I read about Pussy Riot a couple of months ago, mentioned in dispatches, one of those names you see a couple of times and these were the unthinking conclusions I reached while relentlessly click clicking around the internet:
1) what an awful name
2) they are Russian, probably therefore not very good
3) click on
So I managed to be a bit sniffy and superior verging on racist, I was certainly ignorant, perhaps it doesn't pay to be honest, perhaps I should shovel on the bullshit about how I knew from the get go that this was the band, blah blah blah, but I didn't so there you go
I thought 'I can probably ignore this'
And the truth is, of course, I still can but events took a turn for the disturbing in February and I finally got it into my thick skull that Pussy Riot matter in a way that arguably, here in 2012, Felt certainly don't (to pluck one example at random... and I love Felt)
Pussy Riot aren't- as I wrongly surmised- a snotty punk band with a mildly provocative name (I've subsequently learned that Pussy Riot is a play on the Russian word for 'patriot') they are a feminist punk rock collective who play guerilla gigs (usually on the streets of Moscow or in public spaces to anyone in earshot) and who have by virtue of being politically active, uncompromising and not a little bit impudent pissed off the Russian authorities (the arrest took place follwoing an incident when members of Pussy Riot entered a church and performed a song before 'praying' to the 'Holy Mother, Blessed Virgin' for Putin to be chased out of Russia) and now three women suspected of being members of Pussy Riot face 7 years in prison for the act of 'hooliganism'
Two of the musicians remain in custody, where they have begun a hunger strike. Nadezhda Tolokonnikova and Maria Alyokhin are protesting against the conditions of their arrest, which will see them kept behind bars until a late April hearing. They both have young children: Tolokonnikova has a four-year-old son and Alyokhin's daughter is five. The women "will starve in jail until they are returned to their children", Pussy Riot explained on their website.
From the Guardian: http://www.guardian.co.uk/music/2012/ma ... f-comments
For more information Tobi Vail's excellent Jigsaw blog collects YouTube clips of Pussy Riot and a call to arms of sorts from Kathleen Hanna plus some useful links: http://jigsawunderground.blogspot.co.uk ... -riot.html
Plus information on the Collapse Board here: http://www.collapseboard.com/everett-tr ... -in-years/
and http://www.collapseboard.com/blogs/spac ... ns-glamor/