Lyrics and Poetry


A selection of Satan Panonski’s writing translated from Serbo-Croatian to English by Nikolina Lazetic


I am the fruit of this civilization, but not its devotee.


I divide peoples into SHEEP, DOGS and PEOPLE!  Sheep as sheep: with bowed heads, timid, calm. DOGS shear them as and when they please, keep them in a herd – deceived, blackmailed, abused.
If a sheep dares to step out of the herd and escape the corral, DOGS send their wolves, all dressed up for the occasion, to punish the sheep wickedly and bring it back to a predestined habitat.
DOGS, therefore, have it easy with SHEEP. Clever (not wise), greedy, deceitful, envious amongst themselves; DOGS stand divided. Yet they unite in a hellish plot against any open-minded MAN that happens to stand in the way of their Evil, anyone who unmasks their gruesome deeds. They, then, point all their weapons at MAN, aiming at anything holy inside, around and to PEOPLE. I myself am an obvious target. But…


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Dir. Milorad Milinkovic, 1990.
Yugoslavia, 34 min.
In Croatian with English subtitles

SATAN PANONSKI: DOKUMENTARAC is a Serbian student film featuring the best footage of Panonski’s “Hard Blood Shock” Body Art performance, Continue reading

KAMIKAZA: A biography of Satan

My Motto is: No one can choose their parents, time and place of birth, religion, appearance, skin color, and language from a catalog. But later on we have a choice: be a human or a beast.” Ivan Glišić, Yugoslavian punk, poet, and friend of Satan Panonski

Who wants a world in which the guarantee that we not die of starvation entails to the risk of dying of boredom?” satan panonski 87-Raoul Vaneigem


It was Autumn of 1980 in Vinkovci, a Slavonian town of about 30,000 that locals jokingly called the Chicago of Yugoslavia, when Pogreb X, likely the region’s first punk band, played their now legendarily short set at the  Communist Party-sponsored  “Youth Conference,” where rock n’ roll performances would mix with discussions of teenage delinquency, (mainly “drinking and Kung Fu movies”) and its danger to the socialist ideal. While Rolling Stones and Ramones records were contraband behind the Iron-Curtain, Yugoslavia’s “Velvet Curtain” allowed the contagious anthems of disaffected youth in through the thrift shops of Trieste, making Yugoslavia  the likely high water-mark for the 77’ punk wave. And while punks would be suspected of neo-Nazism in Ljubljana and monitored as a potential agents of chaos in Novi Sad, Vinkovci’s bureaucrats, who had likely seen one of Pogreb X’s first gigs as a Sex Pistols cover band, apparently saw some potential in the vaguely leftist and iconoclastic songs that poked-fun at monarchy and pondered the benefits of the other side of the Berlin Wall.

These organizers may have been surprised to see Pogreb X had a new singer, a beer-swilling, deranged-looking street-kid with a shaved head and ragged outfit. Power chords blasted, the singer growled, and the scheme of punkers and aparatchiks walking hand-in-hand  towards the socialist horizon were demolished with the smashing of the vocalist’s bottle against his skull. Blood poured down his face, and he  hawked globs it off the stage as  he yelled,  “You came to cheat and deceive, not help!” Horrified, the party members, Young Pioneers, and most of the audience ran in terror from the hall. One imagines them continuing to play their set to the empty room, the portrait of the recently-deceased beloved dictator Josip Broz Tito hung behind them as the last audience member. Continue reading

Free Radicals: A Look Back at the Rise and Fall of Yugoslavian Punk

by Patrick Offenheiser

Yugoslavia is dancing Rock­’n­Roll
everything around you is straightening and bending

Elektrikni Orgazam



I arrived in Nikola Tesla airport five summers ago to visit my fiance’s family in their home below the Romanija mountains in Bosnia. We set out for Sarajevo across vast reaches of Serbian plains and farmland, not a hill in sight until  we finally arrived at the Bosnian border where towering limestone karsts loomed before us. As we entered this new territory the landscape’s geography gave way from the endless empty plains of flatlands into winding mountain highways and through needle peaks amidst Bosnia’s craggy pine topped alpine ridges. I found the landscape was startling in its familiarity, yet instantly disorienting in its difference, simultaneously recalling national parks of the American West and the forests of European folktales, haunted throughout by the vestigial reminders of the long defunct national machine of Yugoslavian communism. There were moments where it felt as if I could have been in Colorado, but after driving past the startling monolith of the Sutjeska Partisan monument, rising like weathered wings of granite to form a gateway into the mountains where Yugoslavian partisans had fought and won to wrest their country from fascism, I was reminded of the weight of history borne by this small country torn between great powers.

As we drove deeper through the cliffsides, Marina’s father began to adjust the dials of the car radio, crackling through the airwaves to land on the syncopated percussion, snarling vocals and distorted guitars. I leaned into Marina and asked, “What do they call this?” and she answered “Oh this? This is novi val. Our new wave”

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