Tárkány-Müvek are a group of young musicians from Budapest, Hungary. Their sound welds together the raw energy of traditional Hungarian folk, with classical music and avant garde jazz. This bubbling brew is topped off with poetic lyrics and splashes of influence from artists as diverse as Bartók, John Coltrane, Toni Iodache and Dr. Dre.

Bandleader Bálint Tárány Kovács began to play the cimbalom (hammered dulcimer) at the tender age of 7. Now in his thirties, he respected as one of the instruments most prominent young masters. He was a key mover and shaker in the significant táncház, or ‘urban folk’ movement of recent times. Well-versed in folk, Tárkány-Müvek is Bálint’s creative outlet – a forum which allows his outlandish and eccentric ideas to come to full realisation. He sums up his inventive musical approach as a way of re-creating Hungarian culture to reflect his generation’s contemporary way of life. 

Similarly to the folk repertoire, many of Tárkány-Müvek’s songs tell tales of love. Singer Julianna Paár’s unique voice is deeply expressive. Gergő Kováts’ tenor saxophone, bass clarinet and flute interjects and converses with the vocal playfully throughout. Kováts is a player on the experimental jazz scene in Budapest and his approach adds a forward-thinking and free element to the music. The string section is headed up by Endre Papp on classical and a three-stringed Transylvanian viola, with András Bognár on double bass. 

The album opens with the track, ‘Csípd + (Bite It)’ a racing cimbalom led number, with a humourous sax solo that takes centre-stage mid-way. ‘Semmi Sem Hasonlít Hozzád (Nothing Compares To You)’ is a slow ballad that quotes and re-configures Harold Arlen’s famous tune. ‘Még A Fák Is Sírnak (The Trees Still Cry)’ explores a darker side to Tárkány-Müvek’s work with a moody vocal opening, followed by a free jazz interlude.

Introducing Tárkány-Müvek’s is the band’s first international release, and an excellent opportunity to delve deep into the band’s intellectually stimulating and creatively excellent world.