Tuesday, July 5, 2011

[mandelbrot set]

[mandelbrot set]

The beginnings of the band are placed in the city of Zadar, Croatia and go back to 2001 when Kris Vunić (an Australian ex-pat) and Pavle Valerjev (who had recently moved from Rijeka) managed to form a band with an interest to play frenetic, loud, noisy, psychedelic and “weird” music. Both of them were under the influence of complete history of rock’n'roll especially its weirder, obscurer and wilder part. The sound of the band proved excessive for Zadar scene and much hasn’t changed since. Besides Kris Vunić as vocalist and bass guitar player and Pavle Valerjev on guitar the band comprised of Drago Mladenović (from Zadar) on guitar and Saša Velčić (a university student from Split) on drums.

After a difficult start the band managed to move ahead and started to gig in 2002. Not long after Drago left the band making it a trio. Raul Jereb (Pavle’s childhood friend from Rijeka) joined up as a replacement without moving to Zadar, making the band a strange rehearsal combo of two coastline cities. The self-titled album consisting of 12 songs and about 50 minutes of music came out in 2004 on independent label Carpe Diem! Records from Split with the generous assistance of noise enthusiast Igor Mihovilović. It was originally conceived as demo but was eventually deemed as quality material fit for release. Band’s sound and approach to music was welcomed on Croatian indie scene. Album material is a mixture of older and modern noise-rock, with math-rock odd rhythm measures and two-guitar soundscapes. It got some very good reviews from Rijeka’s main newspaper Novi List (Zoran Baljak, Rijeka), and from indie music web portals (i.e. Finte.net – Marijan Dumančić, Slavonski Brod) and from Ivica Kosavić (AKA Razorblade Jr.), leader of the legendary Zagreb-Amsterdam noise-rock trio Gone Bald. Ivica continued to promote and support the [mandelbrot set] considering them one of the more original acts from Croatia. Band was recognized by Croatian and Slovenian modestly proportioned but devoted indie-rock crowd (especially in Zagreb and Rijeka) that enjoyed band’s gigs because of sincere and non-pretentious rock expression and original songs. Band also got a cold review from Croatian DOP magazine (Anđelko Jurkas) considering noise-rock outdated, but not to worry; the original edition of 300 copies sold out quite rapidly and entirely by band (mostly on gigs).

2006, a difficult year for the band, saw Saša’s departure just before Netherlands tour. The band got through the tour successfully (with the aid of Marko Duvnjak, a professional drummer from Rijeka), but the drum seat remained a problem for about a year. Željko Anić (from Rijeka) took up this post full time making the band a true Rijeka-Zadar conglomerate.

The year 2007 saw the band recording a new album, this time with more preparation, elaboration and better conditions with mixing and mastering assistance from USA web-pals. When compared to the first album, new material seems more sophisticated, songs are longer and more carefully arranged and little bit more psychedelic. Band’s latest material was recorded in “Ambulanta” studio (Rijeka) by Darije Herceg and Sven Medanović during 2007. The initial rough mix was sent to Scott Evans (San Francisco) and to Ben Adrian (Oakland) for further mix and mastering.

Album Hotel Magnolia is released in 2009.

The [mandelbrot set] have played over 70 concerts up until now; a great achievement considering that all of its members are employed (two university professors, one guitar-shop owner and one construction engineer), two of them are married and one is even a parent. They have played in all most known venues in Croatia and Slovenia many times and in Germany and Netherlands as well.


2004 – [mandelbrot set]
2009 - Hotel Magnolia


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