When SKALPEL was releasing their debut album on Ninja Tune in 2004,
Poland was just accessing the European Union and NME described the music
duo as an exotic oddity from a faraway land. After 10 years and with 2
nu-jazz classic albums under their belt (Skalpel and Konfusion) that
put Poland on the electronic genre map. SKALPEL, well respected and
recognized is back with a new release in yet again an important moment
in history when the Polish Prime Minister becomes the new European
On their previews releases SKALPEL resurrected the dusty and smoky spirit of 60s and 70s Polish Jazz and then re-imagined it for 21st century audiophiles. The new album TRANSIT shows that the producers imagination takes them much further beyond Polish inspirations creating a truly international blend. They do not limit themselves to Europe but also reach for music of American continents and take a journey across Asia. Eastern European melancholy intertwines with Mediterranean warmth. Transit is about transition from one music genre to another, from sample-based music to programming and electronic production, from black and white to full colour spectrum, from dark to bright, form low-fi to hi-fi. Finally from Ninja Tune to their own imprint PlugAudio.
Transit is about communication: conquering literally borders between countries but also metaphorically between music styles the world over. Its about communicating with fans through emotions, feeling and soul.
To describe the music one could use: ambient, swing, latin, cinematic, trip-hop, easy-listening, broken beat but the key word is really VIBES. In music instrument context, there are a lot of vibraphone parts on it but also in terms of ambience, there are plenty of good vibes.
Marcin and Igor still live in Poland, where SKALPEL has a cult status but a lot of their fans moved to the UK and other European countries and the social, political and cultural European environment in Europe has changed.
In Skalpels case, a lot has also changed, however, what was written about their first album remains: Warm, crisp and complex without being complicated. A refreshing break with prevailing UK trendmongering and banwagoneering, Skalpel are just focusing on doing it right.
And this is the right time for SKALPEL's new music.