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© Photo Courtesy of KYPCK

Russian doom, Finnish-style

by Vladimir Kozlov at 24/03/2011 20:34


March 25, 8pm, P!PL Club, 20 Ul. Derbenyovskaya, bldg. 10, m. Paveletskaya

This Finnish band describe themselves as “fast Russian doom metal from Finland” and all their lyrics are in Russian.

“First there was an idea among old friends to start a new band together after working for a long time on other projects,” Erkki Seppänen, the band’s singer, told The Moscow News.

“And when the musical style that began to emerge was crushingly heavy, with very slow tempos, but still with a melodic-melancholic touch, we got the idea to do it in Russian, which no foreign band has done before – at least not seriously.”

According to Seppänen, the name – pronounced “Kursk” – was chosen among other similar, short and masculine words as one “with numerous historical associations and the ‘bonus’ feature of being able to write it almost in the same way using the Latin-alphabet.” It bears reference to both a Russian city – in which, incidentally Kypck are to play during this tour – and a Russian nuclear submarine that exploded in the Barents Sea in 2000.

Although singing in Russian is something unusual on the Finnish doom metal scene, Seppänen said that people with a broader mindscape find it refreshingly beautiful and fitting the style of Kypck music.

“Those with a slightly less intellectual approach to life still have their calendars in 1939,” he added.

The band’s singer stressed that Russian lyrics are not just a way to make the band look different, but are really important to him.

The band say Russian lyrics are important to them and not just for show

© Photo / Courtesy of KYPCK

The band say Russian lyrics are important to them and not just for show

“Our [lyrics] deal with Russian history, culture and literature, and the contain a multitude of literary allusions and references to such authors as Blok, Lermontov, Akhmatova, Tyutchev, among others, whose works I studied back at Oxford,” he said, adding that he also referenced such Russian classical authors as Chekhov and Tolstoy, which are “in-tune” with Kypck’s music.

The current Russian tour, which Kypck are to play in support of their new album “Nizhe” (“Lower”) released last month, is the band’s second visit to Russia. They played shows in Moscow and St. Petersburg two years ago.

“Well, obviously, the Russian fans sing along with me during the concerts,” Seppänen recalled. “It’s a bit rarer in Finland … And the fans in Russia naturally experience the music thus on a far deeper level, which makes the shows very emotional experiences for both us and the audience.”

“In Finland, people naturally focus more on the music and the visual performance,” he added. “And after a show here I can have a beer and go back home, whereas in Russia I have to write autographs for an hour or so.”

Commenting on his perceptions of Russia, Seppänen said: “Russians have done things in their own way.

“They are right there, over the Finnish border, but the cultural gap is enormous,” he elaborated. “You can feel it immediately as the train crosses over to Russia. As a young person growing up, it was very refreshing to move to St. Petersburg and experience a whole other world.”

According to Seppänen, among things he dislikes about contemporary Russia, are “restrictions on one’s chances to express their opinion and such”.

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