Grindcore band

Krupskaya

Drums and artwork

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Krupskaya is a grindcore band from Staffordshire, UK. Our music is characterised by speed, intensity and bleak historical and cultural subject matter.

Krupskaya – bleak, chaotic noise

Krupskaya started in 2005, rising from the ashes of several Stoke-on-Trent based hardcore/grindcore bands.

There was literally no ambition beyond “Let’s make fast music and play a ton of gigs”. We’d each been in bands that hadn’t really gone anywhere and I was planning to leave the country in a few years. With all that in mind, we just wanted to do as much as we possibly could.

What’s since unravelled is over a decade of writing, releasing and touring some of the most intense, painfully uncompromising noise, this side of planets colliding.

Our goal with Krupskaya is to create the most punishing, uncomfortable sound we possibly can, underpinned by reasonably bleak commentary on the human condition.

I play drums for the band since we began, but for 2009 to 2012 when I moved to South Africa.

Approach to artwork

I also handle all of the band’s artwork. Originally this was because I was the only one with a copy of Photoshop. Now I like to think it’s more because of my skills and knowledge… I can dream.

People have often commented on the extreme lengths we’ve gone to, to distance our artwork from those of similar bands or genres. It’s true that I’ve certainly made a conscious effort to ignore any such work. But the end results have always had more to do with focusing purely on what our music is about, rather than worrying about what others are doing.

Frozen bodies against the wire

Frozen bodies against the wire

Pretty much all our releases have incorporated visuals which relate to the subject matter. My goal has been to do so in a way that creates a rich, visual tapestry which incorporates forms, rather than relying on any single one of them as the focal point.

More than anything else, I’ve wanted Krupskaya’s artwork to extend the music, facilitating an aspect of the experience that cannot be achieved through sound alone.

Whether or not I’ve been successful is anyone’s guess.

Gateway to the rest of the planet

I also love to travel and Krupskaya has been an unexpected blessing in this respect, too.

We’ve toured across Siberia, Iceland and a significant portion of Europe. This has given us the opportunity to experience sights, sounds and people who we otherwise wouldn’t.

Sure, you can hop onto a plane to most of these places, but it’s not quite the same.

When you’re on tour and people come to hear your music, quite often you already have a relationship with them, forged through the music itself. You’re likewise immersed into the lives of real people in these places, rather than voyeurs walking through a holiday brochure.

Krupskaya is never going to sell out stadiums (most bars would likely be a struggle). Nevertheless, it has created relationships and experiences with people across the globe, for which I’m personally quite grateful.

Long may it continue.

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