Monday, March 31, 2014

POPSIMONOVA conquers Europe

One of the nice and special things about our STYLE! IT! TAKES! project is that we try to keep an eye on our well selected fashion designers, artists, dancers, gymnasts, photographers... One of our most amazing musicians, singers, models and designers (all in one!) is POPSIMONOVA - the grande Croatian Electro-Diva who has been part of the first two Style! It! Takes! - Berlin Fashion Week Nights # 1 (2012) and # 2 (2013). So I'm very happy to hear that Lana has kind of a break-through finally... both concerning record releases and lots of live performances... And - needless to say - there's new photo material arriving, ecstatic ecstasy inclusive as always... ♥

Popsimonova in Ljubljana (Aug. 2013) - Photography & editing by Shąvi Ląvi

After more and more releases on different labels and compilations (both as Popsimonova and with various other collaborations, for example ZARKOFF, who played live in Berlin at our first event in 2012), late last year she has having been released her first 12" vinyl on Netherlands Electro-Label Gooiland Elektro Records, a sub-label from Enfant Terrible.

Surprisingly the label decided on starting to release 4 very early tracks of her, sung in her original Serbo-Croatian language - which is the first time in music that a foreign label releases vinyl with tracks in this language!!! Hvala lijepa! ♥

POPSIMONOVA - Staviti Crveni Ruz

12 Inch EP 2013, Gooiland Elektro - Enfant Terrible; Gooiland 09 - ET027
Label pic shot by Shąvi Ląvi: POPSIMONOVA wearing DEGENEROTIKA fashion

The title of this amazing EP, "Staviti Crveni Ruz", translates like "Put on red lipstick" and it contains four quite different, all very danceable, thrilling and catchy tracks.

The technoid title track "Staviti crveni ruz" is about her state of mind after coming home from her factory job:

Put on red lipstick / turn off the lamp in the corner,
let the turntable scrape / turn on the fan,
open a window, let dragons of stormy sky enter between the walls,
lie down on the floor / fall asleep without any intention to wake up

...a very beautiful description of life in alienated (post-)industrial societies and also for the music my favourite song, since the dragons seem to fly directly into an intensive & great club night - (not) forgetting the status we come from...

So I'm happy that Lana - who already commanded great lines like “Turn off your television – We go out!!!” (in her song No Contact) - kept her red lipstick close - it's a symbol of our loves to life and our resistance to oppression, both...

Closely related with the first topic, the hectical „Brzo“ (Fast) with its ticking military-style drums and distorted stressy guitar sounds is exactly about that, about "fast instant life today" (Popsimonova):

be smiling, be nice, be healthy, grow up fast, fast in school, work fast, fast home, quickly in the evening, quickly find someone, quickly make fun, fast revealed love, quick rest, quickly get out of the way, and you will die quickly and rich, time is money

Did we hear such both sensible and clear words referring to most of our everyday lives in electronic music in the last years very often? I missed them and sort of lost interest in that kind of music for that reason... thanx for bringing us back to what matters Popsimonova!!!
(in that context the just released new Laibach album positively comes to my mind immediately - since, yes, it's definitely time for clear words about our lives and the world we are living in again! Regarding this Enfant Terrible record being a very retro release, Popsimonova was ahead of times (please check my first Popsimonova record review which also shows the political awareness of parts of the Post-Yugoslavian Underground scenes)... and we should love her for that! She's a pioneer!!! ♥)

The other side opens strongly with the beautiful wavy, dark and spectral Electro-Minimal-Track „Ektoplazma“ which is definitely a spooky & spacy dance hit!!! (I put the lyrics below).

Track B2 „Danas Si Slab(Today you are weak), an Industrial style song about personal life feelings and relationships, ends this great EP and it's oppressive darkness is touching me so much, that I would say, uuugh, maybe second best of this consistently great record, which could be running endless hours without getting boring and last forever - I just want more and more and more... so I always just switch and switch the sides and listen again... let the turntable scrape...


If you forget the world
it will disappear
forget yourself
and time will stop

Since then, Popsimonova is performing live gigs all around Europe (& abroad), from her bases in Sisak (the Croatian Sheffield!) and Zagreb over Ukraine, France and Czech Republic (to name just a few) and now together with Jessica 93 & Dorcelsius in a touring package all around Europe up to the North in Scandinavia...

 left: "April gonna be great!" (pic comment on Facebook)
right: POPSIMONOVA checking it all in Ljubljana (^.^) (Photography & editing by Shąvi Ląvi)

POPSIMONOVA in her self-made Throbbing Gristle-dress (archive pic, ca. 2007)
ATTACK!!! European Tour Plan, Spring 2014: POPSIMONOVA surrounding Germany :-)

Ready for 22 shows in 
Paris > Beograd > Brussels > Rotterdam > Aachen > Enschede > Paris > Strasbourg > Zurich > Lausanne > Fribourg > Nice > Brescia > Milano > Treviso > Budapest > Wien > Boskovice > Hradec Králové > Berlin > Copenhagen > Goteborg
...and then for a summer festival in > Alvesta / Växjö (Sweden)...

Their nice & lovely tour plan (see the map) caused an ironic discussion between two chummy musicians about the POPSIMONOVA Europe Tour 2014 on Facebook:

A: The good thing is, you're constantly bordering Germany so if anything fails, just hop into Germany and they will sort you out ;-) GERMAN EFFICIENCY

B: all my biggest troubles on tour happened in Germany :-)

A: That's because you're French.

B: and look like an immigrant haha 

... girl power with style all the way...     POPSIMONOVA live in Nantes (France) (Flyer, Oct. 2013)
Fashion Design by DEGENEROTIKA
Photo by Shąvi Ląvi


POPSIMONOVA live 2013 wearing a DEGENEROTIKA harness and lovely Polka Dot tights ♥
@ Musica Obscura party - Klub Močvara (Zagreb) - photos by Zvonimir Ferina

ektoplazma - ectoplasm

Long hours you stood there
Silent witness removing the day
I walked up close to see your face
Night, black and quiet
the echo of your voice in the room
but you're actually not there
Yet since childhood
always standing near me
I have no fear
I love the shadows

In the dream you often tie
white thread around my hand
black thread around my heart
silver chain around my waist
And then the long hours I'm standing
At several places at once
threads are knit into the trap

Night, black and quiet
hunger and darkness in us
we hunt at dawn
And we feed
until the sun comes out
And then you fade
And the long hours of standing in place
And I never get to see your face

POPSIMONOVA is a fashionista

"The new upcoming queen of cold electro (wave)" (Enfant Terrible label about POPSIMONOVA) is not only a great musician, but also a fashion designer herself. Especially significant is her series of blue dresses, which all suit perfectly with her blonde wild hairstyle, sometimes combined with golden or red elements and applications.
In the context of our STYLE! IT! TAKES! project she has also been modeling both live and in studio for DEGENEROTIKA avantgarde fashion, photographed by Slovenian artist and fashion photographer Shąvi Ląvi, but also by Berlin based photographers Majlo Milevskij, Ruby Venezia Kainu and Lux Artifex (Atelier 'ex Lux'). Some months ago our photographer Jarka Snajberk shot her for the STYLE! IT! TAKES! book which is in a making. So, new gorgeous photos are to come...

POPSIMONOVA 2014 dressed in her own fashion design
(Photo by Zvonimir Ferina, MUA Kasandra Make Up)

POPSIMONOVA wears DEGENEROTIKA fashion (Photo by Shąvi Ląvi)

POPSIMONOVA make-up by Thea B. Adora / DEGENEROTIKA fashion

All our best wishes, Lana...

... and yesssssss!!! We see you in Berlin!!!

Thursday / Donnerstag
24. April 2014
Jessica 93
ACUD (Noisekölln in Exile)
Veteranenstr. 21, 10119 Berlin - Mitte
20:00 h

Discography (incomplete) & Video-Links: 

“sharp, minimal, direct and mercilessly innocent electronic music”
~ Half Doses Fanzine ~

Innocent? (^.^)

POPSIMONOVA: Staviti crveni ruz
(maybe not really safe for work, adults only... (^.^)...)

Gooiland Elektro / Enfant Terrible (Netherlands)
Gooiland 09 - ET027 (label shop, you also can mailorder it here or at this Berlin based Mailorder)
12" Vinyl-EP, Sept. 2013


POPSIMONOVA: Ruby (Tuesday Mix)
Various Artists - Frogmania 2 (Compilation, w artists like Nine Circles, Psyche...)
Plastic Frog Records ‎(Germany), pfr 066
Coloured Vinyl-LP, Limited Edition, 15 Apr 2013 

POPSIMONOVA: Budi kakav si noću
Various Artists - Namjerne Griješke 
NAUK (Srbija - but "all mistakes produced in Croatia" (^.^)...)
mp3 compilation, 2013 

POPSIMONOVA: Falling Down Tonight
Various Artists
Darkdiscorecords, X0002 (Austria)
CD compilation, 2012

ZARKOFF & POPSIMONOVA: Selecto - Hazardous Material inc. Fetish Freak & Borgie remixes
Adriatiko Recordings, Adr47 (Croatia)
CD, 2012

Falling Down Tonight / Voluntary Work Camp
limited 3" Mini-CD-Single in an envelope, with poster, postcard, chess board, 2012 (sold out!)

plus extra limited:
POPSIMONOVA: Ruby (Tuesday Mix)
Half Releases (0.5) (Croatia)
limited CD in a single cover, 2012 (sold out!)

First pic from STYLE! IT! TAKES! # 2 (Popsimonova live wears Degenerotika fashion)

Various Artists - Romance Moderne
Romance Moderne (Brussels / Belgium)
12" Vinyl, 2012

left: Vinyl-Compilation-Cover
right: MP 3 download cover by Chris Von Steiner (from a pic made by Pley)

POPSIMONOVA: No Contact (Dismixed by 1/2)
Half Releases (0.5) (Croatia)
Promo-CD with four artists, 2012

ZARKOFF: Alprazolam (inc. POPSIMONOVA Remix)
CD, 2010

Various Artists - Radio Resistencia
Enfant Terrible (Netherlands)
CD, 2009

Saalschutz & POPSIMONOVA
Parafin Rec.
Split-Vinyl-EP, 2009

Definitely next to be released on vinyl:

POPSIMONOVA & ZARKOFF: Take it as it comes

theatre/dance group CONTEMPORARY CRUISING video
from the show "ANGEL ANGEL DOWN WE GO" in Zagreb 2012
(definitely not safe for work, adults only... (^.^)...)

More about POPSIMONOVA in this blog: