Band Review: Igor and the Red Elvises

Siberian Surf Rock

By J.R. Bryant

In a word of plastic sound alike music it’s nice to know that bands like Igor and the Red Elvises exist.

An eclectic mix of American Surf Rock, Elvis Presley, Russian folk and humorous lyrics sets this band apart from the herd.

Why haven’t you heard of them? This is mostly due to the fact that they refuse to sign with major studios.  Front man Igor Yuzov wants to stay independent without the influence of a major studio. It may have not made them famous but it gives them great integrity.

German born Yuzov grew up in the former Soviet Union where American Rock “N” Roll was illegal.  This didn’t stop young Igor, he spent many hours listening to the forbidden music through the black market.

Igor’s band Limpopo left Russia as soon as possible to find their way to the United States. Limpopo was a cross between Russian folk and rock ‘n’ roll. In America they proceeded to win Star Search and land a Kit Kat commercial.

In 1995 Igor had a dream that the “King of Rock ‘n’ Roll told him to start a band and the Red Elvises were formed. They began as street musicians in Santa Monica, Ca. Soon large crowds began forming around them. The city of Santa Monica took them to court and ordered them to cease and desist. Since then they have made a cameo appearance and performed the soundtrack to the cult classic “Six String Samurai”, produced 11 albums and have toured all over the world.

The constant influx of guest musicians makes every show a different experience for their fans.  But no matter who is playing with them the shows are high energy and fun.

Crazy Songs like “Twist like Uma Thurman”, Closet Disco Dancer”, “Drinking with Jesus” , “Strip Joint is Closed” and “I Want To See You Bellydance”; make it impossible to be in a bad mood when listening to this band.

Lyrics like “I’m a crazy fother mucker, I got a bottle of Smirnoff” or “Got a condom in my pocket, gonna meet me pretty girl”; would definitely be stricken out by a major label. If not stricken out possibly changed and/altered to fit the labels Ideals.

Give them a try and let me know what you think. I will be introducing other independent bands in the future so keep an eye out.

Published December 8th, 2013

J.R. Bryant lives in Northern California. She has 14 years of experience in a music store, plays music and is a former radio disc jockey.