Balos, Bulgar (and other steps)

Balos, Bulgar EP:

Set for release on April 23rd, ‘Balos, Bulgar (and other steps)’ is a whistle-stop musical tour of Eastern European folk, klezmer medleys and gypsy-esque improvisations. Recorded in a single day at Premises Studios in London back in December 2020 (in between two UK winter lockdowns), the EP marks a dramatic change for a band known for their loud and lively brand of ‘klezmer-punk’. The EP was made in collaboration with esteemed cimbalom player, Janos Kallai (who trained with the Hungarian Radio Gypsy Orchestra).

“We decided to make a more traditional sounding record this time” explains the bands double bassist, Tom Bailey, “with no gigs on the horizon for anyone, it meant we suddenly all had a bit of extra time to do these sorts of collaborations with some amazing musicians that we would normally wouldn’t get the chance to work with”

“Also, we had the bleak realisation that our usual audiences – big crowds of sweaty dancing folk – might not be coming back for a while…”

All the songs are entirely instrumental and although they still speed along with the band’s usual frenetic energy, they also sound gentler and more refined than anything Buffo’s Wake has recorded before. With nods to classical music, and drawing on klezmer folk tunes and gypsy-jazz manouche guitar licks, it’s a recording that really highlights the musicianship on display in the band. The EP will be released on all major streaming platforms on April 24th 2021.

The band will accompany this release with a seated and socially distanced concert at St Luke’s Church in Brighton on June 11th 2021.

Buffo’s Wake:

Buffo’s Wake – Brighton’s very own ‘klezmer-punk’ institution – have been on a relentless touring schedule since their inception back in 2010. Their energetic and chaotic live shows have taken the band all over the world; through 22 countries and 15 US states. 2020 was set to be their busiest year yet, following the release of their 2nd studio album at the end of 2019.

Well, we all know what happened next – 2020 decided it had other plans – but even with no gigs on the horizon, the world in lockdown (and the band’s drummer relocating to Tunisia just before the pandemic!), they managed to squeeze in a single day of recording to produce this collaborative EP of world-folk.

Read more about Buffo’s Wake here.

Download the EP here.

Buffo’s Wake performing in The Coronet, London, 2017

Balos, Bulgar (and other steps) cover art.