Crabs are invading! – an interview with the vocalist/ guitarist of Crab Invasion.

12430008 - KopiaFirstly I’d like you to introduce yourselves to readers. Who is the Crab Invasion and where did the nicknames of individual members come from? And where did the idea for the name come from?
Jakub “ZaStary” Sikora :
Crab Invasion is a band that I started with my brother Robert (bass, vocals) in 2009 in Lublin. Since then almost everything changed from the place where we played rehearsals and recorded material (Warsaw), the line-up (today it is the quartet – before the trio and duo), the music we play. Today, we try not to operate our nicknames, leaving them to our friends. Let the source of their origin remains a mystery.
The name comes from previews of a natural phenomenon. We recommend to google it. For the lazy ones: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5o2J2fI59so

Your sound is classified as a mix of disco, indie and funk. However, if you had not pigeonhole in the context of musical genres, how would you describe the sounds that you create?
It’s hard for me to find a common denominator for everything we do. I think the easiest way to understand it all is being on our show. There’s a whole combinatorics and some kind of melodic motifs excess disappears under the weight of trance and dance pulse. As for the album “Trespass” it should be treated as a journey through our musical interests run over. It is very colorful and heterogeneous trip, but coherent melody shouldn’t make anyone get lost in it. It’s also a bit of a stylistic kaleidoscope.

So far you’ve released your work, “Dart” and “Trespass”, that listeners can for example listen on Spotify. Your music has a unique sound. A little bit of melancholy in it, a bit of nonchalance, all composed in the songs that once lured with its gentleness, and immediately afterwards makes people want to jump on the dancefloor. How did you manage to create music that enjoys each ear?
I think it will be enjoyed by people with open heads. It’s also who we are. None of us is tied to any particular genre. On the other hand, each of us for a moment was. After this stage of life, there comes a time (at least for me), where you want the music to speak its own language. You try to understand the musical message, cutting off pieces of all other codes that accompany it. Such an approach opens the head in countless sound experiences. This is of course much easier today than in the pre-Internet era. In such an environment (excess stimuli) this album was created. I would add that it’s about life stimuli, which probably explains the emotional variety of the album. For example, during the formation of the material I moved five times. And this is just me – one of the four people in the band.

Is there a band or an artist that is important for the development of your music or you don’t direct your personal inspiration to create music for the Crabs?
Referring to the previous answer – there is a whole bunch of artists. I think that the way this album is worth mentioning since from what it all started almost two years ago – fascination of the 70’ties; both “black”: funk, soul, fusion, disco (including Curtis Mayfield, Marvin Gaye, Stevie Wonder, Parliament, Herbie Hancock, Miles Davis, Earth Wind & Fire, Chic, George Duke) and “white”: progressive rock or soft rock (Genesis, Pink Floyd, Yes, King Crimson, Steely Dan, Todd Rundgren, Fleetwood Mac). Quite important was also the influence of contemporary dance music and some kind of roots Crab Invasion – the American indie rock. At some point, music was all around us so much that we began to neglect our real, ordinary lives. Crazy period. Something like the beginning of a relationship – only that made of four.
Okładka Trespass
Returning briefly to the history of the band . How four such talented guys from Lublin met?
At the beginning two people met and it was more than 20 years ago. After receiving a thorough musical education from my elder brother that bought plenty of CDs, I began to repay the sacrifice by teaching him to play the instrument. After a brief stint in a post rock project CoveInsight – I’ve recorded at the age of 16 and I thought that I know about music production (we got up on the American compilation of fan covers of Depeche Mode!), then came the time to play indie rock with a real drummer. Then we let into the network our first demo and EPs, drummers were changing (greetings for Twilight Man, Raspberry Boy, Thesmonda and Gajos, who played a session in Lesson 01 and Margin of Order) and finally after more than a year since my move to Warsaw, Tomasz Bala and Tomek Skórzyński fell from the sky. Then cosmic things had happen.

When creating Crab Invasion have you thought about success? What were your plans: have you been warned that one day you will play concerts in whole Poland, or that you’ll end up as a sub band playing in small smoky clubs?
Quite frankly – I do not remember too much about our plans at the beginning. I always wanted to deal with the music, but in the beginning I did not know anything about this market. That changed over time, but the fact that we have survived so much adversity and not broke up despite internal problems makes me think that the plans were always big. Perhaps more dreams.

Crabs’ songs are written in English. How did you made the decision to create in this universal, global now language? Were you afraid that the Polish language will not adopt to a wider scale?
The issue of scale has never been considered. As a child I listened to music sung in English. I have lived under the shade. Except to Polish rap, which in my childhood passed the period of the mainstream, I had a greater awareness of Polish music. Or rather, I was, but I was not attracted. I started relatively late fascinated by the Polish lyrics. Therefore, quite naturally I have written in English. Over time I start to feel a slight discomfort. Why I read books, I communicate with friends, talk to people at the concert in Polish and sing in English? Such a testing ground for my solo project ZaStary. Perhaps in time the song of Crab Invasion in our native language will appear.

What do you like to deal with outside of time spent with the band? Is there anything besides music, what gives you joy?
Movies, books, talking to people, drugs, dancing (recently!) 😉

Hardball : What Crabs have in plans for the next year?
All the greatest. We will communicate them on a regular basis. For now we will focus on the promotion of the album in unexpected places. We want to go all out, not looking to the nature of the medium in which we act. In addition, in the winter there will be a new video, remixes, gigs in places where we could not play last year, and later spring tour. It will be loud!

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Sister ties and common dreams in an interview with I.O.PROJECT

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Hello. In the beginning I’d like you to introduce yourselves to wider audience. Who are you and what is I.O.Project?
I.O.PROJECT is a group of musicians seeking to succeed in the music market. And besides “cool people with the right sound,” as we were recently described by one of our fans.

Where did the idea to create a music group come from and how long it took I.O.Project to select the right line-up?
Ideas to create a musical group was plenty. Each of us played in different bands, participated or made a variety of musical projects.
The band was formed very quickly. At the beginning we practiced Olga’s songs as two, at home. After some time, we invited our neighbor, keyboardist Kamil, to collaboration. Then, together with Kamil’s colleague, drummer – Konrad, repertoire narrowed down in the rehearsal room . We wanted to record part of the prepared material. Andrzej – the bassist took up recording, who joined our team, encouraged by the song “Shadows”. Andrew at express pace recorded his parts and thus how our group met.

The initiative came from the sisters Szczepaniak. Did you know from the start what you want to do in life?
Yes, music has always been our passion. We’ve experimented in the times of the music school and just from this it all started .
We were always connect with this one goal – a common music project. Hence, moreover, the band took the name from. Of course, there were plenty of ideas, we’ve been through many different attempts to form a band. I.O.PROJECT is accumulation of our experiments and ideas.
Olena Szczepaniak3
As sisters you complement each other in the band. Have you never argued about it, which of you will be the leader in the team?
We make a very harmonious and good duo. Of course there are quarrels. They concern mainly organizational matters. Stormy discussions we conduct with each other practically every day. They do not apply to music, because in this field we are consistent. With no clashes and exchange of views there would be no I.O.PROJECT and through the year of existence we would not achieve so much.
It is natural that Olena is the leader of the team. She is a singer and author of music and texts.

You’re the winners of the “Otwarte Wtorki z NuPlays” first edition. You also participated on many festivals, you’ve played many gigs. Do you start to feel the pressure of creating a band?
The pressure is sometimes felt. It results from the pace of work which impose ourselves and the fact that we treat our work very seriously. Sometimes you need to quickly prepare for the unexpected concert or contest. There are various situations in which you need to strongly fasten yourself. However, it is natural to work of the musician, the realities of today’s music world and growing competition in the music industry .

The music you create is a catchy, pleasant fusion of jazz, pop, rock and funky. Thus was born your unique style and atmosphere. Have you not been afraid to mix these genres? For the average listener it seems to be an explosive mix.
Our unique style and atmosphere is caused primarily due to what would be born in Olena’s mind. It stems also from the original choice of instruments. In addition, each of us is listening to a different kind of music and has developed his own style, which certainly affects the final shape and sound of our songs.
A mixture of genres is spontaneous. None of us thinks about to push a little jazz here and there to add a little funky or pop music. Everything is like the most natural reflection of each of us, it’s just who we are.
Iga Szczepaniak2
Who inspires you to create music? What kind of music do you listen to every day?
We have a lot of inspirations. It is difficult to talk about specific examples, because we are not following nor imitating anyone. We listen to a variety of music, including classical.

The band consists of musically educated professionals. Music has always been the most important thing in your life, but have you ever wondered about choosing a different path in life?
Iga is at the threshold of a thesis defense at the Department of Geology, University of Warsaw, Konrad is a student at Warsaw Film School. Andrzej works in the family business, and Olena and Kamil are students of the Academy of Music in Łódź. We are all graduates of the School of Music I and II degree in Żyrardów.
Music and the band is a brave choice. We would like to be able in the future to devote ourselves completely to music and we strive for it. We still have a long road and hard work before us. We have tremendous support of our families and friends, so we can put everything on one, musical card.

On first of December you have finished a mini tour. What the fans that you have earned from the band, they can expect in the near future from I.O.Project?
We have a very busy time, because we’re preparing some surprises for the fans. Some are going to be surprising, but we can not tell yet. At the moment we are focusing on studio work, the effects of which can be heard, hopefully early next year. We invite you to visit our Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/I.O.Project, there we put information on current events 🙂
I.O.Project

Finnish inspiration to walk all night – Hannu Lepistö’s “Have A Beautiful Life” review

Finland’s full of amazing musicians. If you look carefully enough you will find there many different genres, from metal and rock, through pop, synthpop, electro to jazz, blues and folk. When you ask people on the street, they will give you most known names of the bands from this country of the North. They will give you all the “big” names.

But there is also this kind of artists who are simply unique. They don’t always have this “big” name, that everybody around the world knows. Not yet though. There are artists that have a chance to become an incredible performers recognizable around the world. Artists with great predispositions, talent and charisma.
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Hannu Lepistö is one of those people. A man with the personal charm, enormous talent and warm, slightly husky and still lovable voice. And now, this great man finally released his first LP album that he entitled “Have a beautiful life”.

Here I could actually end this review, because the title says it all. But for me it’s not enough. The album radiate with positivity, great emotions, grace and enchantment and lures the listener with its charm. It contains 10 songs deeply rooted in the nature of a real bard. Each song tells a story. Each one put a spell on people. Each one shines.

"I Wanna Walk All Night" First single of the album

“I Wanna Walk All Night”
First single of the album

I have to admit that this mixture of strong guitars, peaceful melodies, poetic lyrics, raspy yet soothing vocals do not fit into any kind of audience. But don’t put back the CD on the shopping shelf. This album is worth it. Every now and then each person had to listen to a song few times before it catched person’s attention. There is a long road from the ear to heart.

And Hannu Lepistö is a very serious competition to other artists who create this kind of unique sound. You can hear a little bit of Bob Dylan or Bruce Springsteen, a little bit of Johnny Cash or Tom Waits… But that’s what Hannu’s music is based on.

And so this album contains all of the magic of that influenced mixture.
I truly hope and believe that fans are going to fall in love with this album just like I did.

"Have A Beautiful Life" LP cover

“Have A Beautiful Life”
LP cover

Where to find Hannu:
http://www.hannuofficial.info/
https://www.facebook.com/HannuOfficial
http://www.reverbnation.com/hannulepisto
http://www.youtube.com/user/Hannuification