(Russian village name) is a backwater village on the outskirts of Kazan, which looks like it has been materialised atom by atom from the 15th century. The wooden houses, dirt roads, a well, and a booming horse-riding industry indicates so. The only indicator that this is the 21st century, is that a minority of the villagers wear t-shirts with a brand from the west, and a crumbling statue of a long forgotten Soviet hero. Despite all the regression in technology and old men rambling on about the great moral values of the USSR, the villagers are calm, accepting and hardworking, the ill’s of the 21st century seem to be years away. Anyone who would grow up here would find the outside world alienating. Would it not be surprising that a visionary would come from here?
“The world is like a broken glass, broken and divided, squabbling for trivial facts. But you knew that already” Rezov tells me. He grew up in (village name), and it certainly had an impact for him, for he wears his great grandfather’s Prussian jacket.“I don’t get it. The lust for excessive materialism, celebrity cultism and worship, and a new form of imperialism, data imperialism. A form of imperialism which strips people from their individuality and reduces them to numbers so capitalists can target them with more advertising. And the worst of all, the general divide against everything and everyone, as if everyone has war against everything. That’s what I see. And they tell me mankind is at its best it has ever been, and they find it terrifying living anywhere simpler.” Despite this gloomy and bleak rant, a faint smile is present on Rezov’s face. “I know a way to fix it, through the power of music.”
“Everyone loves and understands music. Even if you’re an asshole, a philistine, an old codger, whatever, you can still connect to other people through the love of music. It is the best way to communicate ideas and feelings, it touches the all the important senses, much better than some old columnist rambling on in a medicorce article. That’s the only way we would understand, is through music. By highlighting problems and identifying solutions via music, and if everyone agrees, we already have fixed a huge problem: mass division. ” At this point, I tell Rezov he reminds me of an idealistic missionary, preaching on ways to fix the world, and each individual's problems. He shakes his head. “I’m no missionary. I’m a common man, who finds the world a mess. My time in (Russian village) taught me the importance of understanding, compassion and simplicity. No, I don’t want the world to regress in technology, but progress in morality. I’m more of a soldier waging a war against all the vices present in the world. I wish no one harm, just the destruction of vices.”
At this point, his posture changes from a preacher like, to more of a brooding type, hunched over, head towards the ground. “It will be a difficult war and struggle. Many are glorifying these vices.” He looked up again, another faint smile present. “Maybe if I don’t change the world completely, it would make me happy if I made some people happy. One has to be realistic.” Rezov starts to talk about his songs and upcoming album. After being on stage in several niche concerts, Rezov grew in popularity in Russia, probably for his somewhat edgy and political subtexts present in his songs. He hopes to release his n