Bega Blues Band, Richmix Shoreditch,  June 15 2016, London,  Johnny Bota, Mircea Bunea, Toni Kuhn, Lucian Nagy, Vasile Dolga, Maria Chioran

CONCERT REVIEW: ‘Scores for Scores’ by the Bega Blues Band at Rich Mix Shoreditch


After the tension of three Euro 2016 footballs matches back to back, the Bega Blues Band – on Wednesday 15th June – was thankfully on hand to defuse the evening at Richmix Shoreditch. The Bega Blues Band’s sound was unapologetically steeped in its genre’s roots and reminded us of the merits of what would now…

Depo Olukotun | 20/06/2016

REVIEW – TiK: Marrying the strange bedfellows of pop and (Ukrainian) history


The spirited Tik concert at London’s Scala Kings Cross crowned the unofficial Ukrainian week of music. Still high from winning the Eurovision song contest, the mainly Ukrainian crowd were jubilantly clapping and jumping around – their take on dancing – to the brass of the ensemble and vocal displays of Tik’s frontman Viktor Broniuk, an…

Depo Olukotun | 21/05/2016
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Review: Gypsy Fever at the Forge, Camden – healing the wounds of Former Yugoslavia


In football terminology it was very much a gig of two halves. The first set, which lasted an hour and a quarter, was comprised of songs from former Yugoslavia whose subject matter was often on the lugubrious side. But the much shorter second set consisted of fast-paced dance music that had most of the audience…

Ian Mole | 13/05/2016

Volya Male Voice Choir and Podilya Ukrainian Dance Ensemble, reviewed by Ian Mole


The audience at the London Ukrainian Club were, on 12th March 2016,  entertained by the Volya Male Voice Choir and Podilya Ukrainian Dance Ensemble, which had travelled down from their base in Manchester. There was something of a family atmosphere in the hall as, over two hours, we were given a short series of dances alternating…

Ian Mole | 14/03/2016
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Live Event: Ukrainian Supergroup S.K.A.Y. reviewed by Ian Mole


This was clearly more than just a gig; it was a celebration of being Ukrainian. S.K.A.Y were given a great reception at 229 The Venue when they took to the stage and the audience lapped up their show not only for the songs, which clearly meant a lot to them. It was also for the opportunity…

Ian Mole | 01/03/2016
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Europe’s even newer ‘Headache’ – Polish Band Trupa Trupa, reviewed by Ian Mole


Trupa Trupa are a four-piece band from Gdansk, who sing throughout in English. Headache – their third album – was recorded in Gdansk in 2014. Their style is deliberately repetitive, stark and uncommercial. Track titles such as ‘The Sky is Falling’, ‘Getting Older’, ‘Headache’ and ‘Wasteland’ are examples of the sombre flavour of this album…

Ian Mole | 29/02/2016
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The Maciek Pysz Quartet at Pizza Express, reviewed by Depo Olukotun


The Maciek Pysz Quartet, in the intimate setting of the Soho Pizza Express Jazz Club, warmed up a chilly Tuesday night. With the strums of Pysz’s flamenco guitar it also placed Europe – perhaps unwittingly – firmly on the menu. The continent – though never specifically mentioned – was a recurrent and edifying theme throughout,…

Depo Olukotun | 27/02/2016
Tina Karol

Ukraine’s Digital-Age Evita: Tina Karol at the Troxy, reviewed by Depo Olukotun


To describe Tina Karol as a Ukrainian national treasure and institution might seem far-fetched, yet Karol’s concert at the Troxy in East London had to be seen to be believed, and the experience warmed up the wintry Saturday evening of January the 30th. Did British legends like Elton John, the Rolling Stones or the recently…

Depo Olukotun | 05/02/2016
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Czech Band Ghost of You: Debut Album ‘Glacier and the City’ reviewed by Ian Mole


This is the debut album by Ghost of You, a young four-piece band from Brno in the Czech Republic and it was released in October 2015. The opener ‘Armenia’ bears many of the hallmarks of their sound, with powerful staccato drums placed well forward in the mix, twangy guitar and washes of synths – as…

Ian Mole | 26/12/2015