The Babbutzi Orkestar was born in September 2007, and aimed to offer a refreshing combination of Balkan music with traditional eastern European sounds, a truly unique sound.
In 2009 they released their first, self-titled albu, after an intense stretch of live gigs which saw the 8 musicians perform on numerous stages throughout Italy. This album began to circulate and increase the band’s notoriety which led to them being invited to perform at many festivals and on bigger stages. Their incredible concerts are buzzing with energy and they can transform any audience into a dancing frenzy in mere minutes. Their second album, Baro Shero (2011), is a more mature album with a driving beat throughout, and although at times a little punk, it never deviates too far from their traditional Balkan roots. This album’s new sound is compelling and the proof really is in the pudding – they have toured throughout Italy, in 2013 shared notable stages with Kocani Orkestar and Shantel and have been invited to Guca Na Krasu Festival in Trieste and Hidrellez 2013 in Istanbul. They released a compilation album for the Guca Na Krasu Festival, where one of their songs, Bum Bum Boje, was selected to support the now widely known Dubioza Kolektiv, Boban I Marko Markovic and Magnifico.
They returned to the international stage in 2014 with their album Vodka, Polka & Vina, an album which demonstrates another completely new and intelligent interpretation of traditional Balkan music. They slightly nuanced their direction, incorporating more punk influences and electronic elements, but the all-pervasive Balkan beat is, as always, present throughout.
The energy which the band emits in live performances is tangible when listening to the album, and this album exemplifies raw and vibrant guitar and brass moments as well as a frantically driving bass, consistent with their Gypsy influences – a theme which is prominent throughout the whole of Vodka, Polka & Vina.
Their sound is woven from electro sounds, dub and soul influences, melismatic violin playing and virtuosic accordion playing and the overall sound is raw and personal but held in place by stable bass and rhythmic elements. The powerful, earthy voices (voices which scream in passion and lament the destructive nature of man) add a hint of rock-soul to their already diverse sound but also serves to unite the seemingly eclectic combination of influences into the overarching theme of Balkan music
The 13 tracks of Vodka, Polka & Vina were all written by G. Roccato with Babbutzi Orkestar, with the exception of the Italian classic Buonasera Signorina from 1958 which is their own sexy, Balkan arrangement. The album was produced with the help of old equipment, synthesizers and vintage tube amps and recorded entirely by Antonio Polidoro.
Through melodic ballads, polkas, fiery rhythms, psychobilly, punk, soul and Balkan sounds, Vodka, Polka & Vina drags the audience into a delirious and insane worl, from which it is difficult to escape.