So far, Poland hasn't made much of an impact on world music audiences, though that may be about to change, with two Polish bands nominated for awards this year. The Warsaw Village Band are six young musicians who first came together in 1997 and have since dedicated themselves to conserving and experimentally enhancing the traditional folk music of the Warsowia region in the heart of the country. They refer to their take on it as 'hardcore folk' or 'bio-techno' and have been compared to Swedish group Hedningarna for their uncompromising acoustic approach.
By studying old manuscripts and travelling round the Polish countryside learning traditional music from old-timers, they have rediscovered a lot about their own folklore and rescued much that was in danger of dying out: "50 years of communism have cut off the oral tradition, only very old people still have the knowledge of folk songs," the band's producer Wlodek Kleszcz told journalist Stefan Franzen recently.
The group made their first album Hop SaSa in 1998, but only two of the original members contributed to their second and most recent CD People's Spring (2001). The present line-up features cello and various pounding drums as well as three violins, including the suka, an ancient Polish fiddle, which is played using the fingernails to stop the strings.
Lead singer Katarzyna Szurman revels in the severe and rather alarming 'white voice' style of singing formerly used by shepherds, which she accurately describes as "close to screaming". It's not easy listening, but nor is it folk revival as museum piece, as the addition of trumpet, Jew's harp, hurdy-gurdy, dhol and hammered dulcimer attest. And just to make it a little more accessible to some of their contemporaries, the new album closes with a couple of remixes that take in Alice Coltrane styled Indo-jazz, trip-hop, dub and techno elements, underlining the trance-like qualities of the original music.
Jon Lusk, 2003
Read other peoples comments
Now if we can only get "Celtic Women" repeats off PBS (in case you missed it the first 60 times) and replace it with the Warsaw Village Band I would be happy to send them a few $
Bob Evans (mother name "Wodarska"
traditionally inspiring.makes me think of my roots
I'm so proud and heappy because of music they makes in my city! Thank you!
Rafal from Warsaw Village :)
fresh, energetic, wonderful. What a pity there are so few bands playing such music.
I am loving it!!!
I'm Pole living abroad. I've never really like polish folk music. But this blow my mind.
It's great to read some positive comments about music which is indeed fantastic so keep up good work or maybe "music" ;-)
Jasiu from Poland
These kids rock!! It sounds like the children of the corn singing to me as I stand before a firing squad. Sets the soul on fire with inspiration. Innovating with passion. Bravo. *****
These people were really cool. Their music makes me want to move away from everything, and start my own village. In this village I would scream, scream out the impurities of my spirit and get back to my SPIRIT,.....my polish spirit, my universal spirit. I would also buy a hurdy-gurdy. You reading this..........buy this music!
I just heard live in Toronto, Canada. Great music. Their live performance blew me away.
It's a combo of Punk,Rock and Polish Folk. We might be witnessing birth of new genre of music :)
Hope to hear and see more of them .
Incredible!!! Been waiting for years for something as moving as this!!! Married a Greek and as much as I love his music, I now have my own!
had the great fortune to see the Warsaw Village Band live in Belfast at the weekend as part of the BBC Music Live Festival. they were fantastic!!addictive rhythms, haunting vocals and amazing musicianship. outstanding!!
polish folk music _ finally in a swallowable pill.
Brilliant! Get both of their albums and enjoy!
"Acoustically" blew me away...
Neat! Grew up with Eastern European music as dad is a folk dance fan. Have missed the excitement of folk rythms, and yes, the singing style, in current music. Bravo!
Lexington, Kentucky USA
Only heard them for the first time last night and it blew me away. Barbaric and beautiful.
They remind me of a Slovak/Hungarian band called Ghymes (anyone heard of them?); there's the same harsh singing style and foot-pounding rhythm. Takes me straight back to my visit to Slovakia with a girl who wore safety-pins in her clothes to avert the evel eye...
Wonderful! The Polish Pogues
In my opinion they are the best!
I only had a chance to listen to the demo piece on this site but... I'm loving it!
Ok, time to press play AGAIN (4) and see if i can get their CD online. Good Job!
attack army of violins and drums, very expressive,
cool realy cool
Wonderful! So pure and raw...Great job!
pure polish spirit
Wow!!! I´m still shaking! Their album "wiosna ludu" is a trip through the extremest emotions. All kinds of emotions! It´s for dancing as well as for dreaming-it´s Hardcore-Folk....
is super !
Loads of energy and very enjoyable, thanks a lot