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Indexi - Indeksi CD (album) cover




Crossover Prog

3.71 | 19 ratings

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5 stars The more I dig into the past of ex-Yugoslavian early 1970s discography, the better are chances to stumble upon unexpected and unlikely releases. The whole my life I have believed that "Indexi" (pink cover of 1974) was the first LP of legendary Yugoslavian/Bosnian group. And in spite of not being a "real" studio album, it represented a progressive era of the band's development, bringing several key 7" songs ("Plima", "Balada", "Svijet u kojem zivim"...) together in a condensed format.

Then, a few months ago while browsing the online archive of the renowned, historic Yugoslavian music magazine "Dzuboks", in its first issue of July 1974 I saw an advertisement page with several titles as presented by RTV Ljubljana music label. Among them I noticed an image of INDEXI cassette tape, with photos of band members, titled simply "Indeksi" (that is how the band name is actually pronounced in South Slav languages). This came as a big surprise because I had never ever heard of such an issue and never saw anything like that in many "official" discographies of Yugoslav rock! Even highly comprehensive "Illustrated exYU Rock Encyclopaedia 1960- 2000" (title translated as information only, the book is not available in English) by P. Janjatovic does not mention it at all.

Like in some magical way, shortly after the big discovery, I found "Indeksi" posted on a blog, along with track list, indicating 1972 as the year of release. Soon after that, in September this year I obtained recently published biography of INDEXI, by J. Dujmovic, where the author presents very comprehensive and probably the most detailed discography of the band so far. Finally, he mentions this cassette as "unbelievable" oddity. Therefore, although released in cassette format only and never on vinyl, "Indeksi" is actually THE FIRST long-playing discographer release of INDEXI! That fact alone, however, would not mean a lot, had it not been for the quality of songs compiled therein. Now, onto the music...

- "Dan kao ovaj" (A Day Like This) - hard rocking main theme, filled with aggressive bass lines and Hammond. Following the bridge are psychedelic guitar solo, with strong drums and bass, then bluesy organ solo, then bass guitar solo. Very jazzy style with good singing. Recorded in October 1970. (Kovacevic, guitar-Popovic, vocal-Redzic, bass- Saranovic, drums-Rihtman, keyboards)

- "Hej ti" (Hey You) - starting with spacey Hammond, then melts into wonderful rhythmic performance that sounds quite accessible. Popovic vocal is brilliant as well as Kovacevic fuzzy guitar, sometimes resembling SANTANA. Excellent bass leads through a break then follows a "wall" of Hammond heavy tones a la VAN DER GRAAF or VANILLA FUDGE. This should have been a huge hit but was never released as a single. Recorded in 1972, live version also appeared on double album "Boom Pop Festival 1972". (Kovacevic, guitar-Popovic, vocal-Redzic, bass-Saranovic, drums-Lesic, keyboards)

- "Da li postoji ljubav" (Is There Love?) - starting with organ sounding like that of Joe Cocker's Woodstock interpretation of "With a Little Help From My Friends". Popovic sings about love of course, while the orchestral arrangements provide fine background for Kovacevic's short but effective solo. The song is done in a pop/beat arrangement, typical of the period. Again, despite its accessibility the song remained virtually unknown. It was performed at Sarajevo pop festival "Vas slager sezone" in January 1971, hence the pop arrangement, but very nicely done in 1960s beat style. (Kovacevic, guitar-Popovic, vocal-Redzic, bass-Saranovic, drums-Rihtman, keyboards)

- "Najljepse stvari" (The Prettiest Things) - brings the wah-wah guitar proving that Kovacevic also had mastered the Hendrix acrobatics. Redzic's bass is also fuzzed giving a deep heavy sound. Wonderful pedal effects make a unique psychedelic noise. The song was performed at Sarajevo pop festival "Vas slager sezone" in 1969. One can only imagine how these psyche sounds were received by the pop audience back then. (Arnautalic, guitar-Kovacevic, guitar-Popovic, vocal-Redzic, bass-Saranovic, drums- Novkovic, keyboards)

- "Ja odlazim sutra" (I Am Leaving Tomorrow) - hard rock with blues hints. Hammond organ and solo guitar accompanied by bass melodic line go into spacey jazz improvisation in the mid-section. If you can combine DEEP PURPLE, Canterbury school and add some Hendrix and TRAFFIC spices, you may taste what it's all about. Probably recorded in 1971. (Kovacevic, guitar-Popovic, vocal-Redzic, bass-Saranovic, drums- Rihtman or Lesic (?), keyboards)

- "Negdje na kraju u zatisju" (Somewhere On The Edge of Silence) - Phenomenal early prog rock anthem in Yugoslavia. Starting with raindrops and poetic recital and church organ. Hard rocking drums, bass and guitar come in, then gently going into acoustic guitar passage. Popovic sings the main chorus backed by strings. Then comes noisy piano avant-garde leading to wild bass solo and organ. Guitar solo shows all the talents and technique of Kovacevic. This part sound very "symphonic" then goes into a gentle flute solo accompanied by cymbals and acoustic guitar - one of the nicest melodies in YU scene! Guitar solo comes again, reminding me of what Steve Hacket was about to do with GENESIS in years to come. Another electronic noise section filled with timpani and FLOYD-ian organ, almost like Krautrock! The main theme is back again with gentle Popovic's vocal and strings. 11:42 minutes masterpiece. Recorded in October 1969. (Arnautalic, guitar-Kovacevic, guitar-Popovic, vocal-Redzic, bass-Saranovic, drums- Rihtman, keyboards)

- "Galijom sna" (Galleon Of Dreams) - Another early "symphonic" style song, with very pop-sounding beat chorus, which was followed by what sounds like brass/trumpets. Chorus although very poppy is based on a strong experimental guitar sound (some fuzzy effects again) playing the melodic scale in a strange way. Recorded in October 1969. (Arnautalic, guitar-Kovacevic, guitar-Popovic, vocal-Redzic, bass-Saranovic, drums-Rihtman, keyboards)

This collection represents a remarkable package of INDEXI's most avant-garde and most progressive rock themes from the period 1969-72. For all these songs this is the premiere appearance on an official release, while "Najljepse stvari", "Galijom sna" and "Da li postoji ljubav?" never appeared on any subsequent compilation or any other release again! Therefore, although "Indeksi" technically speaking is not a real studio album, it is probably justified to treat it as such, because these tracks were not actually compiled from previous releases. Listening to it today, it sounds amazingly coherent as if it is a spirit of the unborn first album, which should have been recorded in this period, 1969-72, but was not meant to be. This album, along with "Modra rijeka", is the best and most consistent presentation of progressive rock expression, and therefore deserves ten stars **********

Seyo | 5/5 |


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