Club Contact

The new MP3 blog from London's club Contact. The idea is to allow people to hear new music they wouldn't have otherwise found but, if anyone has any copyright issues with a particular song, i'll take the link down. Songs are only available for a limited amount of time.

Thursday, September 29, 2005

Oskar's magnificent 2001 debut album, Beg Pa Ostriyu Nozha (Run On The Edge Of A Knife) made him a superstar virtually over night in Russia. Outlandishly dressed and with a habit of performing stripped to the waist, covered in white body paint and fake surgical scars, he courted controversy with the gay-themed electro-pop of Mazh Vazelinom (Spread Vaseline) while wooing the dyevs with gorgeous ballads like Mezhdu Mnoi I Toboi. But as he was to find out, there's controversy and there's controversy. Sick of getting hassled on the Moscow metro by racist police officers and heartbroken at the continuing conflict in his homeland, Chechnya, he reverted to his roots, changed his name to Shamil and released a single called Become Jihad with an accompanying video showing the aftermath of the actrocities both sides had perpetrated. Moscow's skinheads, strangely, didn't take kindly to a gay Muslim Chechen commenting on the war and he was forced to flee for his life to London, before relocating to New York.

It's not just his history that makes pretty much every male solo star in the world look banal. His personal magnetism and showmanship are unrivalled and his two Russian albums are astonishingly good. He has returned under the slightly modified title of The Oskar and looks set to release an English language debut later this year. Along with the brilliant How To Find Bin Laden, Make Love To America will be on it.

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