Even though Poland is now a member of the EU, Europeans still regard it as the unknown neighbor to the east, especially with regard to the music scene. We’ve heard of Klezmer and that’s about it, until now. The Warsaw Village Band has unveiled a fusion based on traditional Polish musical elements with modern sounds of turntable specialists. Founded in 1997, The Warsaw Village band was the winner of the Polish radio competition “New Traditions” in 1998; which fueled their start towards international recognition.
Their new CD Uprooting (World Village 468036) is the Warsaw Village Band’s boldest venture yet. The ensemble invited representatives of traditional Polish folklore to join them in the recording studio they also forged contacts with two dub-sound and scratch specialists. In view of this unusual blend of elements and epochs, the Warsaw Village Band’s motto for Uprooting, comes from Reggae hero Burning Spear, “Remember the past, but keep it livin’ in the future.”
Warsaw Village Band is known for their trance-like rhythms of two drums and the so-called “white voices” – near-screams, primeval, clear and wild, combined with the szuka (knee-violin), cello, dulcimer, violin and hurdy-gurdy. The Warsaw Village Band experiments with its roots, creating an entirely new, suspense-charged relationship between the traditional and the modern. Their great love for their national musical heritage and the will to preserve the old musical traditions are the chief ingredients for their success. For the Warsaw Village Band preservation does not mean restoration but – as in the case of “The Pogues” and “Les Negresses Vertes” – reanimation, the conveyance of the songs’ spirit into the present. So Polka gets a shot of Techno. The result is a sound young people identify with, a sound that has mesmerized audiences all the way from America to Japan. “From village to metropolis, from untuned violins to scratch, from generation to generation, from uprooted musicians to the latest vibes, from soul to soul.” -- Warsaw Village Band