ТYT I TAM’s Obriad: a Contemporary Classic

Stephanie Turenko, Toronto.

TYT i TAM is not a new Ukrainian-Canadian band on the scene. The seasoned performers, who are originally from Saskatchewan, have been captivating audiences worldwide for over a decade with their energetic and unique style of Ukrainian folk-rock music.

July 31, 2015 marked the highly anticipated release of their fourth album, Обряд (Obriad) – Ritual. The 12 track album explores ancient rituals of the calendar year and life cycle in a contemporary context. Through Obriad, the band examines fundamental elements of the human experience – love and loss, the changing of seasons, celebration and hardship, traditional songs and village dances – with a new depth and impassioned honesty. Obriad is a departure from the band’s previous albums but it in no way does it lose their seamless blend of folk rock, dance, ska, reggae and village influences.

Obriad is carried by beautiful melodic vocals and musical experimentation with a rock undertone. The album does have some fun zabava favourites (Nece Halya Vody, Hop Sidi Ridi), although the stand-out tracks are the more contemporary and poignant (Медове пиво: Щедрий вечір – Honey Beer: Let’s Get Lucky, Веснянка – Spring Song, Іванку, Іванку, купи ми рум’янку – My Affair, На Івана Купала – Ivana Kupala).

Obriad is a clear example of the band members injecting their own personalities into each track. Even the classic Arkan has a ghostly violin solo. The second last track, “Сумний Святий Вечір” (Знову в нашій Україні вороги гуляють/Once again, enemies trample upon Ukrainian soil) is an updated version of the popular carol from World War Two. The song has been changed to reflect the current situation in eastern Ukraine. Finally a Ukrainian-Canadian band is experimenting with well-known melodies and straying from the typical “zabava sound”.

Obriad is definitely a contemporary classic to add to your collection. Obriad is available on iTunes: www.itunes.com/artist/tyt-i-tam or CD Baby: www.cdbaby.com/Artist/TytiTam.

To learn more about the band visit www.tytittam.com.