TRINAJST is a new solo project from Ivo Lozej, previously active in Slovenian bands The Hoax Program and Elodea, churning out his new experimental project, weaving together various influences ranging from jazz, to post rock, sludge and electronic music. His debut offering ‘Twentytwenty’ does an expert job of keeping things gripping, utilizing many different styles and holding them all together masterfully, bridging the gap between often contrary genres, and testing the spectrum of experimental, yet accessible music and proving the new blend to be endlessly versatile.
‘Twentytwenty‘ is a continuation, an extension of a few months older Trinajst’s debut ‘Culture of Ongoing Violence, Insecurity and Distress‘. Although in its essence it’s a similar musical journey based around cornucopia of rather dismal global events, it’s also a step forward from a mere bedroom experiment to a more focused take on various musical shapes. Extending from oppressive sludgy vibes all the way to explosive jazz and playful electronic music, it offers a befitting soundtrack to 2020.
“I’ve been creating music for a long time.” – says Ivo.
𝐼 ℎ𝑎𝑑 𝑚𝑦 𝑓𝑖𝑟𝑠𝑡 𝑏𝑎𝑛𝑑 𝑖𝑛 ’96 𝑎𝑛𝑑 𝐼’𝑣𝑒 𝑏𝑒𝑒𝑛 𝑓𝑎𝑖𝑟𝑙𝑦 𝑎𝑐𝑡𝑖𝑣𝑒 𝑤𝑖𝑡ℎ𝑖𝑛 𝑡ℎ𝑒 𝑙𝑜𝑐𝑎𝑙 𝐷𝐼𝑌 ℎ𝑎𝑟𝑑𝑐𝑜𝑟𝑒/𝑝𝑢𝑛𝑘 𝑠𝑐𝑒𝑛𝑒 𝑒𝑣𝑒𝑟 𝑠𝑖𝑛𝑐𝑒.
“You know, having my own label, distribution, webzine, always playing in at least two bands at the same time (LowPunch, Elodea, The Hoax Program, Iamdisease, etc.) and so on. Although I’ve been playing hardcore for more than 20 years I’ve also been interested in many other different music styles.”
𝐼 ℎ𝑎𝑑 𝑡ℎ𝑖𝑠 𝑖𝑑𝑒𝑎 𝑜𝑓 𝑑𝑜𝑖𝑛𝑔 𝑑𝑎𝑟𝑘 𝑗𝑎𝑧𝑧𝑦 𝑡𝑟𝑖𝑝-ℎ𝑜𝑝 𝑚𝑢𝑠𝑖𝑐 𝑏𝑢𝑡 𝑤𝑖𝑡ℎ ℎ𝑒𝑎𝑣𝑖𝑒𝑟, 𝑚𝑜𝑟𝑒 𝑢𝑛𝑑𝑒𝑟𝑔𝑟𝑜𝑢𝑛𝑑 𝑎𝑝𝑝𝑟𝑜𝑎𝑐ℎ 𝑡𝑜 𝑖𝑡.
Ivo admits that Trinajst was definitely a child of self-isolation. “It’s been in my head for almost a decade and it would most probably stay right there if Covid-19 wouldn’t have happened. It’s one of the rare good things that came out from all of this. So I started exploring a completely new territory of making music on a computer.”
It didn’t took me long to complete my first EP ‘Culture of Ongoing Violence, Insecurity and Distress’ in May and now I’ve just finished its consecutive album ‘Twentytwenty‘. Musically it’s a lot going on.”
It’s a cocktail of jazz, trip-hop, industrial, sludge, post-rock and electronic music. “I guess I found my biggest influence in listening to Portishead, Dälek and Four Tet.” – says Ivo. “They’ve all been on my playlist for a long time. Anyway, the music is pretty dark and very much in the mood of this year. Songs don’t have lyrics nor vocals. Their titles were mainly inspired by daily news and dystopian novels. Each song title could have many meanings but to be frank I’m way more interested in what one gets from the title or the song as a whole than what I had in mind when I wrote it.
If you still want me to throw you a bone just look at the album cover.”
𝐼𝑡𝑠 𝑓𝑜𝑢𝑟 𝑤𝑎𝑙𝑙𝑠 𝑎𝑛𝑑 𝑎 𝑠𝑖𝑙ℎ𝑜𝑢𝑒𝑡𝑡𝑒 𝑖𝑛 𝑡ℎ𝑒 𝑚𝑖𝑑𝑑𝑙𝑒 𝑎𝑙𝑙𝑢𝑑𝑒 𝑡𝑜 𝑡ℎ𝑒 𝑓𝑒𝑒𝑙𝑖𝑛𝑔𝑠 𝑡ℎ𝑎𝑡 𝑚𝑜𝑠𝑡 𝑜𝑓 𝑢𝑠 ℎ𝑎𝑣𝑒 ℎ𝑎𝑑 𝑖𝑛 𝑡ℎ𝑒𝑠𝑒 𝑠𝑡𝑟𝑎𝑛𝑔𝑒 𝑡𝑖𝑚𝑒𝑠.
Behind the songs there is a big dose of anxiety, depression, fear, anger, paranoia, pessimism and negativity going on. “I guess being creative is how I fight those feelings and keep the hope alive.” – concludes Ivo. “As cliché as this may sound we all need hope and the least we can do is to give it a try so that good things might happen.”
Ivo’s top 10 releases this year:
AGREGAT – Agregatke dol (Pigpower/ MKDC)
One of the best records coming out in the Slovenian hc/punk scene this year. This is nuts. Great guys, lots of fun and one of the wildest live bands you can possibly experience. They sound like your favourite fastcore band but faster!
KLEEMAR – No Love in Modern World (rx:tx)
My favourite electronic music producer from Slovenia. He’s been around for more than 10 years but this is his first album. Really awesome chillin’ electronic music similar to Boards of Canada, Arms and Sleepers, etc.
PIG DESTROYER – The Octagonal Stairway (Relapse)
Big fan of Pig Destroyer. I’ve been buying their records since they were just a small fish on Clean Plate and Robodog Records. I’m still keeping an eye on them. I wish this was a full length album though.
NAPALM DEATH – Throes of Joy in the Jaws of Defeatism (Century Media)
I know it’s a shitty time to put out an album, but damn, this actually did come out just at the right time. Grindcore veterans never cease to amaze. Their sixteenth studio album. Huge respect.
DROPDEAD – 2020
Long awaited third album. So good to hear Dropdead back in action. Great album too!
SMEDJA IN SMETKE – Smeče da se reče
Another amazing hardcore release coming from Slovenia this year. Smedja in Smetke is a one-man-band doing angry, pissed off in your face grinding hardcore you shouldn’t miss if you like bands such as Haymaker, Harm Done, etc.
SHOPPING – All Or Nothing (FatCat)
Highly danceable post punk tunes from the UK. Beautiful album.
MARK HEANEY – Drums From The Archive
One of my favourite discoveries this year. Mark Heaney is an amazing drummer from the UK doing his own ambient, experimental thing with superb drumming. He has a bunch of records out, this is his latest. Great stuff.
AIMING FOR ENRIKE – Music For Working Out (Pekula)
Disco music done with guitar and drums. Went to see their live show early this year and totally fell in love with their music.
SHIT AND SHINE – Malibu Liquor Store (Rocket)
Shit and Shine already have a huge list of records behind their belt but I just got into them with their latest release. It’s definitely a weird one. Some kind of rhythmic psychedelic noise music that has totally sucked me in.