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DOKTOR SPIRA I LJUDSKA BICA

Crossover Prog • Yugoslavia


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Doktor Spira i Ljudska Bica biography
Unconventional singer/songwriter from Belgrade Dusan Mihajlović "Spira" began his career in 1972 when he founded an acoustic duo MIRA & SPIRA with Mirjana Marković. They used to play as support act at POP MASINA gigs and were part of the then burgeoning Belgrade acoustic scene. His name became more prominent when his song "Prvi sneg" appeared on the debut LP of another Belgrade folk-rock acoustic band SUNCOKRET in 1977.

In late 1970s he changed his style and formed an alternative post-punk band DOKTOR SPIRA & LJUDSKA BIĆA (Dr. Spira & the Human Beings). In 1980 they recorded their debut album "Dijagnoza", which contained unusual songs inspired by the New Wave urban alienation aesthetics and strong artistic feel. Although he enjoyed a brief fame as a cult personality at the Belgrade alternative scene, no record label wanted to release his album. That's why he went to England and independently pressed some 50 copies of the record and shared them among friends. December 1981 saw the promotion gig at Belgrade's Atelje 212 theatre. The group disbanded in 1985, but ironically only then the state-owned PGP RTB label decided to release it the following year. Mihajlović has been living in London since 1988 and in the meantime he also invented a small guitar amp called "Iron Chicken".

Dr. Spira re-activated during 2006/07 when he decided to make digital remastering of "Dijagnoza". 2CD set " Arheoloski Artefakti..." appeared in 2007 containing a second disc of previously unreleased album "Dizajn za stvarni svet", which was recorded back in 1987. He gathered a new backing band for live promotion with: Predrag Kozomara (guitars), Predrag Milanović (bass), Aleksandar Miletić (keyboards), Slobodan Jurisić (drums), Ana Milanović and Sanja Bogosavljević (back vocals). Special guest appearances included Emily Jane Sarić (vocals) and Mitropa Music Project from Sweden (with Dragan Popović, ex-DAG). They played several gigs in October 2007, Belgrade.

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3.50 | 2 ratings
Dijagnoza
1981
3.86 | 2 ratings
Arheoloski Artefakti Tehnofilskih Civilizacija Proslosti Ili Naucna Fantastika Kao Zanr U Umetnickim Delima S Kraja Dvadesetog Veka
2007

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 Arheoloski Artefakti Tehnofilskih Civilizacija Proslosti Ili Naucna Fantastika Kao Zanr U Umetnickim Delima S Kraja Dvadesetog Veka by DOKTOR SPIRA I LJUDSKA BICA album cover Studio Album, 2007
3.86 | 2 ratings

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Arheoloski Artefakti Tehnofilskih Civilizacija Proslosti Ili Naucna Fantastika Kao Zanr U Umetnickim Delima S Kraja Dvadesetog Veka
Doktor Spira i Ljudska Bica Crossover Prog

Review by historian9
Forum & Site Admin Group Site Admin / JRF Team

4 stars This compilation of the first and second album brings the best of Spira's work. Even though all the labels that his music is surrounded by, like new wave, alternative and post-punk still apply, the songs are very sophisticated and experimental at times. This serves as a fair warning to prog listeners cause Spira does blend in the new wave 80's scene, a dark and underrated part of the scene that is. Listeners might catch on to some krautrock, maybe gothic and some jazz influences, people who are into COCTEAU TWINS might like something like this. Also, lyrics are important piece with more than a few songs being in a spoken word form, and even when they weren't carrying message across they were little stories on their own; so understanding the language maybe made me rate this higher.

First 11 songs from the album "Dijagnoza" ("Diagnosis") are less interesting, mostly basic new wave with remnants of acoustic folk and krautrock, with a theme of alienation throughout the album, which makes it interesting but not the jolliest of listens.

Previously unreleased second album (translated "Design For The Real World") is excellent and much more diverse, with more influences coming into the mix, world music for one. Ambient, boogie, dance and atonal music also can be mentioned as influences in the album sound, but every song is a story for itself. For instance, "Negde U Gradu" ("Somewhere In The City") is more in a electronic blues tone, "Moji Prijatelji Mi Kazu" ("My Friends Say To Me") is a dark dance influenced number, while the mouthful "Kraj avanture otimača izgubljenog kovčega na Pesčanoj planeti", (translated "End Of Lost Chest Kidnapper's Adventure On The Sand Planet") is a short but sweet ambient motive with space rock qualities that slowly degrades into an loud aggressive guitar with female chorus. PINK FLOYD influence also shows up in "Prvi Sneg" ("First Snow"). "Vruće Pile" ("Hot Chicken") is something like post-punk bands GANG OF FOUR or SHRIEKBACK but with a flute and "Molitva svetom Kamenku Katiću ("Prayer To Kamenko Katić") is a prayer reminding a bit of THROBBING GRISTLE. Whole album is all over the place like that, with even cabaret showing up as an influence.

Overall if you won't mind the language barrier and are interested in the experimental side of 80's music you might want to give this one a listen.

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