Myslovitz Długość Dźwięku Samotności
Myslovitz is a Polish rock band formed by Artur Rojek in 1992. Originally the band's name was "The Freshman", as in the film of the same title, starring Marlon
Brando and Matthew Broderick. Rojek has always had a fascination with film and it would become the groundwork for his musical career. In 1995, they
changed the band's name to Myslovitz, after their hometown, in Upper Silesia (southern Poland.) Their music combines elements of college rock, shoegazing,
and Britpop. Their initial style could be described as a debonair punk sound.
Rojek claimed that when he started the band he had no idea how to make good music, nor play the guitar. A great understatement. The band did very well
and captured wide-spread media attention, winning several prestigious music competitions. By 1994 they produced their first recording at Radio Lodz and
were signed by MJM Music Pl to record their debut album with British producer Ian Harris. Harris had produced also for Joy Division, New Order and The
Exploited. When their album was finally released in 1995 it was met with abundant praise and was declared the "Debut of the Year" by major magazines.
Myslovitz' popularity according to some critics was compared to that of Oasis whose fame had also sky-rocketed at the same time.
In 1996, Przemek Myszor joined Myslovitz as their third guitarist and keyboarder. They released a second album called Sun Machine with Sony Music Polska.
Two of its singles became smash hits. - Z twarzą Marilyn Monroe ("With a Face Like...") and Peggy Brown- both songs being very "Beatle-esque".
A third album was released in the following year, Z rozmyślań przy śniadaniu ("From meditations over breakfast") and demonstrated a distinctly more
sophisticated and "polished" sound with deeper and more introspective lyrics. At this time, Myslovitz's passion for the cinema, made its presence felt in his lyrics
and sound tracks. In 1998 they recorded the track to To nie był film ("That was no film") for the Polish movie Młode wilki ½ ("Young Wolves ½"). Their lyrics,
accompanied by a music video were explicit in referring to a wave of violent crimes committed by juvenile delinquents, and raised quite a lot of controversy in
the media. The Polish broadcasting networks clamored to boycott the video and the song from being aired. Nevertheless, Myslovitz won a Fryderyk award for
"Video of the Year". They went on tour and performed shows in Sweden, Germany as well as in the United States.
In 1999, their fourth album went Platinum; Miłość w czasach popkultury ("Love in The Time of Pop Culture"), selling 150,000 copies. In short time the album
achieved Double Platinum status in Poland. The single Długość dzwięku samotności ("[The Length of the] Sound of Solitude") became an instant hit and the
largest success so far.
In 2000 Myslovitz wrote the soundtrack for the movie, The Big Animal (Duże zwierzę) starring the legendary Polish actor and director Jerzy Stuhr. The song
was Polowanie na wielblada ("Camel Hunting"). In addition, he wrote two other tracks for the movie, "That's Us" (To my).
In 2002, another album entitled "Korova Milky Bar" was produced. It's music created an almost depressive mood. But sales surpassed even that of their
previous album with singles, Acidland and Sprzedawcy marzeń ("Dreamsellers") repeating the success of Długość. Incidentally, the title being a allusion to
Kubricks class film " A Clockwork Orange".
Why was this new album so hugely popular? Critics surmised that the music reflected the "resignative-recessive mood" of Polish society, an appraisal
confirmed by Przemek Myszor, the groups guitarist: In an interview with he Montreal Mirror, he elaborated: "For us, the Korova Milky Bar [from Kubrick's 'A
Clockwork Orange'] is a place where something different may happen to your mind. It's a place like today's Poland. You know, Poland is a place where very
strange things happen to your mind. It's a country full of crisis and everything around you is very sad, very dark, very fucked. There is an economic crisis here.
People don't have money, politics are fucked. The lyrics on our record are sad because of this. We sing a lot about being in a strange state of mind"
Myslovitz made appearances at several festivals throughout Europe, as well as the German festival for Alternative acts (Bizarre) and the prestigious Montreux
Jazz Festival. In addition they played backup to Iggy Pop and the Simple Minds on their European tours that year. And received an MTV Europe Music Awards
in Barcelona for Best Polish Act. They were nominated twice in previous years..
In the same year Myslovitz signed a contract with Pomaton, a division of EMI Polish, and produced their first English language re-recording of Korova Milky
Bar. It was released in 27 countries including Germany, the Netherlands, Belgium, Switzerland, France, Spain, Russia, Turkey, and South Africa. An English
version was also made of older tracks such as Długość dźwięku samotności" (The Length of the Sound of Solitude). A video clip of this song was directed by
Janusz Kaminski. Kaminski is a Polish cinematographer who achieved success in Hollywood for his work on Schindler's List, and Saving Private Ryan. He won
an Academy Award for Best Cinematography.
Kaminski declined an offer from Martin Scorsese, and chose instead to work with Myslovitz. Kaminski openly declared himself to be an admirer of Myslovitz
saying "I only work for Spielberg and Myslovitz [...] Money is not a factor in this. What one doesn't do for one's idols!" The video was played frequently on MTV
Europe and the album received rave reviews in the European music press, especially in Germany. Radio airplay however was minimal and prevented
Myslovitz from reaching the top of the charts outside Poland.
Also in 2003, Myslovitz collaborated again with Stuhr and created a title song for his film, "Tomorrow's Weather" and even appeared in cameo roles in the
movie as a neophyte monks. They also performed with Travis and Skin (of Skunk Anansie fame) on The Road to Edinburgh, where they received another
MTV Europe Music Award for Best Polish Act.
In 2004, Myslovitz toured Europe again, beginning with a concert for WDR, the German public radio and television broadcasting company. They played again
for Iggy Pop & The Stooges, for The Corrs in the UK, and European continent, in addition to playing smaller venues and festivals, including the largest Swiss
open air event in St. Gallen.
In December 2004, EMI released Myslovitz's album entitled Skalary, mieczyki, neonki ("Angelfish, swordtails, neon tetras"). Its tracks contained outtakes from
the Korova Milky Bar recording sessions that were "instrumental soundscapes with an utterly melancholic (pyschedlic) mood to them." On this album Myslovitz
bears a close resemblance to Radiohead, and even Pink Floyd. At the same time, the band completed recording another album called Happiness Is Easy
(which was released in May 2006)
It is no exaggeration to say that Myslovitz's success had a considerable influence in the revitalisation of the Polish alternative rock scene in the late 1990s and
early 2000s. They spawned bands such as eM, Kombajn do zbierania kur po wioskach, and Lili Marlene.
In the tradition of American rock bands of the 70s, Myslovitz, like Chicago, Boston, took their names from their hometowns, though the band considered
Myslowice rather provincial. A liberal Catholic weekly journal called the Tygodnik Powszechny wrote that "coming from Mysłowice, the band entered the new,
wonderful world of show business with a small-town complex".
In an interview with the Montreal Mirror Guitarist Przemek Myszor called Mysłowice "depressing" [...] like all small towns are. In Poland there are few big towns.
And by big town I mean where there is culture. You know, towns that have big clubs. We still live in Mysłowice, but this is a city to die in, not to live. Our region
of Poland, in the south, is very industrial, coal mining, hard industry". For statements like these, Myslovitz were sometimes chided for fouling their own nest;
paradoxically, however, they even helped to sanitize the city's image. Says the music journalist Leszek Gnoiński (author of the "standard work" Encyklopedia
Polskiego Rocka): "Mysłowice is a city of some 100,000 people. Until the early 90s, it was known, at best, for its coalmines - until these five guys with guitars
turned the mining town into a place that could be located on any map of Poland." Myslovitz's impact was one factor which stimulated the development of a local
music scene. By now, with bands such as Negatyw and Supermusic, a lively Alternative rock and hip hop culture is flourishing in Mysłowice. Far away from
Warsaw as the centre of the commercial Polish entertainment industry, it even benefits from its image as being peripheral, obscure, and non-commercial - not
totally unlike the British Manchester phenomenon in the 1980s and early 1990s
Artur Rojek - lead vocals, guitar
Wojciech (Wojtek) Powaga - guitar
Przemysław (Przemek) Myszor - guitar, keyboards
Jacek Kuderski - bass guitar
Wojciech (Wojtek, "Lala") Kuderski - drums, percussion
Sun Machine (1996)
Z rozmyślań przy śniadaniu (1997)
Miłość w czasach popkultury (1999)
Korova Milky Bar (2002)
The Best Of (2003)
Korova Milky Bar (English version) (2003)
Skalary, mieczyki, neonki (2004)
Happiness Is Easy (2006)
1995 "Zgon" (Demise)
1995 "Krótka piosenka o miłości" (A Short Song About Love)
1996 "Maj" (May)
1996 "Z twarzą Marilyn Monroe" (With Marilyn Monroe's Face)
1996 "Historia jednej znajomości" (The Story of an Acquaintance)
1996 "Peggy Brown"
1997 "Blue Velvet"
1997 "Scenariusz dla moich sąsiadów" (A Script for My Neighbours)
1998 "To nie był film" (That Was Not a Film)
1998 "Zwykły dzień" (Common Day)
1999 "Długość dźwięku samotności" (The Length of the Sound of Solitude)
2000 "My" (Us)
2000 "Chłopcy" (Boys)
2000 " Polowanie na wielbłąda" (Camel-Hunting)
2000 "Dla Ciebie" (For You)
2002 "Acidland "
2002 "Sprzedawcy marzeń" (Dreamsellers)
2003 "Chciałbym umrzeć z miłości" (I'd Like to Die of Love)
2003 "Kraków" (Myslovitz vs. Marek Grechuta & Anawa) (Cracow)
2003 "Behind Closed Eyes"
2003 "Acidland" (English version)
2003 "Sound of Solitude"
2004 "Życie to surfing" (Life is surfing)
2006 "Mieć czy być" (Have or be)
2006 "Nocnym pociągiem aż do końca świata" (By the Night Train to the End of the World)
2007 "W deszczu maleńkich żółtych kwiatów" (In the Rain of Tiny, Yellow Flowers)
2003 O sobie 1995-2001 (Sony Music Polska) [About themselves]
2004 Życie to surfing (Capitol/EMI Pomaton) [Life is surfing]
2006 Happiness is easy live