Friday, May 11, 2018

Губернатор - "Рождение Чукотки" [2010]

Artist: Губернатор
Title: Рождение Чукотки
Genre: Folk Rock
Country: Russia (Chukotka)
Release date: 2010

Track List:
  1. Подружки
  2. Лооной
  3. Какомэй
  4. Почему (Колыбельная)
  5. Ночной дежурный
  6. За прошлую вину
  7. Тебе
  8. Лилия
  9. Посмотри-ка
  10. Утро в Снежном
  11. На берегу
  12. Рождение Чукотки
  13. Rock'n'roll instrumental
  14. Белая пастель (DJ Grey Trance Mix)
First off: it's really hard to find info about this band, mostly because of their highly Google-unfriendly name (really, the only worse idea than naming your band "Governor" is naming it "Ministry"). Some thing about them that are known for sure: they were formed in 2006 in Anadyr, the complete outskirts of the world. So far they're the only rock band to base their music on the folklore of Chukchi, the best known Paleo-Siberian ethnic group who are basically an archetype in popular culture for all ethnic groups of the Siberian Far North.

Although most if not all of the band members are Russians, their interpretations of Chukchi folk music are considered fairly authentic and have gained them a considerable fan base in their home region. Unfortunately, they aren't well-known outside of it, so finding information about them is a problem. I couldn't find even the cover art for this album, so there's a photo of their lead singer Veronika Oshulik instead.

Those who aren't familiar with the folk-rock bands that employ throat singing and similar vocal techniques, like Yat-Kha or Altan Urag (both of which were already mentioned on here before), may find the first few tracks on this album quite weird. However, that's how authentic Chukchi shamanic singing sounds like. Here's a video of Veronika performing it solo:

The rest of the album is more standard blues rock with less ethnic influences, with lyrics mostly in Russian. Not exactly my kind of music, but some of these tracks are quite nice, like this one (in this video, the lyrics are in Chukchi language, but the album version is in Russian):

Overall, they're a quite unique band and definitely deserve more recognition outside of their home region that they currently have. As far as I know, they're still active and perform live quite often (their biggest success so far was participating in a folk/ethno-rock festival in Italy), although the lineup has changed several times (I've even read that two of their members have died in an accident, but don't know if it's true). They have recorded 3 or 4 albums by now, but looks like that only two were properly released. If I manage to find out more about them (which is difficult due to above reasons), I'll update this post for sure.

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