KEXP at Trans Musicales: Trad.Attack!

photo by Morgan Chosnyk

This week, we continue sharing our discoveries from the Trans Musicales festival in Rennes, France, where last December we captured twelve exclusive sessions. We’re sharing with you one unique session each Friday, and you can watch all the previously released ones here. This week we present Estonian trio Trad.Attack!

DJ Morgan says of our experience with them:

Because the band consists of husband and wife Sandra and Jalmar [Vabarna] and Sandra’s childhood friend Tõnu [Tubli], their chemistry was intoxicating and their performance so much fun to watch. Self-described as traditional Estonian folk, Trad.Attack!’s music has earned them Estonian music awards for Best Artist three years in a row, and it was clear they are deserving of the title. With Jalmar on acoustic guitar, Tõnu on drums, and Sandra showing impressive skill changing between bagpipes, folk pipe, and mouth harp, they are more than just a folk band. Their sound certainly has folk elements, but it’s also super rocking with tribal-meets-psych drum beats and frenetic guitar melodies, and, on top of it all, they have what I can only describe as the most badass bagpipe playing I have ever heard. Trad.Attack! also pays homage to their heritage, mixing in samples of old Estonian archival audio recordings – including an old recording of Jalmar’s great-great grandmother.

Watch our live session below with Trad.Attack!, recorded at the Chapelle du Conservatoire de Rennes, a small chapel attached to a vibrant interdisciplinary art school, and be sure to find more about the band on their website and Facebook page.

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