Croatian Music Guide: Psihomodo pop

Psihomodo pop is a popular Croatian rock band that formed in 1983 under the former Yugoslavia and still makes music to this day. The band’s opus is mostly comprised of rock, punk rock, and pop-punk.

From the start, the band became popular very quickly and grew a large fanbase. Psihomodo pop is known for its remarkably energetic gigs and heavy sound. Their charismatic frontman Davor Gobac is an audience favorite and an icon of the band.

Psihomodo Pop - Lead singer Davor Gobac
Image by Novosti.hr

Psihomodo pop beginnings

Before Psihomodo pop, the original band was called “Neron”. Neron’s members were Tigran Kalebota (“Tigi”) on drums and Smiljan Paradiš  (“Šparka”) on the bass guitar and back vocals. When Davor Gobac and Neven Kepeski (“Kepa”) joined the band on guitar and vocals, the band changed its name to Psihomodo pop. The name was inspired by the album “Psychomodo” by Cockney Rebel, an English glam rock band from the early 1970s

In 1985, Saša Novak Radulović (“Sale”) joined the band and replaced Kepa. In 1987, Vlatko Čavar (“Brada”) joined the band as a second guitarist.

The band released its first demo album called Godina zmaja in 1988, which became very popular throughout Yugoslavia. The band officially blew up when it was selected as one of six best rock bands at the Dutch rock festival “Grote prijs of Netherland” in 1988.  Six hundred bands competed for this award.

How the band made it big

The success at Grote prijs put them on MTV’s radar. MTV then aired their music video “Ja volim samo sebe” (I’m love only myself). The video was the first Yugoslavian music video shown on MTV.

In the following years, Psihomodo pop toured all over Netherlands and the Soviet Union. They also played as an opening band for their idols including The Ramones in Zagreb and Ljubljana. In 1993, the band released their 4th studio album Srebrne svinje, which has been declared their greatest achievement by music critics.

The song “Starfucker”, from the Srebrne svinje album, won the Porin award and the Oktavijan award. Sale left the band in 1995 and Jurij Novoselić (“Kuzma”) (originally from Disciplina kičme) took his place. The band set up remained the same until 2018 when Tigi passed away at 54, and Tin Ostreš replaced him on drums.

Psihomodo Pop performance
Image by Narodni.hr

Staying power

Psihomodo pop has released 10 studio albums, 2 live albums, and several compilations. Their influences include the Rolling Stones, Lou Reed, Velvet Underground, Iggy & The Stooges, and The Ramones.

With his freakish sense of humor, cheerful presence, and childish spirit, the frontman Davor Gobac became a rock icon leading Psihomodo Pop to a cult status in Croatia.

Psihomodo still plays and entertains its fans with positive energetic performances. Their fans are from across the spectrum, from children to the elderly. They still fill concert halls thanks to their youthful approach. Everyone likes their music but that doesn’t mean that they have no specific style. Quite the opposite, their rock style is recognizable, authentic, and Gobac’s vocal expression is irreplaceable.

Psihomodo Pop band members
Image by Novilist.hr

Here are 5 Psihomodo pop songs to get you started

1. Ja volim samo sebe (I’m love only myself)

2. Mila (Darling)

3. Osjećam se haj (I feel high)

4. Kad sam imao 16 (When I was 16)

5. Ramona

For more Croatian music, check out the other artists in our music guide:

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