Šlagwerk is a music and visual creative group working and creating in Ljubljana. Behind the name, with word, sound, and visuals, are Tadej Markelj, Kaja Janjić, Miha Žehelj and Žiga Čibej.
The basic foundation are the beats produced by Tadej Markelj, better known to the world as DJ Dado, who takes up the role of the MC on stage. His 20 years of DJing experience, particularly on the clubbing electro scene, give Šlagwerk’s sounds, which feature a plethora of genres and styles, its true colours. The leitmotif of their repertoire are dub and hip hop. In terms of vocals, their centrepiece is rap with cynical choruses, singing bits and recited “intellectual thoughts.” This part is held by Dado and Kaja, the latter appearing under the stage name Fraw Blanka. Kaja has been a dancer and contemporary dance choreographer for the last 20 years, so she’s definitely no stranger to stage performance, and it shows in her on-the-mic persona. The performance, which lasts just under an hour, is more akin to a DJ set and differs from your standard band gigs in terms of tempo.
The tempo is driven by Miha Žehelj aka Dj Zhe, who has many years of experience in spinning vinyl records. His presence alone gives the set a strong energy, which is especially felt if the stage is supported by a powerful sound system; the sound gets even louder and the shadow above the set fuses with words to create some sort of wail of the present, which lets us, the society, cross the margins of the acceptable, which, if you look at it from a philosophical perspective, is really quite grotesquely ironical.
Šlagwerk support their lines and the lines between the lines with videos posted on the Youtube channel Toni Žaba. They shoot and edit all their videos themselves. For the latest two videos, the singles Evotibet and Kult Črne Žabe, the crew brought on cameraman, video editor and producer Žiga Čibej.
They’ve appeared at big-time events such as ‘Pod Pritiskom’ at the Gala Hali (Metelkova), Drum and Bass Conference 2017, Festival Spider and Dub Lab, and smaller events in Ljubljana and the greater area. They were also invited to Radio Študent’s show After party.
- Dado Sheik, MC, producer (Tadej Markelj)
- Fraw Blanka, MC (Kaja Janjić)
- DJ Zhe (Miha Žehelj)
We’ve witnessed the rise in popularity of (t)rap music during the last few years, a style originating in the US south whose rhythmic patterns, 808 samples and distinctive iconography has had a massive influence both on hip hop found far away from the Southern USA, as well as on modern clubbing electro and even mainstream pop music,
Despite the ubiquity of sound and visual trap elements, everyone seems to forget the true origins of this culture. This is why two aficionados of drug dealers’ slang, ice and bling, fancy cars and high-end labels decided to evoke the spirit of the dirty south and take you on a trip from the dusty tones of 90s Memphis tapes, banging rhythms of Atlanta’s strip clubs, all the way to more homages to this type of music and aesthetics, right into the middle of the Houston – Atlanta – Memphis triangle, with an occasional side trip to Chicago, New Orleans, Florida, and even the future.
Bor$aleano and Cookie are veterans of the Ljubljana music underground, who have been spinning and sharing these sounds for nearly a decade. They’ve been appearing under the master label Trillity for over four years now, and their careers span back nearly a decade. They appear mostly in Ljubljana at clubs like K4, Gala Hala, and Channel 0, but they don’t shy away from touring Slovenia or the neighbouring countries, and have even made it as far as North America.