15 Dec 2017
There are some regrets which I process but which aren’t of my doing. It made sense in my head when I said it in my head. For instance, I will always consider the late90s-early00s the best era for errythin – raving, fashion, Got Milk campaigns, anorexia boom, smoking indoors and, OMG, THE MUSIC – but at the time the social media didn’t exist, and neither did YouTube, and this is the regret I’m feeling, because how the hell were we supposed alert the world about all these cultural revolutions? I will never not be nostalgic for those (best) years, which is why, more than I decade later, I am back to the video that I still think is a thing of sheer amazingness. The people of Russia collectively lost their innocence and not looked back.
This is how the Russian music business works: everything is controlled by a producer, he da Man (or Woman), who is in charge of putting bands together, trademarking their names and finding writers for them. Because of the name trademarking, the producer is able to keep the band go forever: if its members decide to leave, he/she swiftly finds replacements and no one is bothered by the fact that there are bands whose members had rotated so many times that none of the faces which were there at the start are the faces which are there now. It’s hilarious.
This girl band (I’m sure they’re all super young here, like girl-young, though none looks anything but a woman, right?) started gracing the Russian screens, and the fantasies of ambiguously-aged Russian men, in the early 00s, and to this day, despite their countless legit hits, when I think of the group I think of this video. It’s not that it was (is?) just provocative or sexual or that the band members are too hot to touch, it’s that they are so in your face, all tits and vaginas, fiery explosions (what do you think they mean?) and wet hair, so unapologetic and hungry that even now, in the age of complete accessibility and desensitisation, it’s f-cking bombass. (None of the three have remained in the group.)
The band’s name, by the way, is Via Gra. In case you doubted Russia can do "subtle".