Best Albums of 2018
selected by 10 Croatian critics

Kevlar Bikini <BR> “Rants, Riffage, And Rousing Rhythms”

Kevlar Bikini
“Rants, Riffage, And Rousing Rhythms”

It can be very difficult for a band when the main singer leaves, but not in the case of Kevlar Bikini. They needed to rotate a little bit and after that they made a new record, on which the guitarist is the new lead singer. Everything else is the same – heavy sound with yelling, so we didn’t wait in vain. We could expect that one person less will influence the sound, but the guys managed to cover that minus and they made a great alternative record.

♪♫ Listen: “Pre-Doomsday Orgy” + album stream

Kevlar Bikini on Facebook, Instagram, Youtube, www.

Edo Maajka <BR> “Put u plus”

Edo Maajka
“Put u plus”

During the war in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Edo migrated to Croatia. Since then, he’s become one of the best rap artists in the Balkans, and many have been waiting for his new album. “Put u plus” shows that his tongue still manages to produce a big amount of great lyrics about the state of society in our countries.

Although trap is the most favourite genre in rap these days, with this album Edo shows that he is still the boss.

♪♫ Listen: “Ne mogu disat” + album stream

Edo Maajka on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, www.

Demoler Demoler <BR> “Demoler”

Demoler Demoler

What we get if we combine Tom Waits, The Tiger Lilies and Gogol Bordello? Demoler Demoler of course. Although the album was released early in 2018, we already knew it’s one of the most interesting album of the year. In “Demoler”, they demolish everything – it sounds like an alternative burlesque show where anything can happen.

♪♫ Listen: “I Fire Fire” + album stream

Demoler Demoler on Facebook, Youtube.

The Gentleman <BR> “The Gentleman”

The Gentleman
“The Gentleman”

Marko Lucijan Hraščanec is known from bands such as Moskau or U pol’ 9 kod Sabe. In February, he decided to release his solo album under the name The Gentleman. This name really explains his music – it is gentlemen’s sound, mixing chanson, rock and folk music with a little bit of Tom Waits.

♪♫ Listen: “Crossing for Wildlife” + album stream

The Gentleman on Facebook.

Jonathan <BR> “To Hold”

“To Hold”

From their first single, we could predict a great future for Jonathan. Now, Jonathan are one of the favourite bands of Croatian listeners. With “To Hold”, they finished what started last year with the album “To Love”. They have a specific sound, but they are compared a lot with Editors. Let’s be honest, they are better than Editors nowadays.

♪♫ Listen: “I Never Meant To Be There” + album stream

Jonathan on Soundcloud, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, www.

Embassy 516 <BR> “Correlation”

Embassy 516

Six years passed from Embassy 516’s “Surveillance Of The Environment”, so that was about time to release a new album. “Correlation” is a great follow-up. It takes the best from the last record, and takes it to a new dimension, combining dark ’80s sound with revival bands from the beginning of the new millennium, especially from the UK.

♪♫ Listen: “Song Title” + album stream

Embassy 516 on Soundcloud, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram.

Tyger Lamb <BR> “Born Into This”

Tyger Lamb
“Born Into This”

If Quentin Tarantino heard any song from Tyger Lambs debut album, for sure he would put it on his next soundtrack. Tyger Lamb play surf rock with female vocal in a very old-fashioned way. “Born Into This” also shows that there is still public for such music, especially if it’s as good as this record.

♪♫ Listen: “Mermaid Tree” + album stream

Tyger Lamb on Soundcloud, Facebook, Instagram, Youtube.

Ogenj <BR> “Domaj”


Ogenj is Croatian Flogging Molly or Dropkick Murphys. But they don’t play Celtic punk, but punk with influences of Croatian ethno music. And while they’re very energetic live, they managed to transfer some of that energy into the studio – making “Domaj” a music bomb.

♪♫ Listen: “Hote hote” + album stream

Ogenj on Soundcloud, Bandcamp, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram.

Rezerve <BR> “Ravno u zamku”

“Ravno u zamku”

Rezerve are from Makarska, Rezerve are new, Rezerve are cool, Rezerve are funny, Rezerve have 14 hits on their debut album, Rezerve have returned rock in prime time, Rezerve have balls, Rezerve are pop, Rezerve are rock, Rezerve are punk, Rezerve are one of the most promising bands in Croatia! They are five guys who enjoy entertaining their audience and they are doing it in a perfect way.

♪♫ Listen: “Oduzimaš mi dah” + album stream

Rezerve on Soundcloud, Bandcamp, Facebook, Instagram.

Ischariotzcky <BR> “Recovery”


After the band Pešes has split, Joško Klarić started to learn music production. During that period, from 2015 until the “Recovery”, he played a lot with different buttons in his studio. The result is something completely new – experimental electronic sound, with lyrics in English. Although they come from the small city of Brela in Dalmatia, they manage to present themselves as one of the best new acts in the scene.

♪♫ Listen: “Perfect Sky” + album stream

Ischariotzcky on Soundcloud, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Youtube, www.

Them Moose Rush <BR> “Don’t Pick Your Noise”

Them Moose Rush
“Don’t Pick Your Noise”

Three guys perform prog-rock. After a series of EPs, they have decided to leave that format and make a full LP. And what a great decision. Everything is in its right place, sound is energetic and crazy, and the dynamic keeps changing even within one song. And Nikola makes perfect vocal interpretations. You should listen this album very loud.

♪♫ Listen: “Don’t Pick Your Noise” + album stream

Them Moose Rush on Soundcloud, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram.

The Basewalks <BR> “Hello”

The Basewalks

Although “Hello” includes only seven songs, they last around 35 minutes full of dark indie rock sound. Influences are diverse, from the early ’80s up to contemporary styles, and from artist like Depeche Mode to Nick Cave and Mark Lanegan. We can say that sorrow is one of the biggest motives in their songs and in the entire album.

♪♫ Listen: “Cave” + album stream

The Basewalks on Soundcloud, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram.

Mary May <BR> “Things You Can’t Put Your Finger On”

Mary May
“Things You Can’t Put Your Finger On”

Mary May comes from nowhere and with several singles she showed that she could be one of the biggest divas on the Croatian music scene. Her interesting voice is combined with atmospheric soundscapes. It’s just her first album, and she still needs to work on her live performances. But we could already say she’s one of the best female artists in Croatia at the moment.

♪♫ Listen: “Softest Tune” + album stream

Mary May on Soundcloud, Facebook, Instagram, Youtube, www.

Svemirko <BR> “Tunguzija”


While Svemirko’s debut “Vanilija” was a very retro album, it was still really refreshing for the Croatian music scene. A year and a half later, we get a new album called “Tunguzija”, which continues to explore ’80s synth-pop sound.

And they keep getting bigger and bigger, becoming one of the rising stars in Croatia.

♪♫ Listen: “34,5” + album stream

Svemirko on Facebook, Instagram.

Mimika Orchestra “Divinities of the Earth and the Waters”

Mimika Orchestra “Divinities of the Earth and the Waters”

“Divinities of the Earth and the Waters” is the jazz album positioned at the highest place, so we can say that it is the best Croatian jazz album in 2018. Mak Murtić started Mimika in London and very soon he got lots of supporters. Now we have big jazz band called Mimika Orchestra. The album itself is about mythical ceremonies in the Balkans.

♪♫ Listen: “Song of Sorrow” + album stream

Mimika Orchestra on Soundcloud, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Youtube, www.

Goran Bare & Majke <BR> “Nuspojave”

Goran Bare & Majke

Majke was one of the best Croatian bands on the turn of the century, when Goran Bare decided to split the band. Several solo albums later, he decided to play with the old colleagues again.

After a very good album “Teške boje” in 2011, he changed the formation a lot of times. Now with the completely new band, he released “Nuspojave”, which shows him in a very good form again.

♪♫ Listen: “Skarabej go-go” + album stream

Goran Bare & Majke on Facebook.

Bebè Na Volè <BR> “Hate Is A Wonderful Thing”

Bebè Na Volè
“Hate Is A Wonderful Thing”

Adam Semijalac a.k.a. Bebè Na Volè is a blues magician. His music is minimalistic, but very interpretative because his guitar and voice make magic together. His latest album “Hate Is A Wonderful Thing” continues where he stopped last time, and it presents 12 new aching songs with a very specific atmosphere.

♪♫ Listen: “Never got over” + album stream

Bebè Na Volè on Soundcloud, Facebook, Youtube, www.

Šumski <BR> “Ostrvo ledenog kita”

“Ostrvo ledenog kita”

The beginnings of Šumski are in the early ’90s, but for the last 15 years they were more or less on hiatus. After a successful Indiegogo campaign, they started to work on their new, fifth album, which received very positive feedback from critics and listeners. The retro pop-rock sound is coloured with some world music, kraut and math rock, where the mid-tempo songs are much better than ballads.

♪♫ Listen: “Prijatelji se sele na selo” + album stream

Šumski on Facebook, Instagram.

Kensington Lima <BR> “May”

Kensington Lima

Josip Radić has a lot of different music projects, from Buđenje to Valentino Bošković (“Marsovska listina” selected as #1 in 2016). The newest is Kensington Lima, the solo project in which he gathered all his ideas collected in past 15 years. The sound is really retro. When you listen to “May”, you can imagine the time when The Beatles, The Kinks and The Beach Boys ruled the world.

♪♫ Listen: “Day Off” + album stream

Kensington Lima on Facebook, Instagram, Youtube, www.

The Strange <BR> “Echo Chamber”

The Strange
“Echo Chamber”

The Strange are Chris Eckman (The Walkabouts, Dirtmusic, etc.) + The Bambi Molesters. This is their second album – the first was “Nights of Forgotten Films”, released in 2004. Otherwise an instrumental band, The Bambi Molesters now play Americana with vocals (Eckman) in The Strange, and this sounds perfect on “Echo Chamber”. This album has a very specific mood and there is no doubt that it was one of the best records in Croatia last year.

♪♫ Listen: “Killing Time” + album stream

The Strange on Facebook, Bandcamp, www.