The Slovenia Times

Siddharta: We Know Every Step We Take, We Understand Every Move We Make



They have broken all the rules of pop music in Slovenia and declare "There are no bigger Gods above, its only us who have got the show'. September 13th was a profound culmination of their musical vision - they stole the virginity of the last concert venue in the country, selling out Bezigrad stadium. This was the first step towards their dream - of breaking into the wider world market. What follows is the "confession" of two members of the band - drummer Bostjan and saxophone player Cene. To begin with -many things have been written about the Siddharta phenomenon - what would be your explanation, your point of view for your success? We think that everything that has happened has been more or less spontaneous. When we established the band, we didn't think much about our future. Our intention was to create music we liked - to be recognized for a sound that was completely our own. There was no strict plan that we had to follow at all costs. Music was our priority and that was the main path for our break through. Of course, there was a lot of unnoticed hard work and practice before we made our first step onto the music scene. We also haven't forgotten the very important role of building a supportive organization around the band including public relations. So we can't overlook the huge machinery that stands behind the band... That's true. Somebody must show you how to survive in the world of the media, where you have to go, what you have to do, how to be successful in any way you can. When everything becomes so serious, like it is now in our case, you can't be spontaneous anymore. Then you have to plan. You achieved success with music, that is atypical of the Slovenian music scene , and which has overturned the musical clich's of the last decade. Maybe the main reason for our popularity is precisely because we saw a space in the music industry in our country. Old rock, which was played in former Yugoslavia had slowly faded away, and the market was being flooded with pop music that was all the same and obviously no one had the courage to create rock music in a slightly different way. The public was longing for something new and we just filled a gap that was there. How do you find a consensus between Siddharta as a music group and Siddharta as an institution? The institution is our background, which our public can't see, but always feels the presence of. However at the same time, the institution is mainly separate from the band and its creativeness. To be sincere, we keep a distance from the institution in a certain way. The organization consumes a lot of time. In the early days, we used to take care of everything, but now it would be impossible to do that. We are a band and we do what we are best at - and that is music. How did you manage to orientate yourself in a minor and mostly tasteless domestic music market? Irrespective of the place - minor or major - you have to examine what's going on. When you find your course, you can decide where to go and who you'll have to deal with. In a way you have to control the media. Our market is relatively small, so you have to keep in mind, that public appearances aren't our every day routine. With that intention, we just disappear from the public for a while to be sure that people won't get tired of us. We are not confused and that's very important. You have also worked with Laibach, the most successful Slovenian band internationally. How did it happen? Our first co-operation was on a remix project called Silikon-Delta. At that time we invited the band to remix one of our songs and they chose the song 'B Machina'. After that, they also decided to put the same song on their new album 'WAT'. That has been the only co-operation between our bands, but you never know what the future might bring. Venom, a song from the last album, could be seen as a sublime attack on the local media... Yes, it's true. Sometimes the Slovenian public is a little bit na?ve, because they accept everything that is offered to them. Music is not a machine that you fill with gasoline and then it works spontaneously. You have to invest something in your music, and that song derides everything that's going on around. Music must have its content and that's our main goal. After your breakthrough, many Siddharta clones appeared - but none of them have actually made it. Is Slovenia only big enough for one band like yours? Our market is small and we can't deny it. Therefore it is more important to be original, to have a unique music approach - and you have to believe in what you do. Of course, there are bands which are trying to imitate us, but that's not good for them. It's logical in a way, but not good. Nevertheless, this is not our problem. We create our own image and express our own feelings and knowledge. Your music takes an eclectic approach, which leaps from genre to genre. What kind of arrangement or consensus do you make within the band and do you fear that you might mix too many influences so that the final result will be hard to digest? Every song on the last album has a different colour, from head-banging metal to tender, loving ballads. Every song takes time and production, which represents the real aspiration of its meaning. Through the years you find out that the less you complicate things, the better results you get. When the songs are taking shape, we have to settle for a compromise, what we want to tell and how to be effective with it. It is obvious that if there are too many approaches in a song, that song will lose its true meaning. If we compare all three albums, the last one contains the most varied musical styles. But these styles change during the songs and emphasize just a small part, an emotional peak of that particular song. It is said that listeners do not understand everything you sing, that the articulation is incomprehensible. We think that all the lyrics are quite understandable, maybe not on the first listening. Perhaps our fans need a little bit more time to recognize all the meanings of the words. The lyrics are also not so simple to memorize if you hear a song once. You cannot concentrate on everything that music gives at the same time. You have to discover. Sometimes it's a similar process when you are watching a video. You can be so impressed by visuals, that you don't know which song you are listening to. Now, that you have finally 'woken up' from the September 13th concert, what do you think about breaking the 'myth' of Bezigrad stadium. First of all, we have to express that we were very enthusiastic about the concert but at the same time we have to point out that this was not only a concert but also a project, which lasted more than a month. We hope that it is not an unrepeatable - unique experience, that can't properly be expressed in words. Siddharta has set a new standard for pop culture in Slovenia. What will the band do next? We will attempt to go abroad, play in Europe and then across the Atlantic Ocean. We have 22 concerts across Slovenia between now and the New Year. After that we will work intensively on breaking into new markets.


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