Tania Lozano and Víctor F. Clares never imagined that singing a song to Macaulay Culkin could radically change their lives. This couple of friends and music journalists came up with a thug and unprejudiced anthem in honor of the boy from Home Alone. Since then they have placed their group, Russian Crab, in all the indie clubs until becoming a small phenomenon that already has two albums (Estado de malaise and Costumbrismo Mágico).
His culmination came with Kitt and the cars of the past, another sample of his music where humor and partying are paramount. From then on they went to festivals like Sonorama, where this year they sang in front of more than 30,000 people. It was there that they experienced one of the few controversies that has surrounded them, when they were accused on social networks of "politicizing a concert" for having spoken of anti-fascism. A controversy that they themselves have taken naturally and making it clear that there are fights where one has to get wet.
They haven't stopped all summer. Concerts, festivals, I don't know if rest is in sight at some point.
Tania Lozano: Not yet. There will be no peace for the crabs (laughs).
Víctor F. Clares: We finished at the end of October, but we still have some time left. We have a few left. This weekend, for example, we are going to Palencia, and the truth is that we are going to have done about 50 concerts, more or less... or maybe more. And well, very grateful but also wanting to rest a bit, really.
Has it been the moment with the most professional commitments for Russian Ladilla?
TL: Yes, but I always tell the same thing. That we, when we were going to take off, was before the pandemic, that we wanted to close a brutal tour. But the world stopped and now is when we have taken it up again. And yes, it is the year that we have had the most concerts and in fact we are already closing things for 2023, that we even already have a few festivals.
Much has been made of the festival bubble. I don't know if they have also experienced it and even come to think that there are too many.
VFC: Man, it's true that now it seems that even the smallest city has its own festival and I don't know if there are so many public for so many festivals. But hey, I don't know, I guess it will fall under its own weight, but it's good that there is an offer. What is striking is that the posters are often repeated a lot and that is curious, but the point is that people still want to go, and we are delighted.
You were journalists, at some point when you started with Macaulay Culkin did you expect this, to get up on stage in front of thousands of people?
TL: The truth is that at no time, when we started with the group, did we imagine that we were going to perform in front of 35,000 people at Sonorama. Or well, that's the numbers we've been told. But hey, happy. In fact, the first time we were at Sonorama, which I think was in 2018, we already performed I think in front of 9,000 people and seeing 9,000 people singing Macaulay Culkin left us shocked for three days. But hey, look, it's the magic of life, that sometimes you do something without pretense and now we're living from this.
In Sonorama this year they have had controversy because they have been accused of having politicized a performance, how did they experience that moment?
VFC: Let's see, it was really just some comments. Many people perfectly understand the message, which is that in the end it is an anti-fascist message and that is a very clear position and quite common sense. There's nothing special about it and it's just said in a song and we don't make any reference to any political party, although we could do it perfectly because we know exactly what we're talking about. But well, no more. It makes me a little angry, because we believe that it is necessary to take a position, especially on these issues, which in the end is to talk a little about everything that is human rights. And whoever doesn't, is going down a slightly strange path. If you are not a fascist, you have to be anti-fascist and you have to position yourself so that things change and give each thing their names and surnames. Whoever has complained, well let him complain and period, we will continue doing what we want. It is done.
This theme once again brings to the fore the reflection on whether an artist can be apolitical. Somehow the songs show their way of seeing the world, can an artist not get wet in anything, be apolitical?
VFC: We have never had any intention of making a protest song or anything like that. But it is true that there is a look at the world in many songs. There is a feminist gaze, there is a class consciousness gaze. And it is that, although you do not want to position yourself in something, that is also a political attitude that is not positioning yourself, not wanting to find out and wanting to look the other way. Immobility is also a political attitude. So it is better to be aware of what is happening and have a view of the world to improve it and to call for respect for everyone.
How did you live, after the concert, seeing the controversy on social networks? Is it more scary now to say something and the repercussion it may have?
VFC: It doesn't scare me, because I don't say anything I don't think either, so it doesn't scare me at all. And well, about the networks it is true that you have to be careful because there are also many bad intentions to make news of nothing, of absolute bullshit, of a comment that is not news. That is also a bit absurd, and we have come here to amuse and entertain people and let them keep this...
TL: But it is true that sometimes we have to be careful with what we say, because I remember when we put the Eurovision thing like that half as a joke, which became super viral. That sometimes we are not aware of the power that networks sometimes have. But hey, beyond that...
Now that Eurovision is mentioned, after the success of the previous edition, do you consider it or not?
TL: No, no, not me personally. I don't want to because Ladilla Rusa is a group that is much more live than television. I don't feel comfortable in that format. And well, well, we already made fun, we recorded a video clip, but that is not something that makes me particularly excited. To me, personally.
They break many prejudices. They haven't had any kind of problem going, for example, to sing Save Me, how do they make those decisions?
VFC: We thought it was fun and we went, just like we've done a lot of TV shows and that's it. Of course we think about where we are going and where we are not. On TV we try to sing less and less because it's a bit hard for us, because we're a very thug group and on TV it's a bit weird, but we were amused to go meet María Patiño and such.
Bands always say this 'we have to stop to compose, we have to retire'. Is it time for Russian Crab to rest to compose new things?
VCF: Sure. Let's see… on tour you do come up with some ideas, but it's true that you do need to stop because you can't do everything at once. In other words, when you're touring you're very tired, and the days you have off we dedicate a bit to resting, seeing people... Yes, it's necessary. In our case we need to stop and compose while being at home and being calm.