Viagra for Putin

A brand new musical genre has emerged in Russia, with a strong political overtone. It is not a new hymn of a new Russia, and not a demonstration of musical talents by not-so-talented politicians, but a new kind of political provocation.

Composer Aleksey Vishnya, infamous in Russian musical world, has created a project called "PolitTechno". The idea is not that new or original: he samples the cuts of Russian politicians’ speech over rhythmic music.

The first to try this was a Russian DJ GROOVE, who made a song featuring the voice of Mikhail Gorbatchev a few years ago. Despite of its success the idea was not developed much further. But there are no bad ideas, there are bad musicians!

The website of "PolitTechno" became the most popular address of the Runet (Russian Internet), and Vishnya's last song called "There’ll be no Trade!" was on air of many radios, including even "Moscow Echo"

Aleksey Vishnya has always been attracted to music and experiments in it. Despite of his involvement with the new wave of Russian rock of the 80ies (he recorded the best albums of KINO), he did not become a "star" or made much money. His solo carrier did not go well too: his love for techno music could not find acceptance.

But now Vishnya has found the means: "Dorenko sang about Putin", said all banners in Russian Internet. A famous tv journalists warned people in the song: "Vladimir Vladimirovitch is trusted, not trusted, it is not a joke!" And the web counters spin 7 times faster!

Then Vishnya sampled words of Irina Khakamada: "I met with the president, and gave him a document…" into "I met the president, and gave him…"

On the first "PolitTechno" album called "Viagra for Putin" one can hear all the famous Russian politicians: Tchubays, Khakamada, Zuganov, Zhirinovsky, Novodvorskaya and others. An instant hit is a song "There’ll be no Trade!", dedicated to the arrest of Khodorkovsky and sang, of course, by Vladimir Putin.

But this project has raised a few serious questions also. First of all I obviously the copyrights. The featured politicians may claim a part of the earnings, or they may feel offended by the representation in a song.

A much more serious aspect is that "PolitTechno" is a new instrument of political technologies, as many experts point out. For any politician featured on the album, it can be positive or negative promotion. They will not touch Vishnya before the coming elections, because of possible accusations in fighting the "artistic freedom". At the same time, a properly sampled phrase can cause severe damage to political carrier. For instance, no one will react positively to Zhirinovsky's words "Russian pigs".

On one hand, all this speaks about the low level of culture of Russian politicians. On the other, in the face of "PolitTechno" we still have a new political weapon, whose power can be even greater than that of TV or newpapers.

Author`s name Pavel Morozov