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Test Pressing

343 / Sasha Tessio & Artem Super Ikra / Krossfingers

Artem Super Ikra, Sasha Tessio, Test Pressing, Mixes, Dr Rob, Krossfingers, Ukraine,

Guitar Journeyman ambience, `80s soundtracks, and synthetic Pop. Pastoral Kosmische, a blue-eyed skank, and Andean peace. Peter Green and a drum machine. Loveboat balladry. Hollywood Exotica. Musings on misogyny and Jazz-Funk covers.

Where are you based?

Sasha: Kiev.

Artem: Odessa

Is this your hometown?

Sasha: No, it’s not. I finished at university and stayed here almost four years ago.

Artem: Same.

How did you meet?

Sasha: We met in early 2012 in Fazenda Bar. We played at the same party.

Artem: Yes, I am still grateful for the Fazenda bar, it was a landmark meeting. A gift from fate.

Can you tell me more about Krossfingers?

We founded Krossfingers in May 2013 as a blog for friends. It was about shots from our ultra cheap analogue cameras and some tracks we found and wanted to share. Our first post was Gigi Masin’s beauty “Stella Maris”, when nobody knew about the upcoming release on Music From Memory. Other bigger ideas came to us later. We got in touch with some very interesting people and we wanted to share their stories, musical thoughts. The idea about painting covers was suggested to Sasha by one lovely girl.

Primarily we want the blog to be interesting, pleasant and a comfortable place to stay for ourselves. As children, we were building houses of pillows and hiding favorite characters there, creating a territory of warmth, love and grace. We are always in search of ways for the blog to evolve, but this idea of “sanctuary” is at its heart.

How do you go about sourcing your records, because you find some amazing stuff from all over the globe?

Sasha: Today everyone has access almost to everything via the internet, and we in Ukraine are no different. Our sources are Discogs, Youtube, Facebook, Juno and bunch of other blogs and online-stores. The only thing we do not have a lot of are physical stores, record shops.

Artem: The main resources are certainly Discogs, Juno, YouTube and a million different blogs, sites. Some things can be found at flea markets, but it is very rare.

What are your favourite places to play / hang out in?

Sasha: The best places for me were Bibique Bar in Kiev and Moskvich in Kharkov.

Artem: At the moment I’ve got no such clubs in our country. I used to think that any place could be saved by a good crowd. I used to love to play at the Fazenda bar at Kiev.

What is your favorite place outside of a bar / club?

Sasha: I love walking in old city, there’re many places to go. Zhovten Cinema, Artema Street, the tiny bars on Prorizna street.

Artem: I like to spend some time on the sea. I find the surface of the water is very soothing. I also love to walk around a large flea markets and second-hands.

Can you tell me more about the current situation in Ukraine? What is it like in Kiev? Odessa?

Sasha: Kiev is the quietest and safest place in the whole country at the moment.

Artem: Odessa has always been a free and cosmopolitan city, a “jewel by the sea”. There is quiet enough here now, unlike the east of the country, and I have no doubt that this harmony will be preserved.

What was it like during the height of the protests?

Sasha: Of course I was at the Maidan and Grushevskogo street during protests, it felt always like a home among your friends, but I wasn’t there on the hottest nights. The whole world knows the details: central streets were on fire, many people were killed, the police were not on our side. It was dangerous to walk in the evening even on the ordinary streets. I saw video of two people being killed in downtown, and there were many aggressive people from the East Ukraine. I was watching online videos of protests and almost crying.

Artem: It was a very difficult and stressful time. Anyone who thinks about the country supported the Maidan.

What was it like in the immediate aftermath of Yanukovych`s departure for Russia and the announcement of Turchynov`s election preparations?

Sasha: It was a super cool time. Everyone was happy. Many people came to Yanukovich’s residence the next day to see how he had lived last three years in gold and luxury. It was a very promising moment when the government changed and Parliament took on very important laws.

Artem: It was a great moment. I believe our country deserves huge and quality changes in the near future.

What is the mood like in the light of the Russian movement into Crimea?

Sasha: It was a bad surprise for all of us. We thought Yanukovich and Co. were the problem but after them we got a 100 times bigger problem with Putin’s aggression in Crimea. We hear terrible lie from Russian government propaganda and it hurts. You understand it but can’t do anything with this Russian war machine.

Artem: Definitely!

What are your plans for 2014?

Sasha: We are talking at the moment with Vangelis Katsoulis & Ilias Pitsios (Into The Light / Echovolt), Norio (Rare Groove), Tolouse Low Trax (Kreidler, Salon Des Amateurs), Steve Yanko (Truffle Music) and more. We want Krossfingers to grow. We have many crazy interviews and mixes coming. I am working on some cool drawing projects. There are many great records being released and discovered. And we are also working on a small European DJ tour this summer!

Artem Super Ikra, Sasha Tessio, Test Pressing, Mixes, Dr Rob, Krossfingers, Ukraine,

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