56 Soviet Punks

Soviet Punks

Posted on June 11, 2009 by


Russian Soviet youth

In Soviet Russia... Well, in Soviet Russia the state tried to control everything and such things like music people were listening or the cloths people were wearing was under strict regulation. School children in every Soviet school had to wear uniforms and were obliged to buy it each year. There were no single school where kids were dressed in color nice cloths - everyone was wearing the one and only styled form in Russia at that time.

Same story was on the streets. If the police have spotted someone looking weird he could be easily taken to psychiatric clinic and treated there with severe mind altering stuff.

Still, some, especially closer to the times when the Soviet Union ceased to exist started breaking this barrier and their extraordinary looks shocked people. Here are some of the photos from that times.


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Russian Soviet youth 2

Russian Soviet youth 3

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56 Responses to “Soviet Punks”

  1. Kirov says:

    FIRST!!111

  2. pimp says:

    They are not punks, they just Russian drunks.

  3. Harry says:

    Last picture looks cool, bit nazi, but cool

    • Bruce Willis (AAAH) says:

      That’s what I thought – guy on the right is more Kraftwerk than err.. Krafwerk

    • Sojus says:

      Nazis? In the late 70’s and early 80’s that was quite a common look in the underground wave and postpunk scene. Take Joy Divison as an example, or Palais Schaumburg from Germany.

  4. Anrkist says:

    Even in Russia, Oi is pronounced Oi. Most of these guys look pretty lame though… but I guess they didn’t know any better.

  5. fsddfs says:

    heh, mods and punks.

  6. russia in dark says:

    Did anybody recognize Viktor Tsoy in 3rd pic?

  7. Audrey says:

    I think it’s cute, they thought they were so wild! And who is Viktor Tsoy?

    • Steamed Mcqueen says:

      He was the lead singer of the group KINO. He is often referred to as the Russian Jim Morrison. If I remember correctly he was killed in an auto accident. Some believe that it wasn’t an accident at all, but a hit carried out by the KGB in order to silence him.

      He is buried in St. Petersburg where even today people hang around his grave and play his music or leave cigarettes by the headstone.

  8. Skirmantas says:

    Now that is funny :D

  9. oscar says:

    quite amazing to see that. some of them are even wearing american clture clothes (as the Rambo t-shirt). Cery noce to know that people was fighting against the system.

  10. too much vodka says:

    That man on the left on the last photo, is that the Gauleiter of Sankt Peterburg?

    • not enough vodka says:

      Obersturmgruppenführer Ivanov

      • Shawn says:

        Wrong, it’s living proof that Russian physicists have not only discovered the secret of time travel, but also the fact that Russian Neo -Nazi’s have commandeered their time machine and sprung Varg Vikernes of Burzum from jail and transported him to Russia.

  11. adios says:

    on 5th photo guy with Rambo t-shirt not punk,he is Luber.

  12. Alex says:

    Not many people dressed as punks – the punk style was created in London in the 1970s, where I was growing up, so I’m quite familiar with what proper punks looked like (the punk scene only lasted a short time before it mutated into something completely different).

    The last picture shows three young men dressed as new romantics (post punk – Duran Duran and similar).

    I can’t imagine how anyone could describe that style as having anything to do with Nazis – I feel sure Hitler’s lot would have thought the whole new romantic music scene every bit as decadent and worthless as they considered jazz. After all, the men mostly wore makeup…

    There was a chap from another British new romantic band who was notable for the lop-sided hairstyle on display in quite a lot of the pics, but I can’t recall his name.

    Fourth from last – I don’t see anything unusual there at all, except for the woman in what I assume is fancy traditional dress. The photo /before/ that is a shot of a genuine looking punk – as is the shot of the woman in photo number three.

    Photo six, three chaps in Red Square; I see (L-R): one normal young man, one `greasy biker’ type who’s had a wash even if he is wearing the usual filthy jeans, and one rockabilly.

    Picture number seven – they could be 1950s Americans, decades before punk.

  13. Shawn says:

    Isn’t that a very young Konstantin Kinchev from Alisa in photo 9?

  14. Punx not dread says:

    Say what you want. Thoose guys risked a lot. That’s more than you can say about sub culture kids in the west.

  15. vovka says:

    Shawn, it definitely not Kinchev, it is Garkusha (Гаркуша) from the band Auktyon (Аукцион)

  16. Jason says:

    The barrier started to come down in 1989 when Gorbachev allowed the Moscow Music Peace Festival to happen at Lenin stadium.

    Motley Crue,Skid Row,Cinderella,Bon Jovi,Scorpions,Ozzy Osbourne,and Russia’s Gorkey Park performed for 2 days in Moscow.I saw it on MTV when I was 16.

    Before that time Russian’s would smuggle recorded tapes of Scorpions into Russia.

  17. Andrew says:

    I notice that mostly no europeans rise the bait laid out by these loudmouth yanks. Nice!
    And when they are, they’re very succinct (ie. Finnish Alcoholics Online)

    Great pictures BTW

  18. Miss India says:

    OMG Russian soviets are trying to look more western nowadays :(

  19. 'Merican says:

    ‘Merica is all about being yourself and doing your own thing. Twenty years later these styles may seem a little funny, but hats off to these young people. These people were not just rebelling against their parents, they were rebelling against a whole society. It probably took real guts to be seen in public dressed like this in Soviet times.

    And I must point out the American things: Harley-Davidson Motorcycle patches, Levis Jeans and Rambo t-shirts etc. The gay hair styles were inspired by the British of course.

  20. 'Merican says:

    (try #2): ‘Merica is all about being yourself and doing your own thing. Twenty years later these styles may seem a little funny, but hats off to these young people. These people were not just rebelling against their parents, they were rebelling against a whole society. It probably took real guts to be seen in public dressed like this in Soviet times.

    And I must point out the American things: Harley-Davidson Motorcycle patches, Levis Jeans and Rambo t-shirts etc. The gay hair styles were inspired by the British of course.

  21. Merican says:

    (try #3): ‘Merica is all about being yourself and doing your own thing. Twenty years later these styles may seem a little funny, but hats off to these young people. These people were not just rebelling against their parents, they were rebelling against a whole society. It probably took real guts to be seen in public dressed like this in Soviet times.

    And I must point out the American things: Harley-Davidson Motorcycle patches, Levis Jeans and Rambo t-shirts etc. The gay hair styles were inspired by the British of course.

  22. Merican says:

    Sorry about the multiple posts – I have horrible problems posting to this site. Sometimes my posts take right away, sometimes they take days or weeks and more often than not, they never make it at all.

  23. dandy says:

    Number 10 is Oleg Garkusha, front man of Auktsion, a Russian indi band.

    • allabsk says:

      as older generation of former soviets – have to admit – that pictures are quite nostalgic…. it is Victor Tzoy from KINO and Oleg Garkusha from Auktzion… i lived then and there. and yes, you could be arrested for being dressed like that. not to mention for the attending some concerts these guys were given underground.

  24. shidoni says:

    Tsoi zhiv! Thank you Viktor, for introducing me to this wonderful thing called Russia… The real Russia, not the one you see in the movies.

  25. Austin says:

    Heh… i like the guys in the last picture, they look a bit like Joy Division. Well, maybe not the guy in the middle. He looks more suited for Spandau Ballet.

  26. Audrey says:

    There is something poetic and beautiful about Soviet Russians buying Scorpions music on the black market, a German band singing in English. The Scorpions did not know what they were singing. Russians did not know the words, It’s the music that brings us all together. If only Ozzy Osbourne was the leader of the world we would have no war. well, that may be taking it too far…. but it would be better than what we’ve got.

  27. gogoplan says:

    there are actually no punks at this photos. Tsoy, Garkusha…etc – all that people was “non-formals” and soviet rock-n-roll stars.

  28. Cigarettes says:

    It was a hard time for the neformals in censored sovietic state. when a spoke with some rock veterans a understand that they had very bad times. All peoples looked at them like a nation enemies.

  29. SSSR says:

    Calm down Pat,so you have a mohawk and pierced ears and nose and maybe tattoos of atomic bomd mushroom clouds and you listen to Sub Humans,Dead Kennedy/DK,SOD,DRI,Crass,Blag Flag,and so on!

    Relax!even heavy metal gets confused with rock!

  30. Concray says:

    The true meaning of punk…
    Awesome!

  31. Pat Rubbish says:

    SSSR…no mohawk here,just a lack of a hairstyle but yes i do listen to…so on and whatnot,was thinking you would search my name and find out who i am and become more confused…DAS VIDALIA ONIONS!

    ROIL NOISE RUBBISH!

  32. Mads says:

    These pictures are really great. Thx for making them available!

  33. Phuttbuck says:

    To: Russia. From: USA.
    Your welcome!

  34. Harris says:

    I think the last picture is where headly got his look from,lol!

  35. Jeans says:

    Whoa, nice story. I just now came across your blog and I am already a fan.

  36. Aimi says:

    Badass

    does anyone have stories about what it was like going to underground shows then?

  37. I really enjoy my blogs and yours recieves an A+ from me.

    Carpet stains

  38. sobot2 says:

    rambo LOL !

  39. buy jeans says:

    this is unbelievable, hahaha

  40. Kauser says:

    I think the man at the right in the last photo has a George Clooneyesque face.

  41. B says:

    I have no doubt that what these people were doing and how they were dressing at the time made them stick out a great deal. To hell with the labels judging what was/wasn’t punk… what a waste of energy. It’s the spirit these guys had that’s admirable.

    Never heard of Kino before but I’m now listening to a podcast about them:
    http://russmus.net/band.jsp?band=Kino

  42. Ivan Turdson says:

    Is it Victor Tsoy on the 8’th pic, bearing black MUZIMA guitar?

  43. Matt says:

    What with the photo with the fat women?

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