Saturday, August 29, 2015

Breakout — Karate


   Blues in Western Europe was known a long before rock music had happened. English bands playing blues standards became the first force of rock movement in sixties. In East European countries blues was known mainly as American folk music, it was played more as a kind of exercise for jazz than stand alone repertoire. In sixties, after first wave of East European rock, based predominantly on rock and roll and some elements of local folk traditions, appeared deeper interest on blues and blues-rock. In seventies next generation of independent East European rock music expressing more complex emotionality was based on stylistic solutions of British blues school, these bands gradually evolved to their own ideas of blues-rock and folk-rock.
   One of very first was Polish band Breakout formed February 1st, 1968 in Rzeszów. In fact first period in band’s history was more rock than blues, but already in these early recordings some ideas of blues were clear. The founder of the group Tadeusz Nalepa (1943-2007) became godfather of Polish blues scene. Breakout was his most famous bands although it wasn’t the only one. In 1965 he started his first band called Blackout performing songs and original songs in style of early pop rock. Nalepa was composer and lyrics came from poet Bogdan Loebl. After this group was transformed into Breakout, the style begun to change, but authors were still Nalepa and Loebl. Breakout was disbanded in 1983, but next decades Tadeusz Nalepa was reactivating band on many occasions. As his name was almost synonymously associated with this band, one of later bands was called Nalepa-Breakout. 

Breakout — Karate (1972)

   The first decade in history of the band was the period of most progressive projects. This was the time of creation blues-rock scene in Poland. During five years between 1969 and 1974 Breakout published seven studio albums. Fifth album Karate was ambitious attempt to repeat success of third album Blues published one year earlier. The lineup of Breakout was smaller than on earlier albums, including Jerzy Goleniowski on bass guitar, Józef Hajdasz on drums, Tadeusz Trzciński on harmonica and Mira Kubasińska playing maraca and leader Tadeusz Nalepa who was singing and playing guitars.
   In main part this album continues the style of earlier recordings. All songs were written by Bogdan Loebl and composed by Tadeusz Nalepa. There are two hits: Nocą puka ktoś (Someone Knocks at Night) and Rzeka dzieciństwa (River of Childhood). Album Karate became even bigger success, giving some examples of blues-rock instrumental improvisations for the first time in Polish rock. Title song is instrumental composition alluding to jamming riffs in style of American blues-rock bands. Solos by Tadeusz Trzciński and Józef Hajdasz on drums were something new in Polish rock. This one was a clear sign of band’s aspirations to evolve in more progressive direction. Four stars for overall effect and importance in Polish blues.

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