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OSSIAN / OSJAN

Indo-Prog/Raga Rock • Poland


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Ossian / Osjan biography
The origins of Osjan (the name derives from a fictional character from a poem by Bolesław Leśmian. The musicians slighly changed spelling to 'Ossian' but when they later found out there was a Scottish band of the same name then they returned to the original spelling) date early 70s when two former members of ANAWA (a band mostly known from playing with Marek Grechuta), namely Jacek Ostaszewski and Marek Jackowski, met with Tomasz Hołuj. At the beginning the band was highly influenced by indian music. You could also trace some avant-garde and folk touch. In 1975 Marek Jackowski abandoned the band in order to form a rock band Maanam with a percussionist Milo Kurtis who was later invited by the remaining members of Ossian to work for the band.
In 30 years time span the lineup and instrumentarium frequently changed. The band also collaborated with many guest musicians like prominent polish jazzmen Tomasz Stańko and Paweł Jastrzębski, Apostolis Anthimos from SBB, legendary trumpeter Don Cherry, a shaman from the Cheronee tribe and others.
Osjan's music is combined of elements of musical cultures from many parts of the world such as aforementioned indian music, african, arabia, far east and south american indian folklore which meet with jazz and classical music influences.
But the factor that occupies the central place in Osjan's music is rhythm - the most primordial and present in every musical culture element.
Ossian is regarded the pioneer of so called world music in Poland but in reality the music of Osjan doesn't explore nor utilise any ethnicality. It simply stands beyond any ethnicality, stylistics or genre affinity because the goal of all Osjan's searches were always the most basic and universal elements of music.

Current lineup (January, 2007): Jacek Ostaszewski (flutes, vocals), Wojciech Waglewski (guitar, vocals), Radosław Nowakowski (drums: conga, bata), Milo Kurtis - (drums, Jew's-harps, vocalisations).

DISCOGRAPHY:

OSSIAN: OSSIAN
LP 1973 Poljazz Z-SXL 0545a PL

OSSIAN: OSSIAN (Księga Deszczu Plus, live)
LP 1975 Polskie Nagrania - Muza SX 1279 PL
CD 1999 Pomaton EMI / Scena FM 5 24316
CD 2007 Milo Records MR111 / 5907513047254

OSSIAN: OSSIAN (with Tomasz Stańko)
LP 1978 Poljazz Z-SX-0689 PL
CD 2005 Milo Records MR109 / 5907513047223 (with a different cover)

OSSIAN: KSIĘGA CHMUR
LP 1979 Polskie Nagrania - Muza SX 1777 PL
CD 2003 Yesterday 830988 ...
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OSSIAN / OSJAN discography


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OSSIAN / OSJAN top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

4.00 | 7 ratings
Ossian (with Tomasz Stańko)
1978
3.67 | 6 ratings
Księga Chmur
1979
4.25 | 8 ratings
Roots
1982
2.00 | 1 ratings
Głową W Dół
1992
0.00 | 0 ratings
Po Prostu
2008

OSSIAN / OSJAN Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

4.14 | 7 ratings
Ossian (Księga Deszczu)
1975
0.00 | 0 ratings
Ossian
1980
4.00 | 2 ratings
Rytuał Dźwięku I Ciszy
1988
4.50 | 4 ratings
Muzyka Fruwajacej Ryby
1998
0.00 | 0 ratings
Księga Liści / Drzewo Osjan
2005

OSSIAN / OSJAN Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

OSSIAN / OSJAN Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

OSSIAN / OSJAN Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

0.00 | 0 ratings
Ossian
1973

OSSIAN / OSJAN Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Ossian (with Tomasz Stańko) by OSSIAN / OSJAN album cover Studio Album, 1978
4.00 | 7 ratings

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Ossian (with Tomasz Stańko)
Ossian / Osjan Indo-Prog/Raga Rock

Review by twseel

4 stars 'Ossian (with Tomasz Stanko)' is the second album by the polish group Ossian. This album, like most of Ossian's albums, is an improvisation, spread over two or three songs(the two parts of 'Epilog' could be considered separate songs). The Polish Ossian is not to be confused with the Scottish folk group Ossian and the Hungarian metal band Ossian.

'Wstep Do "Ksiegi Chmur"(Introduction to the Book of Clouds)' is the first song. It covers the entire first side of the LP with a flute-oriented, Kraurtock-like improvisation. Behind the ongoing flute, there is a lot of percussion and some sound effects, which create a very natural feeling. Despite all the percussion, there is hardly any sense of rhythm throughout the piece, as sounds just come and go. This music might appeal to fans of Faust.

The second half of the album is 'Epilog "Muzyki fruwającej ryby"(Flying Fish Music)'. The first part, 'Ten sam wiatr porusza dwa drzewa(The same wind moves the two trees)', starts of with the kayagum of Jacek Ostaszewski, who also played the flute in the first part. After a while, the trumpet of Tomasz Stanko comes in with some lines and screeches. About halfway, tabla and other percussion come in and create a dark rhythm, while the trumpet gets continuously more aggressive. From there the trumpet and trombita improvise over the percussion up to the start of the second part, 'Dziurawe ucho (prawe)(Ear holes(right))'. The name of this part is based in the second half of the first piece, which was named 'Dziurawe ucho (lewe)', or 'Ear holes(left)'. This part starts off slowly until percussion takes over and the flute returns to the music. The trumpet of Tomasz Stanko is again prominent. Later the music turns again very minimal and arrhythmic with occasional trumpet and percussion interacting. This is kept up until a long trumpet note marks the ending of the album.

Overall Ossian provides very unique music, as a mix of Krautrock and ethnic music, with a lot of rare instruments as well. The music might, however, be difficult to enjoy, with not much rhythm and little variety. That makes that this not a perfect record.

Recommended to fans of experimental music, a bit risky for fans of melodic music, but still a very original mix of influences, overall 4,5 stars, rounded down to 4.

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