A weekend-long celebration of global sounds mixing roots and modern, local and global.
Dakhabrakha’s Ukrainian “ethno chaos” combines beguiling harmonies, ecstatic beats and brilliant theatrics. Dengue Fever bring a powerful blend of 60’s Cambodian pop, psychedelic rock and global grooves.
Ukrainian “ethno chaos” band DakhaBrakha craft stunning new sonic worlds for traditional songs, reinventing their heritage with a keen ear for contemporary resonances. With one foot in the urban avant-garde and the other foot in Ukrainian village culture, DakhaBrakha shows the full fury and sensuality of some of Eastern Europe’s most breathtaking folklore. Their musical spectrum ranges from intimate to riotous, plumbing the depths of contemporary roots and rhythms, and inspiring “cultural and artistic liberation.” Accompanied by Indian, Arabic, African, Russian and Australian traditional instrumentation, the quartet’s astonishingly powerful and uncompromising vocal range creates a trans-national sound rooted in Ukrainian culture, presented with a strong theatrical visual element. bq. bq. Best Breakout: Ukrainian folkdrone Björkpunk quartet Dakhabrakha went into Bonnaroo as unknowns but ended up with one of the most receptive crowds of the weekend.” Best Things We Saw at Bonnaroo 2014,- Rolling Stone
“Before it was partly Cambodian and partly indie rock…Now it’s 100 percent both.” Widely recognized for their trademark blend of 60’s Cambodian pop, garage and psychedelic rock, Dengue Fever’s have cross-pollinated their musical palette even further to include Khmer rap, Latin grooves, Afro percussion, layered Stax-like horns and more. They have performed in front of thousands of fans at such noted music festivals as WOMAD, globalFEST, WOMEX, Glastonbury, Transmusicales and Roskilde. Their songs have appeared in films such as City of Ghosts, Jim Jarmusch’s Broken Flowers, The Hangover 2, the Showtime series Weeds, and the HBO’s hit series True Blood (who named an entire episode after one of their songs). Dengue Fever is Cambodian songstress Chhom Nimol, Zac Holtzman (guitar/vocals), Ethan Holtzman (keyboards), Senon Williams (bass), Paul Smith (drums) and David Ralicke (horns).
It’s hard not to get caught up in the magic it weaves. Founded by former underground theater performers, DakhaBrakha possesses an incredible stage presence that transcends its eclectic repertoire and instrumentation…The group mixes everything from punk-pop to traditional Ukrainian songs in cool yet beguiling textures, often with the close harmonies usually associated with Balkan music. But it’s really the live shows that take DakhaBrakha beyond mere curiosity to utter brilliance. – NPR
Dengue Fever’s trenchant grooves and textures really draw you in. With minor keys and ominous aesthetics, they create an irresistible world in which Nimol’s liquid voice rains. At the same time, the band can pull out the stops with glorious surf rock bravado. Dengue Fever deserve credit for sticking with an offbeat idea and making it work for over a decade. More than just good fun, this music has power. – Banning Eyre, NPR