Just as last week, we will stay on the Adriatic coast this week. At least in name if not with the actual birthplace of the band. Čao Portorož invoke the name of Slovenian coastal tourist resort, and subject of many a Slovenian pop and rock song, the town of Portorož.
Despite their name, Čao Portorož hail from the Slovenian capital Ljubljana. Formed in 2009, they were the four guys hanging around in one of the many hipster/alternative pubs that dot the Ljubljana Old City and realised they could actually make music.
The music Čao Portorož make is officially billed as indie-rock, post-punk and – lately – synthpop. If this reminds you of last week’s band Diskodelija, you’re not all that mistaken. It would appear there is a definite undercurrent flowing in the Balkan alternative music scene. Even though some said – and continue to say, that Čao Portorož’s music is basically just a couple of syllables with some chords slapped around it.
Čao Portorož are Ivian Kan Mujezinović, Anže Petrič, Aljoša Cetinski and frontman Gregor Andolšek. Full disclosure pengovsky shared the staircase and the occasional P.E. class in high school with the latter. You know, just to show you that Slovenia is not all that different from Luxembourg.
To date, the band released three albums. And because life is never confusing enough, their first two albums have the exact same title. Which is, obviously Čao Portorož. And their third album is titled Pop. I guess simple form of music leads to simple album naming choices.
While most of their production is in Slovenian, Čao Portorož are quite comfortable with lyrics in English and Serbian/Croatian/Bosnian (we’re not going down that rabbit hole today). But curiously, and – mostly owning to their frontman’s real-life experience – they also sport an odd French lyrics track.
Čao Portorož have an uneven production schedule. But it seems that the older they get the more serious the boys are becoming. Still retaining their underground status, their third album, released in 2020, does contain something resembling a mainstream hit. You might have even heard it if you managed to attend this years CineEast festival here in Luxembourg. Namely, Slovenian film comedy Bitch – A Derogatory Term For a Woman, by Tijana Zijanić, used Čao Portorož’s track as its title song. Appropriately, the tune is called Cocks on the Rocks.
Check out Čao Portorož on Bandcamp, Youtube or wherever you get you music from. Balkan Express will be back next week.
Balkan Express takes weekly trips into contemporary musical production of, you guessed it, the Balkans. Forget the gusle and tamburice, this show is about rock, pop and a sense of humour. Well, at least there’s guitars. On air most Tuesdays in a new-and-improved time-slot at 1100 hrs. Usually. Your train conductor is Aljaž (aka @pengovsky) who once did the world a solid and decided never to sing again in public. Which is why he ended up doing radio.
TuesdaysWith : Aljaž Every Tuesday at 10.00
Balkan Express takes weekly trips into contemporary musical production of the Balkans.