Destruction "Put your handsup!"

Tokyo Sex Destruction "Dead cops"