As of September 2014, the Russian hardcore punk act Svetlanas have been banned in their homeland due to their anti-government stance and political commentary, not to mention their ever growing popularity…not only is the sale or possession of their music unlawful in Russia, they are also now no longer allowed to return to their country and are considered enemies of the state.
I was recently able to have a brief conversation with Olga of Svetlanas, who was kind enough to answer a few questions on the subject. The full interview can be read below.
DS: The fact that your music is now officially banned, and you are personally barred from returning to your home country must be difficult for you. Can you tell us a little about how you’re feeling about this situation?
Olga: Yes I can thank you, Russia Is place of my birth and I love Russia and Russian people very much, yes? And to not be allowed to return I think is bad thing, a disappointing thing you know, that because we want to talk freely we are treated like the criminals.
Do you believe they would possibly imprison you if you were to return?
Yes! what the fuck you think? Russia doe’s not do the fucking around like in America or the most of Europe…Fuck yes they would do arrest on us, and punish us for our thoughts and our expression…But understand this is not the true way of Russian people right, it is way of Putin and of our puppet Duma if you oppose you are squished like bug…you can ask that of Boris Nemtsov…No maybe you can not because they shot him dead for speaking of reform.
Where are you living at the moment? Or where will you now call home?
Svetlanas for many years now have no home…sometimes in Spain, U.K. Italy, Slovenia, Germany, for long time now Svetlanas are in the self exile to pursue more freedom and our music and art yes…Now we have some popularity and Russian government wanting to make us criminal.
What are your thoughts on the Crimea situation?
What you think I think? Situation for Crimea is very bad, many people, many innocent and good people getting killed on both sides because of money and power and the ego of Putin…yes is very true that many Ukraine people want to be part of Russia…but in today of 2015 I think invasion of and destabilization of a sovereign country is very wrong thing to do, making of war for profit and for power is wrong thing to do…so here I must side with Ukraine.
Do you think there is hope for the future of Russia to become a true democracy?
Answer to this is yes, today Russia is phony democracy run by strong and powerful people yes? But I think one day somehow, the powerful will fall to pieces and people will be to vote for change and for better leaders in government, Russia has long history of corrupt rule, of the unfair rule, but all things in the world come to change and I think Russia will have better future.
Thanks for the answers, Olga. We always love hearing from you and good luck.
Thank you Mr. Dying Scene man for helping Svetlanas and all other rock artists have voice, thank you.