Saturday, June 30, 2018

V/A - "Monsters of Rock USSR" [1986-1993]

Artist: (various)
Title: Monsters of Rock USSR
Genre: Heavy Metal, Thrash Metal, Glam Rock
Country: USSR
Year: 1986-93

Track List:
  1. Диалог - Красный рок
  2. Статус - Лешаки
  3. Чёрный кофе - Владимирская Русь
  4. Тяжёлый день - Берегись жала
  5. Коррозия металла - Дьявол здесь
  6. Железный поток - Эмбрион
  7. Э.С.Т. - 30 ХГСА
  8. Маркиза - 220 вольт
  9. Мастер - Воля и разум
  10. Союз - Племена
  11. Чёрный обелиск - Стена
  12. Круиз - Дальний свет
  13. Демарш - Свободная любовь
  14. Рондо - Богиня секса
  15. Джокер - Магия
  16. Холостой выстрел - Тотальный исход
  1. Август - Демон
  2. Ария - Герой асфальта
  3. Фронт - Мы победим
  4. Парк Горького - Volga Boatman
This compilation was made by a music journalist Denis Boyarinov, originally including 16 tracks and released under the title "Devil Is Here: Soviet Halloween Rock". Later on, the owner of this blog decided to extend it a bit. In its final form, it contains 20 tracks by various Soviet metal bands, both well-known and obscure.

Of course, it should be mentioned that some of the bands on there were not that good, and are deservedly forgotten by now. For instance, glam rock bands like Rondo became popular mostly due to the use of the word "sex" in their lyrics (yes, it was considered quite scandalous at the time), and their provocative stage looks:

A special case is Korrozia Metalla, who never were a good band by any means, yet they successfully made a career of a comedy/shock rock band, and their frontman now enjoys a living meme status. Some of the better known bands on there, such as Aria and Black Coffee, are now considered extremely uncool to listen to by metal elitists, but 30 years back they enjoyed an unquestionable cult status among "rebellious" Soviet teenagers. In particular, the debut album of Black Coffee was sold in more than a million copies, largely because it was the only metal album available in stores in most smaller towns around 1988:

Some tracks on this compilation are from the post-Soviet period (1992-93), but the overwhelming majority of them are from 1988-91, when the public interest in metal was at its peak in the USSR (fun fact: the "Monsters of Rock" festival held near Moscow in 1991, featuring Metallica, Pantera and AC/DC, is now considered one of the largest rock/metal festivals in history - according to some estimates, the number of attendees was over 1.5 million!). The metal scene first appeared in the Soviet Union during the summer of 1984 (initually consisting mostly of children of diplomats and other people who was able to travel to the Western Bloc countries), broke into mainstream around 1987-1988, and became largely dead by 1995 (the modern Russian metal scene is a different story).

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