Lithuania is a relatively young country, and in a short period of time it has managed to build an impressive cultural heritage. One of the most important parts of this is Lithuania’s musical world.
Looking back on the past with respect, one can see giants of the music scene such as Stasys Povilaitis, Foje or Hiperbolė, but the music world is improving and growing every day. Today’s Lithuania can be proud of more than one representative of the music scene, but it is still a rather difficult task to leave a more prominent mark on a global scale, if we don’t count the astonishing global success of Dynor.
PlanetNews.info invites you to get acquainted with 10 extremely popular Lithuanian bands and artists who, in the opinion of the editorial staff, are currently making the greatest contribution to the progress of the Lithuanian music scene.
Monika Pundziūtė, also known as Monique, who won the third season of “X Faktorius”, joined the ranks of the most popular singers in Lithuania quite quickly. Initially, the singer was written off by many commentators who said that her popularity would gradually fade and she would be quickly forgotten after winning X Faktorius, but Moni proved otherwise. Such famous tracks as “Palauk dar”, “Nenoriu grįžt namo”, “Dviese”, “Man nebaisu” broke popularity and listenership records in Lithuania.
Monika’s work is quite in line with global trends and brings a lot of innovation and modernity, especially in the video clips, which colour the songs with much more variety than is usual in the Lithuanian context. The singer’s work may not yet be world-class, but at least it has the pretension to be on a par with western pop stars. Despite the fact that Monika is still a very young rising star of the Lithuanian music world (she was born in 1997 in a small town of Širvintos), she is already shining with unusually bright colours, and we can expect much more from Monika in the future. We have no doubt that she will surprise everyone.
9. Deeper Upper
The energetic quartet has been playing since 2010. Mixing indie rock with electronica, they have been building their audience in Lithuania for a long time. The group consists of young “synthpop” guys who have been actively participating in various music festivals and international competitions. According to the band members, the group’s survival and success was due to the goals they set themselves, most of which they have fulfilled.
The group’s work is truly contemporary and reflects the 21st century. Music videos such as “Unity” reflect the openness and tolerance that the band promotes, with visual motifs that send friendly messages to the LGBTQ community. The band writes in English, and we very much hope that the guys will try to make their mark on a global scale. Most notable tracks include “Unity”, “In the Sands of a Desert”, “No Regrets”, “Boys Don’t Cry”.
8. Ieva Narkutė
Ieva Narkutė’s work stands out from the rest with songs that evoke special feelings and emotions. Ieva, also known as Jieva in the music world, became especially famous after the release of the movie “Tadas Blinda”, when the song “Raudoni vakarai” was performed. But the other popular songs “Sakyk, kur tu”, “1000 metų”, Tarp kažkada ir dabar”, “Metų laikai” are no worse.
Ieva’s music career has slightly lost momentum since the birth of her daughter, but she says that nothing will stop her, and we hope that she will never lose motivation for her future creations and her performances on the big stage.
Observing “Skylės” musical path, one gets the impression that the band is staying away from all that fierce industrial business in Lithuania and trying to go its own way. The band, which was formed in 1991 when the Soviet Union was collapsing, has made a good name for itself in the Lithuanian music world. Rokas Radzevičius, Aistė Smilgevičiūtė, Kęstutis Drazdauskas, Mantvyvas Kodis, Gediminas Žilys, Jonas Krivickas, Salvijus Žeimys. The band’s music style is not easy to define, varying between rock, neo-folk, bard, punk and several other styles.
The band’s latest albums are “Vilko vartai” (2015), “Dūšelės” (2016) and “Broliai” (2010). The content of the songs is quite varied, ranging from memories of Lithuanian partisans, Baltic culture, to erotically sounding duets or reflections on death. The creations are truly for music gourmets and are not particularly suitable for today’s Cardi B and Nicki Minaj fans.
6. G&G sindikatas
Enough with the feelings, you all know this band, it is a Hip Hop music group founded by Gabrielius Liaudanskas and a very motley crew of complementary personalities. Established in 1996, this extraordinary guard has become a true symbol of Hip Hop in Lithuania. The group has released 8 albums and won numerous awards (Lithuanian Hip Hop, Bravo, Radiocentro and M.A.M.A awards). The group has been actively performing at various music festivals, arenas around Lithuania and abroad throughout its career.
G&G’s production strongly reflects the Hip Hop genre, which was widespread in the West in the 90’s. Svaras drew inspiration from famous artists such as Eminem, 2Pac and many others. As far as the pioneers of Hip Hop in Lithuania are concerned, G&G is the real father of the genre. We hope that this bunch will not stop progressing and feel the winds of the new times and avoid the unfortunate fate of dinosaurs.
Singer Justė Arlauskaitė became famous for her duet “Leon Somov and Jazzu” with producer Leon Somov, which stuck in everybody’s brains and hearts. Since 2009, the singer has been sweeping the Music Association of the Year Awards. Jazzu started her music career in London, which is exactly where she met producer Leon. Even after the duo split up, Justė did not lose the spotlight and if it wasn’t for her difficult character, somewhat unreasonable ambitions and bad social media management, we would probably see her even higher on this list.
Justė’s creativity and the unique timbre of her voice have the ability to evoke a myriad of emotions in listeners. A perfect example of this is “Po mano oda”. With 11.5 million views on Youtube, the song has received a great response from listeners even from abroad. Justė has collaborated quite successfully with the music world’s representatives such as Jovani. The artist’s voice and DJ skills open up the music to a much wider audience than just one country. The song “Keep It To Myself” also has over 11 million views, so the artist has been quite successful and persistent in promoting the name of Lithuania.
4. Domantas Razauskas
Domantas Razauskas is a renowned songwriter and performer, poet, guitarist and composer. He can offer you a punch in the face if you call him a singer-songwriter. When it comes to the musician’s work, it would be fair to say that it is much more than rock, reggae or devilishly/devilishly talented poetry. Before the programme “Pasivaikščiojimai”, the journalist and sound engineer Rytis Žemkauskas described his songs as “songs you can live with”. Domantas has written almost all of the songs he performs himself, and the number of songs has long since far exceeded one hundred. What’s really great is that it’s almost impossible to hear two of the same songs at different concerts. Thanks to endless and never-ending improvisation, all Domantas’ songs sound different every time.
Every time Domantas appears on stage differently, he may give the impression of a rocker or a rasta-man, but everything is much different and the truth lies somewhere beyond. So if you are looking for a way to relax and find peace of mind, or to find the answers to your most important questions, you need to listen to the work of Domantas Razauskas.
3. Marijonas Mikutavičius
You probably haven’t heard much about this singer, or seen him on TV? Just kidding. So let’s not say too much about Marijonas himself. Marijonas became most famous after the sports anthem ” Trys milijonai” and the Eurobasket 2011 basketball song. Of course, these are not the only wonderful works of the singer, his sonorous voice was perfectly reflected in such works as “Ten galėjai būti tu”, “Balintos sienos”, “Aš miręs”, “Drąsių nieks nežudo”, “Ar mylėsi tu me”, “Geriausi mūsų vakarai” and other breathtaking works. Marijonas is not only an extraordinary, highly accomplished Lithuanian singer, he is an integral part of basketball and the country’s culture.
2. Jurga Šeduikytė
MTV awards from Justin Timberlake’s hands, the main prize of the International Baltic Song Music Festival, the albums “Aukso pieva”, “Instrukcija”, “+37”, these are some of Jurga’s achievements. Jurga became active in the music world back in 2005, when the song “Nebijok” was played on all radio stations. Jurga’s work is also quite closely linked to Lithuanian culture and history. The song “Seniai toli” celebrates the ancient Balts and their life. Jurga’s work is genuine and original, the singer avoids repetition and most of her songs are based on rich lyrics. Jurga, never stop!
1. Andrius Mamontovas
Yes, we know that saying that Andrius Mamontovas is the best Lithuanian singer is a bit predictable or even hackneyed, but the fact that an apple that is thrown upwards will fall to the ground at some point in the future is also banal. It is simply impossible to deny the fact that the singer has exceptional talent and inspiration. He has made a name for himself in the world of music far more than any of the bands or artists already mentioned, and he has countless songs that are forever imprinted on Lithuanian hearts. Andrius was born in 1967 and started his musical career as a teenager in the band “Foje”. He has released 24 albums and 6 singles. Mamontov’s musical odyssey spans more than 30 years, during which time he has not had any particularly significant downfalls, which is very typical of various stars from the western world. Andrius is a unique Lithuanian artist of whom we can be truly proud.