Budoár Staré Dámy
(The Old Gentlewomans Boudoir)
Brno, Czech Republic
B.S.D. representing a home-made alternative rock band was ground during holiday in 1999. The average age of three girls (Marta - guitar/vocal, Dasha - bass and Eva - violin/vocal) and of two boys (Stepan - drums/microphone and Ondra - guitar/microphone) did not exceed 16 in that time.
Imaginative prime arrangements and easy grasp of simple melody have outgrown the group from homely diction. B.S.D. favours the secret beauty in melody and prefers rampancy to heartsease.
The individual members have busied themselves with a variety of private activities, e.g. Marta has immersed herself in computer animation, Eva has became an emphatic singer, Dasha, Stepan and Ondra have put one's mind to their study.
The first self-made album offers surprises, such as unexpected breaks and scream interspersed among the clever melodic parts. A lot of songs is about rebelling against the authority and usual problems of retrieval time.
1. Uneste si me!
4. Sane! Kone!
5. Stribrná svatba
6. Slunce má stale barvu lisky
7. Noc co noc
10. Ona osudna
11. Tmou tmouci
12. S kridly za hlavou
+ video-clip "Stříbrná svatba"
+ video-clip "Bozi"
+ video-clip "Tmou tmouci"
+ document - recording od video-clip "Stribrna svatba"
Rock discovery and absolute revelation at the festival Alternativa 2001 /Alternative 2001/ was Brno band Budoár Staré Dámy. No complexes, clear certitude about drift, no depressions, youthful vitality and charming naivety. As regards their music they can be compared to Hole for their combination of melodic to pop passages with shrill, hit refrains. Nicely sung vocals and playful texts, which do not worry about the troubles with the borders of fantasies. The base of the band is created by girls singer with a guitar, violinist and bass guitar player, which is completed by a guitar player and drum player. Probably everyone who heard this band's live, let himself to be impressed by the commitment and charisma of young singer, who is also the author of music, texts and videos. Her performance is irresistibly schizophrenic, her voice is the innocent little girls voice, but it is at the same time very fierce and harsh womanly hoarse voice. On CD you can find also two videos which Marta Svobodová Miss Bandmaster calls "kukohyby" ("watch-moves") and she, herself, directed and recorded them. The whole CD will be in special magnetic field, which is created by the effect of three magnets put under the inlay. Simply, the entire CD is FOR PLAYING. The debut of the band offers very impressive and catchy songs and it is the absolute embodiment of young, unburdened and fresh approach to music.
1. V Sobotu i v nedeli - 3:44
2. Rozhovor 9.5.1945 - 4:42
3. Pomsta neuklizejici kozene - 2:16
4. Rozryta - 2:46
5. Drava - 2:08
6. Setkani M. a T. - 3:28
7. O zazracnem samponu a kremu - 2:33
8. Myslitele - 2:59
9. Nemocna - 2:06
10. Kostickama na kost - 6:20
11. O Slecnach, pihach a cihlach - 1:26
12. Usnul dub nad stadem hub - 4:03
13. Trihvezdickova - 2:22
14. Pruchod Nemesidy - 6:24
15. Rozhovor 9.5.1945 [video-clip] - 4:39
16. Usnul Dub Nad Stádem Hub [video-clip] - 4:06
Straight Outta Brno - PopMatters , December 8th 2005
Budoár Staré Dámy is a quintet based in Brno, one of the cities in the Czech Republic that isn't Prague. (There are a lot of them.) The group was formed in 1999, when they were all in their teens, and its name means "The Old Lady's Boudoir". That indisputably kicks ass.
Budoár Staré Dámy are fronted by singer/songwriter Marta Fúú Svobodová, who also plays guitar and mandolin and does the enigmatic cut-paper illustrations in the CD booklet. I don't speak Czech, so I don't know if she is a great lyricist or not, but the words sound really cool and interesting when she sings and shouts and declaims them in one of her voices. (She has several.) Plus, her middle name is Fúú. So, y'know, role model / crush right there.
Inspired by Nirvana and Hole, their music is muscly indie-rock, with a violin high up in the mix and lots of stoppy-starty parts and stabby parts and dramatic passages that sound like lots of '70s/'80s bands that didn't suck: Talking Heads, X, Blondie, R.E.M. They don't sound at all like the Pixies, but Marta's voice often intertwines and plays off violinist Eva Svobodová's voice like the Deal sisters' voices did in the Breeders. They also do one song that sounds like country-reggae except that on the chorus it gets suddenly Slavic, like everyone is all drunk at Oktoberfest ("Oná Osudná") So there are your signifiers if you need them.
Budoár Staré Dámy intentionally makes their songs hard to categorize by turning each one into a labyrinth; things never end up where you think they're going to go. "Uneste Si M?" starts out as a march, relaxes into a slow groove, and then bounces back up again with searing guitars and double-time drums from Št?pán Svoboda (Marta's brother, natch). They pull out some surf-band stuff on "Boží", and then it's gone but your head is still swimming. The minimalist funk of "Noc Co Noc" is Talking Heads-ish but keeps exploding into Skye Sweetman-style girl-punk. I love it, and I don't see how any other reaction could happen.
It can be nerve-racking, reviewing CDs from foreign countries when you don't live there or know much of the context. I have had angry people writing me about "Oh, you don't know what you are talking about, you idiot American," and they've been right. So I guess I'll just say that this sounds more sparkly and weird at the same time than other Czech rock/jazz/pop/etc. that I've heard.
Brno must be the jam. Maybe I'll move.
Interview - New Folk Sounds Magazine, October 2005
You started the band at an early age in 1999, what kind of band did you want to start? What were your examples? How did the band start and how did the first years go? What were the ideas behind starting the band?
We wanted to start a big beat band, something as loud as possible. Our greatest example was Nirvana.
In 1998 Marta got her first electric guitar that was the impulse to start the band. She told her brother Stepan if he couldn't play drums. They played together in the garage. But two members - that wasn't enough. So they asked their friend Jajco for playing solo guitar and his sister Dasa for playing base and so they grounded the Budoar. The Budoar members thought that the band is complete. However, they played first concert with the great band Cvachtavy Lachtan with a virtuos violinist. Budoar felt that their performence wasn't very good. That's why they desided to call upon violinist Eva for assistance.
Can you tell me a bit about the history of the musicians? What is
their background? What are they doing today besides the group and what
would they like to do in future.
Each member has his/her own different interests. Marta studies visual arts at the Faculty of fine arts and also medical physics at Faculty of Science in Brno. In future she wants to make short scientific films for children.
Dasa has studied geodesy, but she doesn't do that job any more. She works as a managing clerk in the firm Porsche Brno.
Eva studies social education and counselling at the Faculty of Arts in Brno.
Stepan has passed the school leaving exam and now he studies physics and technology at the Faculty of Education in Brno - he wants to be a teacher.
Ondra has studied drama theory at Janacek academy and now he works in the theatre Polarka in Brno.
Unfortunatly I dont have the first CD, how different is that one compared
to the second? How did your music change?
The first CD "Na hraní" = "For Playng" is quite different from the second one "My o vlku." - "We about the Wolf.". There is the whole time cross-section of our (predominantly of Marta) creation since 1998 on the first one. The second one is a more collective and restful work than the first one. The first CD sounds like a children's play, the second one has already some adult's features.
How would you describe "My o vlku.", what is the theme of the cd, of
the songs (as you understand it's not easy to understand the lyrics
because I don't know the language). How do you create the music, is this a
groups proces or is one person responsible for the songs?
Marta is still responsible for most songs. She usually brought an idea, basic melody and lyrics and then we thought out together other parts for drums, base, guitar and violin. There is no leading topic of the CD. All song is much different. "My o vlku." can be sensed like a walking along wolf`s trails marked in various environments and states of mind.
I was very impressed by the videoclips aswell, how important is the
mixture between (video) art and music? How do you connect these two,
first the song and than the video or in a different way?
First the song is created, then the video. Some songs activated in us (especially in Marta) visual concepts.
She co-operated with her boy-friend Tom, who is able to multiply her dreams. Marta made always her movies with practically no inputs. All things used in clips were found at home or borrowed from her friends. None of the videoclips cost more than the price of a videocassette and a plenty of time at a computer.
How do people react to the cd in your homecountry? I dont know much
about the musical world of Czech Republic, do people like this more
alternative style of music? Do they prefer other styles of music?
I think that our new CD surprised (in every way) our fans and reviewers. People in our country like various styles of music. There are many interesting as well as boring bands in Czech republic. You can choose. We have got quite a lot of fans.
Many radio stations play usually pop-music, but recently rised some new indipendent radios.
What about the future, any plans, any dreams that you hope to come
true in future?
In the future we do not want to change, because playing in Budoar is our hobby, our relaxation and our fun. Nothing less, nothing more.
Magic Carpet is Radio Prague's monthly music magazine
Petr Doruzka, 21. 8. 2005
Irony and humour in "An Old Lady's Boudoir"
The French word boudoir specifies a woman's dressing room. So if a band calls themselves "An old lady's boudoir," what kind of a message do you expect? Obviously they combine irony and humour, and plenty of originality. "We are not modern. We are not virtuosi," you can read on their website. 3 of the 5 members of the band are female, all of them sing, and they play violin, guitars, drums and bass. Yet the most original essence of their music is in their songs and especially in their attitude. Their latest album, "Talking About The Wolf", includes several texts by well known Czech poets put to music. "But we can never catch the wolf, who is disappearing in distance," they explain. Many of their songs feel like dreams put to music. If they had lived 80 years earlier, they would certainly have been called "surrealists", but today they are described as "alternative punkrock".
BUDOAR STARE DAMY MY O VLKU (INDIES RECORDS) (Gabor Fabian, Strutter Magazine )
A band from the Czech Republic that debuted in 2002. The band has a female singer and is playing nice Melodic Poprock that sounds like a mix between PAT BENATAR, 90s female fronted rock (ANOUK, ALANNIS MORISETTE) and some Folk. Best songs between the 13 included are "Namesicna" (strong chorus, uptempo rocker), "Uneste si me", "Noc co noc" and "Tmou tmouci". There are also some weaker poppier tunes on the album, as well as some Slavian Medieval music. The CD comes along with 3 videos, so I am sure this all well be enough for the people in Czech Republic to buy it, but any regular fan of Female Fronted Rock may want to check out this band.
(Points: 7.7 out of 10)
Budoár Staré Dámy - My O Vlku
Jan Willem Broek, 19-07-2005
Onder leiding van zangeres/gitariste Marta Svobodová verschijnt er in 2002 het geweldige debuut Na Hraní van het kwintet Budoár Staré Dámy (boudoir van oude vrouwen op stand). De cd laat horen hoe originele en vooral afwisselende, stevige rock vandaag de dag kan klinken. Sindsdien is de band alleen nog maar gegroeid en op de cd My O Vlku is dat te horen aan de beter gearrangeerde muziek. De gitaren, (samen)zang, viool, bas en drums staan hier in dienst van een nieuw overweldigend totaalgeluid. Met opzwepende melodieën, stevige gitaren, schitterende vioolpartijen, pakkende zang en schreeuwerige refreinen weten ze je volledig in te pakken. Zeker als ze dit regelmatig afwisselen met wonderschone rustige stukken. Folk, pop, avantgarde, postrock en kabaal, Budoár Staré Dámy heeft het allemaal. De aanstekelijke muziek is niet echt te vergelijken met iets anders, maar bevat zeker elementen van Uz Jsme Doma, Zuby Nehty en Iva Bittová en een klein beetje van Hole, Miranda Sex Garden en Come. De beste brutale meisjesrockplaat van dit jaar tot nu toe!
Translation: Leaded by singer/guitarplayer Marta Svoboda the band Budoar Stare Damy releases the magnificent debut album Na Hrani in 2002. The album is a mixture of original, surprising and strong rock music. Ever since the band's gone through a process of growth and the result is the album My O Vlku with stronger arrangements. The guitars, singing, violin, bass and drums combine to an overwhelming total sound. The band catches you with catching melodies, solid guitars, splendid violins and beautiful though sometimes screaming singing which are combined beuatiful quiet pieces of music. Folk, pop, avantgarde, postrock and noise, Buduar Stare Damy have got it all. Incomparible with anything else, with elements of Uz Jsme Doma, Zuby Nehty and Iva Bittova and a little bit of Hole, Miranda Sex Garden and Come. Girl power rocks.
Na Hraní (François Couture, allmusic.com)
An old lady drinking tea in the boudoir is not the image that crosses your mind when listening to Budoár Staré Dámy, even though its name means just that. This Czech group plays alternative punk rock. They are loud, a bit crude, but slightly more mannered and subtle than what you could expect beyond radio-friendly consciousness. Na Hraní is very well-produced and displays unusual care for arrangements in this genre. Females outnumber males three to two and take most of the lead and backing vocal duties, which gives the group something of a riot grrrl attitude. Singer Marta Fúú Svobodová uses a mix of anger and seduction to get her sharp-edged messages across. The music features good driving beats, crunching guitars (two of them), angular melodies, and the odd saxophone or clarinet line. If "V Sobotu i v Nedeli" delivers an opening punch, things settle down a bit afterwards. "Usnul Dub Nad Stádem Hub" even gets close to a ballad, while "Pruchod Nemesidy" gets into something very different, opening with a barbershop quartet of sorts, switching to a punkish Merseybeat, and then alternating sections in a deconstructed punk a la Uz Jsme Doma. Here Svobodová sounds less fierce and more comfortable with her singing, turning the piece into an unexpected highlight. An enhanced portion of the CD includes videos for "Rozhovor 9.5.1945" and "Usnul Dub Nad Stádem Hub."
Alternativa 2001, Prague (tamizdat.org, 01-12-2001)
But perhaps the most exciting prize-winner of the festival was the band Budoar Stare Damy, a wild and very timely mostly-girl band blending Czech "girl band" sounds (Zuby Nehty, Dybbuk) with some kind of Hole or The Donnas rock thrash. Actually, Budoar won the "Little Alternativa" local band competition, and for good reason: a young new Czech band to look out for!
Audio (demo version):
Live in Jablonec nad Nisou, Na rampě 28.3.2003: