MUMIY TROLL at the Pike Room

SUNDAY OCTOBER 11, 2009
doors at 8PM
tickets: $12 (buy tickets)

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MUMIY TROLL (pronounced Moo-me Troll) is undoubtedly the most significant band that modern Russia has produced since the fall of the Soviet regime. They have made their mark with startling albums and live performances that are bursting with energy, combining warmth and total debauchery.

What exactly does the band sound like? Consider the term – ROCKAPOPS. Contemporary Russian music is actually divided into what was before and what came after Mumiy Troll. Band founder, frontman Ilya Lagutenko, defined their music style as «rockapops» just to avoid pointless Russian media debates on the definition of what is rock and what is pop. Mumiy Troll became the leader of an entire new musical trend, copied now to greater or lesser degree by Russian wannabees and mainstream artists.

Ilya Lagutenko’s talent, irreproachable taste and constant working to create something new allow him to be at the center of contemporary cultural development trends in his country. Mumiy Troll changed not only the music, but also the clothes, hairstyles and behavior of Russian young people. It would not be a stretch to note that aside from influencing modern music in Russia, Ilya and the band also helped shape fashion, hairstyles and the like during the 90’s for the youth of the country.

ILYA LAGUTENKO: Ilya formed his first psychedelic punk band named «Bunny Pee» at the age of 11 in his hometown port of Vladivostok, the Trans-Siberian railway terminus on Russian Pacific Coast. This was at a time when Russia was still isolated behind the Iron Curtain and any rock 'n roll activities were considered subversive and were forced underground. Ilya can still hardly believe that his teenage hobby survived through the years and became so influential. He was asked to support projects of Mark Almond (Soft Cell) and Brett Anderson (Suede), contributing lyrics and performing.

From the early days when they were banned by the local Communist Party chief and labeled «one of the most socially dangerous bands in the world» to being voted «Best Band of the Millennium» in Russia, Ilya has come a long way. He served in the Russian Air Navy, graduated from Far Eastern State University with degrees in Mandarin and Chinese Economy, worked for an investment bank in the City of London, and prepared for a crossing of the globe in a sailing-boat.

BAND: Being an example of one of the successful long-standing independent artists in Russia, Mumiy Troll has released 8 studio albums so far, has written and produced soundtracks for a full-length cartoon movie “Neznaika and Barrabas” and gave a new sound to classic Russian silent sci-fi movie “Cosmic Journey” and donated tracks to feature films including Russian blockbuster «Night Watch», where Ilya also plays a vampire. More recently Ilya was the voice of the monkey in the Russian language version of Kung Fu Panda and covered “Kung-Fu Fighting” for the Russian soundtrack of the film.

Mumiy Troll is not a one-man band however — the 4 people on stage have been together for the last 10 years. Yuri Tsaler, one of the most admirable guitarists in the country, is also the co-author of some of the bands songs. Oleg Pungin began his drumming career at the age of 7 and is still delivering the strongest pumping beats as he helps to record a good half of all records in Russia. Sdwig is the bass player who is in charge of introducing the band to modern-day technologies.

SOCIETY: Mumiy Troll was the first to support the activities of PSI organization fighting AIDS in Russia. They are also well known for conservation activities on wild life in Far-East taiga and helping local minorities to survive. Ilya Lagutenko is a patron of the British-Russian Amur fund for the protection of Siberian tigers and leopards.

FACTS and RUMORS: It is said that Mumiy Troll tours from their hometown of Vladivosyok by ex-military submarine. Also, the band’s popularity has become so large that they have been included in school textbooks for Russian youth. The bands video for Vladivodstok 2000 was the first video played on MTV Russia in 1998.

 

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