Top 5 Bulgarian Music Artists

I hate when someone says there is no good Bulgarian music. There are so many amazing Bulgarian artists. Some of them are worldwide known. Here is a list of my top 5:

1. Kottarashky

Who hasn’t heard of Kottarashky and how? Seriously, his music streams in most of the contemporary coffee shops and bars in Sofia. A music critic of the Independent described his “What you hear feels like a dislocated dream ride through the pungent soundscape of night-time Sofia.” I couldn’t agree more, but if I might add – Kottarashky’s songs are just the soundtrack of every Bulgarian camping experience, every road trip, all of the beaches and just all the chill days at home. I see him as the Bulgarian version of Parov Stelar, as his music boosts the positive vibe on all occasions. Kottarashky’s music gives freedom of the mind and the body. You can sit and relax while listening or you can dance your feet off. The choice is yours.

 

 

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2. Ivan Shopov

Balkansky, Cooh, Ivan Shopov. He goes by many names and does many things – drum n’ bass, dubstep, even graphic art. His stuff is so diverse, I really can’t put it in one general description. I could say his music is intense. Even his calm and chill works are so emotionally intense. Each song feels like a story. Anyways, I have been listening to him since 10th grade (7-8 years) and he is just constantly evolving and getting better. Ivan Shopov is without a doubt one of the pioneers of fusing modern genres and Bulgarian motives. Most young Bulgarians have probably heard of him or they have seriously missed out. For the latter:

 

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3. The Mystery of Bulgarian Voices

Where shall I start?! The Mystery of Bulgarian Voices is a women’s only choir created in the early 1950s. That’s almost 70 years. It’s insane. They won a Grammy award and are just amazing. I can’t tone it down, sorry. Recently they did a collaboration with Lisa Gerrard from Dead Can Dance, who is probably one of my favourite artists of all time. If you haven’t heard of her perhaps, you’ve watched Gladiator or Baraka – she did the soundtracks for those. She said The Mystery of Bulgarian Voices inspired her in her early career when she didn’t quite have a muse. The Mystery of Bulgarian voices preserved an ancient sound that inspires the mind, awakens the soul and takes you on a cosmic journey:

 

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4. Nasekomix

For all the melancholics out there, this is it. It’s one of those addictive soundings: once you are hooked – there’s no turning back. I repeatedly listen to their few songs over and over again, until I dive to the bottom of my own pain.  Nasekomix are terrifying and amazing. They remind me of my own mortality every time I listen to them. Unfortunately, we will never get to witness a live concert, as Andronia Popova, the founder and vocalist of Nasekomix is not present anymore. The lyrics of her songs became prophetic when she passed away and completely crushed her fans. We can pay our respects by never forgetting her timeless art:

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5. Strugare

Strugare is filling a major gap here in Bulgaria. He is something all of the modern music-addicts have been waiting for. “Troyanko (Strugare) is the perfect dude” as he described himself in one of his songs. He is fresh, good-looking, talented and controversial for our conservative post-soviet society.  His sarcasm and self-irony come at the right time. I readily await his future projects and while waiting just play this:

 

 

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Art in Bulgaria is evolving right now and it feels like we live in a modern Renaissance. There are so many more names that I’d like to mention like Oratnitza, Isihiya, JEREMY?, Dead Man’s Hat… Probably many that I haven’t even heard of! Share in the comments your favourite ones, I can’t wait to listen to something new.

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