Q&A Scene: Dubioza Kolektiv

Tell us about your new single/ album/ tour?

Our latest album “Happy Machine” is named after traditional Balkan moonshining device. It is used to distil everybody’s favourite alcoholic beverage – rakija. Drinking fresh-hot rakija, straight from the “Happy Machine”, is known to cause instant happiness (and mild hallucinations). This age-old practice has been outlawed by the European Union in recent years due to “concerns about health risk”, requiring special permits and tons of paperwork even for producing small qualities for non-commercial domestic use. We put detailed schematics how to assemble “Happy Machine” for yourselves on CD cover.

Our latest single is “Free.mp3 (The Pirate Bay Song)” and it is dedicated to people who are fighting big corporations and governments – not for profit but because they believe in ideas of freedom of information and knowledge, even at the price of their own personal freedoms. This is very inspiring for us. Music video for “Free.mp3” ended up on the front page of The Pirate Bay and a lot of people saw it there for the first time.

Last couple of years, we are on never-ending tour and this year alone we’ve played well over 100 shows all around the world.

Our music is available for free from our website dubioza.org

What’s your favourite work at this point in time? 

It has been the same thing from the beginning: traveling and playing concerts. This is where all the work done around the band comes together most truthfully and this is what we enjoy the most.  

How would you describe your sound in food form and why? 

Our sound in food form would have two variants – vegetarian and non-vegetarian.

Vegetarian recipe: avocado + baked potatoes + kimchi + gorgonzola cheese + miso soup.

Non-vegetarian recipe : Sushi + grilled lamb + Bosnian curry ratatouille + smoked salmon + scrambled eggs.

Some kind of schizophrenic buffet table. 

Tell us a quick, on the road or studio, anecdote.

Few years ago, we played some festival, which had a pretty high stage. In the middle of the show, our DJ slipped on the cables and – BAAM – fell off of it in a cartoon kind of way – you know, when the character sees it’s feet in the air slow mo and his sneakers fell off.

All bruised, he managed to climb on the stage somehow and desperately tried to call the photographer, to ask him to go find and grab his sneakers, but the photographer thought he wanted him to take more photos of him and spent next 15 min taking endless photos of him. It was hilarious.

What, or who, inspires you?

Since most of our songs speak about politics, inspiration is in abundance wherever you look. It is enough to turn on TV or read few articles at news websites and here it is… 

Which song do you wish you wrote?

“Jingle Bells”, because that one makes a lot of money in royalties. :)

What’s next for you?

After Australia, we will go back home for a few days and then head for the first time to INDIA as well. Afterwards, we will start recording new songs. We will try to do as much as possible before Happy Machine tour restarts in the spring of 2017.

What’s your scene?

Our scene is mostly revolving around the interior of our band’s van in which we travel around Europe and where we spend most of our time. We will probably be a little lost without it in Australia.

To celebrate their Australian tour, the Dubioza Kolektiv prepared a little something special just for us – check it out!

Australia – meet Dubioza Kolektiv.

They’re non-conformist and a little rebellious.  Their music is exuberant and their lyrics tell it exactly how they see it.  They are known for their “kick ass” live shows.  Oh, and they give their music away – for free. [pullquote]“Yeah, the Dubioza Kolektiv really are that good.  Damn…Just…Damn…” –Mass Movement Magazine[/pullquote] Melding influences of ska, punk, reggae, electronic, hip-hop with traditional Balkan flavours, and presenting traditionally no-go topics in politically incorrect fashion, Dubioza Kolektiv (Doobie-Oza Collective) are a band quite like no other.  December 2016 sees them headed to Australia for the very first time, with headline performances in Melbourne, Adelaide, Sydney and Brisbane and appearances at Woodford Folk Festival.


Born in 2003 in Bosnia and Herzegovina, at a time of deep moral and economic stagnation in the region, and with little space for cultural or political expression among the crop of newly plugged-in youth; Dubioza Kolektiv  arrived kicking and screaming – demanding to be heard and creating a bit of a phenomenon while they went about it.  [pullquote]“There’s fiery polemic in the lyrics, but it’s all wrapped up in a frantic joie de vivre that’s as infectious as it is unique” – Kerrang![/pullquote] By 2008, with the release of their 3rd full length album “Firma Ilegal” the band’s bold and uncompromising stand against their nationalist establishment elevated them to fame across the entire Balkan region.  And in an open snub to ultra-capitalist music labels and as an expression of commitment to their fans, Dubioza made the album available for free.  Around this time, Faith No More’s Bill Gould discovered Dubioza and the band’s fifth album “Wild, Wild East” was picked up by his label Koolarrow Records – introducing DK on the international stage with worldwide distribution.

In  the ensuing years the band has gone on to become one of the most popular live outfits in Eastern Europe, with the video for the track “Kažu” from the album “Apsurdistan” reaching over 12 million views on YouTube. All of this combined with a relentless approach to touring, has bought DK’s sound to every corner of Europe. [pullquote]“Kick-ass from start to finish, Dubioza Kolektiv marries power and positivity” – PopMatters[/pullquote] Which brings us to their new release.  The subject matter on the new album “Happy Machine” may be typically confrontational and challenging, but the music is as always, as catchy as hell – now more than ever.   The album is largely inspired by events that have unfolded over the past two years; from Istanbul’s Gezi Park protests (“All Equal”), the jailing of the founders of The Pirate Bay (“Free.mp3”), the Syrian refugee crisis and Europe’s shameful response to it.  More kindred spirits in the music world have jumped on board, with guest appearances from Manu Chao, Benji Webbe from Skindred, Punjabi singer BEE2, Catalan ska-rumba band La Pegatina and trumpet player Dzambo Agusev from Macedonia.  Songs are in English, Spanish and Punjabi.

The music needs no translation though.  It’s wild, frenetic and fabulous.  And again, it’s also totally free.  You can download the album at the band’s website right now. Head to dubioza.org to do just that.


Thursday December 22

The Corner Hotel

57 Swan St, Richmond VIC

Ph: 1300 724 867 / 03 9427 7300


Friday December 23

Fowlers Live

68 North Terrace, Adelaide SA

Ph: 1300 438 849 / 08 8212 0255


Saturday December 24

Factory Theatre

105 Victoria Rd, Marrickville NSW

Ph: 02 9550 3666


Thursday 28 & Friday 29 December

Woodford Folk Festival, QLD


Friday 29 December

Woolly Mammoth

633 Ann St, Fortitude Valley QLD

Ph: 1300 762 545 / 07 3257 4439


Tickets to all shows on sale now. 

“The Best thing at Paleo is coming across a band you’d never heard of before, and getting totally blown away.  This is what happened to me yesterday with Dubioza Kolektiv” – livinginyon.com


About Mary Boukouvalas 1614 Articles
Mary is a photographer and a writer, specialising in music. She runs Rocklust.com where she endeavours to capture the passion of music in her photos whether it's live music photography, promotional band photos or portraits. She has photographed The Rolling Stones, KISS, Iggy Pop, AC/DC, Patti Smith, Joe Strummer, PULP, The Cult, The Damned, The Cure, Ian Brown, Interpol, MUDHONEY, The MELVINS, The Living End, Foo Fighters, Smashing Pumpkins, Rage Against The Machine, The Stone Roses –just to name a few - in Australia, USA, Europe and the Middle East. Her work has been published in Beat magazine, Rolling Stone magazine, Triple J magazine, The Age Newspaper, The Herald Sun, The Australian, Neos Kosmos, blistering.com, theaureview.com, noise11.com, music-news.com. She has a permanent photographic exhibition at The Corner Hotel in Richmond, Victoria Australia.