Ukrainians Respublika

Respublika is an anarchist punk tribute to the Ukraine: its history of struggles and sacrifices and celebrations of its people and independence. The well-seasoned Ukrainians have chosen ten traditional songs to reach that vision (with themes of lost innocence, Kozaks going to war, seduction and a bit of partying) and added a few surprises. The trad/punk band comes off a bit like the Pogues interpreting Irish music but they wield a far bigger political lexicon. In fact, when they cover two Sex Pistols songs ("Anarchy in the U.K." and "Pretty Vacant"), you get the sense of what might have occurred had Johnny Rotten and the gang tried their hand at Eastern European folk music. They only difference is the Ukrainians have full command of their instruments. Ultimately the vision is highly successful with anarchy, hardship and rebellion enacted with violin, mandolin, trumpet, sopilka, drums, bass and lots of electric guitars. But there is celebration too - a motley party to end all parties as the popular Western Ukrainian dance "Arkan" ("The Lasso") clips along as if Walter Ostanek were on speed and playing a heavily distorted Les Paul. Simply crazy! (Omnium)