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PUSSY RIOT JAILED, THE MUSIC COMMUNITY REACTS

PUSSY RIOT JAILED, THE MUSIC COMMUNITY REACTS

When punk-performance-art trio Pussy Riot performed an impromptu gig late last year, they could never have realised the causal avalanche they were triggering… The verdict dropped several days ago, and now, the ladies who dared to critique the Russian government in a Moscow Cathedral have now been sentenced to jail for two years. Their crime was labelled by the court as “hooliganism motivated by religious hatred”.

In an article in the Guardian, Alexey Kudrin, a former finance minister who remains a close ally of Putin, is quoted as saying: “The verdict in the case against the Pussy Riot punk band isn’t only a fact in the lives of three young women; it is also yet another blow to the justice system and, above all, Russian citizens’ belief in it.”

The international music community is also far from happy, with the Pussy Riot plight a now mainstream issue within the industry. After the verdict was dropped several musicians took to twitter to voice their disdain for the verdict.

Franz Ferdinand frontman Alex Kapranos tweeted:

Black Keys drummer Patrick Carney asserted on twitter:

St Vincent was even angrier adding:

Musical dedications have also been pouring in over the course of the trial. Below are a selection of these.

Canadian group Austra were stunned by the news of Pussy Riot’s sentence and quickly linked to the below video.

Madonna played a recent gig in Moscow and she turned the concert into a show of support for Pussy Riot. Watch below and she gives a speech to her audience, a move which lead Russian Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin to call Madonna a “whore” for vocally supporting Pussy Riot.

Bjork dedicated her song ‘Declare Independence” to Pussy Riot during a recent concert with a wish for freedom of speech.

Here’s Franz Ferdinand performing ‘This Fire’ for Pussy Riot.

And there was the song Peaches penned, that we posted about last week.

It is unclear what if any effect the pressure the international community, including the support of all the above prominent musicians, has had on the Pussy Riot campaign. It may or may not have reduced their sentence. It could also eventually help free the three women. One thing is clear as a result of this international movement – it has sparked a huge debate about the freedom of speech and has allowed musicians to reaffirm their important position as a crucial and powerful part of this mechanism of democracy.

 

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