петак, 09. мај 2014.

The 12 Best Things In Belgrade, Serbia Every Music Fan Should Do


2014-03-30 02:25:52
Written by Corey Tonkin on 28 March 2014
Serbia’s most recent difficult history dates back to the 90s where  the country suffered through the initial ramifications of the breakup of Yugoslavia, civil war, high inflation and high unemployment rates.

"The 12 Best Things..." Developments of events

For some reason the Western world’s idea of Serbia hasn’t fully moved on from that turbulent period.
Despite this Serbia’s local music and arts scene has flourished in the years since.
Why its nightlife still remains largely uncelebrated in comparison to Paris or London is baffling when you consider that even during the 90s Belgrade managed to not just to maintain is fervour for nightclubbing but actively improve it.
When the 1999 NATO bombs dropped down on Yugoslavia Belgrade still managed to have its own huge outdoor concerts in city squares and on bridges, just as the city’s nightclubs started operating during the daytime.
With that period behind them, Belgrade may not be as architecturally as splendid as its European counterparts, but its nightlife rivals all.
There are countless nightclubs citywide and on the metropolis famous splavs, that is music venues on barges for the uninitiated.
Nightclubs reverberate everything form house music to progressive, tech house and Serbia’s own turbo-folk, which incorporates folk music with electronic and pop elements.
While a wide variety of other genres are represented across the board, there’s an underground scene that has emerged from the scars of the past.
Canadian bred, but Serbian born producer Ensh takes The 405 through his birth place’s music scene, detailing a “myriad of small clubs, cultural centres and re-appropriated spaces. Like Fest, KC Grad and Inex Film”.
Primarily though he introduces outsiders to an establishment called BIGZ, which is an multilevel abandoned publishing house that has been transformed into a creative centre for artists.
The building is home to underground venues, practice spaces and recording studios.
Ensh’s most interesting statement though, is where he describes the artists that make up the creative scenes in Belgrade.
“No one involved in the Belgrade alternative scene plays music because they have any pretense of “making it”, they just want to play music. It is that very same passion that has drawn in DIY tours from all over Europe to Belgrade. It just feels like the right place to be. There is a combination of naiveté, devotion and wonder that would give any musical cynic a glimpse of hope.”
As both Ensh and the city’s large number of thriving nightclub’s demonstrate Belgrade’s music scene is thriving on a number of fronts.
Whether you’re interested in dancing the night away or immersing yourself into avant-garde culture the Serbian capital is one of Europe’s must-visit music destinations.
Read on for the 12 things every music fan must do in the Serbian capital. 
Having just won the ‘Best Major European Festival’ award at the 2014 EU Festival Awards, Serbia’s biggest music event is continually recognised as one of the greatest music festivals in the continent. Despite it being held outside of Belgrade in Novi Sad the event is too integral to the country’s music scene not to be included here. Its foundations are important to note as well. Founded in 2000 as a student movement fighting for democracy, it still to this day is an important promoter of social equality. Held over four days Exit books big name acts such as Arcade Fire, Portishead, Guns N’ Roses, Bloc Party, Faith No More, Lily Allen, The Prodigy, Arctic Monkeys, Sex Pistols and Pulp to name just a few.
Visit A Splav Splav literally translates to raft in English, although it’s known more for being a barge restaurant than a floating device. These restaurants are typically located along the Sava and Danube rivers, which define the city. Most turn into nightclubs by night with no cover charge on entry. The music at the splav’s range from folk, pop and rock acts to dance inspired DJs. You can’t visit Belgrade without hopping aboard at least one of these floating restaurants or nightclubs.
Pick up a record at Yugovinyl Toplička 35 ZvezdaraA favourite amongst locals this record store is true to its name. Selling a variety of vinyl from ex Yugoslavia with titles from major and minor labels Yugovinyl provides a fascinating insight into the music of Yugoslavia. There’s even Yu editions of international legends such as The Beatles, Queen, The Rolling Stones and Elvis Presley.
At the forefront of the ‘New Serbian Scene’ – a collective of pop/rock artists formed after the year 2000 – this seven-piece outfit has a large following in the ex-Yu region. With their name translating to ‘Everyone One The Floor!’ it’s not hard to distinguish just what the band’s dancefloor aims are. The pop ensemble were voted best band in their local music scene in 2009 and were awarded best local concert in 2011 by Serbian website Popboks
Have a late night at 20/44 Toplička 35 Zvezdara Sava River dock
If there’s any splav nightclub you should visit first it’s this one. Situated on the banks of the Sava River 20/44 is open all year round. The sound system echoes a broad range of sounds from Detroit techno to soul, disco, funk, house and dubstep. The venue is most famous for its ‘Disco Not Disco’ nights which allows the city’s best DJs to experiment and surprise their audience. Its cheap entry and you can also get a pretty great view of old Belgrade from the splav in summer.
Take A Walk Down Skadarska Street Tourists venture down this street because it is filled with quality restaurants and cafes in the heart of old Belgrade. Paved with cobblestones and characterised by buildings with impressive murals you won’t remember a more lively daytime Belgrave than when you’re down Skadarska. You’ll also experience plenty of live bands and string orchestras along your walk. Just remember to stop off for some Serbian cuisine while your walking down this pedestrian street.
Buy vinyl from The Wall The Wall, Balkanska 29Toplička 35 ZvezdaraWhile this record house has no online presence to speak of it’s more than worth checking out in person. Centred towards metal, punk and rock it sells vinyls from these genres at pretty competitive prices. Band merchandise such as hoodies and t-shirts are also for sale here, along with badges and other forms of memorabilia. The Wall is open Monday to Friday from 12pm to 6pm and is located on the first floor of a mini shopping mall.
Catch Gramophonedzie At One Of His Local Shows Known internationally as the maker behind ‘Why Don’t You’ which reached the #12 spot in the UK charts, Marko Milićević is one of Serbia’s most famous DJs. The producer has released a wide array of DJs and a string of singles to follow up the success of ‘Why Don’t You’, won a European MTV award and played festivals across the continent.
Hear local house music at Club Sound Brodarska BB, 1107o, New Belgrade
As one of the first summer clubs to open back in 1996 Club Sound has become a favourite in the warmer months for fans of house and dance. Belgrade’s best DJs stop by here with a few foreign stars hitting up the barge as well. Despite it being a place for house connoisseurs Sound is an upmarket venue so make sure you dress to impress to get in.

Brace Krsmanovic 4
An initiative by the Cultural Front Belgrade and Felix Meritis Foundation in Amsterdam, this cultural centre as become a focal point of Belgrade’s music and arts scene. The 1884 warehouse was restored to become a multipurpose building that hosts exhibitions, concerts, debates, performances, conferences and workshops. Although more popularly known as a sometimes underground club, this establishment juxtaposes the old structural Serbia with the new cultural one.
Toplička 35 Zvezdara Makedonska 30, lokal 15
While this record store doesn’t contain any domestic releases on vinyl or any second-hand titles it does have a fairly decent assortment of new imported vinyls and CDs. This establishment also celebrates Record Store Day and holds sales frequently. Pinball is opened from 11am to 9pm weekdays and 11am to 5pm on Saturdays.
Toe-Tap & Fist Pump to Negative Live Formed in 1999 this Serbian rock four-piece has released four studio albums of power pop proportions. They’ve steadily become mainstays in their home country and reached audiences across Europe, which culminated in a European MTV award nomination in 2010 for Best Adriatic Act.  They began work on their highly anticipated fifth release in 2011 with a heavier release expected from the band.

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