I’m not one to sing the praises of the overhyped house-music scene, but I gotta say, something interesting is afoot on Prague’s dance floors. What had devolved into a scene dominated by jackhammer techno and bubblegum trance has started evolving again with a return to whimsical lyrics, bootlegged pop turns and nods to the edgier end of ‘70s rock. The latest generation of electronic-music makers is drawing from a much wider array of influences than pre-bundled sample libraries. From the newly legitimized (and lucrative) bastard-pop and mash-up scenes to the top 40 choruses cut and pasted over wicked dance grooves embraced on the fashion runways, the house scene is, at long last, loosening up and lightening up. Hey – it’s danceRead more.

I once heard a musician say: “If you break it once, It’s broke! But if you break it twice?… It’s jazz.” What with the umpteenth new musical genre crowding for space on retailer’s shelves, It is Nu-Jazz that has defined itself as one of the leading musical styles with this decade almost half over. Imagine a groove, well tempo’d and flowing. Now add a lead solo devoid of pattern or repetition. A horn or guitar just riffing along to tell a story of musicianship long lost with the advent of electronica. How electronic and jazz first met is a long story, but safe to say this latest breed of artists have invigorated an over-saturated and bland dance music scene withRead more.

Pigeonholing, a probable manifestation of modern music marketing. Local contemporary electronic musicians Alvik have managed to defy this term and redefine their brand of sensible and engaging popular expression. Their comparison to Nu-Jazz contemporaries Lamb and Zero 7 are unmistakable. Imagine: Equal parts smoky back room speak-easy meets sampled electro turtabalism. Confused? Good. Alvik is comprised of seven uniquely trained musicians. Four Czechs, Two Norwegians and a female American lead vocalist Anya Stewart. The concept is a novel one. Put your stand up double bass center stage flanked by lead flute. Immerse in heartfelt vocals, additional staccato percussion and electronics and bake till ready. Presto! Ringleader and lead producer Misan Pajdiak met Anya in 2000 where they shared a flatRead more.