Could all the members introduce themselves and tell us about the origins of each one and where they are currently located? HI, I’m Mathieu, I’m on bass, I come from Reims and I’m living in Constance. Hi, I’m Jerome, I’m the drummer, I was born in Geneva and I’m living now in Biel Hi, I’m Quentin, I’m the guitarist, I come from Geneva too, and i’m living in Biel as well.
How did you meet and how did you come together to create Raskolnikov? Well, we formed the band in 2015 in Geneva. For two weeks, Quentin is on guitar with us. Now we’re based in Biel (CH).
What is your current vision about music, after this pandemic has changed the way you live music? In 2020, we had about 20 gigs planned. We unfortunately had to cancel, just like all other musicians and technicians friends. So we decided to record a live session, in Geneva, that you can find on YouTube. We also decided to edit a live album, which is cool and it will be soon available on several websites. On the other hand we hope that we will soon play gigs again. We really miss that. We are planning now the next tour for the third album. We also use these times to write and record the third album, and we hope we will play the new songs, maybe in 2022, maybe earlier… We’re not sure, but we’ll see! The positive point is that we have time to do it great for the moment when we’ll be able to play again. And it will be awesome!
What are your most important musical and visual references – in this case referring to your album covers- ? About the references, it comes from the coldwave and postpunk from the 80’s. But also from alternative indie rock from the 2000’s, like Ghinzu, Interpol, for instance, a little from The National too … From the «classicals» of the coldwave and postpunk from the 80’s, we have as references of course The Cure, Joy Division, The Sound, Sisters of Mercy, Einstürzende Neubauten, Bauhaus, we sure forget a lot of others! Concerning the cover of the second album, we’ve chosen «Salome dancing before Herod» from Gustave Moreau. Well…. I bring this idea, with some others… We had some ideas from paintings from symbolism and then for the live album that follows yet – we played live the second album in an empty hall – and the cover of this live album comes also as similar, «similary» / s i m i l a r l y – shhh ? (to stay in the same atmosphere). It deals with Jean-André Rixens : «The Death of Cleopatra»… also from symbolism… We already have an idea for the third album – it will be a surprise. We keep on in the same spirit… People didn’t go to museums these times… it’s a little pleasure to add this.
Rodion is cold but also compassionate and at the same time he is an impoverished student with great ideals who seeks to solve his problems in different ways, he also represents social alienation, what parts of this character are present in your work and in what the band wants to project? Well, the character of Raskolnikov is at the same time fascinating and frightening. It deals with a person who can feel like a «superior being» then suddenly can tremble of being afraid of everything and of one-self… «Raskol» in Russian means the split, the schism, and …. it’s between the collective moral and his own moral…. Being capable of justifying an irreparable act with an own moral… as a superior person… and also then repent and suffer of being so small… And… it reminds us that – why we decided to take this name for the band – we consider that everyone is able to be arrogant and then tremble of being so small, so insignificant finally.
It seems very evident that your second album has references, specifically «Sold dead Souls» and «Вий» to the work of Nikolai Gogol: what specifically attracts you to Gogol? Well in the «Dead Souls» and «Vij/ Вий » from Gogol, we have a mix of a joke and cynicism, irony about the human mediocrity.
What connects all these authors in your work (Dostoievski, Gogol, Mayakovski) , does it have something to do with the society they describe so obscure and banal? We actually, in the novels of Dostojevski, Gogol, Maiakovski, or also Bulgakov and many others, what in this kind of literature I like particularly, it’s about this description of the beauty and the ugliness of humanity. Most of the time with a dark atmosphere… like in our music and the music from other dark, cold and post punk musicians… Yes it’s a good source of inspiration for us, and what I enjoy about these authors are the several tragedies that we still find in our societies, and the imperfection of the human being.
Do you have any projects in the near future for this year? yes, well we have the composition of the third album, we are on this story currently! And also we hope that we’ll play gigs again! But now the most important thing is this new album we are working on.
Is there anything you would like to share with the audience, any message, upcoming dates, any reflections, etc.? And so, We are looking forward to playing live again, on stage, looking forward to meeting you guys! – It will be awesome ! – No? – Yes. It will be.
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