Polska / Poland
Date of establishing :
Gothic, Gothic Metal, Gothic Rock
Band members:Anja Orthodox - vocal
Michał "Rollo" Rollinger - keyboard
Krzysztof Najman - bass
Mariusz Kumala - guitar
Janusz Jastrzebowski - drums
Aleksandra Wojciechowska - management
Piotr Bieńkowski - drums
Andrzej Szymańczak – drums
Przemysław Guryn - keyboard
Wolfgang Tomasz Grochowalski - bass
Jacek Skirucha – guitar
Robert Ochnio - guitar
Piotr Pawłowski „Posejdon” - drums
Paweł Pieczyński - guitar
Krzysztof Najman - bass
Dariusz Boral - instrumenty klawiszowe Tomasz "Mech" Wojciechowski - keyboard, guitar
Marcin Mentel "Freddie" - guitar
Marcin Płuciennik "Pucek" - bass
Gerard Klawe "Gero" – drums
Closterkeller (name from Bulgarian "Klosterkeller" wine) was formed in 1988 by guitarist Jacek Skirucha, keyboard player Przemysław Guryn and vocalist Anna Sabiniewicz, who assumed pseudonym Anja Orthodox. Soon, bass player Tomasz "Wolfgang" Grochowalski joined their ranks and together with rotating couple of times, changing drummers, the band started to conquer Polish musical market, eager for moods like X-mal Deutschland or Siouxsie and the Banshees. In 1989 Closterkeller won prizes on the couple of significant fests and young bands' rewievs (Mokotowska Jesien, Rock pod Chelmcem). Their greatest success was winning the Jarocin Festival. 1990 brings their first album "Purple" (drummer - RIP Andrzej "Szczota" Szymańczak, later on, the backbone of Kult), very similar to punk genre.
On the following disc, "Blue", launched in 1992 Closterkeller encounters with changes in line-up. Michał Rollinger (keyboards) and Piotr Pawłowski (drummer) joined the band and stay with Closterkeller until today. The second album, for the fans od New Wave, stays the most favorite one and Anja is said to be the one of the most talented Polish vocalists.
Releasing of the new album was preceded by changes in Anja's private life (marriage with bass player Krzysztof Najman and giving a birth to son Adam) and in band's line-up which is joined by Anja's husband and Paweł Pieczyński, guitarist. Released during the fall of 1993, "Violet" album is concerned up to this day as an outstanding one; gothic and New Wave elements are mixed together and blended with metal tones. Thanks to Closterkeller's lyrics, the group gains quickly status of the cult gothic band in Poland.
Following years are filled with plenty of concerts and even greater popularity. On "Scarlet" album, released in 1995, the band flirts with heavier sound (Titus from Acid Drinkers as a guest). A year after, "Cyan" is more gothic and mysterious again. The second half of the nineties abounds with Przystanek Woodstock and newly created Castle Party Festival gigs. At that time Anja started her passion with computers, which fruited in a innovative for those times move – starting with "Cyan", every CD is enriched with a multimedia track. The vocalist lets herself to be known as a person deeply commited in politics (she was a councilor in Warsaw), and is famous for her controversial statements (e.g. plastic surgeries, role of the Church in Poland). Anja attracts also fan’s attention by guest appearances in recordings of other bands (Wilki, Delator, Voo Voo, Piersi, Abraxas, Sweet Noise). She is a frequent guest in Tomasz Beksinski’s broadcast in Polish Radio "3". In years 1997-1999 Closterkeller recorded two live albums, acoustic "Fin de siecle" is especially worth your attention. Year 1999 gives us a great "Graphite" album, which was originally to crown the discography of the band. A year later a new, very interesting publication for fans came out – "Pastel" CD, which second part contains a dozen or so of unpublished tracks in mp3 format, what is more, an interviev with Closterkeller, lyrics, a full discography, video and pictures gallery.
For a couple of years, the band gives only concerts. Its line-up changes dramatically. Pieczyński gives his music career up, Najman and Pawłowski leave as well (later on they form Virgin). Their postion is taken by guitarist Marcin "Freddie" Mentel, bass player Marcin "Pucek" Płuciennik and drummer Gerard Klawe. Together with Michal Rollinger and Anja, of course, they form an up-to-date line-up. In 2003 Closterkeller entered studio and released the English version of "Graphite" and a new, one of the most puzzling and dark of all their albums, "Nero". The band released also a DVD with concert in Krakow and a set of videos. Closterkeller performs at foreign festivals (e.g. Wave Gotik Treffen in Leipzig) and gives a couple of concert tours – they are the headliner during Dark Stars in 2003 and 2004 and (together with Artrosis) Abracadabra Gothic Tour in 2005. Next Closterkeller’s album is "Reghina" CD which includes two new tracks, a couple of covers (the well-known "Earth Song" by Michael Jackson), remixes and videos. The band currently focuses on its concert activity, that why we have to wait 5 years till 2009 for new album Closterkeller ''Aurum''.