Diva-Dodola Folk Orchestra



It is rather interesting to observe the ways in which the public learns of various musical traditions. Since the mid-80s, when interest in the local lore began to flourish in Slovenia, we have hosted hardly any musicians from Russia or other countries of the former Soviet Union concerned in any way with their lore. This lack of concerts has naturally resulted in an unsatisfactory publishing presence of such musicians. The situation has been recently improved to some extent - paradoxically - by the IRA ROMA band, consisting of Irina Gushchin and Alexander Gushchin, professional as well as intimate companions having lived in Slovenia for several years, and the Slovenian musicians Branko Rozman and Uros Rakovec.

As we learn from the cover, Slavic folklore was made use of also in the creation of the music, permeating it in the best way possible - making the songs sound as though we've known them for ever. They feel like a beautifully arranged bouquet of many different moods. The inward introductory Duckling, marked by the measured movement of the accordion's bellows, is followed by the supple, lively Frogs (with the lyrics of a Slovenian folk song) bursting with cheerfulness and jovial esprit. A few beautiful songs on, however, the Nightingale evokes a fairy-tale dreaminess, with the clear, suggestive voice of Irina Gushchina surfacing from the hushed instrumental accompaniment. But The Antic, for instance, developing slowly in a manner similar to that of a chamber motion-picture theme from the fragments of the romantic as well as playful, prolonged sounds of Gushchin's violin, the barely audible percussion instruments and the graceful bass, bursts into a rapid rhythm the moment the voice enters, pulling us a moment later into a brisk gallop.

Apart from the clear production, responsible for the equal role of all the instruments as well as a splendid feeling for the drama and dynamics of the album, the praise goes especially to the musicians, i.e. the basic group IRA ROMA as well as the numerous guest musicians playing so harmoniously as though they had been working together for years. First let us mention the most unusual guest - the famous Croatian drummer Boris Leiner, joined in the effort to create a pristine Slavic atmosphere by the bassist Ziga Golob, the percussionist Nino Mureskic and the wind Bostjan Gombac.
We look forward to future projects, as well as hearing the music live.

(a review of the DIVA-DODOLA album, translated from the leading Slovenian daily paper DELO)



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