Meet Music Latvia

7

May

Ozols returns with a single “LIELAIS FLEXXX”, released via “Sony Music Entertainment”

After a longer break and a released album “Y A U D A” in August 2020, one of the leading Latvian hip-hop artists Ozols returns with a brand new single “LIELAIS FLEXXX”. The single is released in cooperation with the international record label “Sony Music Entertainment”. 

“LIELAIS FLEXXX” was created together with a new local beatmaker "Mauriks". Ozols comments: “The song was written during a time when the majority of events are cancelled, “frozen” and a large part of the society is experiencing a reform in their professional and personal lives. This time will definitely leave a certain mark on all of us.”

Regarding the cooperation with “Sony Music Entertainment”, Ozols comments: “We’ve established cooperation for multiple singles and in my opinion, this is the right time when teamwork might bring greater results than individual work. I hope we will succeed!”

Kaisu Pulli, Director, Partner Services & Baltics, comments: “We couldn’t be more excited about our partnership with Ozols. We are simply amazed by his talent and artistic vision and have huge respect for the long career he has been able to build by himself. Latvia’s music scene is vibrant and we are looking forward to finally start building more relationships in the local community.”

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7

May

Carnival Youth release “Good Luck Remixes” EP with a visualiser for the remix of “Baby”

Carnival Youth release “Good Luck Remixes” EP which features alternate versions of 6 tracks from their 2019 album “Good Luck”. This eclectic mix of different genres and styles is no short of surprises. The EP includes already released singles “Only the Moon Can See the Sun (Bel Tempo Remix)”, “Boys Do Cry (Kasetes Remix)” as well as remixes by such Latvian electronic masterminds as Elvi, Kashuks, Platon Buravicky and Carnival Youth long term collaborator and producer Gatis Zakis.

Carnival Youth came up with the idea of “Good Luck Remixes” about a year ago. Emils Kaupers from Carnival Youth explains: “We called up a few of our friends - artists and eventually came to a very colourful bunch. We gave them absolute freedom; they could choose the song themselves and do with it whatever comes to mind. Add new musical structures, use only the voice tracks (as Elvi did with “Desktop”), or remake songs beyond recognition. The results are very different and interesting. We believe that “Good Luck” has gained a new parallel life!”

To coincide with the EP release, the band shares a visualiser for one of the remixes - “Baby”, courtesy of Gatis Zakis. The video is done by Creators 22 team, who also remade the previously released - "Only the Moon Can See the Sun" and "Boys Do Cry" - remix videos. Gatis Zakis comments on his remix of “Baby”: “Creating a remix is like taking a baton and continuing on a map that has not yet been drawn. Fortunately, the song itself contains an inexhaustible amount of both sound and content, hence the journey turned out to be easy and exciting.

Listen to “Good Luck Remixes” EP here

The Latvian indie band Carnival Youth is one of the most successful new generation bands from the Baltic region. Carnival Youth fuse neat melodic lines with the energy of alternative rock and indie music, while their emotional range varies from youthful melancholia to pure, bright joy. Since the formation of the band, Carnival Youth have released five records, from which the latest one – “Good Luck” came out in August 2019

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7

May

Rock band Cacophonics releases a new song We Did Not Use It All and a video

Local Latvian rock band Cacophonics presents their newest song We Did Not Use It All and an accompanying video.

The song’s author Ingus Sala comments: “Just like for many other bands, last year has been a big challenge for us. We greatly missed spending time together, rehearsing, also gigging and visiting shows of other musicians. At the same time, it has been a good opportunity to slow down and evaluate past events and decisions so as to more effectively use the chances that live presents and appreciate things that seemed self-evident in the past”.

The song was recorded at No Fuss Audio studio in Tukums, it was mixed by the drummer of Cacophonics Valērijs Černejs. The song’s music and lyrics were written by the band’s singer and guitar player Ingus Sala. The video for the song was filmed at Tukums city Culture Center, it was shot and edited by Gints Sprēdis in collaboration with the band’s bass player Aivars Daugavietis.

Cacophonics was formed in 2002 in Cēsis, up until now the band had released 1 full-length LP, 2 Eps and 7 singles, has played shows in all Baltic states, Slovakia, Hungary, Poland and Russia.

Spotify

Press release photo by Laura Grūbe.

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5

May

Local group “Dagamba” and the new singer Dārta Stepanova released a new collaboration – the song “I must go further”

On April 30, the local group “Dagamba” and the new singer Dārta Stepanova released a new collaboration – the song “I must go further”.

The title of the song is especially significant for Dārta Stepanova, as this is her debut in the world of Latvian popular music. The author of the single’s music is a member of “Dagamba”, cellist Valters Pūce, while the author of the words – singer Patrisha, the representatives of the musicians informed.

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5

May

Latvian producer MICKEEN releases single “Feel Free”

Electronic music producer MICKEEN (Miks Pinzulis), in collaboration with Saule (Krišjānis Suntažs)  on May 4th, released the single "Feel Free".

Saule about the song:“Message is pretty straightforward, but at the same time so true. When I wrote the lyrics, I was in a place in my life, where everything was changing, everything about my life was getting more and more serious and I felt like i’m losing my spark, my spontaneity, my inspiration to have fun. That's what the song is about, an encouragement for people to not be shy, to do silly things and embrace life fully.”

MICKEEN about the song: “When working on this song I wanted to create happy but still emotional feelings with thought that adults sometimes should feel like kids and feel free. With Saule we already knew the motive of this song when we started.”

The single was released with a video about friendship, the feeling of being free and having a good time.

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30

Apr

Latvian rockers “Laime Pilnīga” release a new song- “Stop”

Song “Stop” is dedicated for all those who didn't know or care that for some people they are a hero. An inspiration for this one came from famous photo "Tank man". Latvian version “Divatā” is a story about desire, fear and indecision. Both versions of the song are available on all biggest music streaming platforms.

Song was recorded in bands own studio “Laimes Telpa” with bands guitarist Mārcis as sound engineer, and some parts with Mārcis Kalniņš in “Siguldas skaņu studija”. Song was mixed by Krišjānis Geidāns, mastered by Minerva Pappi from Waudio Mastering. Artwork by Miķelis Vīte.

Song was funded with the help of LaiPa (Latvian Performers’ and Producers’ Association).

The Latvian rock phenom “Laime Pilniga” embodies a rock`n`roll dream by combining elements of unique vocals, groovy rhythm section and virtuoso electric guitars. Fueled by true passion and outstanding musicianship band is a one of must see live acts from Baltic rock scene.

Laime Pilniga have released four studio albums - Dual (2011), LP (2015) Synergy and Waterlilies (2018) and “Atoms”(2019). All albums have been nominated as “Best rock/ metal album” in annual Latvian music awards “Zelta mikrofons”.

The band have toured a lot in Europe and shared stage with artists like: Three Days Grace, Anathema, Sinead o’Connor, Jake’s Lee Red Dragon Cartel, Mummiy Troll, Frank Turner, Skyforger and many others.

Band members:

Ervīns Ramiņš (Vocals), Mārcis Vasiļevskis (Guitars), Jānis Olekšs (Bass) and Elvijs Mamedovs (Drums & Percussion).

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28

Apr

Reinis Jaunais releases new surreal music video, together with Regan Awale from Nepal and other musicians

Reinis Jaunais recently released new animated music video for his song “Depths”. The song features several guest artists, including Regan Awale from Nepal, Ivars Štubis from Australia, Erna Daugaviete and Ernests Mediņš from Latvia.

The video was made by Reinis Jaunais's wife Laima Jaunā. She made this video inspired by a dream she once had. She describes the idea behind this surreal video: "Imagine yourself waking up in the middle of a night because of a mosquito buzzing around you. You get up desperately trying to catch it! Afterwards, you can’t get back to sleep anymore because you are stuck in a weird place between your dreams and reality.”

Nepalese musician Regan Awale recorded sarod tracks for this song. Sarod is a string instrument, common in Nepal, as well as in India and other nearby countries. It has broad fretless fingerboard covered in metal. The strings of the sarod are plucked with a plectrum held in the right hand, while the fingernails of the left hand press and slide the strings. The plectrum often is made out of a coconut bark. Sarod has up to 25 strings, most are tuned up in a particular scale for resonant, reverberant sound.

Another featuring artist in this composition is Ivars Štubis. Ivars Štubis was born and raised in Australia but he moved back to Latvia year ago. Ivars added bass guitar lines to this song. Latvian musician Erna Daugaviete added cello tracks to this composition. At the very beginning and end of this song you can hear some vibraphone melodies played by Ernests Mediņš, known as member of Perpetuum Ritmico band. Audio was mixed by sound designer Arvis Ahuns.

The song is included in Reinis Jaunais latest music album "Zeme", released with the support of VKKF fund and AKKA / LAA author scholarship. The album also raised necessary funds on the crowd-funding platform "Projektu banka" in less than 24 hours.

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21

Apr

Brainstorm releases a music video for “FEELS”

“Never thought we’d compose a track for Japanese animation? Neither did we J watch the new video and try to identify each of us in it”

Brainstorm

Today, April 21st, Brainstorm releases their new music video “Feels”. This unique video is made by animation studio “HonkFu”. Animators across the world were working for eight months to create the video in the Japanese manga format. In addition to the main characters in the story, members of Brainstorm are brought to life as superheroes.

The idea for the song came from Swedish musician and producer Magnus Nilsson with whom the band has worked with for several years. This is a very contemporary song, particularly the chorus that gives a sense of total freedom and freefall – a soaring new musical experiment by the band.

Kaspars Roga explains the inspiration for the video: 

“The idea came from my daily life. One day, between my daughter’s Lea toys, I saw a doll who was sitting in the wheelchair. My first impression was: “My God, who she is playing with!?”, but immediately I realized how narrow-minded and stereotypical was my thinking. I truly was ashamed. The main character in the video is a girl in a wheelchair who is scared from life and other people. She is scared, just because she is different. I want to inspire people to leave aside judgments and accept the world as it is, with each one of us in it.” 

The music video for “Feels” was premiered worldwide during a special online presentation on brainstormfeels.com platform April 21st 16.oo (GMT +3). During the premiere, the audience had a chance to ask their questions to the Brainstorm members who joined live from a studio in Riga.

The website brainstormfeels.com will continue to live on after the premiere and everyone will have a chance to take a quiz related to the music video, win exclusive prizes, find out which countries have the most Brainstorm listeners, purchase new merchandise and most importantly buy discounted tickets for the new album cinematic experience this fall.

Brainstorm upcoming shows: St. Petersburg (13th May) and Moscow (14th and 16th May). More info: www.pratavetra.lv.

Song “Feels” released by BrainStorm Records Company, available on all digital platforms worldwide.

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20

Apr

"Very Cool People" dedicates a song to renegades of Latvian music history

Musical hooligans "Very Cool People" release the second single from the autumn album "50 Years of Influence + 30 Years of Cool Equals 13 Years of Music Hooliganism". It's called Renegade and is released along with the band's most engaging video to date.

The song is recorded in the studio at once by an 8-piece band featuring four horns & rhythm section. This is an instrumental tune. The composition also has a vocal part in the middle with the lyrics "Baaa, baa, ba, ba, ba, ba, baaa". This song has a slight Soviet estrada touch as well. 

The new single is based on the aesthetics of vocal-instrumental music of Latvia of the seventies, written in the best retro soul-jazz tradition, mixed with ska and Latin rhythms. The composition has a vocal part in the middle with the lyrics “Bā, bā, bā, bā, bā / Bā, bā, bā, bā, ba, ba, bā…” that are easily understandable by all the nations of the world. Scatting syllables and sounds “ba, ba, bā…” could also be called unique, new scat phrases with the claim to become archived in the consciousness of the world music industry as a Latvian scat. 

"We dedicate this tune and clip to all Latvian music renegades who resisted the general requirements and listened, as well as played, jazz, rock, funk and instrumental non-academic music, keeping it alive from the sixties to the nineties," explains Very Cool People's leader Elvijs Grafcovs. "We want to say:" Thank you to all the renegades of the past, you helped to create the next generation of musicians and in the end you have paved the way for us in the off-road conditions of Latvia’s past! " The clip was filmed at the legendary VEF Culture Palace, where in the past 40 to 80 different amateur and professional ensembles, choirs and dance groups have rehearsed and countless musical acts have been performed. 

This is the second single of the band's upcoming album – “50 Years Of Influence + 30 Years Of Cool Equals 13 Years Of Music Hooliganism”, the hooligans did not respect any musical boundaries and allowed themselves to mix jazz with classical music, Balkan music with metal, surf music with funk and soul, choir music with klezmer, as well as mixing musical heritage of various nations living in Latvia.

This single is written & arranged by Andris Buiķis; Produced by A.Buiķis & E.Grafcovs; Mixed by Andris Buiķis at “Ciemupes Production”, Ogre, Latvia; Mastered by Jānis Kalve at “Labo Ierakstu Studija”, Riga, Latvia; Released by SIA VERY COOL PEOPLE.  Oskars Ozoliņš – trumpet, vocal; Māris Jēkabsons – tenor sax, vocal; Laura Rozenberga – trombone, vocal; Kristaps Lubovs – baritone sax, vocal; Elvijs Grafcovs – guitar; Māris Vitkus – organ, rhodes piano; Jānis Olekšs – bass; Andris Buiķis- drums, percussions, vocal.

Spotify

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16

Apr

Katrīna Gupalo fights depression and fatal outcome with her song “Agony”

Singer and pianist Katrīna Gupalo has released her new song “Agonija”. The song is about the last breath of love – about the last moment before the inevitable split. The message of the song is amplified by the music video. The musician in cooperation with the Crisis and Counseling Center "Skalbes" is calling to pay attention to the currently very obvious public mental health issues.

“I wrote the song “Agony” two years ago, when I had been suffering from depression for a long time. It was a time when I went through the cruel and ruthless criticism on my skin, which I could not “filter out” and perceived it very directly and painfully. At the time, I didn't really see any light at the end of the tunnel, and the only thing that pulled me out of my deep depression was the resumption of active concert activities and the creation of music. Only after a while, looking back at my thoughts and feelings, I could take it easy – as a normal stage in my creative growth. But if I weren't a fighter by nature, it might have ended differently. This situation made me remember my grandmother's grandmother Sofia, who dreamed of becoming a doctor, but when her husband forbade her, Sofia hаnged herself in the attic of her house,” shares Katrīna Gupalo.

The song “Agony” tells about the last breath of love – about the last moment before inevitable leaving. It's the moment of sweet bitterness towards the morning, when the party is almost over and everyone is drifting apart. When you really feel sleepy, but you are afraid to fall asleep, because in the morning everything will be different, so with the last effort you desperately try to stick to the reality that no longer has a future.

Jānis Škapars, the director of the video “Agony”, has presented the song from the viewpoint of this moment in time, when dark, depressing thoughts and feelings have filled the pandemic reality. He tells about the video: “When creating the music video, I wanted to show a multi-layered and ambiguous journey of an individual into the world of thoughts and dreams. The mind and the subconscious are sometimes the darkest places. When we close our eyes, we get into the darkness, into our thoughts and fantasies – sometimes it can be soothing and hide the reality for a moment, but sometimes it pulls you in so deep that it is very difficult to break out. With this video, we want to emphasize that suicide is not the solution, and that the complications that lead to it can be resolved.”

The video of the song can be seen here:

Katrīna Gupalo urges: “We want to encourage everyone – women, men, children and teenagers – not to hide and not be ashamed of being in greater or lesser difficulty, and to seek help before the situation worsens. In such moments, an open conversation with a friend, relative or a call to a crisis helpline can be very important. We also invite you to contact your loved ones more often to find out how they are doing, because such a call can provide not only joy, but also the necessary support.”

The video's creative team and the Crisis and Counseling Center “Skalbes” encourage everyone to share their experiences of the pandemic on the social networks Facebook and Instagram using the hashtag #paliksimnomodā, also about the ways of overcoming difficult situations or distressing thoughts. You can also express your emotions in a song, drawing, poem or other creative way, as this is one of the ways to help yourself organize your thoughts and at least partially get rid of negative feelings. Experience stories will be collected and published in the accounts of Katrīna Gupalo Music and the association “Skalbes” on Facebook.

The song is available on major music streaming sites, including Spotify.

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