New Music

HAŃBA’s revolutionary new album “Kryzys”: a bold exploration of crisis through the lens of history

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On the 1st of May, HAŃBA released their fourth full-length album “Kryzys,” (Antena Krzyku, Karoryfer Lecolds) a timely reflection on the various crises affecting the world today. With a renewed focus on the experiences of ordinary people, the Polish band seamlessly weaves together social issues, politics, and personal narratives, all set against the backdrop of the interwar period.

HAŃBA’s band members, Andrzej Zamenhof (banjo, bass banjo, vocals), Tadeusz Król (accordion, clarinet, tenor saxophone), Antoni Skwarło (drums and percussion), and Ignacy Woland (sousaphone, saxhorn), have created an album that resonates with the current political, economic, and social turmoil. The title “Kryzys” was chosen after a long search for a central theme that would connect the album’s songs, both new and old, to the realities of the 1930s as well as today.

The band’s inspiration for the new album stems from their previous work on the radio play about Zagłębie Dąbrowskie, which featured three songs: “Przemsza,” “Fabryka na cymencie stoi,” and “Zagłębie Dąbrowskie.” However, the band did not want to limit the album’s scope to regional or mining-specific themes. Instead, they explored broader social issues that have been addressed in their earlier works, but not as the primary focus of an album.

In an effort to shift away from overt political commentary, HAŃBA sought to concentrate on the everyday lives of people during the interwar period. While still drawing from historical texts, the band aimed to create a more melodic, song-driven album. The sound of “Kryzys” is heavily influenced by local folk, its amalgam with punk rock, but also the 1980s cold wave, with a distinct chilliness reminiscent of the British band Gang of Four.

The album features guest vocals by Maniucha Bikont (“Fabryka na cymencie stoi”) and the trio Sutari (Basia Songin, Kasia Kapela, and Dobromiła Życzyńska) on the track “Cjankali.” Recorded and mixed at Bimbrownia Studio in Krakow with the invaluable support of Stanisław Karasia, “Kryzys” was mastered by Marcin Klimczak at Mustache Ministry Studio. The  striking artwork was designed and created by Katarzyna Majewska-Kremska, while Antena Krzyku and Karoryfer Lecolds released the record.

“Kryzys” stands as a testament to HAŃBA’s commitment to reinterpreting history and illuminating the complex reality of interwar Poland. Through their innovative fusion of punk, folk, and klezmer influences, the band’s “musical-literary fiction” challenges the notion that punk rock emerged in 1970s Britain, asserting that its roots can be traced back to the turbulent times of the Second Polish Republic.

As a bold exploration of crisis, “Kryzys” invites listeners to reflect on the past and draw parallels with the present, all while enjoying the band’s unique blend of musical genres.

The swift, straightforward, and dance-inducing tunes played on four instruments and accompanied by vocals will once again transport listeners to the 1930s, as Hańba! narrates the era with unadulterated candor, imbued with ample sarcasm and irony. The central theme of both the album and the concert tour is the crisis—a term that has firmly embedded itself in our everyday language and hampers all social initiatives.

The crisis also signifies scarcity, resulting in Hańba!’s special performances taking place without amplification, lighting, or professional stages. Audiences will be compelled to stand as close as possible to the musicians to hear the lyrics and feel the rhythm of the songs—precisely in the form they were originally created one early spring in 1933 on a Krakow backyard.

Catch HAŃBA live at the following dates:

May 4th – Kassel – 25th Kasseler World Music Festival
May 17th – Augsburg – Karman Festival
May 18th – Bad Kötzting – Bahnhof
May 19th – Bratislava – T3 Cultural Venue
June 2nd – Nördlingen – Streetfood Festival
June 3rd – Ellerdorf – Wilwarin Festival
June 11th – Dresden – Zirkustheater Festival
July 28th – Rimavská Sobota – FRAJ Festival
July 29th – Megesheim – Der Krater Bebt Festival

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