Blast from the Past: Andrzej Korzyński – Tajemnica Enigmy (Secret Enigma – 1968-1981)

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(Vinyl LP, Finders Keepers, 2012)

For some reason, Polish composer Andrzej Korzyński is not that much known in his home country than in some western countries, like the United Kingdom. As Bartek Chaciński pointed out in his article on the work of Andrzej Korzyński, most of his records (that is, the film soundtracks he has made over many years) are easier to obtain in, say, London, than in Warsaw. Thanks to the Finders Keepers record label, the often intense, experimental and out-of-the-box thinking (especially in communist Poland at the time of their creation) soundtracks of Andrzej Korzyński are finally available as a high-quality compilation/retrospective of his works for movies of Polish filmmakers.

„The Secret Enigma” compilation came from a label specialized in such music-related investigations, namely Finders Keepers. Actually, the detective skills of Founders Keepers members is a material for a whole book, the guys manage to find information on things even the musicians themselves don’t have any idea about. This time, the Finders Keepers crew managed to collect and/or salvage several tracks from the soundtrack of this Polish soundtrack maverick, created for both Polish and foreign movies. The orchestral arrangements meet the dense psychedelic rock interludes and early electronic soundscapes (Korzyński himself was one of the founding members of Arplife, possibly the first [or one of the first] Polish electronic music groups). This proves Korzyński’s compositional talent, he could work with both a “live” orchestra or with studio equipment alike, pushing all his agents to the limit, often pushing the envelope of music itself, especially when it came to fantasy/horror creations.

Korzyński moves with incredible ease and grace through a plethora of wildly different musical genres and styles. The compilation is organized in such a way that tracks often provide sharp, sudden surprises with totally different tracks which sometimes gives an impression that we’re dealing with different composers. But it’s Mr. Korzyński all the time – whether he’s stumbling through some lysergic acid rock trip or designing disciplined and sublime tango miniatures. This compilation is a perfect album not only for fans of movie soundtracks of Mr. Korzyński himself, but also for any fans of Polish music in general. Because it proves that despite being in the Soviet camp for a long time, Polish music wasn’t behind the Western countries – actually, sometimes it was ahead of them.

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