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Punk Rock & Alternative Rock in Russia
August 23, 2007 21:16


Andrei Panov

Russian Punk Music It is assumed that the so-called Russian punk rock was born in 1979 in Leningrad (now St. Petersburg), mainly due to the efforts of Andrei Panov (1960—1998), the permanent frontman of the first Russian punk band Avtomaticheskie Udovletvoriteli (translated as Automatic Satisfiers).

'Sok i vodka' (Perfomed by Avtomaticheskie Udovletvoriteli)

Strangely enough, in the same 1979 the first Russian punk band appeared in Siberia - it was “Apolloned in the grim punk teos”, founded by Konstantin Ryabinov (Kuzya UO). The first Moscow punk group Chudo-Yudo (Whangdoodle) came to the world in 1983 and showed up in the drama feature Avaria – Doch Menta (aka Crash - Cop's Daughter) (1989), destined to become a cult movie among the young generation of that time.

'Panki, Panki!!!' (Perfomed by Chudo-Yudo)

 
      From the mid 1980s punk bands (like Purgen (Purgative), Bytovie Parazity (Domestic Parasites), etc) started springing up all around the USSR.

An enormous wave of the so-called “Siberian punk” was entailed by Grazhdanskaya Oborona (Civil Defense) led by the intellectual Yegor Letov. Their music, or to be more exact, their highly artistic and not less depressive lyrics (not without foul language) have influenced the majority of modern “dirty sound” bands in this country. More than that, even the individual performing manner of Yegor Letov reverberates in the singing of many of his fans who, knowingly or not, imitate him. (Read more)


'Vsyo idet po planu' (Perfomed by Grazhdanskaya Oborona)

 

 Another key figure of the Russian punk music (rather, of its “lower”, still dirtier and more primitive level) was the band Sektor Gaza (Gaza Strip) headed by Yuri Hoi (1964-2000). Their lyrics are remarkable for the smutty black humour and abundant use of bawdy vocabulary. The like bands of today are H…zabei, Leningrad, Krasnaya Plesen’, etc.

'Bomzh' (Perfomed by Sector Gaza)

Furthermore, there are plenty of popular punk bands of the so-called “MTV format”: Naiv, Tarakany, Lyumen, to name but a few.

 

Russian punk fans must be well acquainted with the original names, such as: 1,5 kg Otlichnogo Pyure (translated as “1,5 kg of Excellent Puree”), Zuname, Port 812, Turbolax, Smeh (Laughter), Teni Svobody (Shadows of Freedom), Tri 15, Korol i Shute (King &Jester), What We Feel, Spitfire, Necondition, Distemper, Prividenie s Motorom (Apparition with an Engine), Dergat’! , Solomennye Enoty (Straw Raccoons), and Brigadnyi Podryad (Brigade Contract), belonging to the bands not so widely promoted as the MTV bands, and yet rather often released in various punk music collections.

'Yolochyi bazar' (Perfomed by Solomennye Enoty)

In addition to that, there exists a subgenre, the so-called acoustic punk, or bard-punk involving lots of single musicians in Russia.

In general, it is difficult to speak about punk-music definitely, because majority of musicians nowadays freely mix various styles. However, some people in Russia are still trying to preserve direct (foreign) traditions of punk music and even write books on it.

'Popsa' (Perfomed by Brigadnyi Podryad)

Alternative Rock in Russia


 
Alternative rock, alternative metal and emo-bands in Russia are often referred to as united by the notion “alternative”.

Alternative music started shaping in Russia in the mid 1990s with such bands as Kirpichi, Tequilajazzz, Djan ku, and Ne zhdali. The bands, though different from each other, were similar in the way they stood out against the traditional Russian rock and pop music of that period.

'Zveri' (Perfomed by Tequilajazzz)

 

 
      “Russian alternative” today is mainly popular among pupils and students and is peculiar for its undisguised commercial character, as compared to the simpler sounding of punk bands. By the way, it is ‘Russian alternative” that looks most unnatural among other styles adopted by Russians from overseas. Funny bone in the lyrics of many alternative bands, however, is what saves the day.

Among the well promoted alternative bands one can also mention Animal Jazz, Nebo Zdes, Sedmaya Rasa, Psikheya, Jane Air, Amatory, ##### («5 diezov»), and Stigmata.

Sources:
  Russian Wikipedia


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