Thursday, October 23, 2008

New Release: The Zydepunks - Finisterre

From the beginning, the bend in the mighty Mississippi river known as New Orleans has been a place of trade and inter-cultural exchange. The Zydepunks take this intermingling of cultures to an extreme. The Zydepunks are "New Orleans' favorite Cajun Irish Breton Klezmer Slavic Zydeco Punk band."

Eve Venema and Juan Kuffner met while street-performing in the French Quarter with a clown on a unicycle and a white rapper supposedly on the run from the FBI. Originally from Ecuador, Juan Kuffner (accordion, accordion bass, fiddle, vocals) was able to speak four languages by the time he was 12 years old. Eve Venema (accordion, fiddle, vocals) spent seven years as a street performer in Europe, earning her living playing accordion music from around the globe. The current make-up of the band includes Kuffner and Venema joined by fellow traditional ethnic folk musician, Denise Bonis (fiddle), and a rhythm section at home in any punk rock or heavy metal band, Joe Lilly (drums, vocals) and Scott Beelman (bass) to form the unique blend of international folk-punk known as Zydepunk.

The Zydepunks play Cajun, Zydeco, Irish, Scottish, Klezmer, Romanian, Russian, Quebecois, German, Breton, French, and original music with a blend of classically-trained musicianship and untethered, frenzied abandon. Wild folk dances fronted by accordion and fiddle and backed by relentless drums and bass are the high-energy folk-punk of Zydepunk. Languages are as varied as the music with English, French, German, Spanish, Yiddish, and Portuguese to suit the gypsy melodies.

Other musicians featured on the album include a who's who of the Louisiana music scene: bassist Alan LaFleur (from the Grammy-nominated Lost Bayou Ramblers), cellist Helen Gillet (Wazozo), violinist Matt Rhody (New Orleans Jazz Vipers/Hot Club of New Orleans), guitarist Stix duh Clown (My Graveyard Jaw), singer Meschiya Lake (Loose Marbles), violinist Frank Scully, and cellist Aubrey Freeman (Why Are We Building Such a Big Ship) all made valuable contributions to the album.

No two songs on Finisterre sound the alike. Each is a powerhouse of high energy dance music. Echoes of New Orleans' tumultuous times appear in "Long Story Short" and "Song For Mike", both dedicated to Michael Frey, a friend to the band murdered in 2006. "Dear Molly" was written while the band was evacuated in North Carolina as a song of longing and dispossession. "Por la orilla del mar" combines traditional Ecuadorian song with Slavic melodies in a story of a man being forced to leave his home to search for a new life - a story about immigrants from South of the border and Louisiana's own recent, sad story.

Zydepunks - When My Ship Sails Away.mp3

Zydepunks - Angel Whiskey.mp3

Zydepunks - Dear Molly.mp3

Artist: The Zydepunks
Ttile: Finisterre
Release Date: 21 October 2008
Artist Website:
Label: Nine Mile Records
Label Website:
Purchase or Download at:
Louisiana Music Factory
Soon to be available at CD Baby and other online outlets. Check back at for additional online stores.
Or purchase from your local independent record store.


Blogger Katie D. said...

I've been to Finisterre! Before Columbus sailed, Finisterre was the end of the world. Here is a picture of me throwing my staff off the end of the world, after I walked 500 miles to get there:

October 25, 2008 4:12 PM  
Blogger Onlly you said...

hi... have a nice day !!

October 26, 2008 3:47 AM  
Blogger Ed said...

Hi Katie! Great pic! That sure is the end of the world.

October 26, 2008 10:57 AM  

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