Latvian Music News




"Very Cool People" releases their new single "Oskar!"

The coolest Latvian jazz-funk band, "Very Cool People", does not intend to stop its flow of creativity; the band is releasing a new single dedicated to the group's trumpet player and kebab tycoon - Oskars Ozoliņš.

The band's biggest fans have already heard the tribute to Oskars as VCP have played the song in all the concerts that were possible in these unusual times. The group’s spokesman and guitar guru, Elvijs Grafcovs, explains that he wrote the song to call Oskars to sound checks. “It is vital from time to time, as he is often late for sound checks. Being the owner of a kebab empire and a kebab mogul is time-consuming and Oskars regularly flies to Abu Dhabi and Ankara to find out the latest trends in kebab recipes and implement them into his powerful brand - Oskar’s Kebab, his fast food empire which stretches from Helsinki to Casablanca and from London to Ankara,” says Elvijs.

"This story probably sounds very delicious, because it turns out that there are people who have really been looking for Oskar’s kebabs," says Elvijs with a tireless smile on his face. “I have told this story on Latvian and Lithuanian televisions, as well as at festivals and concerts in Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia, Romania, Hungary and Germany. For example, one Lithuanian fan was very angry that Oskars was not in one of our concerts (Andris Augstkalns played with us instead), because Very Cool People’s “Oskar!” had become his favorite song, so he came together with the rest of the crowd and desperately tried to call Oskars, however ... He also met us after
performing at the "Nida Jazz" festival in August last year and shouted desperately: “Oskar!!!"

There was nothing left but to ask him to record a video message for Oskars which was so emotional & true that we decided to use it as an introduction to the new single, replacing the words of outrage of this southern fan with the sounds of Oskars’ trumpet." The energetic single comes together with a no less enthusiastic video. It is the story of social inequality within the group. All Very Cool People members are equal, but some are more equal than others. In the clip Oskars goes to a concert in a separate car & in addition, he also has a separate back stage area. The video also depicts the group's view of the current situation in Latvia and the world caused by the pandemic. Most restaurants and other quality catering brands are denied the opportunity to work. The only ones that continue to operate successfully are fast food restaurants. As you know, food is a big part of the local culture, as is music and
dance. Accordingly, the culture of many nations of the world is currently suffering, so in the commercials accompanying the single, VCP are ironic about the advertising campaigns of large corporations and the stories of their lucky employees in these companies.

The group has gone even further and has created the Oskar’s Kebab corporate design logo with the advertising slogan: "Oskar's Kebab - Feast Like A Beast!", as well as a webpage, and had branded napkins and t-shirts printed. "We also wrote the Oskar's Kebab jingle and filmed Oskar's Kebab commercials," continues Elvijs. "In the commercial Oskars is portrayed as an Arab sheikh, the boss of the kebab empire. And logically the Oskar’s Kebab website is also up and running where you can try to place orders...”

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Rock band JAUDA releases a new single "Deep inside"

Rock band JAUDA has released its latest music video for song “Deep inside”. This is the fourth single from upcoming album. Song “Deep Inside” is the story of the hardest battle in our life. Despite the fact that many people in our life come and go and often we must face them, they are not our real enemy. The realy enemy is somwere deep - deep inside .

Song was written in JAUDA music studio in autumn of 2020 and later in november/december music video was filmed. This time the main music feeling is energetic, rocking, inspiring and even a little bit aggressive. Cold forest, dark chess game in interaction with a thrilled beat creates a feeling of restless, just the same feeling when you trying to run away from yourself.

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Carnival Youth return with a remix of “Only the Moon Can See the Sun” by Bel Tempo

Hit the dance floor with Carnival Youth as they release Bel Tempo’s remix of “Only the Moon Can See the Sun” with a glitchy remake of the original music video. The remix sharpens up the song, which appears on Carnival Youth’s 4th and latest album “Good Luck”, with the indie electronic duo’s signature spellbinding beats and gives a whole new spin to this procrastination anthem. 

In the upcoming months, Carnival Youth will be releasing more remixes of “Good Luck” songs, all created by Latvian masterminds of electronic music. Emils Kaupers from Carnival Youth explains: “About a year ago we thought it’d be a cool idea to create a “Good Luck” remix album. 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, or remake songs beyond recognition. The results are very different and interesting. We believe that “Good Luck” has gained a new parallel life and we’re glad to say that the first of the remixes is our friends' Bel Tempo interpretation of "Only the Moon Can See the Sun".”

“Our remix is a tip of the hat to Caribou - one of Bel Tempo's greatest inspirations, says Andis Ansons of Bel Tempo. “It refers specifically to his song “Sun”, which begins with that phrase.” Julijs Melngailis adds: “Bel Tempo and Carnival Youth go way back, and it feels like a circle completing an eclipse now that we’ve created a remix for “Only the Moon Can See the Sun”. What makes this occasion more fulfilling is the fact that I also took part in their “Only the Moon Can See the Sun” music video - we'll let you guess where I come in.”

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 emotion 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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Humour rock band "Pirmais Kurss" releases single "Izbrauciens" and music video

Humour rock band "Pirmais Kurss" releases new single "Izbrauciens" from the second studio album "Interkurss", which will reach the audience on March 9. The new album will be a musical reflection in 14 parts about the beauty of love and misery in the lives of young men. Single "Izbrauciens" can be heard on the most popular music streaming sites.

Authors of the lyrics and music is "Pirmais Kurss". Song mix – Arnis Račinskis. Producer – Dāvis Mazurenko. Master – Kaspars Ansons and Krišjānis Geidāns.
“Pirmais Kurss” is a group of normal young people who play cool music in their free time. In their ten-year existence they have played concerts all over Latvia and released the album "Problems", which tells about sore topics - unsuccessful purchase of a new car, barn construction process, hair and internet problems. They play original music and some masterpieces of Latvian music. Intars Busulis: “World group no. 1 in Latvia”
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“Rihards Libietis Orchestra” publishes a new composition and music video “Driftwood Island”

The band “Rihards Libietis Orchestra” has published a new musical composition and music video from the upcoming album “Willful Blindness”, due to be released in late spring 2021. Author of the composition is Rihards Lībietis, and the idea for the music came last spring, during the first self-isolation period. “Driftwood Island” tells about movement and passage of time, but not in their obvious sense - more like driftwood on the shores, having experienced an unimaginable journey before ending up there.

“In this work I feel a very strong feeling of roots and introspection. Everything around us is in constant and unpredictable motion and it is unbelievably important to not lose your footing and self-reliance in all the unforeseen changes. Although it was not initially planned when working on this composition, the worrying events in the world can also be felt in there,” says Rihards Lībietis.

“Driftwood Island” was filmed at the seaside on a winter day and captures the powerful and moving emotions of the music. The video was filmed and directed by Laima Jaunā.

“With this video I tried to bring the viewer in the world of dreams and illusions: where surreal landscapes, mirroring sky and band members as dreamy characters lure the viewer in never-ending thought labyrinths with every frame,” the feeling of the video is described by its director Laima Jaunā.

“Driftwood Island” is the second single from the band’s upcoming fourth album “Willful Blindness”, set to release in late spring 2021. The album’s themes will be about self-responsibility and acceptance of personality’s shadow side. Composition was recorded in “Amfo Music Studio” Riga by Toms Lisments.

Single can be heard on the largest music streaming sites, including Spotify.

Rihards Libietis Orchestra is a quintet performing instrumental, dynamic world music, mixing influences from African, Middle Eastern and Latvian Folk Music with Blues and Jazz. The band was formed in 2015, and has released 3 albums, the newest “Reflections EP” came out in Fall of 2018. Rihards Libietis Orchestra regularly performs in the Baltic area. The band consists of Rihards Lībietis (guitars), Gints Smukais (guitars), Jānis Polis (bass), Erna Daugaviete (cello) and Matīss Repsis (percussion).

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Chris Noah releases lyric video for his single “Only Words”. The track is about how in many situations people can be selfish and do things that benefit them but present it like they’re doing it for the other person. “Words are only words – they can make people feel a wide range of feelings, however, they’re kind of useless if you can’t back them up with actions,” explains Chris. Noah’s 2nd EP “Distance”, which was released in 2020 and includes “Only Words”, is nominated for Latvian Music awards in the category “Best Pop Album”.

Regarding the writing process, Noah explains: “Usually the stories behind my songs are influenced by my own experiences, but “Only Words” is inspired by seeing one of my best friends go through a rough patch in his relationship. It’s interesting to observe this type of situations from the sidelines, it’s definitely easier to see the big picture.”

“Only Words” is produced in collaboration with London-based producer Kristofer Harris (Bears Den, Belle and Sebastian, Ghostpoet etc.) and the lyric video for the track is made by a Latvian graphic designer Didzis Bardo.

Chris Noah is a Riga-based recording artist who gracefully combines indie rock with catchy pop. Noah first gained attention with self-released singles “River” and “Fall Through” - receiving praise for his distinctive vocals, relatable lyrics and a strong sense of melody from a variety of blogs including Indie Air, AlexRainBirdMusic, Uranium Waves, Comeherefloyd, Aofd3, Mystic Sons, York Calling, Wolf in a Suit and many others.

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Katrina Gupalo and Normunds Rutulis meet in a new project

Last autumn, singer and pianist Katrina Gupalo released her version of Raimonds Pauls' mega-hit “Par Pēdējo Lapu”. Now, a new and more danceable version of this song has been created in collaboration with Normunds Rutulis aka N’Works. It will be a perfect fit for the anticipation of spring, which this year is approaching us with extra hopes and promises.

“I was very surprised when I suddenly received a message from Normunds Rutulis. He is an artist with enormous amounts of charisma, and when we met in a photo shoot that took place before the stricter restrictions were announced, I was in awe. I felt very similar again when I unexpectedly received the new remix in my Facebook messenger's inbox. In my original version, “Par Pēdējo Lapu” sounds quite painful and even melodramatic. However, Normunds had combined my voice with completely different – very positive and even playful – moods,” reveals Katrina Gupalo.

A lyric video of the new remix was created by Janis Romanovskis.

N’Works aka Normunds Rutulis: “It is always nice when the first draft of the remix instantly makes your body move and your soul fly. That is exactly what happened with this song – thus the result is melodic and quite rhythmical. I am very glad that the first collaboration with Katrina has been successful. I really hope that dance music lovers will like it as much as we do. In addition, the remix is available in both Latvian and Russian.”

The remix was arranged, produced and mixed by N’Works. It is available on all major music streaming sites, including Spotify.

Photographer: Linda Rutule-Treimane.

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Latvian singer and songwriter “Taurud” gains momentum with a single “I’ve Been Carrying My Past Lives With Me”

After three weeks in Radio SWH competition for new artists called “Priekšnams” “Taurud” is the 3rd best.

“I’ve Been Carrying My Past Lives With Me” is about becoming free from our past. “Taurud” said: The only thing ever messing with our heads is either our memories we are collecting like souvenirs or projections of the future. One is programming how we react and deal with things, and the other causes discomfort, cos we’re afraid of all the unknown. The song is about breaking free, being in the moment. It’s like a friendly tap on the shoulder saying You got this, it’s all in our head, and I am convinced that anyone can overcome anything. Be inspired.

This year has started with new aspirations. The musician is hoping to be in Latvia for spring to present his double single - Latvian and English version. Like many artists, I am not making any income during this time, but I am still looking forward to getting ready for April to go home and bring everyone present - new music. My birthday is in April. This time around I'd want to offer a song in Latvian as well, to get closer to my Latvian listeners. Fingers crossed, we will see each other soon, and I will be able to play live. We’re working on some live streams right now: says “Taurud”. 

“Taurud” and his team would love to release the album this year, but there is no chance to continue the recording process because the situation is the way it is in the UK. The songwriter is ready to get back to work as soon as he will be allowed. The song for the spring release was recorded early last year and finished remotely. “Taurud” says: Nothing will stop me, man. I’m pushing forward!

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Humour rock band "Pirmais Kurss" releases the single "Avansā"

Humour rock band "Pirmais Kurss" releases a new single "Avansā" from the second studio album "Interkurss", which will reach the audience on March 9. The new album will be a musical reflection in 14 parts about the beauty of love and misery in the lives of young men.

Sound of the new single describes search for new musical paths in the band’s life. Band’s solist Dāvis Mazurenko (guitar, vocal) tells: "So far there has been no such sound in our music. With thoughts of a party in the future, this stylistically different song will warm your lonely hearts.” The single "Avansā" can be heard on the most popular music streaming sites.

Listen to the song "Avansā" here.

Authors of the lyrics and music is "Pirmais Kurss". Song mix – Arnis Račinskis. Producer – Dāvis Mazurenko. Master – Kaspars Ansons and Krišjānis Geidāns.

“Pirmais Kurss” is a group of normal young people who play cool music in their free time. In their ten-year existence they have played concerts all over Latvia and released the album "Problems", which tells about sore topics - unsuccessful purchase of a new car, barn construction process, hair and internet problems. They play original music and some masterpieces of Latvian music. Intars Busulis: “World group no. 1 in Latvia”

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Meet Blue Jean Serenade! The Latvian band releases a new single Your Heart

On Friday, 15th of January, Latvian indie-pop band Blue Jean Serenade release their newest song Your Heart.

The single is the very first song published after the debut album that was presented back in March 2020, just before the pandemic hit Latvia. The new single marks a new chapter in the band’s musical life.

The song Your Heart is about the feelings each of us hold inside. The feelings of love. The lead singer Jānis Niedra explains: “We are scared of revealing our love in fear of getting hurt and not receiving it back. We are afraid to ruin the relationships we already have, so we don’t go all in. Then we play out the confession of the other person and how it would feel. How wonderful it would be. This idea warms the heart, even if it is not meant to be. In the end, we mostly regret the things we haven’t done.”

The song first came to be in a song-writing camp held in Riga. It was further developed in the creative camp Blue Jean Serenade had in the July 2020 in the countryside of Latvia. The record is made together with the Latvian producer and musician Aleksis Luriņš. Mix and master is made by Andis Ansons.

The single is available on all streaming services and YouTube.

Blue Jean Serenade dates back to 2016 when the lead singer Janis and the drummer Tomass started playing together. The team has changed over the years, and now they play and write as a five-person band. In 2016 the band released an EP in English called All My Friends Care About Celebrities, Well, I Don’t and then turned to writing in their native language as well. The band has held concerts all around the country and participated in Reeperbahn Festival 2018 in Hamburg. In March 2020 Blue Jean Serenade released their debut album Prieks, no kura neizaug. Laiks, kuru neaizmirst. (Latvian for for Happiness that can’t be outgrown. Time that can’t be forgotten.)


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