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Top Pick: Slovak rap emerges from the underground

Slovakia, one is probably not surprised to hear, has a fledgling rap tradition and a minuscule hip-hop culture. For a Slovak rapper, opportunities to emerge from the underground and play larger venues without having lyrics censored come few and far between.
While the first Slovak rap score is said to have appeared in 1988, the first uncensored CD compilation of Slovak rappers, 'Zvuk ulice' (Voice of the Street), was only released at the end of 2000. Rap fans wishing to check out the scene will now be given the chance to do so when five different local groups perform at one venue on the same evening. This Slovak rap evening will be held Friday, Febrary 9, in the Petržalka culture house Lúky.


DJ R.o.b.o. spins at an underground club.
photo: Courtesy Lúza

Slovakia, one is probably not surprised to hear, has a fledgling rap tradition and a minuscule hip-hop culture. For a Slovak rapper, opportunities to emerge from the underground and play larger venues without having lyrics censored come few and far between.

While the first Slovak rap score is said to have appeared in 1988, the first uncensored CD compilation of Slovak rappers, 'Zvuk ulice' (Voice of the Street), was only released at the end of 2000. Rap fans wishing to check out the scene will now be given the chance to do so when five different local groups perform at one venue on the same evening. This Slovak rap evening will be held Friday, Febrary 9, in the Petržalka culture house Lúky.

All performing rappers have only a few years of experience and most of them are just trying to open minds to the new international rap trend. Slovak rappers say they are inspired by their American counterparts and add that although rap is gaining popularity around the country, Bratislava is where it's at.

Názov Stavby (Construction Name) will be the most experienced act of the evening. Usually two separate groups, called Lúza and Drvivá menšina, they perform together with the same DJ (DJ R.o.b.o.) for live performances, who samples old Slovak funk and jazz, such as Gejza Dusák.

The lyrics are always unique and original, since each rapper writes his own (there appear to be no female Slovak rappers yet), reflecting his individual understanding of life.

Two groups, Flaps and Krakalla, will bring a more relaxed and friendly atmosphere to the evening while the remaining pair of groups, Heslo and Psyché, are the youngest of the evening's acts, and will attempt to establish themselves in the underground scene.

Tickets for the February 9 events can be purchased at the door of the Dom Kultúry Lúky (Culture House Lúky) on Vígľašská 1 in Petržalka for 80 crowns.


By Zuzana Habšudová

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