Tag Archives: Adrian Căpraru

Lost Tapes Finally Undiscovered-Rodion Rosca Interview by Erith Duncan in frank151.com 3rd June 2013

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It was 1978, and the Romanian dictator Ceausescu and his Communist party were ruling the country. People were being prosecuted and isolated due to their background and the way they looked. At this time, Romania was also overrun by pop-rock music, which was perhaps a way to speak out against unfair treatment at the hands of the government. Amongst all of these elements stood musician Rodion Rosca

The Romanian producer is 60 years old, and only just put out his debut album this month. Despite being his first LP, Rosca isn’t a newbie to the music industry.

“I feel sad for me. I am now 60 years old and before I die, just now, I have the possibility to enjoy my records,” says Rosca. “My whole life was destroyed by this Communist regime, but it’s too late right now. Like an umbrella after the rain.”

Rosca began creating music at the age of 18 after acquiring records during Romania’s Open Period between the years of 1965 and 1972. During Romania’s easing of censorship, the producer was exposed to icons like Duke Ellington, Louis Armstrong and Lionel Hampton, frequenting the border of Hungary to get records and speak with record collectors from countries like Japan and Norway.

After getting a little guidance from records and developing a sound, Rosca began creating his own music. “I started to compose music at the age of 18 years old, in music college,” he says. “I played the guitar. I was a guitarist from 18 or 19 and I started to record my music to memorize my ideas.”

In 1975 Rosca hooked up with likeminded individuals Gicu Farcas and Adrian Capraru and started a group called Rodion G.A.  The band was a departure from everything that was current at the time; it was a hybrid band of sorts, combining electronic music, synths, drum machines and a psychedelic vibe. The group created a project around four Tesla machines, guitars, a toy Casio VL Tone, Soviet-made Faemi organ, and drums. Sadly the band never reached their full potential; they only released two singles, and only performed once.

Most people who have dealt with the negative side effects of the music industry the way that Rodion G.A did may leave the industry. Rosca however is different, and still enjoys the possibility and excitement that comes with creating music. To this day, one of his hobbies still remains collecting and composing music. And, finally after more than 40 years, Rosca is finally get the opportunity to release some of his own.

The Lost Tapes released last week via Strut Records, is an anthology of music Rosca created between the years of 1978-84. The album acts partly an artifact and has a depth that was far ahead of its time. During an era when artistic expression wasn’t necessarily appreciated due to censorship, this project is different and was very innovative at the time. Rosca describes the project as being dramatic, original and creative.

“I am thankful for Sorin Luca [blogger and filmmaker] who discovered me. He tried to make me alive again,” says Rosca. “I cannot find the right words for what I have to say and we began to make my music to be heard by people.”

Thanks to http://www.frank151.com

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Rodion G.A. The Lost Tapes-Review in exclaim.ca by Matt Bauer

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Rodion Rosca came of age during Romania’s “open period” of 1965 to 1972, soaking up jazz, Kraut and prog-rock influences, forming Rodion G.A. (the G.A. refers to band members Gicu Farcas and Adrian Capraru) under the oppressive shadow of Nicolae Ceausescu in 1975. In stark contrast to the sanitized pop music of the period, and despite the barebones recording techniques and instruments ⎯ East German drum machines, a toy Casio and a Soviet-made Faemi organ, all recorded and overdubbed on primitive Tesla machines — the sounds on The Lost Tapes are immersive, complex and also difficult to classify. Strains of Can, early Pink Floyd and Kraftwerk are echoed throughout. However, it’s with the jumpy, off-kilter time signature on cosmic workout “Diagnola,” the aggressive, techno-creepy drive of “Cantaec Fulger” and narcotized, ambient closer “Zephyr,” which juxtaposes haunting vocals and classical piano touches with queasy psychedelic effects, where The Lost Tapes demonstrates how musicians behind the Iron Curtain appropriated Western influences into a unique, personal and essential hybrid.

Thanks to Matt Bauer.

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Rodion G.A. The Lost Tapes-Review in therecord.com

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The Lost Tapes (Strut)

Maybe, just maybe, you’ve been seduced by Ethiopian jazz and ’60s Cambodian pop and Peruvian psychedelia and Indian ragas on Moog synthesizers and god knows what else from every corner of the Earth. But surely no one saw this gem coming: futuristic synth home recordings from Romania in the late ’70s, from a band that only ever released two songs on a local compilation in 1981, despite being a popular live act from 1975 to 1987.

Primarily the work of one man, Rodion Ladislau Roșca, and his tape machines, Rodion G.A. sounds like the Cold War relic it is: spooky, ominous and alien, using DIY technology of the time (effects created with reel-to-reel tape machines, homemade amplifiers) that was technologically advanced for the time yet entirely tangible and fragile. It’s comparable, of course, to German electronic music of the same period (captured on two invaluable compilations recently assembled by Soul Jazz Records, the second of which came out in 2012, both called Deutsche Elektronische Musik). But Rodion G.A. is much more primitive, raw and downright weird, not so much hippies exploring avant-garde music and ambient sounds, as in Germany, but more like acid burnouts and proto-punks trying to retain a semblance of sanity under one of the most brutal Communist regimes of the period.

Despite the lack of officially released recordings, Rodion G.A. did have some success, with appearances on national television (including a New Year’s Eve gig) and scores for a ballet at the national opera company, as well as the soundtrack to an animated film. Only an artist from behind the Iron Curtain could boast having a sentence like this in his record company bio: “Scores for gymnastic routines also helped provide some income.” As the regime became even more harsh in the mid-’80s, however, gigs dried up and Rodion walked away from music two years before the Berlin Wall fell. He became a labourer in London in the ’90s, before returning to Bucharest to work servicing sound equipment.

After his music was rediscovered recently, Rodion G.A. played an acclaimed, sold-out comeback show in Bucharest with a full European tour this summer. But as he told one interviewer just before this compilation came out, getting his due now is bittersweet. “It hurts me because it’s too late,” he said. “Even if I became a millionaire now, it will be too late. It’s too late, my life was destroyed.”

Thanks to http://www.therecord.com

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Rodion G.A. The Lost Tapes (Strut)-Review on Bluefat.com

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Rodion G.A. The Lost Tapes (Strut).

Heavy censorship plagued the arts in communist Romania circa late ‘70s-early ’80s, forcing rock bands to make propaganda music or, worse, sappy pop sounds that didn’t rock the political boat. But teenaged Rodion did it anyway, bedroom-producing DIY ditties on creaky reel-to-reel recorders, guitars, toy synths, a rinkydink Soviet-made organ and an East German drum machine, all smeared out with fuzz/flanger pedals and other effects units. Weaving and mushing complex spirals of sound atop rough programmed rhythms and his multi-overdubbed voice, he devised idiosyncratically structured songs roughly akin to Jethro Tull jamming with Kraftwerk and Roky Erickson. Exhilarating!

Thanks to http://www.bluefat.com

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Rodion G.A. The Lost Tapes-Review from Nonpop.de

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Rodion G.A. The Lost Tapes-Review

Rodion G. A. are a myth in Romania, although in the late 1970s, have published early 1980 officially only two songs in the short period of its existence, on a national label. Some more running (rarely) on the radio, which apparently was enough to infect many Romanians with a band, made ​​progressive electronic music at the time of the Iron Curtain, in the Socialist Republic of Romania under Ceausescu. RODION Ladislau ROSCA, the ‘band leader’ until now attributed a crucial role in the development of electronic music in Romania

A blogger recently found a few Tonschnipsel and a concert video from the time and put the music online. Then turn the Future Nuggets  were attentive, a Romanian producer collective, which takes care of the music history of the country. They carried with the help of Rodion Rosca together even old tapes and publish now, some 30 years after the end of the tape, the ‘debut album’ with the remastered original songs from the old tapes. In the meantime should Rodion G. A. even have been newly established, supposedly follows soon a concert.

Fats, analog synthesizer sounds of the 70s psychedelic and spacey break from the speakers, accompanied by beautiful and pleasing melodies. As always reminds me electronic music from this period of time on the famous C64 Sound, on old PC games. Rodion G. A. have also added some sounds that reinforce this impression, the beats to come from the effect machine. From the second piece Eastern European flair, the one by the sound sequences, on the other hand arises again and again of course by the Romanian song that accompanies the title and then sporadically appears in some other songs. Until then, very lively, very rhythmic and with proggigen synth runs. However, a wrenching, rocking electric guitar ensures that with “Caravan” also a powerful piece prog rock is represented. Likewise, “Disco Mania” might actually have been a thumping, bass-heavy disco-rock hit. With “Imagini Din Vis” is still an experimental lleres, partially noisiges piece on the list, before an almost flatly, vibrant electric piano ballad forms the startling conclusion.

A bubbling, swirling combination of synth music, prog, kraut and some others, some jazzy elements. Even from today’s perspective, many passages are still innovative, sound affects the whole album anyway surprisingly modern and fits well into the 70’s trend of many genres (Metal, Prog …). Interesting are the “Lost Tapes” but surely mainly from musicological point of view, as a historical document of a then tiny Romanian underground scene.

With thanks to http://www.nonpop.de

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Rodion G.A. The Lost Tapes-Review by Yves Coudron 24 July 2013 in Enola.be

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Rodion G.A. The Lost Tapes

Rodion G. A. was the Romanian adoptive child of Kraftwerk and Can. It disappeared faster than Ceaucescu and even the secret service had barely recordings. The Lost Tapes combines a lost piece of Romanian music, and that’s quite a fascinating listening experience.

When Rodion G. A. still making music, Europe was divided in half. by the Iron Curtain In the West you had kraut rock, punk and synth which gradually conquered its place in pop music. However, Romania was in the East, and suffered under communist dictatorship. Rock music existed, but you’d better ensured that the apparatchiks do not caught on English lyrics or on a cover of a song from the West.

Rodion G. A. sounded like no other. The band, in addition to creative and technical mind Rodion Ladislau Rosca also Gicu Farcas and Adrian Capraru – the G. and A. – counted among the members, experimented with delay effects, a phaser, an East German drum machine, a toy Casio and a Russian organ. Rosca itself had four tape recorders which he used interchangeably. Together, this resulted in innovative compositions that are a cross between krautrock, prog rock, and of course early electronics. Typically, the analog primitive synth / organ sound, the complex rhythms and influences of classical music and Eastern European folk music.

Although the band recorded a lot, only two songs would actually appear on plate, issued by the state label Electrecord compilation Romanian Rock Vol. 6 When Rosca’s mother died, Rodion was G. A. dissolved. Until producers- and DJ collective Future Nuggets scarce recordings would join in The Lost Tapes, were not heard.

The Lost Tapes sounds a bit like randomly zapping between different levels of an old computer. “Alpha Centauri” is typical. The song begins with an infectious groove with full synth and organ sounds are propelled by a tight beat computer. Then the song makes a 90 degree turn and doubles the tempo suddenly. Mario suddenly gets into a dungeon full of swirling lava where a fire-breathing dragon waiting. From an idyllic landscape with turtles and mushrooms. Tightly packed computer pieces are the ones that seem to put as blocks. Randomly together In ‘Citadela’ is the starting point a bossa groove. Sometimes she is lighter, sometimes heavier, but she is always compelling and highly urgent.

‘Cantec Fulger’ has at other something of a pop structure. The song sounds like Eastern European folk music on ecstasy, and you can also say ‘Diagonala’ same. From the beginning, anyway, because the second song block tends more towards trance. ‘Disco Mania’ actually starts with a rock riff on an acoustic guitar who later overthrew expertly rolled by the computer and thick drum synth. ‘In Linistea Noptii’ which tends to Kraftwerk, ” Salt 83 ‘to Can (the drums!). The Lost Tapes has finally two hidden tracks, which is worth mentioning especially the latter. There is a piano and something that sounds like a tape being played backwards. A successful experiment that actually reminiscent of DJ Shadow. The combination of soft piano and weirdness works well with Rodion, as you ‘Zephyr’ can also be heard.

The Lost Tapes is a surprising piece of music with a nice analog sound. Gefundenes fressen for today’s sample artist seems, but if the plate has a bit too little to offer in order to write well. Outside Romania music.

Thanks to enola.be

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Rodion G.A. Making Music Under The Tyranny Of Ceaucescu-Blog de Viajes

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The story is a mass of inconsistencies where generally there is not much justice. It is common, that the merits, success, recognition and money that usually accompany it, come when individuals responsible for the facts and lie underground. It is common for the death of snobby respect wings and often hypocriticalToday in Gyro Traveller, do honour to our epithet traveling to the past and present of Romania, flying with the strange, sidereal musicRodion G.A.

On this trip we will cross Europe and penetrate in the streets, in the bars and clubs of dictatorial Ceausescu‘s Romania. The music of Rodion GA emerged in the 70s and, like many other musicians on the other side of the Iron Curtain,was influenced by intense cultural movement and counterculture that had awakened in the Summer of Love in California and on the flyers pavés Parisian May. Romania and its capital Bucharest was the fief of the despot Ceausescuand his cliquepragmatic examples of the perversion of the ideals of socialjustice of Communism, and the time, privileged partners of the West with itseconomic pragmatism

The Romanian dictatorship happened for many years as one of the mostmoderate and progressive of all the former Soviet satellitesThe major Westerndemocracies were unable or unwilling to see that under the sheep skin opposition to the USSR personalist vague nationalism hid the cruel repressionand outright corruption that impoverished Romanians

And yet, the government initiated Ceausescu in 1965, opening hoisted certainbladesOne of them, the possibility that Western musicians acted in Romania, as well as from 1967 Duke Ellington and Louis Armstrong, while Romanianbands interpreted newborn issues Cliff Richards or Tom Jones. Anyway, no borderno dictatorship and no wall can stop all the freedom 

Romanian music scene. 

In half glimpses of probation for secret service (Securitate), the Universities will be a center of alternative cultureThread a young Rodion Ladislau Cluj in Transylvania, it starts recording with a rudimentary recorder Tesla songs from1969 This music pioneer electro-rock mounts quickly and Adrian Farcas, Gicu Caprar, a group of young people who have the same tastes and start recording simply, but getting spectacular sound effects. By fragmentary recordings, whichwere replacing the multipistas-subsequent assembly and small as simple as using the voice tricks to overcome the lack of instruments, the group today Rodion GA is a myth, a cult bandThe musician, now with his little eyes rogues and a hint of pride, says, when asked what kind of synthesiser used at the time,has to answer: none. 

Influences and style. 

Distorted guitars and thoughtful lyrics but accepted by the rate at which RodionGA will livenever to faceThe protest songs remain hidden in drawers and never will be recorded for fear of retaliation and ostracism

The power of music and the fragility of the material makes the band needincreasingly larger and more powerful speakers, which constantly burned andspoiledRodion that this forced them to become technicians to repair almost daily and not go bankrupt

The influences of his music are manifold and range from jazz to hard rock, going through the undergraund that appeared in the 70 discs furtive groups thatmanaged to bring friends or family through Hungary, Czechoslovakia and Germany circulated among the musical world Romanian. Frank Zappa, If, Yes, Jethro Tull and Romanian bands (Chromatic, Sorin Tudoran). 

Paradoxes of a dictatorship. 

The band brings together five young people with the same ideas and influences. Despite his few recordings, the big success in Romaniataking into account all of the time. Rodion GA recorded for official government seal and act several times on television, which is one of those curious paradoxes inconceivable that dictatorships seem to blend sometimes macabre and funny. Every dictatorthink beyond good and evil, much as the pillars of his power are found deeply moth-eaten

One of the most grotesque images is his performance, for the gala New Year’s Eve 1982 That music conceived without drugsbut including interstellar travel to Alpha Centauri, one of his opus, was certainlya true gateway to freedom.

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