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Pardubice, Pardubický Kraj, Czech Republic | Established. Jan 01, 2005 | MAJOR

Pardubice, Pardubický Kraj, Czech Republic | MAJOR
Established on Jan, 2005
Duo Alternative Pop


This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos




Usually, I feel confident that regular listeners and/or readers have come to recognise the direction and slant of my taste, and that a recommendation of an album of the month will be consistent with what I have recommended before.

This record defies my own expectations of my usual preferences, so I can’t be confident about anything, only report my reactions to it. I like its playfulness, its capacity to surprise without trying to be silly or quirky just for the sake of it. There are many flavours, with vocals, guitars and saxophones leaving the longest-lasting taste and any number of tunes which confirm their catchiness each time the album is played again.

My World Service producer Radek Boschetty, who is himself Czech, reports that DVA means Pair in Czech, reflecting that there are two protagonists, who refer to themselves as He and She, no names. The songs appear to be sung in a made-up language, something between ‘Bad Hungarian’ and ‘Imaginary Inuit’, as they convey the experiences and thoughts of people who live inside the Arctic Circle.

On first receiving an album, I usually work my way through it with a series of asterisks against the contenders to be played on the radio. On an album of 14 tracks, three or four stars would normally be a good score. On this one, most of the tracks earned stars and have been played one by one, with ‘Dua Dua’ earning repeat plays after its melody got stuck in my head.

Not much more to say, except I have also been listening to Moondog’s two Honest Jons compilations recently, and the three albums are more or less interchangeable.
As we area about to enter September, this is turning out to be my album of the year.

There remains the difficulty of getting hold of a record with no UK distributor, which is simply solved by visiting the website of the group’s label, Indies, where there are links for purchasing the CD itself and downloading songs one by one: http://www.indies.eu/en/alba/214/fonok/?idn=1



Described by the record label as ‘Non existent nations Folklore’ or, Tango-cabaret-circus pop-kitchen beatbox or freakfolk, this CD features 15 tracks described by the artists as ‘Songs of non-existent bands in non-existent world languages put together during travels through the kitchen. Each non existent region has its own representative each non-existent language its own translation’

With sparing use of saxophone, clarinet, melodica, guitar and child’s piano the music on this CD could easily be total nonsense but is in fact strangely compelling. The duo, Barbora Kratochvílová and Jan Kratochvíl from the Czech Republic, recorded this album combining human voices and acoustic instruments without using any fancy recording equipment back in their North Bohemian village of Padouchov. It was later mixed and mastered in Germany by well regarded musician and producer, Jayrope from Berlin.

Although the production uses a variety of loops and reversals this CD is thankfully not overproduced nor full of technical wizardry, instead the clarity of the voices and instruments break through to make the whole a triumphal journey around the imaginary world that is Jan & Barbora’s kitchen. And part of the fun of this album is trying to guess which (non existent) country each of these tracks is supposed to represent, and whose (non existent) language is being parodied.

These songs are not so much copies of world music styles but parodies of those styles, for instance ‘France Trance’ sounds like it has used references from Gershwin’s ‘Summertime’ sung in a faux French sounding language to a louche burlesque soundtrack and featuring some very nice clarinet work. Sounds mad but it works!

Luckily the music seldom strays too far into the bizarre dream-world in which this couple exist and overall the album makes an unusual but pleasing journey around their kitchen of world flavours. - State / Phil Bergan


2012 Botanicula (soundtrack/ Amanita design)
2010 HU (Indies / Label Home Table)
2009 Kolektt8 (Label Home Table)
2008 Fonók (Indies Scope)
2008 Ringtones for mobile uPhones (Surreal Madrid)
2007 Caligari Soundtrack (Label Home Table)
2007 Kapitán_Demo (Label Home Table)



"This collection of 25 tracks - absolutely amazing blend of off kilter electronics, homemade percussion and traditional instrumentation. Wow!"
Gilles Peterson / BBC about Kollektt8 

"this Czech duo gets blood flowing the opposite direction, slicing you a crooked smile, and beats a path youve only dreamed of taking!"
Tiny Mixtapes on Mulatu single (2014)

"As we area about to enter September, this is turning out to be my album of the year"
Charlie Gillett / BBC about album Fonk 

Operating in their own microcosm, DVA have stood out with an idiosyncratic sonic lexicon pop for non-existing radios or folklore of non-existing nations, as they say. The duo it takes two dva in Czech, to tango - Bra Kratochvlov and Jan Kratochvl, have carved out a niche with their rich musical landscape. Established in 2006, the Czech project have toured the world, playing at esteemed festivals including SXSW, Eurosonic, Fusion, Incubate or OFF charming their growing global fanbase with smart sophisticated pop. In 2012, DVA toured the US twice and played more than 80 concerts in 10 countries. DVA's soundtrack for the computer game Botanicula scooped the main prize at Independent Games Festival awards in San Francisco last year, and was also nominated for the UK Sound & Music Awards

DVA's much-acclaimed debut album Fonk was released in 2008 which was followed by Hu in 2010, and an eponymous soundtrack for the aforementioned video game Botanicula in 2012 with a new record NIPOMO in 2014. Their lyrics, written in an imaginary language, remain abstruse, yet universally comprehensible, while the music is similarly peculiarly universal an aural collage of pop, kitchen beatbox, tango, cabaret, circus, radio noise, bearing their unmistakable stamp - quirky, but accessible. Championed by critics - from the BBC to national and specialist music press and beyond - and fans alike, DVA are one of the most successful Czech bands to emerge in the last decade. Aside from music, they are also active in theatre whose features they have transferred into the music as well. It is not surprising then that the project's seeds were sewn during the recording of the science fiction radio play by I. Asimov  Victory Unintentional. DVA are a living and breathing aural organism, its own thing.