There’s nothing worse than the total agony of a country that knows so well what to do, but fails to do it. Meet the Tolmachevy Twins:
There’s a lot of good stuff going on in the Russian speaking music world and we’re not only talking Pussy Riots. Listen to Alina Orlova, Obe Dve, The Retuses and the likes and you might be able to spot a very bright Russian future ahead with modern sounding artists making use of one of the coolest languages around. Even big artists like Regina Spektor (who is in fact Russian born) does a tune or two in Russian while Berliners eat their trendy bilini brunches, showing you Eastern Europe is where it’s all happening these days.
Only problem is it’s not happening in Eastern Eurovision. At all. It’s almost as if Russia tries to cover who they are and put all their efforts into finding something that they think their buddies to the west might like, be it almost parodically ethnic grandmothers or something that looks a bit like an American pop prostitute. And indeed, looking at the Olympic circus this year, we think that theory might very well hold water. But do we like it? No way.
The Tolmachevy Twins represent everything we don’t like about Russia. Or…rephrase, not everything. There’s also Putin, bless him. But still, a lot to hate. What an awful collection of text lines from the worst American pop songs of the 20th century. What an annoying high school musical this would make. And last, but not least, what an indifferent tune.
Trying to be someone you’re not is never as good as delivering something genuine. Someone should have taught the oligarchs that by now. The twins might have won the Junior Eurovision and being Russian and all we guess they will get their decent amount of votes. But that’s not enough when someone is willing to spend all of their people’s money trying to create a winner.
We at least wish Russia would trust their own development and modern cultural artists a little. But guess that’s a little too much to ask. After all we guess great artists are still regarded in the same way as gays over there: as something that should be kept private.