Tuesday, 7 August 2018
Před Vaším Letopočtem - Same -1991- (LP, Primus), Czech Republic
Although obviously there are many exceptions, the musical decade of the nineties in Eastern Europe (or the former socialist countries in Europe, as you wish) is largely the equivalent of underground music in the seventies and eighties in the west. Not only was it after the fall of the iron curtain that previously unknown and "illegal" bands were able to finally publish their music, also their influence trickled down into fresh bands of the beginning and mid-nineties. Because of a certain creativity that was mediated by or against political inlfuences as well as certain underground music traditions from before the communist system collapsed, the music was not always based on trying to be western or something hype. People understood how they related to their own national underground. Due to a slight delay in getting familiar with new genres and contemporary music finding its way randomly to Eastern Europe in the early nineties (and also before) the music there developed fragmented. Nevertheless, in result it was often taken a lot less shallow by the people than in western countries where there was a constant musical (production) overload combined with a constant competitiveness of setting the new tone. The nineties in Eastern Europe were musically an open field field of creativity, an explosion of freedom. It was a moment of hope, change and seizing the moment to harvest full creative potential.
Před Vaším Letopočtem was a Czech trio from Prague that consisted of Vlastislav Matoušek on bass and vocals, František Janče on guitar and vocals and Jan Jeřábek on keyboards and vocals. Musically they play a quite simplistic and repetitive rock music that thrives on wave-y patterns and occasional experiments encompanied by lyrics in Czech. Obviously they stand on that verge of the change of pollitical systems sharing some of their sounds with peer-bands like Půlnoc, Máma Bubo or Onkel Zbynda’s Winterrock (O.Z.W.). It also hints a bit to Czech synth band Betula Pendula (that made an album not really worth to listen to) and even to the Greek group Chapter 24.
It's not as groundbreaking as some of the stuff I am about to post from Eastern Europe the coming year on the blog, but it's definitely nice unclassifiable underground stuff that carries a free spirit and shows the Czech Underground in full effect. Před Vaším Letopočtem also released another cassette in the same period. If anyone could share that one I'd be very grateful!
Get it HERE