Umbra is the solo project of Belgrade-based Marija Balubdžić. Umbra expresses the dichotomy between her need for noise and melodies, meditative vs. macabre moods, heaven and hell. “They were a public duel between the voice and looper, with only a vague idea of structure that pre-existed,” she says about the tracks on her new album Unglued. Umbra's songs (as “tracks” wouldn't do them justice) were largely born of live performances, and capture the raw essence of improvisation. The voice becomes the expressive tool appearing in its various guises: utilitarian and at other times, taking the centre stage. The lyrics, sung both in Serbian and English, are existential mantras.
"Balubdžić has told the shadow history of her city, with herself at the heart of it. "
"Her music is far more than your average ‘looper music’ though, never dealing in emotion as simple as the bliss-outs that litter the sub genre (eg Julianna Barwick) or solely in chaotic noise."
"The success of this cassette comes from the diversity of tracks and the sweetness of Marija’s voice – no shrieking or grotesque shoutings here, just a minute attention to well-balanced experiments, solid textures and a paean to the glory of the female voice."
"Unglued sticks like glue – album se drži još jače kao celina sa ponovljenim slušanjima. Ne propustite ovo izdanje sjajne eksperimentalne kantautorke čija muzika kanališe hrabrost i sirovost kakvu jedino može da izrodi ženska vokalna improvizacija " Popscotch.org
released September 15, 2017
A1, A3, B2
Live recordings of improvised pieces for voice and looper, performed at three different concerts in Belgrade: DKSG (Jan 2016; A1), Kvaka 22, (May 2016 - A3), and Drugstore (Jan 2016 - B2).
A2, A4, B1, B3, B4
Songs recorded at home.
artwork: Andreas Klotz
mastering: Marija Balubdžić
design: Margaréta Fehér
Made by Headless Duplicated Tapes, Prague
2017, Baba Vanga