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Symphonic Prog • Yugoslavia

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Laza I Ipe biography
One-off colaboration released in 1978

Laza RISTOVSKI (keyboard player) and Goran Ipe IVANDIC (drummer) were members of the most popular rock band ever in the former Yugoslavia, Bijelo Dugme. At the peak of their popularity, after they played in front of 100.000 people at Belgrade's "Hajducka cesma" free open air concert (so-called "Yugoslavian Woodstock") in 1977, the group made a break in their activity. Laza and Ipe decided to pursue their own ideas and they recorded their only joint album "Stizemo" in London 1978. The guest musicians included: Vlatko Stefanovski (guitar of Leb I Sol), Goran Kovacevic (vocalist of Teska Industrija), bassist Zlatko Hold, lyricist Ranko Boban and Ipe's sister Gordana as female vocalist.

Unfortunately, just a few days prior to its release in September 1978, the police found illicit drugs hidden in Ipe's drum kit, so along with Kovacevic, Hold and Boban, Ipe Ivandic was to end up in prison. Thus, this album never had a chance to be properly presented and reviewed and subsequently faded into oblivion.

It is however highly recommended for prog fans to listen to it because it is one of the rare interesting works of the Symphonic style of Prog in ex-Yugoslavia, sometimes similar to RENNAISSANCE or CURVED AIR due to a female vocals, sometimes close to GENESIS.

Laza Ristovski, being on and off member of Bijelo Dugme and SMAK during the 1980s, embarked on a solo career as electronic keyboard virtuoso making instrumental albums, while Ipe Ivandic was killed under mysterious circumstances in Belgrade 1994, having spent several years in re-formed Bijelo Dugme, from 1983-89.

: : : Sead S. Fetahagic, Sarajevo / BOSNIA : : :

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2.93 | 10 ratings

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 Stizemo by LAZA I IPE album cover Studio Album, 1978
2.93 | 10 ratings

Laza I Ipe Symphonic Prog

Review by Seyo
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

3 stars The background of this album is already given in LAZA I IPE biography, so here are few more details on the music material.

"Noc u paklu" (The Night in Hell) opens with synth sequence not much different from the WHO's "Won't Get Fooled Again" while guitar brings in some "Pinball Wizard" spice. The song has a potential of a hit, despite the obvious plagi... ahem influence :) and why it failed to achieve that status is explained in the bio story. There is some nice Ipe's drumming and Laza's keyboards, plus Stefanovski's effective solo at the end. But, Kovacevic's vocal is not appropriate to the sound.

"Ko sam ja" (Who Am I) introduces Ipe's sister Gordana as singer. Vangelis-like synths create an easy atmosphere where female vocals fits nicely. Organ and drums bring the "symphonic" bridge, while the rest is filled with piano chords and is done in a ballad style with several tempo changes. There is some RENNAISSANCE resemblance.

Instrumental "Intro-mental" is easily the best moment on the album. This track carries the best legacy of GENESIS sound of the "Trick of a Tail"/"Wind and Wuthering" period. Unlike "Noc u paklu", this is more originally and fully developed in spite of style similarity. Laza's synths and piano are brilliant, while Ipe gives his best in emulating the Collins signature odd time drumming! Excellent.

In "Poslije svega" (After All) Gordana tries hard to give her best but arrangement is not set for her vocals. There are Hammond and Mellotron in here, unfortunately they are quite misused.

"Top hit lista" is a horrible rock'n'roll track with stupedist lyrics, perhaps an outtake of some old BIJELO DUGME "shephard's rock" meditation.

The closing "Ljubav" (Love) starts nicely with piano and acoustic guitar, while Gordana sings a ballad of love. Stefanovski plays some manodlin-like sounds. The chorus is alas quite boring syrup with dumb lyrics "we are all of the same mother and father/let the blood be sacred". Come on, give me a break! :(

In spite of obvious flaws, "Stizemo" (We Are Coming) is actually quite interesting . While not exactly an excellent effort, it has enough quality to be recommended, especially to the fans of symphonic prog, because it is really a rare Yugoslavian record that follows the prescribed pattern of that sub-genre.

Thanks to SymphonicTeam for the artist addition. and to Quinino for the last updates

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