Russian Music and Arts festival, Present Perfect, is located on the docks of St.Petersburg. Now in its third year, Present Perfect promotes contemporary culture locally with three days of art installations, lectures and music, and has become particularly important to the community, as club nights and festivals in Russia become increasingly difficult to put on.
Their 2018 edition will see the likes of Roy Ayers, Larry Heard, Objekt, DMX Krew, Lena Wilikins and Nina Kraviz perform, yet much of the festival is placed around homegrown talent, with acts like Lipelis and Nocow regulars to the party.
We speak with Roots United, the St. Petersburg community of musicians, DJs and friends that run the festival, and ask each of them to pick out the act they’re most looking forward to seeing.
Picking out the likes of Roy Ayers, Marcellus Pittman, Larry Heard, and giving an honourable mention to close friend of the project, Move D, see what the crew had to say below.
1. Roy Ayers – We Live In Brooklyn
Picked by Dmitry Agalakov (Roots United and Present Perfect Festival co-founder and booker)
“An absolute hit of the upcoming show for me is Roy Ayers’ performance. Nine years ago, when we were just throwing the first low-key parties for our friends, one could hardly imagine our events would reach such a scale. Bringing Roy to Russia for his first time means a lot to me. I grew up on his music and consider him to be a rarerity in terms of contribution to the world’s musical history. Therefore, to me, there is no doubt that his gig will go down in history. It feels even better that he will perform at our festival and in my hometown, though I’d pay any money to see this artist live if someone else brought him to Saint Petersburg.”
2. Marcellus Pittman – There’s somebody out there
Picked by Hoopa (Roots United resident)
“Dance music and the culture of Detroit to me is something fundamental to what shaped me as a DJ. Since the late 1990’s, I’ve been following Marcellus Pittman growing up under the wing of Theo Parrish. I was always pointing him out among many other talented musicians and tried not to miss a single release. When his participation in PPF was announced, I was pleased. It’s like a dream you’ve been waiting to come true for a long time. We are very excited and looking forward to seeing him.”
3. Objekt – One Stitch Follows Another
Picked by Shutta (Roots United resident)
“I can’t wait to see the performance of Objekt at Present Perfect. This musician ever surprises, and I love this feeling of suspense and intrigue before his sets as you never know what to expect. For me personally, the very idea of an everlasting surprise either in someone’s live performances or music, in general, is what makes a real artist. Apart from the specific selection of tracks, Objekt knows how to “construct” the set in a very special way – making the listeners sink in a wide variety of not only styles but also tempos and rhythms. His technique of mixing is remarkable to me too, and I’d specifically note his ability to keep everyone dancing and bring underground vibes to the floor.”
4. Larry Heard – Dreaming Of Better Days
Picked by Nocow (Roots United resident)
“Larry Heard is a living legend. Yup, that’s the person who “deepened” house music and so on. What is so peculiar about him personally for me is that time goes, and his music retains its charm and soulful power. It always touches me deep inside and after quite a long while I am still fascinated. Larry has a strong message for his listeners, and his music keeps its strength throughout the years. He stays true to himself no matter what. Today I had one of his new tracks playing in my head when I was watching the sunset over the Gulf of Finland. This means a lot to me.”
5. Pangaea – Coiled
Picked by Eostra (Roots United resident)
“Hessle Audio is a special label for me. In the late 2000s, I used to live in the Russian Far East, where no one had ever heard of jungle, UK garage or dubstep. Then, while studying in Japan, I happened to hear British electronic music. Being 11500 km away from London, my friends and I got hooked on everything related to the idea of hardcore continuum.
At that time dubstep was at its peak and it seemed that this genre was set and unchangeable. Ben, Kevin, and David were producing a sound so different from anything I had heard before and at the same time combining the best of the British music. Following their releases and shows on Rinse FM, I started to “dig” much deeper, mixing up the records which I would never normally put together. I guess this influence can still be seen.”
6. Special Pick of Roots United Crew – Move D
“Within the last nine years, more than 200 artists have participated in the events under the label of Roots United and Present Perfect festival, but probably the most significant trace on our history was left by Move D.
Apart from being a DJ setting the standards in house music, a legendary producer made an invaluable contribution to the development of electronics; he is a true friend and one of the most enjoyable and like-minded people we’ve ever happened to meet. At the upcoming Present Perfect Festival, David Moufang will be curating his own stage, on which his friends from all over the world will perform.
We’d like to thank David for his friendship, wisdom, advice and trust in us. We do appreciate!”
Present Perfect Festival takes place July 27-30 in Port Sevcabel, Russia.
Tickets and more info here.