--Pat Moran, Deli Magazine:
"See This Show: Chervona, August 19th at Mississippi Studios -
It is impossible to describe Chervona's sound without sounding ridiculous. Vagabonding gypsy
folk-punk? Russian fever-folk? Neo-Bohemian dance-rock? Punk/big band fusion? Regardless,
Chervona's musical styling is raucously unique. Formed in Portland in 2006, Chervona's members
hail from all around the world in places that even the Lonely Planet series has a hard time getting to. With roots ranging from Russia to Portland's suburbs, Chervona is what happens when you blend Soviet Bloc drinking songs with American punk and throw in an accordion. Front man Andreyshka Pitersky sings his hearty droll in both Russian and English, which leads to a varied set that includes a mix of vaudevillian choruses, brass-punk versions of traditional Russian folk songs and some of the best covers on the market (their version of Boney M.’s “Ra Ra Rasputin” is particularly great).
What stands out the most about the band is Chervona's lack of reliance on flimsy kitsch. They are adamant about being seen not as another band that uses its Eastern European heritage as a gimmick. Rather, they set out to make the best possible music they know how, regardless of
their background. Chervona's songs spill over with a peasant authenticity that bands like the Decemberists can only dream about. Even the most stoic of hipsters will find themselves caught up in the whirling dervish of Chervona's fist-pumpingly fun set.
If you have been bitten by the “everything sounds the same” bug, then you owe it to yourself to grab your best “Ushanka” (or giant furry hat) and see Chervona as soon as possible."
--Jason Simms, Oregonian Oct 30th 2009 Review Chervona follows Tete' at "Revolution Party".
"When Chervona took the stage to wrap up a night billed as "Revolution Party!" the crowd was fired up. People danced as the band soundchecked. The temperature in the room steadily rose during the first dance/punk/polka songs led by Andreyshka B. Chervona Pitersky, who comes to Portland by way of Russia and whose band plays the Alberta St. Pub every last Thursday.
You know that fake Russian accent you do when you're drunk? It's actually not that far off if Pitersky is any indication – bald, wildly optimistic and dressed entirely in red, he could have been mistaken for a sketch comic mocking his own band.
But in a demonstration of revolutionary cred, Chervona played a traditional song from the Russian revolution. The military drum beat and early 20th Century style actually mixed with the band's Gogol Bordello-like sound quite well.
Along with Pitersky's over-the-top personality, gang vocals from the rest of the band made the performance quite theatrical. Mustached and mime stripe-clad trumpet player and accordionist, Anton Van Oosbree, made wide eyes as he shouted lines like "I know who is hiding Osama bin Laden" with his band mates. Madness was in the air. Someone passed around a giant box of chocolates. Strangers twirled one another in the crowd. The woman in the front row who wore her zombie Halloween costume danced until her makeup ran right off. And the drummer with a nose ring whose sombrero was too big to fit on the tiny stage never stopped."
-- Barbara Mitchell, The Oregonian, Oct 23, 2009 , Immigrant Revolution Party at the Alberta Street Pub
"Franco-Russian relations are about to get a boost -- at least here in Portland, where an assortment of European immigrants and visitors has arranged the Immigrant Revolution Party at the Alberta Street Pub.
The event promises to be more like a soiree than a regular club show: a cultural celebration with Russian and French MCs, films and painting, plus three truly exciting musical acts whose roots stretch back across the ocean.
For starters, there's French singer-songwriter Tete. The soulful artist is in town recording a new album with Los Lobos' Steve Berlin and will debut that material.
Portland's French troubadour Eric John Kaiser and Russian ex-pats Chervona round out the bill. Kaiser brings a seemingly effortless chic to his eclectic folk-pop, while Chervona's rambunctious waltz through Eastern European musical territory is guaranteed to bring down the house."
--Bianca Blankenship The Daily Vanguard, Jan21 , 2010 "Party for a Cause"
Russian-influenced band Chervona plays to support Haiti relief
What happens when the Mt. Tabor Theater fills a stage with singers and musicians that are Russian, Brazilian, German, Lithuanian, Caribbean, Argentinean and Polish, all in the same band? The answer? A party. Chervona, a Portland-based band that is best known for its high-energy shows, seeks to create just that.
“I’m coming from the angle of the audience,” said Andrei Temkin, lead singer and guitarist for Chervona.
He and Chervona’s crew of musicians want to connect with the audience in a way that most Portland bands fail to do. They want to see people dancing, singing, shouting and having some serious fun.
“If us happy, then we make everybody happy,” said Temkin, who was aghast at the difference between the riotous Russian weddings he saw back home and the sulking, sweatshirt-hooded youth who comprised concert audiences in Portland.
Chervona will play this Saturday at Mt. Tabor Theater as part of the Groove Movement Fundraiser for Haiti relief. They will be headlining next to local bands Intervision, Voltronic, Mimi Naja of Fruition and Groove Movement. The show will be an eclectic set of R&B, soul, funk and folk. The bands are all worth a listen, but count on Chervona to get the dancing started. Proceeds from the show will benefit earthquake relief in Haiti.
Hungry for some fun and upbeat music, Temkin started out 10 years ago in a Russian punk band called MiruMir! He then transitioned into Chervona and translated many of the original MiruMir! songs into English. The band still uses old Russian songs but often translates them into English to make it easier to reach the local audience.
“We had an idea that we wanted to shake hands with every Portlander,” said Alma Laskoniene, who, aside from acting as a songwriter and muse for Chernova, also heads the art and design.
Their music takes cue from all the band members’ heritages, and more. The mix of Eastern European, Spanish and Brazilian beats is only a taste of the band’s versatility.
The bouncing rhythm is carried by a lot of horns—tuba, trumpet and trombone, to be exact—and a drumbeat that doesn’t stop. The clarinet and violin lighten up the tone, while the guitar and bass are naturally essential components in a rock band. And, of course, who can play eastern European-influenced music without a sizeable dose of accordion?
As if this great gathering of instruments wasn’t enough to jumpstart a party, most of the band sings along with the songs so that the audience feels as if they’ve just been dropped off at some sort of wild Russian wedding. The lyrics add to the fun and refuse to take anything too seriously.
“They’re uplifting,” Temkin said of the song lyrics. “We’re always trying to find an uplifting subject that everyone can relate to.”
With song titles like “Girlfriends Are Pain in the Ass” and “I Know Who Is Hiding Osama Bin Laden,” the intended humor is obvious. Just because a subject is heavy, they said, doesn’t mean the song has to be dark.
“To be happy is the final destination,” Temkin said, so don’t expect to find anything but a good time when it comes to Chervona."
--Tanya Silverman The Deli Magazine 15 Oct 2009, Revolution Party at Alberta Street Pub: Pre-Halloween Ethnic Rock Out!
"The Alberta Street Pub will be throwing an Immigrant Community Party later this month, combining the energy of the Russian and French Revolutions,to revolutionize your groove. The Pub will also be playing Russian and French short films to accompany this dance-off....
Chervona (one of The Deli’s Band of the Month winners for August, 2009) will be headlining this event, and will be naturals to such a party, as they have been packing this pub every Last Thursday. They are a fun, Balkan-gypsy punk band, and one of Portland’s favorites."
Will Nikolai Vardo – Vancouver, BC: “Chervona describe themselves as an “International Nuclear Folk (Gypsy, Klezmer, Jazz, Punk) band and ultimate dance party machine.” They will be taking Vancouver by storm via Portland Oregon and I am sure that this gypsy caravan will leave a trail of dead!
Chervona have appeared alongside Gogol Bordello and Manu Chao. This band is certainly a giant among giants! Their talent, energy and presence ensures that this will be a night not to miss. May the music play long and our legs dance strong!”
Dimitry Afanasiev, San Francisco:
“Come celebrate the beginning of Spring with the most fun, the most energetic, the most amazing band that I've personally ever danced to - Chervona. Living in Portland, Oregon, this semi-Russian sextet is well known throughout their state and the entire West Coast. These guys take the music that we all know so well and love since the childhood (Ochi Chernye, Konduktor, Nochka Tyomnaya, etc) and play them with so much life and energy that you want to start dancing and never stop. These are greatly complimented with the same songs translated into English and even some original titles. They started as a different band - Miru-Mir, and songs from both Chervona and Miru-Mir repertoire will be performed.”
April Wiza, Portland - "Now I want to see Chervona every single time they do a show. That was sweaty and deafening and crowded but So. Fucking. Awesome!"
Halley Weaver to Dustin Hubbard via facebook -" Dude! I totally didn't realize who you were at the MBW party! Thanks for pulling me forward into the crowd so I could get crazy with Chervona! I had an awesome night!"
Dawn Thornbrugh, Eugene, OR via twitter - "Chervona is rocking' Diablo's!!!"
Ilya Izrailevsky, San Francisco - "...the show truly rocked! Portland is a really great city and you guys were the highlight! :) 'Til the next concert!"
Matthew Subotnick, Portland via facebook - "When my wake finally happens, later rather than soooner I hope, I pray Chervona will play the march and herald my coming to the afterlife! Such fun last night!!!!! My bones ache, my voice is gone, and I am happy!"
General booking: andre @ starbugs.com
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