On August 31, a 20-minute album is released on a small You Tube channel. Only 322 people have listened to it so far, you’re unlikely to be among them.
On September 3, in a small Sofia hall, this group gave a concert, along with two others similar to it. It is unlikely that you were in the audience, the hall has a hundred seats.
Yesterday, on the 4th of September, in an even smaller hall at the Plovdiv Music School, these same three groups played a concert that probably almost no one knew about.
Why am I bothering you with them then?
Because for me, who is obsessed with the subject of music and dare to say that I have senses for it, this small concert in Plovdiv in front of an audience of thirty people is the musical event of the last few years.
And since yesterday evening I’ve been playing this little album continuously, I’ve listened to it dozens of times already. And I dare to say that it is among the most interesting and pleasant albums ever made in our country.
The group is called Aegonia. Their instruments are cello, bassoon, clarinet, guitar, violin, double bass and tambourine. They don’t just play. They tell stories. From Celtic and Bulgarian folklore. About the moonwalk and encounters with the self-divine.
Young people in their twenties. Real musicians who master their instruments. They live in the music. They write their own texts. They make up their stories.
They are not stars yet. They are terribly disturbing. They blush when I try to tell them how amazing they are and sheepishly explain that they messed up on one of the pieces and actually have a lot to learn.
They are on stage before them Freya.
Can you believe this song is Bulgarian?
It’s actually theirs, author’s. In Norwegian. Text Teodora Stoyanova – Freya, music – again she and her husband Dobrin Stoyanov. All of their songs are in Norwegian, except for one which is in Finnish. Their instruments are a guitar, a tambourine and a Norwegian lyre, which a friend of theirs made especially for them.
In fact, Freya has a way of knowing them. After the concert, I looked for something techno on YouTube and it turned out that they were on some reality TV show. Some outraged blonde jury woman I don’t recognize angrily interrupts them mid-song. A few seconds later, the audience went into raptures and the rest of the jury let them continue.
So much for the musical environment in Bulgaria. However, let’s remember that Yuriy Shevchuk from DDT is had a triple in Russian, and Einstein – a couple in physics.
Both Freya and Aegonia were warm-up bands for another musical phenomenon with Bulgarian participation, which we miss with our ears wide shut, as if the Bulgarian scene is full of stars and it is not worth mentioning them.
Cena Koev is the Bulgarian in the multinational Vivaldi Metal Project – a spectacular project of the mysterious Italian Maestro Misteria, which gathers dozens of stars to write and perform symphonic metal based on classical composers such as Vivaldi, Schubert, Mozart and Albignoni. The main composer of Vivaldi Metal Project is Cena’s husband Zhivko Koev.
The two lived in Spain until recently, recently returned to Bulgaria and now live in Burgas. A few months ago, Tsena Koev (this is how it is spelled in English and with this name is already in a number of international charts) released his first album and Maestro Mysteriya came to Bulgaria to present it together.
In 2019, I was a jury in the Web Report competition. We were enchanted by the text of colleague Rayko Baichev from Actualno “Dialogue of the Century: What’s up bro? It’s okay bro. What’s up bro? It’s okay bro.” From this text I found out about some Angel and Susanita, who were very popular.
Yesterday I spent the whole day in Plovdiv waiting for Cena’s concert. On the adjacent park bench, a boy and a girl of 18 (I overheard that this would be their first vote), were talking… about politics. Reasoned, competent, citing Western and Russian publications with details that even I had forgotten. Actually they were having sex, the policy was to keep the conversation going.
An hour later, in the courtyard of the music school, other young people were talking… about books. They competed to see who had read what. (It’s not in Bulgarian yet, but it came out in English the other day…). By the way, the singer of Aegonia is an author of fantasy books herself under the name Nea Stand. (I learned this from BNT, which turned out to be they were the first to notice them.)
And a little later, like a complete moron, I couldn’t join the conversation about how I don’t know which ancient instrument would fit into I can’t remember which harmony. A conversation between children, or let’s say – young people, in their twenties.
There should be a conclusion here. But there is no conclusion. I was just lucky enough to fall into a beautiful fairy tale world of young people yesterday that I had not even known about. And I wanted to share it with you.