Piccola Orchestra Gagarin second album Vostok has just been released!!


PAOLO ANGELI: prepared Sardinian guitar, vocals

SASHA AGRANOV: cello, vocals

ORIOL ROCA: drums and percussion


“Vostok is fearless Mediterranean fusion with a Cold War space exploration theme and an absence of unnecessary formalism. Sounds good to me… and it sounds better with each listen ” Dave Foxall, A Jazz Noise


“En serio, el salto que ha dado el grupo de seis años a esta parte es cósmico. Si el primer disco era la grabación de su segundo concierto, fundamentado en la casi más absoluta improvisación, ahora nos ofrece una versión de estudio (pre)meditada, muy bien estructurada y con la novedad de la incorporación de varios temas con firma” Carlos Pérez Cruz, El Club de Jazz


“Il trio fornisce una serie di input all’ascoltatore, input talmente forti che l’ascolto di “Vostok” diventa una di quelle esperienze che, seppure per soli quaranta minuti, ti inchiodano alle cuffie o alle casse dello stereo” Gianluca Dessì, Blogfoolk





Check out this live session at www.totssants.com


SLOW & CANELA · Tour 2016

David Mengual Slow Quartet & Carme Canela

Slow is a project going back almost four years and with an album U (Bebyne Records) warmly welcomed by the specialised critics. During this time, and after concerts everywhere, it has grown and matured, becoming a stable quartet with great affinity and musical communication. The compositions are originals, written with the aim of creating a thoughtful, sincere dialogue helping to compensate for the impossible pace at which we have to live, this time accompanied by one of the greatest singers in the country, Carme Canela. After this year’s tour, Slow & Canela will record a new album to immortalise this most productive time.

Carme Canela vocals, David Mengual double bass, Miguel Villar saxes, Dani Pérez guitar, Oriol Roca drums.


24 June – Jamboree Jazz Club (Barcelona)

25 June – Nova Jazz Cava (Terrassa)

1 July – Celler Modernista (Sant Cugat del Vallès)

23 July – Nits d’Estiu a La Pedrera (Barcelona)

24 July – Nits d’estiu a La Pedrera (Barcelona)

13 November – Cafè Auditori (Sant Cugat del Vallès)



GIOVANNI DI DOMENICO & ORIOL ROCA · Live at Festival de Jazz de Vic 2016 by Carlos Pérez Cruz (concert + audio interview)

Giovanni di Domenico & Oriol Roca – Live at 18 Festival de Jazz de Vic 2016

Concert + interview from May 2016 with Spanish journalist Carlos Pérez Cruz (www.elclubdejazz.com) discussing the recent album Live in Centelles with pianist Giovanni di Domenico, the duo background, Japan, free improvisation and more… Click here to listen to the whole interview




7 QUESTIONS FOR… ORIOL ROCA by Dave Foxall (interview)

I got the chance to answer 7 Questions by Dave Foxall at his excellent music blog A Jazz Noise.

(…) Here in Barcelona, sometimes it feels difficult to find a gig that doesn’t feature Oriol Roca. A slight exaggeration but he does take the ubiquity prize, whether it’s Giulia Valle’s latest genre-crossing project, Líbera, or the humorous gymnastics of the Piccola Orchestra Gagarin, or the charts+improv of the the David Mengual Free Spirits Big Band, or the leaderless spontaneity of the MUT Trio… the list is almost endless but what it all has in common is Roca’s agile and subtly surprising approach to drums and percussion. In his own words… (Continue reading)



LA TOMBA DEI GIGANTI · Free album download

It all happened by chance. In August 2009 guitarist/improviser Paolo Angeli invited me to play at Isole che Parlano, a small festival held in the tiny village of Palau, in the Italian island of Sardegna. He asked me to do a solo concert at a very special spot near Palau -right at the feet of a bronze era monument, La Tomba dei Giganti (Giants’ tomb), erected in 1400BC. Locals strongly believe it is a source of energy with strong healing properties.



Before setting foot in Palau but aware of the connotations of the place, I sketched a plot for what is otherwise a performance of improvised music. It would be a journey of discovery, from sheer sound to dance, music, and then back to sound -only this time around a sound informed by the knowledge acquired along the way. At the end, because the concert took place on my country’s national day -September the 11th- and a bit as an internal joke, I felt like playing Els segadors, the official Catalan hymn, on a cheap flute my brother Roger had brought me as a souvenir from London. I knew none of the people attending the concert, some of them musicians but mostly locals of virtually all ages, would recognize the tune. But it didn’t matter. It moved them all the same. Hence the tittles –Sound, Dance, Music, Life, Wisdom, and Hymn– into which the performance, presented on the album in its entirety and unedited, is divided.


I had no intention to release a solo album, I din’t even plan to perform solo, for that matter. But an italian radio station happened to be there with their recording equipment to document the festival. Then someone send me a copy, I listened it back and I was struck to recognize myself in the music. And that’s how La Tomba dei Giganti, my first ever solo album, recorded on the evening of my first ever solo performance, came to be.


Click on the cover to download the album, and if you like it share it as much as you want!


Click to download




Produced by Oriol Roca

Recorded live at Festival Isole che Parlano (Palau, Italy) by Roberto Monari September 11th 2009.

Mixed and mastered by Oriol Roca and Dave Bianchi at The Emergency Room Studio (Barcelona).

Cover artwork by Andrea Cirotto.

Photography by Nanni Angeli

Whatabout Music 2010


“The music on this recording goes back to an era when the world is still wild and untamed. A time when sounds are so new no one has ever heard them, a time when someone realises he can arrange and rearrange those sounds and come up with something new. And that is music and it is powerful, for it can make people dance. And after living his life with joy and intensity he goes back to his homeland to share his newfound wisdom with his people. And there he finally rests to the sound of a hymn.” 

VRAK’ TRIO + MUT TRIO · Tribute to “The Ballad of The Fallen”

About four years ago my good friend and flute player Etienne Lecomte came up with the idea of combining two bands: the french-catalan VRAK’ TRIO and Barcelona based MUT TRIO with the (good!) excuse to revisit Charlie Haden and Carla Bley memorable album The Ballad of The Fallen.

A common musical approach (and not only by me being part of both trios) has always existed among the members of VRAK’ and MUT, who have been in contact following each other’s music paths and eventually participating together in music sessions; so revisiting an album by two beloved musicians such as Bley and Haden was a very exciting idea for all of us and a perfect excuse to get together and make some music.

But the idea goes beyond Vrak and Mut. Tubist Laurent Guitton has been organizing music workshops for many years with amateur large brass ensembles all around France, and established a close relation with La Banda d’Auvergne and the Festival Les Nuits & Les Jours de Querbes, both from Midi-Pyrénées region. So the idea of revisiting The Ballad of The Fallen, an album based on Central America/spanish revolutionary music anthems and songs, becomes richer with the introduction of a third element: an amateur traditional brass band (fanfarre in french) which immediately creates through the instrumentation a very natural link with the “popular” sound of the original central american songs, and ties it up with Haden‘s Liberation Music Orchestra distinctive sound: impassioned, often dissonant lyricism combined with a village brass band, a frequent Spanish tinge, free jazz and folk music.

Thanks to the support of the Festival Les Nuits & Les Jours de Querbes and other french/european institutions we are are about to start working on it during a residence at the festival together with La Banda d’Auvergne and have a première concert on August 9th 2015. Revisiting this album will bring us as well the opportunity to work during 2016 with other large ensembles such as l’Harmonie du Conservatoire du Grand Narbonne and l’Harmonie du Conservatoire de Lézignan, adding to the whole project a pedagogical side which not only will be beneficiary for the music students that will take part on it (around 125 in total) but will help spreading the spirit of the original album among younger generations.

This contestataire album conveys a message of hope through music placed between free jazz and traditional songs. At a time of multiple revolutions around the world, the two groups propose, gathered through a rereading, a reflection on life. As an extension, this gathering provides a link with the current situation, using popular contemporary music to evoke the same problems and the same optimism as the record did on 1983.

VRAK’ TRIO is by nature a group moving between France and Catalonia with two french members (Languedoc-Roussillon and Midi-Pyrénées ) and a catalan drummer. MUT TRIO represents the the catalan part of the pyrénées. This project wants to strengthen the link between these two countries and the three regions, connected by essence and history, but we’re basically willing to rediscover an album stamped with a beautiful message of solidarity, freedom and peace among people. 


ETIENNE LECOMTE: flutes & electronics



TITO JUAN: electric guitar



· August 9th 2015: Avec La Banda d’Auvergne / Festival Les Nuits & Les Jours de Querbes (Asprières, France)

· April 2nd 2016: Avec l’Harmonie du Conservatoire du Grand Narbonne + l’Harmonie du Conservatoire de Lézignan (Lézignan, France)

· April 3rd 2016: Avec l’Harmonie du Conservatoire du Grand Narbonne + l’Harmonie du Conservatoire de Lézignan /Téâthre de la Scène Nationale (Narbonne, France)


Contact/booking: www.labelmanivelle



BAD MUSIC JAZZ #145 by Martí Farré (interview)

Audio interview (in catalan) on Bad Music Jazz radio show hosted by Martí Farré. Focused on the second album in duo with Giovanni Di Domenico Live in Centelles recently released onthe label Whatabout Music, we also discuss my 2010 solo album La Tomba dei Giganti or the upcoming album by Bad Currency.

(…) Pioner del nou free jazz comtal, l’avantguardista avant la lettre Oriol Roca (Barcelona, 1979) és avui un dels bateries més sol·licitats de la parròquia funàmbula del jazz nostrat. Ha posat les baquetes al servei de projectes com el Libera de Giulia Valle, el trio de Joan Díaz, la Free Spirits Big Band i l’Slow Quartet de David Mengual, el Bad Currency de David Soler i la Piccola Orchestra Gagarin de Paolo Angeli, entre molts d’altres. A Oriol Roca també se’l coneix per les seves col·laboracions a l’altra banda dels Pirineus, a França i al Benelux, entre altres indrets. Menys conegut, però, és el seu vessant com a creador, de líder d’un seguit de propostes com ara per exemple el duet que manté amb un vell amic de l’escena italiana: el pianista Giovanni di Domenico. Al programa d’aquesta setmana parlem amb Oriol Roca del seu duet amb Di Domenico i d’altres fites de la seva prolífica biografia. (Listen to the complete interview)