Mašinko – Interview

Zagreb’s punk-rock veterans Mašinko will entertain Osijek’s audience at the 17th Pannonian Challenge, and we had the chance to sit down with the members of the band and ask them a couple of questions. Get to know them a bit better!

The band was founded in 2010. in Zagreb and has served as a constant refreshment of the Croatian music scene since. The original line-up consists of: Marin Šulentić (Šulc), Petar Predrag (Perica), Lovro Koružnjak, Andrija Ražnatović, Srđan Grbić (Srki) and Bojan Horvat (Pitura).

Given that you’re one of the well-known Croatian punk-rock bands, what’s it like to be listened to by so many people, especially the young ones?
It feels great, mostly because we had no such intentions in the beginning. During the creation and the realization of the songs we never make compromises (this does not apply to the six of us, of course). People listen to our music, it makes them happy, sometimes it forces them to use their heads and it certainly boosts our bulky collective ego.

Upon founding the band, did you think of the fame you could acquire one day?
Well, I wasn’t actually a part of the band when all of it went down, but given that the group was imagined as a cover band, I will boldly say no, we didn’t think about this. It’s funny that you used the term fame because we certainly don’t feel like celebrities. This is who we are and this is what we’re like – just a couple of guys playing music they love and who have daily jobs besides that.

What was the inspiration behind the name? Why Mašinko?
Brač’s very own Mašinko is a local champion when it comes to impaling lambs and fighting for the rights of Jadrankamen’s workers, and is apparently a great guy. He actually attended our friend Krcko’s wedding with our drummer Pitura, so we decided to name the band after him.

What’s your source of inspiration when it comes to writing songs and producing records?
We would like to know as well, given that inspiration lately likes to pass us by. Jokes aside, the world around us is filled with things that anger us, make us happy, force us to think and use our heads, etc. Some of these things occasionally end up in a song.

Nowadays, it’s rare to see a band that still performs with the original line-up. What’s the reason behind this?
I actually joined the band a year later when Srki, our bass player, went to Great Britain to further his academic career. When he returned, I wasn’t allowed to leave the band and it has been the six of us since then. Everyone that was ever a part of the band still is, and the main reason for this being possible is that we’re friends before anything else.

What was it like to debut your first music video for the song “Kako je Potjeh tražio rakiju”?
It felt great and fulfilling because we gave it all we got when we were making it. Recording and editing were done within the band and the music video was released exactly one year after debuting “Frakturka”, a record off of which this song is taken.

Is there a new record in the works?
New recordings are done and they’ll come out in a form of compilation which will cheer up all our fans, including you, the Pannonian crew. As for now, I have no official statement regarding this topic, but Mašinko’s new songs should be out this summer.

What’s it like to hear your song on the radio?
It’s always a pleasant surprise given that this happens really, REALLY rarely. I was actually left speechless the other day when Šulc told me that he had heard our song in the Croatian Radiotelevison board called ”Sport i glazba”. Unfortunately, domestic alternative scene is crawling with bands who would be considered mainstream or radio friendly in a set of developed circumstances. It is up to radio editors to educate themselves and think more open-mindedly. There’s certainly a plenty of material to discuss this, but that’s a topic for another day.

Are there any anecdotes from the concerts you would like to share?
There are so many of them, haha. Šulc actually injured one of his temples while singing, Lovro fell down into Pitura’s drum and Pero, well… He overslept his own ecnore. Onstage.
But there’s also one which we find particularly funny, and it is associated with Šulc. He told a joke in front of 8000 people in Arena Zagreb, and only one person laughed. One person out of all the people in Arena. That’s just a couple of them that I can think of in this moment.

What’s your opinion on Croatian music scene?
Everything went downhill when Vuki left Shomy. But we shouldn’t complain, there’s always Croatia Records and their contemporary tamburitza hits, Zlatko Pejaković with his new single, accompanied by the best music video ever, created in The Sims, the second season of The Voice is behind us, and there’s an upcoming European Championship and at least twenty chanting evergreens we eagerly await.
Cynicism aside, I could come up with a bunch of bands that are currently at the top, but I won’t. Go to the concerts and listen to the bands, don’t just drink in front of the venues. Oh, and listen to Kurve.

Do you think that punk-rock scene is beginning to be more appreciated by younger generations?
There are good bands who found their audience, their fan community, but what this scene really lacks are new bands. We’re all stepping into our thirties, just like Šank, and we’ve been playing in numerous bands for over a decade. Gužva, Grupa, Debeljaci, they’ve all been doing it for years. What this scene really needs are bands like Fajrunt or Eke Buba who are quite fresh on the scene, yet special and memorable for their performances. However, kids nowadays are exploring and diving into new genres, leaving only a handful of young punk-rock bands on the scene.

Any words of wisdom for upcoming generations of punk-rock music?
Just note all the concerts you’ve played, not subscribers or likes.