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Lost World Band

WITH: Andrey Didorenko



Richard Hawey - January 2017

PROFIL - First of all, thanks for participating in this interview.

PR – LOST WORLD was formed in 1990, in a time when you three were just fresh out of the Conservatory. What brought you into playing Prog?

ANDREY DIDORENKO - In 1990 we were 16, and the rock music was pouring into Soviet Union. We listened to virtually anything we could get our hands on. Soviet music stage was producing new acts, mostly pop rock or an alternative. But there was no Russian art rock or progressive rock on TV or radio. And we wanted to do what nobody else was doing.

PR – When we listen to your music we quickly understand that Classical music is your main influence but we also sense that there must be some others. Which are they?

AD - I loved Beatles since I was seven; in 1989, I befriended Vassili because he had a Beatle haircut. So our first songs were very much Beatles inspired. But we were constantly absorbing new influences, and soon started to write more complex compositions. I remember one composition Vassili wrote had a 21/8 time signature. And I kept digging out everything I could find about art rock. I bought a tape with two Gentle Giant albums on it. I listened to it and it all sounded like weird sophisticated music noise to me. But it was also extremely enigmatic and exciting. So I listened to it over and over again until it started to make sense. Pictures at an Exhibition, In the Court of the Crimson King, Drama were all on our appreciation list.

PR – Let’s talk about the new album «Of Things And Beings». What can you tell us about the album?

AD - I like it. I think it is complete. It sums up my views on art rock. It has complex compositions, simple songs, aggressive drive, and pastoral moments. I don't think it is eclectic, to me all bits fit together well. And it is less direct and more refined than Solar Power.

PR – It was recorded in Moscow and New York. Any particular reason?

AD - As it happens, I live in New York, and the rest of the guys live in Moscow. I recorded most of the instruments in New York, and then I flew to Moscow to record flute and percussion. Alex and Konstantin then recorded all the drums without me. After that, it was a long period of Internet communication, sending tracks back and forth, mixing, remixing, and so on. I believe if we were all in the same room at the same time, we could have finished the album in a month, instead of a year and a half. But c'est la vie :)

PR – You’re the main composer on the new album as well as most of the other ones before. How does your inspiration for creating come and how does the creation process work out with the band?

AD - My modus operandi is to sit at the piano or with a guitar, and record short bits of melodies or chord progressions that sound interesting. Later, I give it a listen and decide if any of the ideas are worth developing. After I have a decent demo, I send it to Moscow to see if the other guys like it. They might throw in some ideas on improvement, which is always irritating, because they are usually right :) As for inspiration, it can hit you anytime anywhere. I got the idea of Shapes and Objects from a Daniel Harms' drawing. It was just a primitive pencil sketch, but the title I thought was very evocative.

PR – You re-edited the album «Awakening Of The Elements» in 2014, even going as far as re-recording most of it. Any reason?

AD - Awakening of the Elements was our first successful album. It was published in France - wow! - and had positive reviews. And I think the music still stands. I've never heard a Concerto for two violins recorded the way we did. Unfortunately, we had very primitive music equipment back then, and we didn't have a drummer. So the new edition with real strings and live drums and overall improved sound made a lot of sense to me. I initiated the remake and I'm glad I did it, it sounds great now.

PR – What can you tell us about your fellow musicians who make up the rest of LOST WORLD?

AD - Vassili Soloviev is responsible for the flute. Alex Akimov does the sound and sort of produces the whole thing, although it is a very democratic process. And we were lucky to recruit Konstantin Shtirlitz as a drummer for the recording. He is a great, solid prog rock drummer, and we get along very well.

PR – Do you have any short-term projects? Do you plan on touring soon?

AD - Our complex compositions are very tricky to produce on stage. With so many overdubs, sometimes we sound like a whole rock orchestra, when in fact, there are only four of us. So to perform our material live, we would have to rearrange a lot and reduce the arrangement, or invite more people to join. We might make couple of live appearances this year, though. I miss the rock stage and the response from a live audience. You don't get an adrenaline rush sitting in a studio.

PR – You’ve made a few Classical albums parallel to the LOST WORLD albums. What can you tell us about those albums?

AD - I did record two albums of violin music which I wrote. Intervals, I think, is a pretty successful set. But I also like my first sonata, it is fresh and maybe naïve, but very virtuoso. And I have a wonderful pianist, Yuliya Basis, to back me up on those recordings.
My most popular classical YouTube recording turned out to be Variations on King Crimson's Moonchild. I don't see much difference between my classical and rock compositions - maybe just the arrangement.

PR – How satisfied are you with the fans’ reception of your music and albums?

AD - Lost World Band always had great receptions with the audience. I only regret that we spend lots of time recording and almost never perform live. But I hope to change it this year. I have a cunning plan to put together a new live formation of the band. Fingers crossed.

PR – Any last word or comment?

AD - Happy New Year! Best wishes in 2017. May we all be happy, healthy, and progressive! Hope you enjoy our new album. Join us on Facebook

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