While scrolling through the darkest depths of the internet late at night, I found what can only be best described as a Russian mental patient’s answer to Die Antwoord. They’re called Little Big, and their “best” video, “Everyday I’m Drinking”, (at the top of the page) features dubstep, dwarves, scary clowns and bears getting fucked. Apart from dangerous driving, it’s literally got every great stereotype that you could ever want from a Russian music video.
After recovering from the realisation that this was real, and not a joke, I found out that the group was founded by Ilya Prusikin. In case you’re not aware, his earlier art consists of him rapping, while dressed as Stalin. The collective have only formed this year and I’ve already found them frequenting my night terrors. The group has four main members, and a few extra walk-ons, including a “clown millionaire”. They’ve also self-confessed to creating their own genre, “Funeral Rave”, which is essentially a mix of Rob Zombie halloween horror, confusing student politics, and leftover rave casualties.
Here’s a cheery press shot of the group:
Unless you share this article to all your friends, one of these guys will appear at the end of your bed, at 4AM this evening. LOLJK. They’re really nice. I Skyped Ilya and Olympia to find out more about them. It involved a lot of broken English and deadpan voices.
Noisey: So what’s it like being a band in Russia?
Ilya: A lot of people don’t understand our music.
I don’t know why they wouldn’t…
Ilya: We show the dark and dirty side which confuses them but we only do that because we want to show that they can live better. There’s a real sense of tradition in Russia. We want to show them a way to live their lives better.
Olympia: Little Big is a huge documentary rave badaboom from Russia. We are trying to touch consciousness corners which people do not even suspect. We wanna show something new, wanna open their eyes, or maybe show another angle of view. By dressing in bear masks? Is any of it politically or socially motivated?
Ilya: Politics are politics and they are very complicated, we just make music. D’ya like Putin?
Olympia: Mmm… Mostly I am thinking of my people, you know, my family, band, friends. I think Putin he is like tsar in Russia, I mean how people relate to him. Russian people all the time loving their tsars, hating and being afraid of them.
What do you think of Pussy Riot’s situation?
Olympia: I think Pussy Riot's story is not about music – the girls are not Mozart, we all know it. Our life and that story is real. Anyway, love and forgive each other, no matter how strange we seem to each other.
Ilya: It’s a horrible situation. People should be able to do what they want. The image that people get of Russia is that it’s a very fucked up country.
What do you like about the country?
Ilya: It’s the best place for music and art; the people understand that we want to talk to them. People support you more when you get bigger around the world rather than if you’re just “that Die Antwoord band”.
What do you think of comparisons between the two of you?
Ilya: We both love classical rave, we don’t need to think about comparing the two bands but still people do it.
Olympia: I’ve got crazy love and and respect for DA and I am so happy to know Ninja personally, but I feel we are moving different ways in music and ideas. So you like rave, what other music do you listen to?
Ilya: More rave, Cannibal Corpse, Nirvana and Die Antwoord, these are my favourites.
Olympia: In the morning I can listen Red Hot Chilli Peppers, Rammstein, in the day and in the evening Beethoven or Mozart. By the way Vivaldi is one of my favorite composers. Between relaxing and driving, I just love different music. Cool. How do you get inspired?
Olympia: My way is catching inspiration from an empty wall. If you want to create, watch around you, look closely and you will see something new, something you never seen before. What’s your song “Everyday I’m Drinking” about?
Ilya: It’s about the stereotypes people have about Russia, the drinking in dirty places, the fucking bears… Fucking bears?!
Ilya: It’s satire. Wild animals go out into the cities all the time looking for food.But the song deals with all these Hollywood stereotypes that people have of Russians.
Indeed. What about the scary clowns in the video?
Ilya: They’re the old problems of Russia still scaring us, clowns are scary, right?
Damn right. The songs are pretty depressing…
Ilya: The songs are supposed to want to make people feel better, not depress you. People shouldn’t be in denial. We’re a big family, we have make up artists and video people, all of us doing our best. We just show people the truth and help them live their lives better. That’s nice.
Ilya: There’s so many problems in the world. We want to tell the world that they are the owner of their lives. Countries and government are not as important as people think, they have the power to do what they want. Fight the power Little Big!
Follow Dan on Twitter @keendang