Originally from Split, Josip Radić is a singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist. He has lived in Zagreb since 2005 and Kensington Lima is his new band project.
Radić's name may be familiar to existing fans of new Croatian music; he is one half of the extraordinary Valentino Bošković, alongside Branko Dragičević, who have released three spectacular albums since 2014.
'Valentino Bošković is a collaboration,' explains Radić. 'We are both the authors and performers. Kensington Lima is my solo songwriting project. And on the recordings so far, I also play most of the instruments. Some of these songs have been lying around for the last 15 years. After I turned 30 I decided it was time for me to record them.'
In contrast to the sometimes zany, sci-fi quoting and humorous pop music of Valentino Bošković, Radić's Kensington Lima project is more of a serious, heartfelt affair. Kensington Lima is frequently acoustic, barren of the electronic or synthesizer sounds sometimes audible in the duo. In Kensington Lima he is clearly combining American country and rock music elements, often to stunningly beautiful and epic effect.
'Kensington Lima's music is informed by pretty much all of my influences, which range from The Beatles, early Pink Floyd, The Kinks, Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young, Jackson Browne to more recent acts like Wilco, Beck. Or Dawes. They're one of my favourite new bands. It's that kind of west coast rock, Americana sound.'
Their sound is not the only difference Kensington Lima hold to Valentino Bošković; the latter is a studio project, with no ambitions to perform live.
'It's my big wish to play this music live,' says Radić. 'I feel it would enhance the lives of these songs. Being alone on stage with just a guitar gets a bit boring after a while, not just for me, but also for the audience.'
'These days it's a challenge to find people who are available to play. Even I am also playing in three other bands, so it's hard to find the time to dedicate,' says Radić, referencing not only Valentino Bošković, but also Buđenje, for who he plays bass and The Beatles Revival Band, a Rijeka based troupe who are one of Europe's oldest Beatles tribute bands. 'But, I'm getting there. I found some people who reacted to these songs. I'm hoping that by the end of the year we will have played a concert or two.'
Kensington Lima's debut album May is almost finished, with one song remaining for Radić to finish from the 11 it will feature. Most of the album is already available to listen to on Kensington Lima's Bandcamp page, where the completed album will be published. It will also be available on CD.