The coronavirus pandemic changed the plans of the band Druhá Trave, which was about to release a novelty in the form of two albums. The first wanted to include cover versions of compositions by authors who influenced the singer Robert Křesťan, the second disc was to contain new original songs.
In the summer, however, due to the interrupted collaboration with producer Eddie Stevens, the band found themselves in a situation where they had all the songs taken over and only a few of their own. Therefore, she decided to release a mix of both called Part One and wait until next year.
Robert Christian. | Photo: ČTK
“Originally, we intended to release a double album, but the coronavirus prevented us from completing the project. So the name Part One I think speaks for itself, because after Part One usually comes Part Two,” says lyricist and singer Robert Křesťan.
The recording was supervised by Brit Stevens, known for his work for the electronic band Moloko and singer Róisín Murphy, the triphop Zero7 or Jana Kirschner. “He played a crucial role, determining the sound and arrangements of each song, so each was recorded with a different microphone and band arrangement. He used the potential of the line-up, he knew what we were capable of. We probably wouldn’t have that courage ourselves. and enforce, “adds the banjo player Luboš Malina.
Stevens amplified the distinctive sound of the Second Grass and enriched it with things typical of electronic music or genres other than the bluegrass played by the Second Grass.
“I don’t think some listeners will accept it, but I believe that in time they will like it,” Christian said. “I believe that we have created a certain position with the Second Grass, we have always gone our own way, so this is just another step,” adds Malina.
In addition to Christian’s three original compositions, listeners will find songs by Tom Waits (Stay), Sting (Why Should I Moan), Kris Kristofferson (Arsonist), Tom Petty (Something Good), Peter Rowan (On the Wings of Horses) or Nine Inch Nails (Pain). ).
The Arsonist, a song by Kris Kristofferson, performed by The Second Grass. Photo: Dušan Tománek. | Video: BrainZone Promotion
The author of all the lyrics is Křesťan, who based his songs on originals. For example, he kept the original words “he gave her a watch for a dollar and a ring from a coffee spoon” in Waits’ song Hold On.
“I tried my best to stick to the original theme, but I know from the translator’s experience that the original version can’t be fully captured. The author often understands the song differently from the one listening to it,” he explains.
In the final composition Where to Fold Your Head, the Second Grass was used by the members of the Spiritual Quintet. “Unfortunately, Dušan Vančura was missing from the recording, although he was still alive at the time, but he didn’t have much time,” Křesťan notes to the spiritual singer, who died on April 16 at the age of 82.
The band wants to baptize the album Díl první on December 7 at the Sono Center in Brno and on December 16 at the Pod Palmovkou Theater in Prague. “So far, the baptism is planned in the same way as the series of concerts, which should start on November 13 in Tábor, if the situation allows,” adds Luboš Malina.
From the beginning, the group Druhá Travá has been ranked among the top folk & country scenes in the Czech Republic and Slovakia. As one of the few local bands, they regularly go to perform in the USA, where they have toured three dozen. She collaborates or has collaborated with important personalities, she is a multiple holder of the Anděl award in the folk and country category.
The first single from New Grass’s new album is called If You Killed Me. Photo: Dušan Tománek. | Video: Second grass