Biography of the Leningrad group
“Leningrad” is a scandalous St. Petersburg group, whose calling card was the use of profanity in the lyrics and outrageous behavior on stage. In 2008, the group broke up in order to return to the stage after 2 years with a renewed image and become one of the most popular bands in the country.
History of creation
In the late 90s, Sergei Shnurov met Dmitry Belyaev, nicknamed Demych, at preparatory courses at a construction institute. They created an avant-garde group that was originally called Van Gogh’s Ear. Subsequently, 6 more people joined them. The lead singer and leader of the group was Igor Vdovin, and Sergey Shnurov, the current frontman of Leningrad, played the bass guitar.
Group “Leningrad” at the beginning of the creative path
To date, only drummer Alexander Popov, nicknamed Puzo, tuba player Andrey Antonenko, aka Andromedych, and Shnurov himself have remained in the team from the old line-up.
January 13, 1997 is considered to be the official birthday of the group – on this day, 4 days before the first concert of the group in the Art Clinic, Van Gogh’s Ear was renamed Leningrad.
The main stages of creativity
Since January 1997, the Leningrad team began performing as an opening act for the then-popular Auktyon group. Already from their first performances, the musicians shocked the audience with drunken antics and obscene language, and their concerts resembled a farce. The basis of the repertoire was the “yard chanson”, to which elements of punk rock were later added.
The Auktyon group helped the musicians “get out into the people”
With the help of the musicians of “Auktsion”, the debut album “Bullet” was recorded and the first video clip for the song “I love you” was shot. The video was shown on St. Petersburg television, the rest of the channels refused to broadcast it, considering it “complete nonsense.”
At the same time, Igor Vdovin left the group, leaving the team without a soloist. After trying several guest vocalists, Sergey Shnurov eventually took on this mission, becoming the band’s frontman. In 2000, the line-up was replenished with girls who performed the duties of backing vocalists.
Sergey Shnurov first played the bass guitar, then began to sing
By this time, the musicians had released two more albums (“Mat Without Electricity” and “Summer Residents”) and recorded the soundtrack for the film “DMB”, which dramatically increased their popularity. “Leningrad” lit up at the “Invasion” and “Wings” festivals, and at the end of 2001 performed live on the TV-6 channel, shocking the audience and presenters with outrageous behavior and obscene language. At the same time, the next album “Pirates of the XXI century” was released, for the recording of which the musicians of the ska band Spitfire were invited. In support of the album, a concert was given at the St. Petersburg Palace of Sports, which is still considered the best for the entire existence of the group. After him, Shnurov took a short time out from touring, during which he began writing new material.
Each performance of “Leningrad” is an incendiary show
In the fall of 2002, Cord planned a big concert in Moscow, but Mayor Yuri Luzhkov decided to play it safe and banned the scandalous musicians from performing. The reason was a concert in German Nuremberg, which “Leningrad” played in what the mother gave birth to. This trouble was more than compensated for by a successful tour of North America, on the basis of which the film “Leningrad Makes America” was made, which was enthusiastically received by fans. Cord by that time had already perfectly understood that video works brought the main popularity to the group, so he relied on clips.
Photos from the performance
The video for the song “WWW”, released at the end of the year on MTV and on the Internet, gathered a record audience and became the hallmark of the group for a long time. Over the next three years, Leningrad released five studio albums, in which they slightly moved away from obscene language towards moderate cynicism and self-irony.
In 2007, Yulia Kogan joined the group, who began to perform solo parts. From that moment on, “women’s songs” appeared in the group’s repertoire, favorably received by fans.
Yulia Kogan is considered the best female vocal of the group
In the same year, “Leningrad” appeared in the comedy of the Quartet I “Election Day”, singing the theme song “Elections”, ironic about the sexual orientation of the candidates. It is noteworthy that the song itself does not belong to Leningrad, but to Alexei Kortnev from the Accident group.
At the end of 2008, at the very peak of his popularity, Cord unexpectedly stunned fans with the news of the dissolution of Leningrad and the creation of a new team, Ruble. He grew his hair long and changed the musical style a bit, while leaving the mat as the main feature.
Sergey Shnurov from the time of the Ruble group
Although the “Ruble” also found its listener, the fans wanted to see the former “Leningrad”, and in 2010 Shnurov announced the revival of the team. Two albums were released one after the other: “Henna” and “Eternal Flame”.
Clip “Exhibit”. Backstage
In 2012, Yulia Kogan left the group on maternity leave. A week later, the audience was presented with the song “Fish” with a female part, re-recorded under a new soloist – the incendiary Alice Vox.
Alisa Voks sang in Leningrad for 4 years
After the reunion, Leningrad began to pay more attention to Internet marketing, posting new clips of the group on the Web, which over and over again became more spectacular and had a viral effect: “VIP”, “ZOZH”, and after the release of the video for the song “Exhibit” (For her, Leningrad received the Golden Gramophone), which overnight made the main character, Yulia Topolnitskaya, a star, all the videos of Leningrad began to resemble rather short films.
Soon, Alisa Voks announced her departure from the group, and two vocalists were taken in her place at once: Vasilisa Starshova (she left the group a year later) and Florida Chanturia. Later, Shnurov collaborated with the young director Ilya Naishuller, who shot videos for the song “Kolshchik”, which the musician described as “complete n *** c [беспредел] in the circus “, and” Voyage “, where the actor Alexander Pal starred.
Then came the clip “Ch.P.Kh.”, In which Shnurov invited many and extremely diverse media personalities: football player Alexander Kerzhakov, outrageous journalist Alexander Nevzorov, rappers Pharaoh and ST.
Cord did not disregard the election of the President of Russia, filming a scandalous video for the song “Candidate” on the topic of the day. It is believed that the video was recorded in support of his close friend Ksenia Sobchak, who also decided to participate in the elections.
Collaborations with other artists
- Album “Huinya” – ft. The Tiger Lilies
- “Where are your hands” – Sergey Shnurov ft. “Diskoteka Avaria”
- “Terminator” – “Leningrad” ft. Grigory Leps
- “From the heart” – “Leningrad” and Vasya Oblomov
- “Fuckers” – “Ruble” and rapper Syava
- “Voyage” – “Leningrad” ft. ST
- “March 8” – “Leningrad” ft. Vadim Galygin
The name of the group “Leningrad” in itself is associated with the epithet “scandalous”. It is difficult to count how many times the guardians of morality reproached the team because of obscene language in songs or obscene behavior on stage, and hardly anyone needs it.
Leningrad was often complained about because of obscene behavior
In March 2016, Alice Vox revealed that she was leaving the group of her own accord to pursue a solo career. However, a source in Leningrad told the press that Alice had been fired. Later, in an interview, Shnurov noted that nothing in the group would change with Vox’s departure, and lamented that “you make stars out of mediocre singers, and they begin to consider themselves goddesses, and we don’t know how to deal with goddesses.”
Alisa Vox left Leningrad with a scandal
A month after the incident with Vox, Shnurov and the company presented a video for a song that became the unofficial anthem of St. Petersburg – “In St. Petersburg – to drink.” A number of public groups were outraged by the image of the city cultivated in the video and sent a statement to the prosecutor’s office with a request to check the video for propaganda of alcoholism, hooliganism and violence against law enforcement agencies. And State Duma deputy Valery Rashkin wrote a complaint to Roskomnazdor. The relevant authorities did not find anything illegal in the video.
In general, 2016 turned out to be rich in scandals for the group: in August, Shnurov published a poem on his Instagram with the line “Burger King, the promo code has more than once brought those who are weaker to hiccups.” For this, the fast food chain sued the performer and demanded 200 thousand rubles in compensation, but only inspired Sergey to a new portion of poetry: “Burger King, take off the crown. In Pokémon, I’m the father. You hang in there. Health. Finally, don’t freak out.” In the end, the parties reconciled.
After the departure of Vasilisa, Shnurov accepted three more girls into the team (Maria Olkhova, Anna Zolotova and Victoria Kuzmina).
- Bullet (1999)
- Mat Without Electricity (1999)
- Summer Residents (2000)
- Made in ass (2001)
- Bullet + (2001)
- Pirates of the XXI century (2002)
- Point (2002)
- For Millions (2003)
- Babarobot (2004)
- Huinya (2005)
- Bread (2005)
- Indian Summer (2006)
- Aurora (2007)
- Henna (2011)
- Eternal Flame (2011)
- Fish (2012)
- Evening Leningrad (2012)
- The beach is ours (2014)
- Mince (2014)
Group “Leningrad” now
In 2019, Shnurov announced the collapse of Leningrad. However, the group’s status is currently ambiguous. New songs and videos do not come out, but Shnurov does not deny performances at corporate parties and public events. So, the team was invited to the Coachella international music festival, which traditionally takes place in the United States, but it was canceled due to the coronavirus epidemic.
Shnurov himself joined the Party of Growth, causing surprise and even discontent among fans. At the same time, his friend Alexander Nevzorov ruled out that Sergei could “sell out” to the authorities and join a notorious spoiler party. In his opinion, the musician is simply looking for new ways for self-realization and is not fully aware of how dirty politics can be.
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