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cd cover Boris Kovac & Ladaaba Orchestr
Last Balkan Tango: An Apocalyptic Dance Party (Piranha)

"Last Waltz in Budapest"
"Begin-ing" Audio courtesy of Piranha Records

Read the RootsWorld review

Kovac says "Just imagine there is only one starry night left til the end of the world... what would we do?" Hailing from Serbia, Kovac knows something about apocalypse, and his dark, threatening yet often humorous music is the stuff of nightmares. His saxophone and compositions are abetted in this dream making by an ensemble of bass, violin, reeds percussion and accordion. Dance like it was your last.....

Bogdan Rankovic (Bogi) - clarinet, bass clarinet
Goran Penic (Gogi) - accordion
Milos Matic (Miki) - double bass
Boris Kovac (Boki) - alto & soprano sax
Istvan Cik (Picu) - drums, percussion
Olah Vince (Vici) - acoustic guitars

"Kovac slips easily across that twilight zone where contemporary composition and folk music touch." Chris Cutler (musician), London

"The soundtrack to the moment before the apocalypse - if Serbian Boris Kovac would have his way, we'd all be dancing to his exquisitely bittersweet band as the missiles rain down. And indeed, it would be a not-unpleasant way to go, as the mournful strains of the Ladaaba Orkest provide a melancholy yet spirited accompaniment to the end of time. True to the traditions of the cultural melting pot that is his homeland, Kovac and the Orkest draw on tango, waltz, calypso and rumba and mix them all into a Balkan hot-pot, albeit one with hidden spice." - World Music Charts Europe

Other recordngs you might want to hear:
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Earth Wheel Sky Band (Novi Sad, Yugoslavia)
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More recordings by Fanfare Ciocarlia

More about Kovac and Ladaaba
Boris Kovac, born in 1955, is a composer, instrumentalist and multimedia artist from Novi Sad, capital of the multiethnic region Vojvodina in the Pannonian Plains. Formerly, this area was known as legendary cross point for all sorts of migrants from the Mediterranean to the Baltic. Till now Pannonia is characterized by the juxtaposition of Catholizism, Islam and Slavic Orthodoxy. Boris writes music for chamber groups that he rehearses and leads. Many of his projects are to some extent connected with theatre. In 1982 the composer created the Ritual Nova Ensemble, an ever-changing, flexible group made up of musicians as well as visual artists, dancers and performers, acting as sole composer and director. Since 1989 he has been the leader of the "Chamber Theatre of Music OGLEDALO" from Novi Sad.

After staying in Italy, Slovenia, Austria and Canada for several years, Boris Kovac came back to Yugoslavia to participate on the cultural reconstruction of his home country in numerous projects in the reflourishing theatre scene. As Bela Bartok 70 years before, Boris Kovac wants to stand out as cultural intersection between traditional music culture and the young contemporary music scene of Yugoslavia. By leading his RITUAL NOVA ensemble, LaDaABa orchest, Chamber Theatre of Music OGLEDALO, Academy of Fine Skills and working with students he attempts to reestablish the contemporary music/theatre scene in his country.

He has shared his artistic talents at approximately 30 festivals of new music and contemporary theater in many different countries.

"Our advantage is, that people from 20 different nationalities lived together in the pannonian plains, so today no one can say from which folklore my music comes exactly. Anyway for us, living in an urban situation, having no contact to the little villages, it is not comprehensible where the music comes from. But I think that is not even necessary: decisive is, to use the sources as food for my own creativity." The mixture of Boris' music continues in the background of his band member's lives: accordion, violin, bass and drums are played by Halfserbians, Halfhungarians and Halfmacedonians, the guitarrist is Roma and the clarinettist a proper Serbian, but lived for several years in the Vojvodina and took over many musical technics from the Hungarian and Romanian. Anamnesis, Ecumenical Mysteries, dedicated to mystics N. Berdjiaev and G. I. Gurdjieff, was premiered by Ritual Nova, featuring musicians from Slovenia, Croatia and Serbia, at Ljubljana's Druga Godba festival in June 1993 which took place in the city's Catholic church. Nevertheless, Kovac's music language is far more impure and contaminated. It reveals the composer's Serbian, Hungarian and Rumanian roots and discloses similarities with the darker side of Rock In Opposition (bands such as France's Art Zoyd and Belgium's Univers Zero, which, paradoxically, were the less "rock" of the groups involved), as well as with the Third Ear Band, combined with the manifest influence of Béla Bartók and Balkan folk music. As Boris Kovac stated : "Music is the last consolation between heaven and earth"

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