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Pussy Riot Share Sardonic Protest Video for Dave Sitek-Produced ‘Chaika’

The Russian trio has also shared an informative Q&A about the man behind the song title

Russian punk activists Pussy Riot are back with a new song and video, this time about their country’s general prosecutor. The video for “Chaika,” produced by TV On the Radio’s Dave Sitek and directed by Andrey Fenø?ka and Pussy Riot’s Nadya Tolokonnikova, examines through a satirical lens Yuri Chaika’s corruption and its ramifications in Russia’s legal system. Watch the clip here (and pay special attention to the subtitles), which sees the musicians going through the motions of torturing prisoners and tearing into monstrous chicken carcasses, á la the most decadent sovereigns of yore; then read a brief self-Q&A about “Mr. Chaika.”

Who is Mr. Chaika and what’s so bad about him?
Yuri Chaika’s last name in Russian — “chaika” — translates to “seagull” and that’s why there are so many birds in this video. This unlucky bird became a symbol of corruption and murder in recent weeks. Mr. Chaika holds the highest law enforcement office in Russia – he’s the country’s General Prosecutor, a close ally of Putin and is supposed to be the top guy fighting evil gangs and corruption.

A month ago, in December 2015, an investigative film was published by the anti-corruption campaigner Alexey Navalny that instantly turned Mr. Chaika into one of Russia’s main bad guys, alongside his friend President Putin. Navalny’s film uncovered a level of criminal ties and corruption yet unseen in Russia. You can see the investigative documentary HERE. A note of importance is that Alexey Navalny’s brother Oleg received 3 years in prison at the end of 2014 as a punishment for their ongoing corruption investigations, so despite this fact, Navalny keeps on fighting to reveal Russian corruption.

According to the report, the son of Russia’s General Prosecutor, Artem Chaika, has close business connections with Russian mafia that staged a bloody massacre in the town of Kushevskaya and are serving life sentences for murdering 12 people, including 4 young children. Those 2 brutal killers go by the last names Tsapok and Tsepovyaz are mentioned in the lyrics of the song (check that below!). Besides that, the General Prosecutor’s son is implicated in murdering the boss of the shipyards in his dad’s home town of Irkutsk. His father’s connections helped him get away with this murder, although official medical documents show that this poor man was strangled to death.

While Yuri Chaika covered up these bloody criminal adventures, it allowed the family of the General Prosecutor to gain a massive fortune, buy one of the most expensive hotels in Greece and a couple of nice villas in Switzerland.

Is there a new Russian revolution about to happen after this crazy story came to light? Is Mr. Chaika in prison already?
Corruption and criminal connections have become so common around Putin and his friends that 82% of Russians who have heard this story believe it to be very typical for the way the Russian government operates. “Everyone steals and kills in the Kremlin!”, most Russians think. Corruption is everywhere and Russians are getting sick of it, but Putin uses government-controlled TV stations to convince people that the biggest threat to Russia is not the existence of Putin and officials like Chaika, but Western values.

What does Pussy Riot want to achieve here?
Pussy Riot demands an immediate investigation against General Prosecutor Chaika and his family, as well as against all the top officials in his office. We hope that the CHAIKA music video will help to convince people that we cannot live in a country where its top law enforcement official is the brightest symbol of corruption and murder. Pussy Riot hopes that people around the world will help us voice our outrage and turn Russia into a country where people like Chaika can no longer exist.

Read another statement Tolokonnikova shared about the video and song, via Pitchfork:

“Everybody should remember that we are flying on the f**king giant rocket though space. Everybody should think about it at least one time per day. Giant. Rocket. I wonder why people doesn’t have telescopes at their house to remind themselves about this truth”, says Dave. That is why he never tries to foretell what is going to happen during your new meeting. He really can give the things the opportunity to happen, to occur. And this is the most important talent an artist can have. All the rest, like technical skills, time period, style, will follow. The linchpin is to be able to let something strange happen, some incredible story or a peculiar situation. “How can I answer the question what track would we write next time? May be tomorrow we’ll just go to pick flowers. Or start sewing a pair of pants. Shall we sew some pants?” This is Dave.

Dave has three huge fluffy dogs and two cats resembling tiny cautious leopards. Dave knows how to talk to them, and his cats and dogs in their turn can sing accompanied by different musical instruments. That is why it is absolutely not important in what language you are composing a track together with Dave. You could write in English or in Russian, or simply mew like Run The Jewels.

If I compose something in an English speaking country I don’t want to be constrained by the language, to stay within the limits of English. I can create stunning and bizarre rhymes in English, working, in fact, precisely due to that bizarreness. We discussed it once with Miss Kittin whose first language is French that it is really wonderful to write using a language which is not your mother tongue and unconsciously come up with paradoxical and amazing phrases. Still I would never agree to write in English only. That is why it came so much to the point to discover Dave who can understand cats and Russians without words.