суббота, 5 сентября 2015 г.

Лосины Маршала Потемкина – Гимны нищим духом (2011)


Well, this time I’ll have to translate a lot of lyrics because this band is basically about lyrics. I warn you that you might find some lyrics disgusting and inappropriate, so if you don't want to be offended anyhow, please don't read this post, as I'm not responsible for your reaction.

«Лосины Маршала Потемкина» ("Losiny Marshala Potemkina", “The Buckskins of Marshal Potemkin”, Marshal Potemkin was an 18-century Russian military leader) is a meaningless name; it’s a satirical reference to typical meaningless bands’ names. Actually, «Лосины…» is not a real band at all, it’s a one-man band, and I’m the only member. The band was briefly mentioned in a review of Russian Outsider music, which was a pleasant surprise :)

The project was formed in 2009, and experienced serious evolution, as it became more and more solid and severe during the each following year, but it all started as a joke. «Лосины…» didn’t record any of their songs for quite a long time, but there were faux news about bands’ tours, performances and other activities, I even created faces of the bandmates via PhotoRobot, there were artificial characters representing «Лосины…», take a look:


I mean it was real fun, everybody understood it was a joke, and in 2010 Лосины Маршала Потемкина started to record their stuff, it was very lo-fi folk / neofolk, the sound was even primitive, consisting of an out-of-tune acoustic guitar, occasional found objects (often industrial/post-industrial), harmonics and some computer effects which could be applied to such lo-fi record, but some listeners found lyrics funny enough to enjoy it.

So, «Лосины…» participated in a compilation in 2011 and then released a long-play album «Гимны нищим духом» (“Hymns to Poor in Spirit”), which was humorous (except the final track). The picture for cover was created by Alexander Cohan and Cat Rid, check it out:


The title song «Славная песня» (“Glorious Song”) is actually a topical song, satirical and, I believe, sometimes even witty. Then goes «Шутник комнатный» (“An Indoor Joker”), a funny story about a college roommate named Zheka (a reference to popular Russian humorist, a mascot of unfunny and old jokes) who had very strange sense of humor.  

 "Once Zheka invited his girlfriend to our room.
He was joking all the time and constantly adding beer in her cup.
She was laughing, she forgot about everything,
Her smile was reflected in a pool of vomit." 

“Once Zheka was spitting on the ceiling
And every time his saliva was falling down on his face”

“Once Zheka broke a jar full of cucumbers.
He wasn’t upset with that and tried to eat it anyway.
He ate pretty much glass together with cucumbers,
Oh, he could die, I mean, there was blood everywhere”.

And so on. But the story had kind of happy end, so please don’t worry :)

Another song I wanted to mention is actually main «Лосины…»’s “hit” «Я не могу сказать, где твои деньги» (“I can’t tell you where your money is”), it’s about vodka culture. You know, the guy was drunk so he can’t remember now what he was doing and where is the money which, by the way, wasn’t his own. Such a common story.

You’ll ask me where your money is, but I can’t answer right now.
You’ll ask me where your money is, but I won’t reply even in an hour.
I can’t tell you where your money is, because I spent it on drink”

There is also very long, 16-minute song «О масле» (“About butter”), and it’s indeed a 16-minute song telling how healthy butter is. It also has an ironic subtitle «Поучение детям» (“An Instruction for Children”) which is a reference to Russian medieval book with the same name, written by Prince Vladimir Monomakh. I wrote the lyrics together with my old mate.

“If you don’t like butter, it means that you’re a fool”

I hope you understand the subtext of the lyrics, I mean the lyrics are not stupid even if it could seem so, native speakers quickly realized what it’s all really about, and I tried to explain it for you because I find it worth your attention.

So, the final track is way serious. It’s called «Разум советует» (“The Mind Advises”), it includes a dreary poem and, in the end, an excerpt from “Devils” by Dostoyevskiy, read in English. Some listeners found this track scary. My friend Pavel Chainichkov plays accordion on this track.

“Oh, every sincere thing seems to be so artificial”

Further «Лосины..»’s albums were more and more serious, and if you’re interested, I’ll review them as well. 

Check out this album:

 

Or listen to a SoundCloud playlist!

Sincerely yours,
John “Grey Lenses” Grey

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