Svetlanas played Rebellion Festival one year ago, we talked about how things have changed for the band.
It was one year ago to the day when we first came across Svetlanas on the Empress Ballroom stage at Rebellion.
We declared them to have delivered the set of the weekend, even before the festival had ended. We weren’t wrong.
The energy from the band was something else and we don’t mind saying we needed a while to draw breath after their performance.
They released an album, earlier in the year – Disco Sucks, which is a riot of classy punk thrash and a very firm middle finger being sent up to, well anyone, really.
It wasn’t exactly planned this way, but on the anniversary of that gig, we had a Zoom with some of the band to find out how life from the band’s base in Milan is like at the moment.
Olga, Diste and Steve were on screen and we started off as we always do:
P3dro: Where are you and what are you doing?
Diste: We are In Milan, Italy. We are working with new songs with the band.
Olga: In our new studio, we have a new studio, in a skatepark, here in Milan. We are organising a skate contest and we are doing free music lessons for kids.
P3dro: Yeah, I was going to ask about new music.
Diste: We had started to write a new album.
Olga: DISCO SUCKS!
Diste: Which we have not been able to promote because of the virus, so we will do another album soon and hopefully, next year, 2021, we will be able to promote [Disco Sucks] and then right after [that] the new one.
P3dro: Is that new album ready to go?
Olga: No, we have only just started to write the songs
P3dro: Have you been writing much in the last 4 months, during lockdown?
Diste: To be honest, not much. We just started. We did many things to build the studio. Now we are able to produce music of our own, and for other bands also.
P3dro: So, this weekend would have been Rebellion in Blackpool …
Olga: Yeah, it was one year ago, exactly one year ago we were on the stage. We need to get back on a stage.
P3dro: How was the Rebellion experience?
Olga: It was awesome. All the people are fantastic. There are good vibes. I can probably declare it is one of my favourite festivals in the world.
Diste: It’s fun, you meet lots of people. There is an energy and friendship that is unique for Rebellion.
P3dro: Are you doing anything for the “Virtual Rebellion” this weekend?
Diste: We will do [a thing] on Friday, with Ramonas and a lot of very cool bands.
Olga: We recorded a [set] 2 weeks ago. I tried to imagine I was staying, for real in Blackpool.
P3dro: How come you ended up in Milan? We hear you’re not really welcome in Russia.
Olga: So, we started in Milan. Diste and I are married. So that’s how the band started. During a European tour, in 2015, we had album, Naked Horse Rider, the cover is Putin on a horse. During the tour to promote this album, I set on fire a picture of Putin every set.
So, when we were asked to do a tour in Russia, I received a letter saying we were terrible people. So, fuck you! That’s why we can’t go back and play in Russia.
P3dro: Would you like to go back, if you could?
Diste: No big deal. We like to tour the world and if we are welcome, then we’ll go.
Olga: I think you’re right. If we’re not welcome, then they can go fuck themselves. Simple.
I continue to say that Putin is a fucking dictatorship.
P3dro: You have Nick Oliveri in the band. How did that come about?
Diste: We met Nick when we played that tour with the horse. He fell in love with the band and he asked if he could play a song with us one night. So, we were, like “Wow, Nick Oliveri is asking to play with us”.
Olga: Fuck, Yeah!
Diste: Right after that he asked if he could join the band. But we already had a bass player – Steve – and Nick said he didn’t want to mess up with the band, but he wanted to be a part of it. So we recorded This is Moscow Not L.A. in Los Angeles. We did two things – we played with a couple of basses a few times and other times, he just sings. It depends on the mood of the night.
Olga: We are friends. It’s awesome. It’s a family affair.
P3dro: So will he be on the next album?
P3dro: For anybody that hasn’t seen you play, or heard your music, how would you describe it?
Olga: Every time, it’s a different way. Some people say we play punk. Other people say we play hardcore. Some people say it’s metal, or it’s thrash. I don’t know what we play. It’s probably rock music. What do you think?
P3dro: I’d put you down as energetic punks, I think.
Diste: I like that
Olga: We don’t play crap music.
P3dro: Olga – on stage, you can’t keep still – you’re always bouncing around.
Olga: I love jumping.
Diste: That’s Olga – she can’t stay quiet. Always trying to scare people.
Olga: I don’t try to scare people. I scare them. It’s fun. I really love the moment when a show starts – Boom! I can be myself, I can do what I want. I see the people in front of me and I can touch what they feel in the moment. It’s fantastic.
P3dro: What do you prefer? Big festivals like Rebellion or small gigs in bars and basements?
Olga: I really love both. Rebellion is an experience, because I am a fan of lots of the bands that play. So, it’s my moment, I meet a lot of people I call friends, so I love a big festival for that reason.
But at the same time, the experience in a smaller venue. It’s something spiritual.
Steve: There’s a special energy in a small room.
Diste: Over the last few years we have learned to transpose our energy from the small venues to the big stages.
P3dro: Had you had any gigs planned for this year?
Olga: We will probably announce a European tour for November. But, who knows? We’ll come to UK. We hope so.
P3dro: Is there a band or an album that you recommend we should be listening to right now?
Olga: The new album from Mondo Generator, called Fuck It. It’s awesome.
Steve: She sings one song [on the album]
P3dro: Anything else to declare?
Olga: Yes. Rebellion, we miss you. So, see you next year in 2021. And, no tricks this time, Fuck Covid!
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