The late 1970’s to early 1980’s is still by many considered the golden age of rock and pop music in the countries of former Yugoslavia. Coinciding with the death of Marshal Tito and the beginning of economic crisis and destabilization which, within a decade, would lead to the disintegration of the federal socialist republic and the outbreak of civil war, this period saw an extraordinary output of exceptional music and cultural activity.
Not being a part of the Eastern Bloc, at this point Yugoslavia was probably the only european socialist country where these essentially anti-establishment and partly western-influenced subcultures – punk and post-punk – were widely tolerated, often released on major labels and covered by both press and TV. And maybe not just the only european socialist country – let’s not forget that the Sex Pistols were effectively banned from playing live in their democratic homeland UK during most of their existence…
Voted the second best Yugoslav rock album of all time by the critics, the compilation LP Paket aranžman was released in 1981 on the label Jugoton. No less than three tracks from this legendary Novi Val record appear in TITO ON ICE, featuring two of the most famous Belgrade bands, Električni Orgazam and Idoli. One year later, the latter would release Odbrana i poslednji dani; the only album to receive a higher rating than Paket aranžman in the same critic’s vote. The song Poslednji dani was originally to be titled Maršala with explicit references to Tito, but had to be changed in a rare instance of record company censorship.
Both albums have been re-released by Croatia Records.
On the other side of the spectrum, two very rare recordings never released on vinyl or CD come from the Novi Sad bands Luna and Obojeni Program, respectively. Also featured on the movie soundtrack is the prominent Zagreb band Film, and from the more punk-oriented scene of Rijeka the brilliant Termiti – authors of the classic Vjeran Pas, later re-released by Dallas Records.