(music reccomended for reading will gradually appear in this post)

In 1896 in the city on Neva River Lev Sergeyevich Termen was born. Not like most of children he was not interested in child entertainment – he was rather intrested in music. As his parents could afford his passion he started to play piano and chello. But there was one “art” that thrilled young Lev even more – it was phisics. Termen was talented – in young age he developed movement detector on which contemporary detectors are based. He was working on technology of image transmition (and has succeses in this field as well) and magnetic altimeter.

But what is most valuable for us today is invention that world also assessed best from what Lev constructed. Please take a sit and enjoy:


Theremin, etherophone, termenvox – is an extraordinary combination of two passions of russian engineer. Musical instrument using radio waves, on which one can play by waving hands around two antennas. Such a thing could be created only in estern mind. Theremin was popular amongst film makers – it was perfect for pictorial music backgrounds such as return of paranoia of main character of Hitchcock’s “Spellbound” (check wonderful trailer) or scenes with flying disc in “The Day the Earth Stood Still”.

However – mastership in using theremin emerged where its history has began – in Sankt Petersburg. In 2003 Oleg Tarasov – producer of Petersburg’s surf-rock band Messer Chups invited Lidia Kavina – world class theremonist (if there is such proffesion) to play with Chups. Coperation was succesful and captivating sounds of band became even more moody.

Messer Chups are two people: Oleg Gitarkin (on guitar)and mysterious ZombieGirl (on bass guitar) plus changing drummers and vocalists. Consistent image of band is created on the base of american 50’s and 60’s, most of all from B-class horrors (what I managed to check live on concert during FD4K 2008 festival, on yard of legendary Jazzga club in Łódź). Check out duo’s look:


Messer Chups is not the first Gitarkin’s project – earlier he played with another Oleg (third one) – Kostrov in a band Messer for Frau Miller. In their artistic route Messer Chups as well as Messer fur Frau Miller are not forgetting about roots. References to USSR, especially to it’s technology achievements are visible in music, videos and disc labels. Listen to a story of a best girl in Soviet Union:


Another inspiration – song about nightmares, a bit similar traditional music, but in fact it is remix of political resistance song of Dina Vierny:


Russian classics is used as well:


Explore what else petersburgian surfers have to offer. And what about spy devices in american emblem? Our hero – Lev constructed such device as well. His curriculum vitae is full of amazing stories: after success in USA, there was an only one power that he couldn’t resist – Tax Office (Well, quite the same as Al Capone).  In 1938 he returned to Leningrad, where he was arrested, and the person who saved him from labour camp was Andriej Nikolayevich Tupolew, whose surname some time ago became familiar to every Pole.


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