Rock and pop (new wave or post-punk related) music in Slavonska Požega (SR Croatia) in the 1980s (incomplete overview)
*subject to change*
(korekcije krnje faktografije, dopune, lijepe fotke odrpanih pankera, mp3 320 kbps fajle, … su dobrodošle)
Moji snovi su otišli nebu pod oblake, putokazi su slomljeni / Kuda poći ovoga časa, gdje ostaviti svoje tijelo / Prošlost, zaboravi prošlost, prošlost, ostavi prošlost / Prošlost, zaboravi prošlost, prošlost, ostavi prošlost….
In late spring or early summer of ’82 (or maybe ’83), I visited Slavonska Požega while attending some sort of summer sports camp. I remember morning swimming in an open pool in nearby Velika. Even today I can clearly recall battered ceramic tiles covered with slimy green algae in cold and slightly murky pool water. I didn’t drown though. I returned once more after the war to spend two months in a military training complex situated in town. Actually, not bad memories for me.
Now we are in eastern part of Croatia – Slavonia – land of plains, rivers & hills (vineyards!). Don’t let this picturesque (almost idyllic) old postcard fool you. Behind the scenes there was enough of unholy racket to break out provincial constraints. So let’s get back to the noise – r’n’r inclination of local folk, carried on discordant notes and mangled chords. There was an important punk-rock axis in Požega: Rukopotezno povlačilo – Žak fatalist – Married Body. As usually, nothing has been officially documented for posterity. A blessing or a curse of living in a small town?
RUKOPOTEZNO POVLAČILO [1977-1982]
Dražen Heraković-Đuro (guitar, vocals)
Mario Blažević-Mac (bas guitar, back vocals)
Željko Nekić-Štakor (rhythm guitar) (1977-78)
Krešo Mihić-Miha (drums)
2,3 – recorded in “Druga maca”, Belgrade in 1981
Slavonska Požega rightfully boasted with an original ’77 punk-rock band with a wacky name – Rukopotezno povlačilo. Young Slavonian punks explored possibilities suddenly offered by punk-rock and new wave and in the process probably thoroughly enjoyed rite of passage, while getting out of their provincial town and playing concerts around Yugoslavia. In legendary Belgrade studio “Druga maca”, together with Enco Lesić and Dušan Kojić-Koja, Rukopotezno povlačilo even recorded their first professional demo tapes (late post-punk phase as trio). Unfortunately none of these tracks have been officially released. Master tapes have been lost. After successful appearance on YURM ’82 rock festival in Zagreb, Rukopotezno povlačilo won title of “New Hopes”. And then they broke up.
ŽAK FATALIST [1982 – ?]
Unavoidable Đuro founded post-punk Žak fatalist when Rukopotezno povlačilo fell apart (JNA!). I like a lot their demo material. I am not sure about the date of recording (sometime in early or even mid ’80s?) & exact demise of Žak fatalist. Few years later restless guitarist appeared in Married Body and continued his artistic trade producing noise that we loved so much, and still do.
MARRIED BODY [1989 – 1991]
Jurica Dizdarević-Juri – vocals (ex Ex),
Renato Pok – bass guitar (ex Ex),
Branko Goleš-Goljo – drums (ex Spitz 66, Žak fatalist)
Dalibor Platenik-Zec – guitar (ex Secto Limy, Flash)
Dražen Heraković-Đuro – solo guitar (ex Rukopotezno povlačilo, Žak fatalist)
Married Body were trail-blazing noise-rock band that covered similar rock terrain as reformed SexA, but they were discovering it from their own heavy r’n’r angle. As a rock group Married Body had everything needed. They were even visually striking, with a local rockabilly dude as a remarkable noise rock frontman. Married Body ended 2nd best during YURM ’91 rock festival and the future seemed promising. But it was already too late. Recorded studio album wasn’t realized as a finished product in time…
Jurica Dizdarević – vocals
Renato Pok – bass guitar
Dario Pavković-Pavka (ex Flash) – drums
Dražen Heraković – guitar
Unissued studio album samples, recorded in early 1991:
Other bands of note: Bliski susret (new wave pop rock band, actually formed in Zagreb by three students from Slavonska Požega, with a pilot single released by Jugoton in 1984 and two recorded but unreleased LPs), Ex (rockabilly / psychobilly ex YU attraction), Secto Limy (flanger post-punk / new wave band led by junior spiritus movens Dalibor Platenik), Flash (arty pop rock band active in the mid 1980s, continuation of Secto Limy), Apatridi (anarcho punks with Goc on vocals), Amen (local death metal harbingers) etc.
Slavonska Požega extra:
1 – Allegedly the first SexA (then Dežurna apoteka) concert ever happened in the fall of 1980 in Slavonska Požega due to the fact that SexA guitarist/vocalist Darko Kordovan-Dare comes from the town.
2 – Dražen Heraković-Đuro briefly played guitar with Trobecove krušne peći. It’s hard to say whether “Teško je reći (Đuro)” has anything to do with it.
3 – Ivica Baričević-Bara, big enthusiast and driving force behind Zagreb’s underground music scene of the 1990s, as a teenager played in darkwave / gothic rock band Casiel (1989) in his home town. He never mentioned that fact. Bara simply moved on with his music projects and vision, devouring current stuff and looking ahead. He did mention Hare! (although reluctantly) and gave me a copy of their self-released seven inch EP (recorded in June 1990, in “Crveni vepar”) to check it out.
4 – Kktz – local crust punker and fanzine (Fecal Forces) writer with talent for phantasmagorical drawings
5 – And last but not least, Igor, emperor of Dirty Old Shop, is also from Požega.
Croatia, such a small pond.
Nema tu istine. I traganje za njom je izgubljeno vrijeme. Da li je to dokaz? Da li je to dokaz? Da li je to dokaz da je nikad nije ni bilo!?