In 2013, the creative minds of singer Anastasiya Kreslina and producer Nikolai Kostylev converged to give birth to the enigmatic electronic band known as IC3PEAK.
Pronounced “Ic3peak,” this duo hails from Russia and has carved a unique niche in the music industry with their high-concept, disturbing, and visually arresting music videos.
Since then, the fans of “Ic3peak” have been wondering what happened to them.
They are genuinely concerned about “Ic3peak.” You must delve into the article to know more about IC3PEAK and to get answers to all of your questions.
A Trailblazing Journey Begins
IC3PEAK’s journey into the realm of political activism started to gain momentum in 2018 with the release of their song “Смерти больше нет,” which translates to “Death No More” in English.
This powerful track serves as a direct protest against the Russian police, the Federal Security Service (FSB), and Vladimir Putin’s repressive policies.
The accompanying music video opens with the Russian flag billowing in the sky while Kreslina and Kostylev perch atop the shoulders of Russian riot police.
The music video, characterized by its macabre and absurd imagery, features Kreslina singing about self-immolation in front of a Russian government building, the duo indulging in raw meat at Vladimir Lenin’s tomb, and playful scenes where they engage in patty-cake atop the shoulders of riot policemen in front of the Lubyanka secret police headquarters.
This irreverent satire directed at the Russian government unsurprisingly led to the cancellation of half of IC3PEAK’s tour dates in Russian provinces.
They faced harassment from Russian law enforcement, who disrupted their performances without providing valid reasons.
In a notable incident, they were detained in Novosibirsk and were only released after their scheduled show time had passed.
What happened to Ic3peak?
Members of IC3PEAK and local concert organizers disembarked from the train at Novosibirsk Central Railway Station and were detained by the police.
Their concerts have been banned. IC3PEAK’s second Russian-language album, titled “Сладкая Жизнь” (Sweet Life), stirred significant political controversy, especially due to the music video for “Death No More.”
Conservative public figures strongly protested the video, viewing it as an affront to law enforcement institutions and the Russian government.
They also alleged that the video contained elements that could be interpreted as promoting suicide, which, they argued, posed a risk to IC3PEAK’s underage fans.
In response to this growing political backlash, Russian security forces initiated actions targeting IC3PEAK’s upcoming tour.
According to the duo, individuals claiming to represent security forces began making threatening calls to concert venues across Russia, pressuring them to refuse hosting IC3PEAK’s concerts.
The pinnacle of this confrontation occurred during the planned performance in Novosibirsk on December 1, 2018.
What followed were hours of threats, interrogations, and detention.
However, due to mounting public pressure, which included international media attention, the police were ultimately compelled to release the artists without filing formal charges.
A Battle Against Censorship
IC3PEAK has consistently used their music to challenge the issue of government censorship in Russia.
Their song “TRRST,” an abbreviation for “terrorist,” questions the rationale behind being labeled as terrorists and placed on the government’s blacklist.
The music video sees the duo dressed as riot squad members, staging protests in front of the Kremlin, and criticizing both the Russian police and government officials within the iconic building.
The lyrics poignantly convey feelings of war, confinement, and reliance on canned food as symbols of their frustration under Russian censorship.
Bridging the Generational Gap
IC3PEAK’s music has resonated deeply with younger generations in Russia, shedding light on the stark generational divide between the youth and the elders who grew up under Soviet rule, marked by government control over media and extensive censorship.
While older generations tend to maintain complacent attitudes influenced by the government’s ideologies, younger Russians are increasingly exposed to Western media, weakening the government’s grip on youth culture.
Russian President Vladimir Putin himself acknowledged this shift, remarking, “Rap and other modern (genres of music) are rested upon three pillars: sex, drugs, and protest.”
Putin’s efforts to control and shape Russian youth culture have faced resistance, with IC3PEAK emerging as a symbol of youthful defiance and desire for change.
Addressing Broader Social Issues
IC3PEAK’s music doesn’t limit itself to political criticism alone; it also tackles other significant societal problems.
In their song “Marching,” they confront the lack of democracy in Russia, with lyrics lamenting intrusions into their lives and the imposition of new laws without consent.
“Boo Hoo” delves into the issue of domestic violence, which was only decriminalized in Russia in 2017. The song’s lyrics tell the story of a girl who has always obeyed the rules but is tired of suffering in silence.
The accompanying music video vividly portrays the escalating violence within a family, using dolls to symbolize the growing brutality.
IC3PEAK also takes a stand for LGBTQ rights, responding to the 2014 ban on gay imagery in Russia with their song “Go With the Flow.”
This track confronts the homophobic laws and anti-gay policies prevalent in the country. The music video features queer communities from Brazil and Russia, defiantly challenging a government that deems queer culture “unhealthy.”