It starts with some sweet strumming on a Spanish guitar, after which a trumpet joins in with the melody and then a cool, dark voice follows with a rap. This is how one could describe one of the unconventional songs on the first album by UM student band Serious Beans Project. It is called Périple, which is French for ‘journey’, and also refers to the place where the CD was recorded: Périple en la demeure (Belgium). The CD presentation was in St. Michel Farm last Friday.
It started two years ago, when a group of friends at the University College got together and slowly became a close-knit band. It now consists of seven musicians from across Europe. The music is surprising because of the combination of instruments (including accordion and contrabass), the variety of music styles (Latin, rap, jazz, reggae, chanson), and the many languages in which songs are sung (English, French, Italian), sometimes within the same song. For those whose command of Mediterranean languages is not so good, it is not always clear what the lyrics are about. Judging by the happy note, it would be odd if the topics were a discussion of the terrible evils in modern society.
The future of the Serious Beans Project is uncertain, considering the fact that some students are leaving Maastricht after the summer. What is certain is that they will perform in Rudolstadt in July, at Germany's largest festival for world music.