О фестивале на английском от журналиста Владимира Елбаева
Beatlefest'15: pledging Britain fidel
Apart from being a decibel torture, the beatlemania impersonators onstage the theatre-converted club venue meant (the promotional) business and they generally delivered. Moscow clones The Beatlove were «exactly the cigar» close, what with their cardigans, hairdos, guitar shapes, stage antics and so down to Harrissonesque solo tembres. What was striking, this and other performers easily crossed over from Russian to correct (!) English, being as fidel in mouthing lyrics. The one American drawl to be overheard that night came from a US expat lone and lost visitor (alas not the expected participant who failed to turn up). Shoving the TV/FM/managerial nonsense of next generation «nu pigin» rules, ways and tongues — the crowd and artists onstage celebrated Britain, its sound, mentality, humor and Oxford English. To a clever observer this was a meaningful Resistance actually missing from any such Western event.
P1060343Particularly impressive was the sharp guitar fingering prowess revealed by lady singer Marina Kapuro's husband/producer/backing instrumentalist Yury Berendukov. His left hand sprawled to 3 frets at a time, his right picking exactly the strings with the progression, order and strength Earl Clough would hardly match. On «Nowhere Man» and other acoustic-friendly covers he and wife weaved a melody of thousand harps one never suspected to have been there. The reticent behaved and inaptly formal suited guy on bass guitar, incidentally, seemed to tunefully play all the right notes evoking imagery and status of the Who's late John Entwisle.
These two acts proved foremost to grace another Queen Elizabeth jubilee to pamper her surprised senses. Just in case... For all we know, Queen likes to grant MBE to KGB agents of influence.
Alas, temperature fell and crowd thinned some on artists that followed. While it took Russia half-a-century to grudge, disregard, neglect and let one able coverband and one guitar wizard (above), others on the bill were, and showed, exactly the idiosyncrasy. Heartbeat, of Moscow club circuit, featured an artful drummer but drab repertoir of doowop and Everlys which they safely buried under severely whisked drum kit volume. Even less spectacular, Father McKenzie band of pretences from the southern Rostov-on-Don proved as a passable side-dish on an amok picnic. They treated the same to every number: dreadful volume, one-note shriek and noisy banging. With exception of the keyboardist, that is. He was a star catcher of old original trappings. Made them shine anew, very alive.
P1060351Another provincial idols, The Singles, of Samara mid-Russia town, were conspicuous for their leader's mock-Lennon persona complete with mimicry and bowtie upon the creamy white pigtails. They did tepid version of hilarious-welcome «Let It Be».
As volume cranked up higher, so imagery went down, loosing about Beatle harmony and British wit, with artists reducing original riffs to lazy picking — or reverting to «Beatle inspired» own drags. Stary Priyatel, band of long standing and cult Moscow fame had failed to capitalize on «Old Pal» English alusions to break into World, and on the night they looked, played and sang a disaster. If you are prepared, one Malezhik, the Soviet era's minor popstar, coming to front those pals on a couple of numbers — was yet a bigger disaster. He pitched and quivered his voice on ends, so unbecoming, and offered an unlikely limeric on the text of «Love Me Do» about «one running a stinky honeyed nose».
All said, the rally at Teatr club in Moscow's uptown to celebrate www.beatles.ru 15th year was the must event, miles higher than most amusement in our times' Moscow. The host, one good natured Alexey Bogaevsky, runs the site, supports the noble British esthetics and serves the cause as he deems by himself. There are no money in this, and even this very writeup is a dedication, not a paid for task. God sure planned otherwise, but it can't be helped since «we're all doing what we can» (Beatles/Revolution, The White Album). But this I do know: what was expressed on mid-career Beatles' albums, formed in Woodstock, founded in Aurobindo works and functioned in Auroville, what converted the golden youth and what still pervades good hi-fi and vintage cars — it is the truth. Period.http://yt.avportal.ru/beatlefest15-pledging-britain-fidel-05-2015/