Published on 21/06/2022 11:00 am

Whenever Balkan Express talked about music from Bosnia-Herzegovina, we talked about hiphop. And in the rare instances where we didn’t we talked about rock bands that were, shall we say, a bit long in the tooth. The author of this here show tried to paper this over with some pseudo-sociological mumbo-jumbo about the socio-economic situation in Bosnia being particularly conducive to the hiphop genre. But you could well have called me lazy. Today, I am making amends. Dear listener, please meet KillingJazzHardcoreBaby.

KillingJazzHardcoreBaby, or KJHB were founded in 2005 in Travnik, a regional capital in central Bosnia-Herzegovina, about 90 kilometres from Sarajevo. While most people outside Bosnia know it as the birthplace of Nobel Literature Prize laureate Ivo Andrić, it was also a hotbed of Bosnian punk-rock of the 21st century. As these bands formed, collapsed and reformed, five artists slowly coalesced into KillngJazzHardcoreBaby.

From Travnik since 2005

KJHB are a five-member act. Matej Baskarad plays the drums and Kemal Destanoivć is on bass guitar. Deni Sihaj plays the saxophone and handles samples and keyboards. Mirza Lendo does the lattler two as well and play the guitar. Their lead vocalist and the only female member of the group is Ivana Brdar.

KillingJazzHardcoreBaby has an unnecessarily long name. This, you will find among many a band in the Balkans that have a slightly high-brow approach to their tunes and music in general. Serbian band “Neočekivana sila koja se iznenada pojavljuje i rešava stvar” comes to mind, even though the Venn diagram of genres these two band cover is not exactly a complete circle. Namely, KillingJazzHardcoreBaby glide somewhere between funk, jazz, drum and bass, dub and hardcore dance, even though they are described – for marketing purposes at least – as an aggressive pop band.

KJHB may have came about in 2005, but it took them four years to put together their debut album. Track One was a massive hit and launched the band regionally, making them a popular act wherever they went. In the mean time they also took home a couple of awards for the album and the future seemed bright for KillingJazzHardcoreBaby.

Thirteen years later

And yet, for one reason or another, the band kind of dropped into a lull a couple of years later. It could be that the band felt they’ve nothing much to tell, maybe there was a general lack of motivation, of maybe just life happened. Nobody seems to be quite sure. However, the band never officially disbanded. And a good thing too. Because a little less than a year ago, KillingJazzHardoceBaby released their first single in almost thirteen years, with a prospect of a second album coming in hot.

This is all the time we have for today. Check out KillingJazzHardcoreBaby on Youtube, Spotify or wherever you get your music from and Balkan Express will be back next week.

Balkan Express takes weekly trips into contemporary musical production of, you guessed it, the Balkans. Forget 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

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With : Aljaž Every Tuesday at 10.00

Balkan Express takes weekly trips into contemporary musical production of the Balkans.

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KilllingJazzHardcoreBaby (Balkan Express 089)