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Zeljko Bebek and Podium

Symphonic Prog

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Zeljko Bebek and Podium ... Skoro da smo isti album cover
3.00 | 8 ratings | 1 reviews | 0% 5 stars

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Studio Album, released in 1978

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. (Prolog) . Skoro da smo isti (6:46)
2. I tako to ostaje (6:08)
3. Podijum (4:21)
4. Sruseni zidovi (4:24)
5. Upitaj sebe (3:39)
6. U tisini (8:51)
- a. Reminiscencija
- b. Epilog

Total time 34:09

Line-up / Musicians

- Zeljko Bebek / vocals, bass
- Eduard Mihael Bogeljić / guitar
- Dragan Điđi Jankelić / drums
- Neven Pocrnjić / keyboards
- The Zagreb Philharmonic / orchestral strings

Releases information

LP Jugoton LSY-68047 (1978 Yugoslavia)

Thanks to seyo for the addition
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ZELJKO BEBEK AND PODIUM ... Skoro da smo isti ratings distribution

(8 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(0%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(12%)
Good, but non-essential (75%)
Collectors/fans only (12%)
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)

ZELJKO BEBEK AND PODIUM ... Skoro da smo isti reviews

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Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Seyo
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars BIJELO DUGME was on the verge of break-up in mid-1978. During the leader Goran Bregovic's absence when he served the military, other band members tried to pursue their solo ambitions. Drummer Ivandic and keyboardist Ristovski recorded their prog-influenced duet LP "Stizemo", while vocalist Zeljko Bebek gathered a group of musicians dubbed "Podium" to make his debut solo album. Guitarist Edo Bogeljic was his old pal from the 1960s band KODEKSI, while drummer Dragan Jankelic was a known session player with many local Sarajevo groups. Only keyboard player Neven Pocrnjic was a relatively unknown.

The album titled "...Skoro da smo isti" (...Almost We Are the Same) is a sonically compact, concept-like effort. Prologue and Epilogue contain similar background noises of urban traffic rush hour, and in between these, the tracks frequently segue into one another, bringing similar feels without much dynamic or stylistic diversity. Regarding style, symphonic prog rock influence (especially that of GENESIS) is obvious, particularly in the treatment of keyboards (organ and electric piano), guitar leads and unusual rhythm patterns. Arrangements featuring Zagreb Philharmonic Orchestra, often citing some familiar classical pieces, are a bit awkward and out of place, but these also provide a strong symphonic-like sensation. "I tako to ostaje" (And So It Remains) begins with a Floydesque bass pattern similar to "One of These Days", which later, after the guitar jumps in, transforms into an Uriah/Purplesque heavy prog style. "Sruseni zidovi" (Walls Torn Down) with its reggae-like rhythms and catchy guitar and piano riffs is a closest thing to a hit, which never was. The closer "U tisini" (In Silence) starts in excellent way with very nice semi-psychedelic atmosphere dominated by GENESIS-like keyboards, but from the mid-section, when strings start repeating a not so engaging melody, the composition looses fuel and the listener becomes regretting that the album did not succeed to attract his/her attention throughout. Bebek himself is in a good singing condition and he also more than proficiently handled the bass guitar.

Overall, the A-side of the original vinyl is much better and all three tracks are worthy hearing for prog connoisseurs. The B-side looses track a bit, is not so appealing and many musical themes are repeated from A-side. Upon its release, critics largely panned the album, the fans of BIJELO DUGME ignored it (the album allegedly sold only in about 5 000 copies at the time when DUGME albums reached 300 000 mark) and live promotion never happened. It remained an obscure and largely forgotten effort in light of the later much more pop-commercial career of both Zeljko Bebek and BIJELO DUGME. However, Bregovic himself praised the material as Bebek's authentic effort to express himself unconstrained by DUGME obligations. Bregovic also seemingly "borrowed" both the idea to use symphonic strings to a much better results and Jankelić' percussion services for the upcoming, critically acclaimed DUGME album "Bitanga i princeza" in 1979. So, here and there, this album definitely deserves a spin or two. MY RATING: 3,5/5

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