piatok 22. septembra 2017

REVOLVER/Револьвер - Interview (September 2017)

REVOLVER je garage/60´s surf-punk-rocková kapela z Petrozavodsku, z oblasti Karelia, na severovýchode Ruska. Natrafil som na nich už dávnejšie prostredníctvom split 7" platne z vydavateľstva Tian An Men 89 rec., ktoré vydáva punkové a undergroundové nahrávky z celého sveta. 

Jednotlivé nahrávky REVOLVERu sú ale od seba hudobne trochu odlišné, absorbujú rôzne vplyvy, samých seba za punkáčov ani nepovažujú, skôr za individualistov a hudobne vychádzajú najmä zo surf-rocku a 60´s rocku alá BEATLES/ROLLING STONES.

Pred časom som im poslal zopár otázok a dnes mi prišli odpovede. Rozhovor je v pôvodnom znení, v jednoduchej angličtine.

1.Hello REVOLVER, when did you start your band? What were your musical influences? How was alternative scene in Petrozavodsk when did you stared? Can you write here your discography?

Hello! Revolver were founded in the late Eighties in Petrozavodsk (Northwest Russia) by two art college students – Nikita Vlasov and Maxim Koshelev. Initially the band were influenced by the early Stones, The Beatles and the '60s garage rock. Those were quite unusual influences for the Soviet alternative scene at that time, which was mainly dominated by politically concerned folk rock bands with a touch of the New Wave-inspired make-up. As for Revolver discography it comprises of nine or ten albums, five of them can be found on iTunes, two have never been re-released.

2. How did you discover punk / alternative music in USSR before 1989? How did you got your first recordings/records? Do you remember of your first record ever which you bought?
As far as we know most of the 'alternative' music in the USSR before (and after) 1989 had been supervised by the KGB and we weren't terribly keen on being a part of it. The only way of  'forbidden music' distribution was copying reel-to-reel tapes and cassettes. Although in the late '80s the only existing state record label Melodia began to cautiously release LPs with some of the popular underground bands' albums. But as it was said above Revolver have never been influenced by those bands considering them rather unexciting. In the 'Nineties any interesting Western music could be easily found on 'pirate' cassettes and we used to buy them in great quantities. That was our 'Age of Enlightenment' in a way. But we weren't interested in copying Western stuff, being very self-content ourselves.

3. The first time I heard your band was split EP with  Imperya Snegov. How did you contact them? That split was released on French label Tian An Men 89 Records running by Luk Haas. Did you meet him personally or he contacted you just thru mail? TAM 89 Rds declaring that „it was created in 1993 for the purpose of releasing punk music from parts of the world where, due to financial reasons, civil wars, or lack of record factories, there is no possibility for the bands to release their music on vinyl“. Do you consider yourself as a punk band?
There was a fellow journalist in SPb and he sent our cassette to TAM89, and most likely we weren't aware of it. That's how it happened. We have never considered ourselves punks in the proper sense of the word. We are individualists, we could never join any 'movement' and did only what we fancied doing. All our albums sound as though they were made by different bands.  Perhaps that's the reason why Revolver aren't mentioned in any 'decent' Russian rock encyclopedia despite our having 9 or 10 albums released.

4. How is scene in Karelia today compared of the 80s /90´s. What about bands? And what about venues / clubs in you country? There is possibilty fo bands as your to have a gigs? I saw on You tube that you also play in TV. In what kind of programs?
Today things everywhere seem to be the same, due to the Internet there are not so many chances for anything unique. The situation in Russia was more thrilling in the '90s, there were lots of really interesting bands playing in underground clubs. In the 2000s the commercialisation began, the centralised rock radio was created with its own 'format' and many a good band have just disappeared. There's not much fun today.

5. GROMYKA – it is side project or regular band? Do you have any other projects/side-bands?

Gromyka are a regular band and it takes most of our time these days. We also have a band called SuperMotoZoids which is famous for surrealistic cover versions of  popular songs.

6. Is there existed some indie-magazines, or fanzines in your city/country?

We hardly read any music magazines as they don't seem to us a good things to read. We read books. As far as we know there is the Rolling Stone magazine in Russia. But it seems like everything is in the social networks now. With a few exceptions music journalism digressed a good deal.

7. What is your opinion on politics? Here in Slovakia, you can actually is often read in newspapers, that is some indicia that many Russian trolls and agents of Russia who are trying to destabilize the political situation. Your opinion to Putin´s politic? What is your opinion on Europian Union, for example?

There is hardly anything more boring than 'politics' really, only music magazines can compete with it.
8. Are you in contact with punks/alternative bands from other countries? Are you playing / touring also in other countries outside of Russia?
Yes, Gromyka played in Poland, Estonia, Finland, Norway.

9. What´s your future plans with REVOLVER?
Despite Gromyka's taking much of our time Revolver haven't been disbanded and still have gigs from time to time. We have never dismissed a possibility of a new Revolver album.

10. Last question – it is all yours. Tell what you want, what you have on mind, some message. It can be also in Russina language (if it is easier for you) - my colleague from work promise to me that he translate it to me.
We'd like to apologise for the delay and dearly recommend you Gromyka ))

Thats all, thanx for your time to answer to this interview :)

Pozri aj/see also : 


Band profile:

Revolver (formed in 1988) is quite untypical a band on Russian rock scene To begin with the band members claim they don't know “how to play rock”. To prove it they took part in many rock (and non-rock) events including enormously popular in Russia Nashestvie festival, DDT – rock festivals, hosted in various TV shows (e.g. cult TV show “Antropology”, Russian MTV shows), they had their videos on Russian musical channels, even charted in Russian hit list, but still...Nobody knows what's this. 
On the other hand, unlike many rockers heading for sound perfection, Revolver stays “primitive” and doesn't use electronic gadgets exept amps, mikes and semi-analog delay unit made in GOOD-OLD soviet days and which colour is black. 
Throughout their career Revolver members main intention was to write so-called “songs” and not to be involved in some musical movement 
They used to change direction as often as they like, recording albums and playing live with funeral orchestra (1997) or even with blonde [female] organ player/singer (1998) etc anyhow managing to sound distinctively “Revolverish”. 

They lyrics are witty and simple to Russian audience and exotic to non Russian ones, proving that voice often is just another good musical instrument...


Interview with Russian indie-rockers REVOLVER.


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