Mandoki Soulmates Announces

Utopia For Realists: Hungarian Pictures;

Extended edition on sale September 24, 2021



On September 24, the label will release a new extended version of their album ‘Hungarian Pictures’ which will be released under the title: ‘Utopia For Realists: Hungarian Pictures’.

In addition to having the original remix and remastering, the new material will feature a new Blu Ray that will combine the recording of the commemorative concert for the 30 years of the fall of the Berlin Wall with an impressive visual realization. There will also be content "behind the scenes" and a "how it was done" in the recording studio.


In 'Utopia For Realists: Hungarian Pictures', Leslie Mandoki plays alongside Ian Anderson (Jethro Tull), Jack Bruce (Cream), Nick van Eede (Cutting Crew), Chris Thompson (Manfred Mann's Earth Band), Bobby Kimball (Toto) , David Clayton-Thomas (Blood, Sweat and Tears), John Helliwell (Supertramp), Al di Meola, Mike Stern, Randy Brecker, Till Brönner, Bill Evans, Cory Henry, Richard Bona, Tony Carey (Ritchie Blackmores Rainbow), Jesse Siebenberg (Supertramp), Steve Bailey, and Julia Mandoki.


This ‘Hungarian Pictures’ is like a live concert complemented by studio recordings, films and a full documentary combined into one comprehensive audiovisual work of art, further proof of Leslie Mandoki's indomitable creativity and her soul mates.


The background of ‘Hungarian Pictures’: ‘Hungarian Pictures’ is built as a suite, based on compositions and themes by Bartók, complemented by the original songs of the band. Along with Greg Lake of Emerson Lake & Palmer, and Jon Lord of Deep Purple, Leslie had been working on the seed of this idea for years.


Leslie explains:


“For Bartók, diversity in culture creates enrichment. He believed that it is precisely from these differences that art draws the force that allows further development.


He Mixing traditional sounds and melodies from different regions of the Carpathian plain to set an example against the growing threat of National Socialism (Nazism) through the unifying aspects of music.

That unified momentum inspired Jon Lord, Greg Lake, and me.


After completing the Mandoki Soulmates "Wings Of Freedom" tour in Europe, we gave a concert at the Beacon Theater in New York. The Soulmates concert was a huge success with an enthusiastic New York audience,

raising ovations and rave reviews from the press.


For me, a former refugee who fled a communist dictatorship for freedom more than four decades ago, this success in the

“Land of Freedoms” was a very special moment.


After the concert, I spent a few days with my kids at Van Morrison's old house in Topanga Canyon, one of the old hippie neighborhoods in Los Angeles.


I used this free time to reflect on the social evolution of recent years. It became clear to me that we, as artists, are challenged to make more noise, to be a thorn in the side of society, and to return progressive jazz rock to real socio-political relevance. Thus arose the first ideas for a new album. It is the best and most ambitious project we have ever worked on.