As you can probably infer from the band’s name, Balkan Beat Box are bending the conventions of the Eastern-European folk genre, and are bringing it bang up to date. The group who originated in the underground music scene of New York, combine the sounds of the dancehall with the traditions of Balkan. The result is a joyous hybrid sound, constructed from the genres of gypsy, electronica, punk, funk, hip hop and dub. Saxophones, guitars, percussion and the powerful vocals of Tomer Yosef bring the audience into the exciting multi-cultural sphere of world music.
The band is incredibly energetic on stage and their enthusiasm for music is infectious. This is not the kind of gig where you lightly tap your feet and nod your head in recognition of the music; when Balkan Beat Box are on the stage you’ll be dancing like a lunatic. See it as a live gig and work out combined. Tomer Yosef is the perfect front man: Charismatic; lively, and of course talented. When the band first leaves the stage, the audience was cheering wildly and the whole of Concorde 2 was filled with fans stamping their feet demanding an encore. I have never seen a crowd so energized by a band.
If you are familiar with the Balkan genre, this band are great fun to see. If you are unfamiliar with the Balkan genre, this band are still great fun to see. Just make sure you wear some comfortable shoes suitable for stomping and jumping.