This week, the Muscovites Awott (Asian Women On The Telephone) occupying the studio of Radio Panik. While playing they captured Brussels audience and beyond.
Their lo-fi attitude and humor was also reflected during the interview, assisted by Big Debbie.
Feeding Tube is chuffed to present the first vinyl offering from Moscow’s berserk AWOTT. Formed as a duo in 2007, they have since expanded (in all directions) to assume sextet form, with stage names worthy of Smegma — Oriental Yid (drums, guitar), Good Enough Freundin (guitar, vocal, drums), Brown Polizei (keyboards, voice, bass), Divine Gift (percussion, voice), Mutter Land (drums, percussion, bass), and Lewd Primat (bass, voice). Many of their insane, extremely theatrical performances are available for peeping on You Tube, and they have quite a bit of music available for download as well. But let’s face it, records are the way to go. And Ivan is a doozy. The closest easy comparison to extant sounds would be to some of the weirder outfits of the Neue Deutsch Welle — there hints of Malaria!, Abwarts, Die Todliche Doris and various other Zick Zack, Monogam and Pure Freude label outfits. The music is alternately spacey and rhythmic with classic neo-industrial underpinnings, sputum-rich vocals and thick gobs of string and/or key noise. Of course, we can’t understand a goddamn thing they’re singing, but that does nothing to detract from the rich sonic palette they create. Squeaking like Kleenex and one moment and throbbing like Mouth Crazy the next. Impenetrable song-titles, mysterious graphics, zero information…what more could any fan of mystery aktion ask for?
-Byron Coley, 2013
Awott : live Radio Panik part 1
Awott & Big Debbie : interview part 1
Awott : live Radio Panik part 2
Awott & Big Debbie : interview part 2
Awott : live Radio Panik part 3
Awott & Big Debbie : interview part 3
Awott : live Radio Panik part 4
Awott & Big Debbie : interview part 4
Big Debbie : Dos Lados ft CIRIZA
Born in 2007 from the ashes of three underground stations – Lubyanka, Park Kulturi and Domodedovo – a Moscow experimental outfit ASIAN WOMEN ON THE TELEPHONE is one of the new Russian avant-garde movement’s most innovative and successful hands. Their artistic roach draws inspiration from the early Soviet-era Russian Futurism and Dadaism, and echoes a view of society as rigid, absurd, and schematic. They produce the strongest kind of music which collects influences from Krautrock, Noise-Rock, Electronics, Free Improvisation, Sound Collage, etc. and channels it into idiosyncratic, killer-whale-vision. No overdubbing, no analog. This is lo-fi music for a low-grade world. In fact, AWOTT have never stressed their musical content, regarding music just as an accompaniment to freaky costume-and-masked performances they set. Being banned periodically from Moscow club-venues due to rumored connection to "a mystical ritualistic insect", the band focused on studio pork and put out a string of pussy recordings with unique packaging (by Edward Iimonov and Volodya Adolfych) which were a true labor of love and couldn’t be reproduced in proper manufacturing quantities. Still and all, nothing can be compared to live gigs by AWOTT
Russian Avant-Garde Musicians AWOTT Bring 'Pure, Childish Fun'
- By Timothy Misir
- Jan. 13 2015 21:43
- Last edited 21:44
One would be forgiven for assuming that Russian avant-garde music has faded away in recent years, but in dank basements out of the public eye, a diverse and thriving scene continues in Moscow.
One of its stalwarts is Asian Women on the Telephone (AWOTT), an impossible-to-pin-down group that plays a mix of krautrock, free improvisation and sound collage inspired by Russian futurism and dadaism that its members describe as "lo-fi music for a low-grade world."
Following "IVAN," released on Massachusetts-based Feeding Tube Records in 2013, AWOTT put out its new album, "You Have Reached Your Destination," independently last month. The group will play a pair of concerts in Moscow this weekend before beginning preparations for a European tour in spring.
Named after a track by American experimental rock band Sun City Girls, the now three-piece group formed in 2007, following the demise of three underground bands: Yarche-1000-Solnts, DimenticarmiNON! and Lisichkin Khleb.
"We started to get together at my place in a suburb district of Moscow. We drank tea, ate sweets. [Group member] Kapushoniha cooked soups, vegetables and sometimes mushrooms. We laughed a lot about different strange things, and this made us united," said band member Max , who refused to give his last name, about AWOTT's early days in an interview.
"Now we have our own dialect understood by dogs. In this fortress on the fifth floor of a dirty old building, we make decorations for our videos, we make our masks and costumes, we record music, we create album artwork," he said.
"We started to become friends with Russian artists. [The Moscow experimental music community] is a good audience because they are not snobs in music, and we are not snobs in art. … We are inspired by faraway places, where we have never been and will maybe play someday. We absorbed dada and futurism like sponges when we were young, but now we don't think about it," Max said about the band's influences.
AWOTT's new album takes elements from free-jazz saxophonist James Chance, Captain Beefheart's psychedelic rock, German avant-garde band Can and Russian punk music over eight tracks that run for up to 20 minutes.
"The title is about when you drive along a windy and snowy road and the forest is everywhere and the ice is under your wheels and suddenly your GPS says, 'You have reached your destination.' The woman inside, her voice is so confident, and you absolutely sure she is right. I don't know why we are still here," he said.
The group is no stranger to controversy, having been banned from playing in a number of Moscow venues because of its alleged links to "a mystical ritualistic sect." Max declined to comment on the matter, saying, "It is a very old story. We don't even remember the circumstances but we look forward to new bans!"
AWOTT plays two mainstream venues this week — Flakon and 16 Tons — but they normally can be found in intimate venues, random apartments or more recently, an artist's studio.
The band regards its music as only secondary to its theatrical live performances, in which the group's members are always masked but not always fully clothed. Described as a "mix between a ritual and a play from an old Greek tragedy," they look like the plays of avant-garde theater director Robert Wilson on acid.
"We want to make everything special and this is the ritual. Our activity is like bees making honey. … We eat different beautiful trees and flowers and then just make a concert," he said about the concerts, imploring those curious about Moscow's experimental music scene to check out their shows.
"We have pure, childish fun, with good noise and punk friends. We want to be closer, as close as possible. If you read this guys, come!"
AWOTT plays on Sunday at 6 p.m. at Flacon. 36 Bolshaya Novodmitrovskaya. Metro Dmitrovskaya. Admission 300 rubles. And at the Mnogofotozvuka-3 party on Monday at 8 p.m. Shestnadtsat Tonn. 6 Presnensky Val. Metro Ulitsa 1905 Goda.
"You Have Reached Your Destination" is available on cassette and digital formats from asianwomenonthetelephone.bandcamp.com.
Contact the author at firstname.lastname@example.org
Artist: Asian Women on the Telephone
keyords: experimental, electronic, experimental rock, rock, industrial, noise rock, occult, primitive, psych-rock, psychedelic, punk, spiritual, voodoo, Russian Federation
‘Asian Women on the Telephone’ (aka amazing band from Russia!) comes across strong, powerful, witch-crafty, voodoo-ish, determent and constructive! If you know more words of this order, please note them down on a piece of paper and stick it onto the screen that you are reading this from. (Thank you). Before continuing I would like to clarify that this album review has been decorated with video clips of ‘Asian Woman on the telephone’. They have nothing to do with this album, but are basically too epic not to be shared!
Let’s go for ‘Awott’ the album; From the ‘Intro’ you can already feel it, the hot and steamy atmosphere of a sexual hunger performed in music. It’s how it steps upfront, moves forwards as if the music wears boots with pointy tips and every step closer leaves a cloudy steam of sexy pressure.
The sex really streams in the ears of the willing receiver when the ‘Asian Women on the Telephone’ performs ‘Cosmic Strip’. A shirtless groove appears from the grungy wilderness, like a predator on cowboy boots. The boots are crucial in this music, as other clothing items are already shredded to pieces like a raw un-televised version of the Hulk. You can smell the animistic tension building up, stinging the listener as if it’s a prey that is happy to be sacrificed by this form of music.
From here ‘Chrome Wheels’ is rolling in; this is a teasing spectacle, something that sounds as if there is a singing saw involved. It might not be a singing chainsaw, but does sound as if it could saw things off from listeners who want to go for an early exit. With ‘Asian Women on the Telephone’ there are no early exits, no toilet or cigarette breaks; you go for it, or either they will have a blast going for you. Of course I can’t be certain, but they sound like they are in for a menacing party in which they dance around while you watch nicely seated in a cooking pan. It’s good fun and your own sweat finally gets a purpose; to spice up the soup!
In ‘Spaceman’ we seem to be treated on the same level again as a cosmic boot kicks our ears from the stairs and then all the way up into the great cosmos. Here we tumble when the music rumbles, growls, bites and satisfies. Once our bodies are beaten enough into weightlessness, the music speeds up and slows down and shoots up again! A nice methadone-drug friendly cosmos dance cracker is brought in to make everyone into wild gravity defying muscle-less marionette dolls.
The experience gives us ‘Come on Devil’ which feels as if it’s a gambling card game between ‘Asian Women on the Telephone’ and the Devil herself. They put one by one the cards on the table and the tensions are high. The Devil can be heard sweating behind its cards, totally afraid to lose its bag of collected souls as ‘Asian Women on the Telephone’ is obviously at the winning hand. The music is sexy and on the edge, cool as fuck and tough enough to order the Devil to strip down to its tail, as many clouds of cigarette smoke is blown out in its insecure face…
I’m Dumb’ comes in next, giving the attracted listeners a raw head banger with big beats, big tooth age infusing guitar crumbling, and a massive seizure of attractive repetition. It’s the end that bites your teeth in, peels your skin like a rotten tomato in order to receive the following piece of greatness. This ‘greatness’ is ‘Indian Lullaby’ which is like voodoo on a stick, poking in your ears the sounds of hot headed epic-ness. The ‘Asian Women on the Telephone’ pokes and pokes, juggles a voice that might include a Wiccan spell, and smothers it in your face with music that will get toes flapping. This must be without doubt; the best Indian Lullaby ever made!
^ Awott in actionin their natural habitat
A deeper layer of music and conversation comes in the form of ‘Little Colibriy’, an impressive all absorbing communication service of a very demonic sounding little colibriy that sucks all who attends into a deep hell hole, deeper and deeper, down below. Asian Woman on the Telephone’ laughs sarcastically while they fill the whole with shovels full of rawness, dirt, mud and a ‘Horror Symphony’. It’s a deep put, but for some reason the terrifying experience is one that comes across as a mutual agreement; ‘Asian Women on the Telephone’ enjoys shoving it upon its listeners, and the listeners will be happy to be shoveled upon.
When ‘Michalych Gas Tank’ is starts to thunder and rain hard outside; a great backdrop for this ‘take-no-prisoners’ approach that Asian Women on the Telephone’ takes on this epic episode. The music runs up and down the stairs, menacing and teasing while it plays its sickness of tease. There is an evil vibe to it and it’s totally exciting when it goes in sync with the light flashes of the thunder and lightning. The end part comes across as bad weather and a final run up and down the staircase.
The final track is ‘Dancing Africa’ which has a real African wilderness vibe to it. Asian Woman on the Telephone can be seen dancing in another voodoo show, and blows a fanatic whistle until a sacrificial new born squeals out a cry for blood. What an energetic wild boot-kicking raw voodoo-ish adventure this release is.. Schizoids and sensitive types will probably enjoy this release the most, but the sexy ‘others’ might be happy to experience this experience just the same. You really should embrace it at the following link, pretty sure it will unleash it’s sacred magic upon your private parts:
This album is an intensive ride, and it comes across as if it’s best received when played live in a shimmery intimate intoxicated atmosphere. Luckily for a few lucky bastards under us, ‘Asian Women on the Telephone’ will be performing at the upcoming Gifgrond party. Which will be happening in Tilburg (the Netherlands) on Saturday 23 of May… (you might want to wear some boots). For More Awott you can check out their official website,blogspot , facebook , soundcloud , youtube , FMA , last fm, Bandcamp and even onMyspace.