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Timpuri Noi


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Bucureşti, Romania (1983 – 2001, 2005 – present)

Timpuri Noi was formed in 1983 in Bucharest, Romania, and remained an underground act up to 1991. This was mainly due to what was perceived as “subversive lyrical content” in the Ceauşescu era. Incidentally, the name derives from a cliché of the period: its literal meaning is “New Age”, used to signify Marxist Socialism. The tongue-in-cheek reference is somehow associated with the Bucharest district of the same name. The name is also the Romanian translation of Modern Times, the title for Charles Chaplin’s classic 1936 film.

The earliest well-known track by Timpuri Noi was Perfect (composed 1984). However, the band was first featured on disc in 1988. Thus, the 11th volume of the Formatii rock (“Rock bands”) various-artists series includes four tracks by Timpuri Noi (and another four by an obscure band from Suceava - Contrast ).

In the early nineties, up to around 1995, the band was arguably the top Romanian act. Around the time, they had the opportunity to be the opening act for rather prestigious (albeit musically different) foreign acts during concerts in Bucharest: Ian Gillan and Uriah Heep in 1992, Scorpions in 1993, Saxon, Paradise Lost and Jethro Tull in 1994, Iron Maiden and Kreator in 1995, Eros Ramazzotti, Joe Cocker and Rod Stewart later in the same year.

1994 also signifies an important event in both Timpuri Noi’s career and Romanian music in general: Timpuri Noi gives the very first unplugged performance in this country, recorded as an album in the same year (see below).


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