Catalan! Arts

Compilation CD Pop Rock from Catalonia 2009
Compilation CD Pop Rock from Catalonia 2009

The Catalan sounds become pieces in the overall jigsaw rather than becoming the main feature. Acts help themselves to a little bit of this or a little bit of that and imports are turned into exports under the Catalan sky, with plenty of brio, sparkle and dash to season the finished article. What you’re hearing on this collection is the sound of a fiercely independent culture, as bright and bold as you would expect with such breeding and background, expressing itself with great exuberance and confidence.

All tracks selected by ICIC from Albert Puig’s (music journalist) proposal in collaboration with Pep Blay (music journalist), Susanna Carmona (Pop Arb festival), Jim Carroll (who writes about music and the music business for the Irish Times in Dublin, Ireland), Nando Cruz (music journalist) and Casa de la Música Popular - Clap.

Pop Rock from Catalonia CD forms part of a series of four CDs intended to internationally promote Catalan music. The rest of the CDs are: World Music from Catalonia 2009, Jazz from Catalonia 2009 i Electronic Music from Catalonia 2008.

To listen to the songs of Pop Rock from Catalonia 2009, click on the links below.

Els millors professors europeus
Manel:“En la que el Bernat se’t troba" (4.19)
CD: “Els millors professors europeus”
Author: Guillem Gisbert, Roger Padilla

They have been the media revelation of the season. Their surrealist pop captivates due to its simplicity and the special sounds of the ukulele. They have published a first record and everyone is talking about them. They have managed to make the critics and the public agree in their favour.

Costa Azul
Sidonie: “Los olvidados" (3.31)
CD: “Costa Azul”
Author: Marc Ros

Young veterans from the Catalan pop scene, who crossed over the frontier of the Catalan market years ago. Brazen, imaginative and the writers of great hymns, their collection of records published oblige for them to be looked at with all of the respect that they deserve.

Ni cap ni peus
Sisa: “Tomba que gira" (3.07)
CD: “Ni cap ni peus”
Author: Jaume Sisa

One of the most veteran voices of Catalonia and one of the musicians with the most reinventions behind him. He has done the latest of these updates with Joan Miquel Oliver, the great inspirer of the Majorcans Antònia Font.

Coser i cantar
Antònia Font: “Wa yeah!" (3.32)
CD: “Coser i cantar”
Author: Joan Miquel Oliver

National Prize for Culture 2008 by the Catalan Government for the Majorcan band that has revolutionized the Catalan music scene. Joan Miquel Oliver, composer and guitarist of Antònia Font, is one of the most extraordinary talents of the country. In their latest work, Coser i cantar, they wrap their hits with a symphonic orchestra.

El Guincho: “Palmitos park" (3.54)
CD: “Alegranza”
Author: Pablo Díaz-Reixa

Pablo Díaz-Reixa is one of the most active musicians of the city of Barcelona. He participates in Coconot and Albaialeix, among others, but his first record as El Guincho has now already had an international impact and his dance sessions in the main clubs of Barcelona are mythical.

La Célula Durmiente: “Sólo sé que no sé nadar (2.26)
CD: “Miente”
Author: Joan Colomo Azkarate

Joan Colomo, founder of the band Zeidun, started this project in parallel, with which he has achieved a certain media impact. An energetic trio with vitalistic songs and a confessed love for electric guitars.

Marc Parrot: “Ulleres per veure-hi malament" (3.05)
CD: “Interferència”
Author: Marc Parrot

Once overcome from his popular TV character El Chaval de la Peca, Marc Parrot goes back to his songs of a cabaret air alternated with his duties as the person responsible for the studios Producciones Silvestres. Interferència is the latest title of this artisan of delicate songs.

Set tota la vida
Mishima: “Un tros de fang" (3.09)
CD: “Set tota la vida”
Author: David Carabén

David Carabén, the singer of Mishima, is one of the most personal voices of the Catalan music panorama. This group from Barcelona sings their songs in Catalan and is becoming an inevitable reference for the new independent pop of Catalonia. Their latest record is called Set tota la vida.

Madera y poca luz
Espaldamaceta: “Y no voy a darte más" (2.21)
CD: “Madera y poca luz”
Author: José Juan González

José Juan González entrenches himself under the name of Espaldamaceta to write and perform some of the most impressive and pungent songs of the Catalan singer-songwriter scene. The dramatic quality goes hand-in-hand with the sense of humour in unique live performances.

Les cançons tel·lúriques
Roger Mas: “Anem" (3.39)
CD: “Les cançons tel·lúriques”
Author: Jacint Verdaguer, Roger Mas

This young singer-songwriter from Solsona is the most natural replacement for great Catalan masters such as Raimon, Lluís Llach, Sisa or Pau Riba. Explorer of the roots of Catalan music, Mas possesses one of the most magnificent voices of the entire Catalan music panorama.

Dies i dies
Clara Andrés: “La pista " (3.10
CD: “Dies i dies”
Author: Clara Andrés

Fortunately, Catalan female voices are at a peak. Clara Andrés arrives from Valencia and offers us a collection of sweet songs thought for short distances. A new generation singer-songwriter, her first record Dies i dies is one of the most interesting discoveries of the season.

L’obligació de ser algú
La Brigada: “Com fulles mortes" (2.57)
CD: “L’obligació de ser algú”
Author: Pere Agramunt

A band from Vilanova i la Geltrú, formerly called The Light Brigade. They have changed the language of their songs from English to Catalan and the change has allowed us to enjoy even more these texts worked in detail. Very high-quality pop of a marked British influence.

Cuchillo: “Come with me" (4.00)
CD: “Cuchillo”
Author: Israel Marco

The great surprise of the Catalan independent panorama. A band with enormous talent that has managed to stand out in a rock panorama where we come across an excess of mimicry all too often. Cuchillo are different and do not leave you indifferent.

A propósito de Garfunkel
The New Raemon: “Tú, Garfunkel" (4.05)
CD: “A propósito de Garfunkel”
Author: Rodriguez Quintana

Parallel project of Ramon Rodriguez, the man responsible for the small Catalan record company Cydonia, as well as the singer and guitarist of the independent rock group Madee. The New Raemon has published a record called A propósito de Garfunkel, a deep statement of the most universal human relations.

Plouen Catximbes: “El pianista" (3.47)
CD: “Telescopi”
Author: Plouen Catximbes

A young band from Manresa led by Albert Palomar, an experienced and very active musician of the Catalan alternative scene. In their latest record, Telescopi, they do a 180-degree turn in their career, doing away with reggae influences and entering fully into a sound most thought for electric guitars.

Una maleta y un perro
Nubla: “Día a día" (2.51)
CD: “Una maleta y un perro”
Author: Nubla, Roger Rodés, Toni Saigi Chupi

Luciana Carlevaro is the daughter of an exiled musician and one of those singers who do not need to justify themselves for the crossbreeding. Nubla, which is how we know her artistically, swims in the most elegant pop of the city of Barcelona.

Ortopedias bonitas
Manos de Topo: “El cartero" (3.42)
CD: “Ortopedias bonitas”
Author: Manos de Topo

Manos de Topo is one of the most peculiar bands on the entire Catalan musical scene. Miguel Ángel Blanca, its singer, does not sing, but rather cries. Tremendist lyrics performed with a great deal of sentiment and a sense of humour as acid as a lemon. Don’t miss any of the videos of the record Ortopedias bonitas.

Hau o Hïu
Anímic: “1, 2 i 3" (4.10)
CD: “Hau o Hïu”
Author: Anímic

Mass band from the city of El Bruc that understands music in a cooperative way. In Anímic, everyone does everything and, as a consequence, variety is guaranteed. Lovers of minimalism and of softly-played melodies. They combine English and Catalan.

Albaialeix: “Afternits" (2.41)
CD: “Albaialeix”
Author: Albaialeix

Alba Blasi on the piano and Aleix Clavera on the guitar and vocals are the architects of this project that renews folk from a very particular perspective. Supported by El Guincho, they are one of the duos with the most personality of the current Catalan scene.

Els invertebrats
Refree: “El Sant Sopar" (2.51)
CD: “Els invertebrats”
Author: Refree (Raül Fernandez)

Raül Fernández possesses a musical talent beyond all rules. His multiple facets as an artist, instrument player, composer, arranger and writer, are impossible to summarize in three lines. Refree is his most personal project.

La revolución sexual
La Casa Azul: “La revolución sexual" (4.34)
CD: “La revolución sexual”
Author: Guille Milkyway

Guille Milkyway is one of the Catalan talents of dance music. Among his hits, there is music for television and a frustrated participation in the Eurovision Song Contest. His impressive live performances expel any kind of suspicion about the quality of La Casa Azul.