Wednesday, January 18, 2006

FELIX LAJKO (ES ZENEKARA)


Felix Lajko is a Serbian born violin and zither player. I might as well give you the virtuoso warning right here. Lajko is largely self taught and was kicked out of a prestigious music school due to the uncompromising instinct of his craft. The rigid classical music gentry has since learned that they must love him or die of shame, the guy is amazing. From his origins, you can guess that Lajko's music is largely influenced by Gypsy and Klezmer, sounds and rhythms typic of the Balkans with accents at the same time uplifting and celebratory but deeply melancholic. The tracks that him and his orchestra (zenekara) play together blend genres not to play on modernity but to expand the scope of emotions of their music, leaving room for improvisation and the freedom for the members to reach emotional peaks. So, classical and popular but not in the pop sense more in a way that music can sometimes tell people's history. The tradition of popular orchestras in the "ex" Yougoslavia is inherent to the cultural history of the country and yet so alive compared to how "folklore" is considered in other countries. The passion of Lajko's music is best fulfilled there, where the audiences match what he gives out with their own energy but that probably doesn't happen in concert halls when you're likely to see him play across the rest of Europe.
Please try these, even if classical's not your bag! The tracks are from a now deleted 1998 self titled album and they'll take your breath away.

Felix Lajko Es Zenekara - el cavillo
Felix Lajko Es Zenekara - hosszu

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