Ulytau- An Unexpected Mix of Music Genres

Country: Kazakhstan
Musical genre(s): Folk Metal; Neo-Classical Metal
Years of experience: 2001-present

Members: Erjan Alimbetov – Dombra;
Maxim Kichigin – Guitar;
Alua Makanova – Violin;

Session musiciansRoman Adonin – Keyboards;
Oleg Tarnovskiy – Guitar;
Serik Sansyzbayev – Bass;
Rafael Arslanov – Drums;

Brief Bio.: The band was formed in 2001 by producer Kydyrali Bolmanov. The music is a mix of Western and Eastern, more specifically Kazakh styles of music combined with Classical music from composers like  Kurmangazy Sagyrbayuly, Antonio Vivaldi, Niccolò Paganini and Johann Sebastian Bach. Ulytau means “Great Mountains” in Kazakh, according to many sources. The band is faithful to Kazakh heritage (i.e. use of the instrument dombra, a national and traditional two-string instrument) while using contemporary styles.

The mix of classic with heavy metal music is not a musical I would have imagined; until now!

I really enjoy the modern twist to the classical music. The music reminds of scores in video games and in some cases, period-set movies. The classic music compliments the heavy metal music nicely, without taking away its essence. What’s most spectacular are their concert performances, which I saw on youtube. I heard music from the early videos, as well as their recent material. It has improved over the years. I would love to see them perform at places such as Place Des Arts and the Montreal Symphony Orchestra.







Original publish date: June 25, 2015


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