Anton Pushkar, Andrii (Andrew) Sukhariev and Sergey (Serge) Zlobin are Love’n’Joy, a psychedelic rock band from Ukraine. They offer a classic, British-inspired 60s sound with a modern twist, and have just released album Bender on the Silk Road. We spoke to Anton and Andrew about their music and new LP.
[‘Bender on the Silk Road’ is] about travelling through life, through its bright and dark moments, and getting experience and wisdom as the result of dealing with the obstacles and illusions made up by your own mind and environment that surrounds you.
First up, tell us bit about yourselves - what led you all to forming Love’n’Joy?
Anton: Hello, my name is Anton Pushkar. I sing and play guitar and I’m the one who was at the very beginning of the band’s formation. Serge and Andrew became the members of the band a bit later and since 2015 we play like this.
Andrew: Because all of us the same consciousness. First of all - alcohol. Secondly, the same preferences.
Who did you take inspiration from?
Anton: At the very beginning of our music journey I was mostly inspired by Brit Pop bands from the 60s and the 90s reflection of it. Beatlemania and also Woodstock hippie era were the most interesting for me at that time. Since then the horizons of my musical inspiration have extended toward lots of other different genres.
Andrew: Hunter S. Thompson maybe.
Why the name ‘Love’n’Joy’?
Anton: Just a name that says everything for itself, play Rock and Roll and get some Love’n’Joy.
Andrew: We don’t know why. But really appreciate the question! We decided that this name would be the major key of success. Dolce Vita inspiration.
How would you describe your musical style?
Anton: Groovy psychedelic rock, also a British invitation from Ukraine) and there is a new name neopsychedelic, I think sometimes it suits us well.
Andrew: Oldfashioned way of writing songs dominates in the album. Mixture of slow and fast psy rock, powerful guitar solos, ukrainian metamorphosis of britpop and australian indie. You can listen to the whole album without pressing “next” button. Like it was at the time of the beginnings of “art” rock, when albums became one conceptual thing, a time of Beach Boys and many more great artists.
If you could collaborate with any living artists, who would you choose?
Anton: Paul McCartney, to touch the legend, and get famous and rich as quickly as possible :)
Andrew: Parallel reality: Oleg Vinnik, Verka Serduchka, and ofcourse Svitlana Loboda. Reality: Charlotte Kemp, Jay Watson, brothers D’Addario, Brooks Nielsen, Stu Mackenzie.
Tell us about your new album Bender on the Silk Road. What’s it about?
Anton: The album is about the journey. It’s about travelling through life, through its bright and dark moments, and getting experience and wisdom as the result of dealing with the obstacles and illusions made up by your own mind and environment that surrounds you.
When did you write Bender on the Silk Road and where did you record it?
Anton: The songs for the album were written all in a different period of time. The oldest one ‘Raving Referee’ was written more than five years ago, but it still suits very well to the current time and situation in Ukrainian social and political climate (live). Most of the Bender was recorded at our home studio CrimyRec. And it means quite a lot for us, cause this is our Ivory Tower in the middle of the busy noisy megapolis.
This studio was projected and built by ourselves especially for this album and probably the next one too! :) A few songs like ‘Brut’ and ‘Stolen Pearl’ were finished in Shpital Recors in the Western Ukraine and the last song on the album called ‘Cosmo’ was recorded in Dresden (Gemany, ‘Ostpol’) during our previous European tour. Most of the mixing was made in the United Arab Emirates by our friend sound engineer Sergii Pynchuk at the «La Dolce Vita» Studio.
How does Bender on the Silk Road represent your style?
Anton: I think it has a direct representation of our style, our thoughts and our love towards groovy psychedelic music. However, it does not completely represent the bands live performance, cause some of the songs were composed and arranged more like for a seven piece band rather than a trio. I’ve made quite a lot of overdubbing and studio experimentation with keys and baking vocals guitars and some other stuff.
Also, as a trio playing live, we prefer to mix songs with some improvisation parts during the performance, to make it more exiting and to reach more organic flow of the music. I hope we’ll catch this vibe even more in our following records.
What are your hopes for Bender on the Silk Road?
Anton: I hope it will get sober, complete his journey across the Silk Road and find some thirsty ears on its way!
What are your plans for 2019 in terms of touring?
Anton: Our spring tour in Germany and Switzerland planned for April. Dresden, Berlin and Leipzig - see you! We also can’t wait to start our summer festival circuit. Our main plan
Finally, if you could go back in time and give yourselves one piece of advice, when would it be and what would you say?
Anton: Don’t build a studio close to the Punk Rock neighbors.
Watch the trailer for Bender on the Silk Road on YouTube below. For news and tour dates go to lovenjoyband.com.