about the band
aztec — a band from st.-petersburg that has made its way to fame in the musical and club sphere after only several months of recording of an album, boutique aoutique. to many, the album has become the evidence of birth of a band with new concept and sound. the root of these qualities lies in the equality of talented musicians within the team, a rare characteristic for artistic cooperations. guitarist andrey bondar, bass guitarist oleg koiava, and drummer yan lemskiy have together invented their unique sound, minimalistic yet dense, penetrated with the live, positive funk energy that mingles from song to song with elements of styles often thought incompatible. this, together with ironic, somewhat strange lyrics and chaotic stage behaviour has led to the advent of the existing original band prone to searching for experiments and discoveries. the professionalism of each of the band’s members and their sincere approach have attracted offers of collaboration with such bands as st.-pete’s poimanniye muravyedy and moscow’s lift, as well as the side band of konstantin kinchev.
the history of the band started off with first joint rehearsals of andrey and oleg at the faculty of international relations of st.-petersburg state university in december 1997. searching for conception and accumulation of experience went on for about three years. it was then already that the band’s members were regularly surprised by the visits payed to their rehearsals by various interesting people, from the reporters of fuzz magazine — suedehead and max hagen — and flourishing back then indie. ru, to prominent producers represented by andrey tropillo. it’s third gig ever, the band supported the perfomance of kirpichi. this case, surprisingly, was followed by an article about aztec in the entertainment section of evening st.-petersburg newspaper, due to which the band was mistakenly welcomed to the circle of st-petersburg jazz musucians.
the opinion on oleg and andrey, the story of the band as it is actually kicked off with yan lemskiy taking over the vacancy of the drummer in december 2001. since october 2002, the band started taking active part in various festivals, both in clubs and on big grounds, touring, giving interviews to russian and foreign publications and leading a dissolute life which resulted in the birth of oleg’s son.
in ocrober 2003 aztec recorded several program songs that further formed a live ep boutique aoutique. the album’s distinctive features are integrity, spontaneity of presentation and rich arrangements that arrest the listener’s attention without tiring one with long monotonous passages. the songs chosen for the album are the one most vividly reflecting the direction of the band’s development. the recording was made live in just several hours which allowed to preserve the spirit and the live-gig drive characteristic to aztec. the musicians themselves consider it a great advantage as the group is fully targeted to live performance of music. the band’s program formed lately not only sets a new performance level to be reached for most russian club bands, but also suggests the ability of the trio to affect the musical tastes of the general public.
what’s left to be said is that many journalists and musical critics (including myself) presently make hearty remarks in the band’s address and are curious to see its development. as i see it, the continuation of this interesting story won’t keep us waiting.