Lebowski are a Polish progressive band founded in 2002 and consisting of Marcin Grzegorczyk (guitars), Marcin Luczaj (keyboards), Marek Zak (bass) and Krzysztof Pakula (drums). In 2010 the band released their debut album Cinematic. Saying Lebowski are just another progressive rock band wouldn't do justice to them, since their music is instrumental, atmospheric and hypnotizing. Principally it's all about movies as the band's name and the album title already reveal. Lebowski were named after the movie The Big Lebowski, but the music could have been written for any imaginary movie and is definitely suitable as a movie soundtrack.
The overall atmosphere is relaxed and all the songs have different themes or have been written with a special type of movie in mind. The idea of this concept started in 2005 and was worked out into these separate themes and songs. The keyboards mostly play the melody, while the guitar lays down different accents, sometimes powerful and sometimes acoustic, but always perfectly balanced. The bass and drums sound sober, but take a prominent part in the song writing process. The rhythm-section forms a reliable base for the melodic journeys through the world of cinema. In all songs, Lebowski used fragments of conversations from different kind of movies, some in Polish some in English. All these accents are part of the creation of each song's individual atmosphere. Listening to the title track, the relaxed keyboards and guitar lay down a pleasant base with fragments spoken in Polish over the theme. The guitar solo and the piano make this a very interesting song. Encore has this typical French touch: an accordion and a wailing guitar solo put you right in the middle of a film noire or on a terrace in the centre of Paris. The Storyteller (Svensson) has a cool and slow ambient touch; a perfectly suited fretless bass guitar over the piano makes you enter the world of a dark kind of fairy tale that in the end moves towards a bright and happy ending.
If you would like to try something different, beyond the down-trodden paths of progressive rock, this Cinematic album could be a pleasant surprise. The keyboards are relaxed and pleasantly played and the guitars sound great. Hints of Camel and Pink Floyd can be recognized in Marcin Grzegorczyk's guitar style. Sometimes a fretless bass lays down the accents and the fragments of international movies, just giving the album its finishing touch. Listen to the music and be part of a theatrical event.
***+ Pedro Bekkers (edited by Peter Willemsen)
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