This special “ttt” cassette will be released Feb 21.
Category: Trupa Trupa
B FLAT A end of the year list made by Zach Schonfeld.
Trupa Trupa hail from Poland, where for over a decade they’ve been using serrated post-punk to draw connections between their country’s fascist past and the present day. According to singer Grzegorz Kwiatkowski, their new B FLAT A is about “the wasteland of human nature where hatred and genocide are not just distant reverberations of Central European history but still resonate in contemporary reality.” Out today, it’s a tense and explosive listen brimming with heady ideas, occasionally branching off in surprising directions like the psych-pop-tinged single “Uniforms.” Perhaps appropriately, the album’s baseline sound calls back to the Cold War era, the bridge between that old uncomfortable history and now.
I first met poet and musician Grzegorz Kwiatkowski via email when we began corresponding about his band, the Polish political psych-rock four-piece Trupa Trupa. Over the course of our exchange, we began talking about poetry. At the time, Kwiatkowski was working with Rain Taxi and the translator Peter Constantine on a chapbook called Crops. He sent it to me, and I was stunned; the poems were short, ruthless fragments about the horrors of the 20th century, sourced from historical documents but reading as contemporary as ever. This is the crux of Kwiatkowski’s music and writing: to make art against the bleakness of humanity. I was thrilled when he agreed to have a conversation over email about his work as a multi-genre artist.
Die polnische Band Trupa Trupa kommt auf Deutschland-Tour und verströmt in ihrer Musik eine rastlose Energie, die an das kompromisslose Punk-Ethos von Fugazi erinnert. Ein Gespräch mit dem Sänger Grzegorz Kwiatkowski über seine Gedichte, seine Musik und den Pessimismus in der Welt.
If you’re looking for somebody to adequately explain to you what Trupa Trupa does, I’m not that person. All I can do is try to provide some impressions because I really don’t have anything to compare it with. It’s bits and pieces. It seems chaotic but you always feel a structure. It can be aggressive. It can float and dream. It can do both in the same song. There really aren’t any rules going on here. It’s kind of like trying to define what Syd Barrett was doing with Pink Floyd before he went off the deep end.
As a kid growing up in a huge extended family of Polish post-World War II ex-pats and their offspring in Chicago and beyond, I didn’t have to travel to Warsaw to get a deep education in the country’s culture and music.
Philosopher-poet Grzegorz Kwiatkowski’s lyrics deal with fundamental questions of fighting evil, in a homeland that has experienced more than its share. This hardcore moral stance is matched by the baleful, seething rock of opener “Moving”. But respite is offered by the scratchily pretty, Sonic Youth-like psychedelic ballad “Lines” and Floydian acid-folk of “All And All”, as Trupa Trupa’s sixth album favours often lovely, mysteriously ritualistic sounds. The dreamy vocal and abrasively chiming guitar on “Sick” are also narcotically dislocating. Kwiatkowski’s words stay sunk deep in the title track’s mix, the submerged poetry of an underground band who carry a courageous subculture with them.
Nick Hasted, Uncut