In anticipation of the first Russian Rock festival, БОЛЬ (Pain), where you can check out the young groups that’ll be dominating the coming decade, we decided to talk to some bands that are 100% female, and find out how they live, where they get their inspiration from, and what it’s like to be the fairer sex in the world of avant-garde music. Today’s heroines are members from the Moscow based group Lucidvox.
Is it hard being a girl group when the majority of the avant garde music scene is predominantly male? Or is it the opposite – and does it carry some sort of advantage?
When women make music, it brings attention. But we don’t really like this separation between female and male bands. It would be nice if people took our art seriously, and not for gender-based reasons.
Alina: It’s fun! People expect less from a girl group, that’s why the motivation to impress, to learn something new, is much greater.
How do you feel about the rising in popularity trend towards feminism?
Glasha: Indifferent. But it would be nice for women to know that they have more opportunites to pursue than just cooking borscht.
Are you friends? Tell us about how you met. What drove you to create the band?
Nadia: We became friends during our hike to Cape Fiolent, which we’ve spoken about numerous times. I think, in particular, it is thanks to the magical atmosphere which reigns there, that our group came to be. We were jamming out in an abandoned space (without actual instruments, just using our voices, the palms of our hands, and a beat) with the members from the group Спасибо (Spasibo) and, I think, at that point is when a connection was formed between myself, Alina, and Glasha – through long nightly games of mafia, and outings for firewood 🙂 And we became friends with Ana through the drummer, Jahroom. I was practicing drums with him for a time and Ana would sometimes come by to our lessons.
Do you have musical training? What do you do besides music?
Nadia: Me, Ana, and Alina went to music school when we were younger.
Alina: I like the fact that we’re not academics and during our practices we use our own terms and understanding, as opposed to those in music schools. We have our own musical lexicon. Besides music, we go out, travel, go to see concerts together, exhibitions. I work at a theater for deaf actors. Ana’s in grad school.
Nadia: I work at a magazing called Кириллица (Kirilitsa).
How did you come into this vein of such experimental music?
Nadia: We all listen to completely different types of music. Each of us brings something of our own into every song, and it all pours into a unique experiment. We don’t have one single person who writes the lyrics or the melodies, but the final idea is whole, as if one person did create the song.
Your pieces are filled with pagan motifs. It’s completely subtle, but nevertheless it creates a certain aura about you. Do you consciously create this type of atmosphere or is it close to you ideologically and aesthetically?
Alina: That happened on its own. The music itself brought us to these types of reflections.
Glasha: Our bassist is a native of Yakutia, and they practice paganism over there. But it came about regardless of that, our interest towards the archaic.
Nadia: We want to recreate a Russian authenticity. Recently at work I’ve also gotten into the everyday life of ancient Russia and I’m diving deeper into this mood.
What form of imagery should be conjured while listening to the music you play? What does it bring up within you?
Nadia: All three recordings are quite different in spirit and imagery, and what they could conjure up – that’s all different too.
Alina: And in general, imagery is such a subjective thing…To me it seems that it’s a very personal matter, the associations which can occur only within you.
Ana: For me – it’s freedom and courage. There is a moment in which you can stop, look around you, gather up strength and realize what it is that you should do next.
In your work you put serious emphasis on the words. Why is this so important to you? Is there an ever-present motif which you hope to carry across to your listeners?
Alina: Of course we put emphasis on the words! If the words are not important then why write songs? You can just sit and play instrumentals! Instrumentals are much better and cooler, more interesting and mysterious than empty rhetoric.
Nadia: The first record is called Другой человек (Drugoi Chelovek // Another Person) and it’s specifically about how we distinguish ourselves from other people – it’s about looking for yourself through the crowds. The second, by no accident, is called В движении (V Dvizhenie // In Movement), which explores the departure from stagnation, the search for a constructive dialogue. The inner “I” already takes on a more definite shape. And Омут (Omut // Slough) talks about the direction that one chooses for themselves in that very moment of decision making – a side of the lyrical hero, under the guise of which we all hide.
Glasha: We explore the time in which we are living. It’s strange, everyone feels a bit lonely…I would like for there to be less of that. That’s why it’s important that through music, you can feel closer to others
Alina: But throughout all the different EPs and albums, we always follow our gaze inward.
Tell us, whose work inspires you? Which Russian or foreign artist do you compare yourselves with?
Nadia: This past year I’ve really been drawn to eastern music, like Yasmine Hamdan and choral folk songs. I also really love White Hills, Metz, Gaslamp Killer.
Glasha: Right now I’m listening to a lot of psychedelic noise and math rock, groups like Metz and Lightning Bolt.
Alina: A few days ago I was thinking about this incredible flute player, Ian Anderson (Jethro Tull) and now it’s been a week that I’ve been listening and watching to his recordings and concerts. I like that his music combines rock, jazz, improvisation, and folk motifs. And Tame Impala. Those guys really inspire me.
Whose work, in terms of native literary classics, are you fond of?
Glasha and Anja: Dostoevsky, Nabokov – existentialism and reflection.
Nadia: For my part, I’ll add Turgenev and his works of fiction, which are dedicated to an individual’s personal problems. As for poets, I really love Gumilev, Blok, and Voloshin.
Tell us a bit about your listener. Who is he or she? How do you imagine them?
Anja: I don’t think that you could describe a listener as one single person or as any type of person in particular.
Alina: I always look out into the crowd when I sing, and look at the people who come to our shows. I communicate with them through the eyes and through words. Each time it’s a different crowd and they receive the music differently. But I know for a fact that many who listen to us close their eyes and live out our songs somewhere within themselves. This is the most sincere perception, in my eyes.
Absolutely! It’s very cool and we’re happy to be a part of it. There aren’t a lot of big festivals in Russia that bring together the native independent music from all parts of the country.
What can we expect from your performance at Pain? What are you preparing?
A tiny but exciting set in which we will play our new songs.
photo: Yulia Busiatskaya @yuliabusya // styling: Nikita Glumov @glmv_ // makeup and hair: Valeria Hrabrova @rurikfish
we thank Dewar’s Powerhouse for their help in organizing filming.
original article can be found at : http://club.trendsbrands.ru/things/post/devushki-v-muzykalnom-avangarde-lucidvox/