congress / people

Igor Boxx

Birthplace: Wrocław, Poland

Living place: Wrocław, Poland

Theme: music

ECC Participation: event curator

photo: Bartosz Hołoszkiewicz

Igor Boxx is the stage name of Igor Pudło, a Wroclaw-born and coming from the DJ scene musician, composer, collector of records and sounds, co-creator (with Marcin Cichy) of the legendary duo Skalpel, and author of one of the best known albums of the year 2010, i.e. Breslau published by the London-based record label Ninja Tune. In his works Igor Boxx combines psychedelic mood, krautrock experiments, ambient and dance-punk rhythms; he also re-mixes film dialogues, radio voices and Polish jazz of the 1970s. His music adds new contexts to old sounds.

„By the way, it’s exciting that computers, which initially were meant to be calculating machines, transformed into musical instruments.”

As a member of Skalpel, Igor Boxx recorded two albums for the Ninja Tune label: Skalpel (2004) and Konfusion (2005). These record received a warm welcome all over the world, and in Poland were considered one of the most important albums of the previous decade. In 2005 Skalpel was honoured with the Paszport Polityki prize. The hero of the first album issued under the scenic name Igor Boxx is the musician’s home town – Wroclaw. Breslau is an evocative narration about the turbulent history of the city that was besieged in 1945 by the Red Army. Despite the historical pretext, the story is very topical and told in the language of contemporary music that refers to the tradition of jazz, hip-hop, krautrock and the present-day avant-garde and film music.

When compared with other historical concept albums, e.g. Powstanie Warszawskie by Lao Che (a popular record devoted to the Warsaw Uprising of 1944), Breslau surprises with its originality and unobvious message. We will not find there any uplifting nor heroic version of the history. Igor Boxx composed Breslau having also foreign listeners in mind; thus what is most important is the very music that, at the same time, is attractive and clear to European listeners unacquainted with the story of the author’s home town. This evocative, diverse and musically rich instrumental album provokes listeners to create their own fantasies.