In the latest instalment of our “Introducing” series of interviews, Shayne chats with Stas Verechuk of the Ukrainian indie rockers, Joneser.
Digging deep into the origins of the name, their style of music, influences, and everything else, Stas provides some great insight in to just exactly who and what Joneser are…
What does the band name mean to you?
I’m Stas Verechuk and I’m the frontman of Ukrainian indie-rock band Joneser.
Joneser is the one who will stop at nothing to render whatever he is “Jonesing” for. So, I’m a Joneser. It was me who created this project, who wrote all the songs and who is jonesing for taking some tiny place under our big musical sun.
First, I named this project Ttyme, but a bit later I realized that Joneser matched my ambitions much more. So, I renamed the project after releasing the 1st single in November 2017.
Where is the band based?
We live in hell for alternative music, because nobody needs it here. To be a successful musician in Kiev, you must be a clown composing and performing primitive trash. So yes, this has an impact on our music. Definitely. And so far, I have ordered clown clothes on Amazon. Waiting for delivery from day to day…
How long have you been together?
I created Joneser in 2017 and till September of 2019 I was the only person in this project looking for my special sound without giving any concerts.
In September 2019 Joneser was joined by Alexey Yuriev – guitarist of Kryhitka and hasGotten bands and the drummer Andriy Bogdanov, known for his performances at Mysteries of the Third Planet, Bahroma and Youra (Ukrainian projects).
What style of music do you play?
I think that we play true modern indie with sensual and powerful guitars and electronic sounds, melodic vocal lines and dreamy feel of this. I believe that we make really creative product with engaging videos.
Give us the story of your current sound.
We came to our current sound through terrible pain and experiments. Having started with funk-rock and rock songs in my previous project Stassa Biomassa (www.stassabiomassa.com), I started composing indie-pop music.
During 2017-2018 Joneser released single «Chas» (02.11.2017) and the album «Vilni» (06.04.2018). It was a long play of 15 songs of indie-pop music in Ukrainian. It was quite important stage of my life when I was trying to follow the lead of the worlds indie pop culture. To be honest, I created a fairly high-quality product. But it turned out too sweet for me. And it wasn’t my way as well.
Afterwards I decided to come back to more alternative sound but at the same time to keep melodic and sensual components of my previous music. I started working on Joneser’s second album «Back Two Me». During 2018 I created 9 variations of the song «Minimal World» having spent 10 months and these were terrible times of despair and misunderstanding. But I’ve managed it.
Tell us about your influences.
I was always inspired by the music of Apparat, Radiohead, alt-J, Depeche Mode, Foals, Balthazar etc. So, I definitely have something from their songs in my music.
Tell us about your latest release.
The work lasted for about 2 years in total and by the autumn of 2019 I had recorded 12 indie-rock songs in English. All these 12 songs were included into the second Joneser’s album «Back Two Me» that was released on all platforms on February 2, 2020. I’m really proud of this album and I do think that the songs Miraline, June and Folie are the best of what I’ve ever created in my musical reality as of today. I like our current sound. Though, I would add in our next songs more live instruments like a bass and drums.
At the same time, we released a video for the song Miraline in the animated short film style. Please, watch it while listening Miraline. You will surely enjoy this dramatic song with appealing vocals over a slow burning instrumentation full of infectious synth lines and dreamy arrangements, with beautiful harmonies and emotional vibes.
Where is your music available?
You can listen to our best album Back Two Me released on February 2, 2020 on all the platforms below. Please, find all necessary links inside:
What are your goals for the bands future?
In the nearest time we are going to release 2 music videos in the animated short movies style for the songs June and Going (both from the album Back Two Me). It is supposed to happen in April and June 2020. Then, 3-4 singles with some music videos are going to be released till the end of 2020. We’re looking forward for the possibility of touring but now the world has much bigger problems then our concerts. So, we are waiting and working on the new material.
If you could share the stage with any other band or artist, who would you chose?
Apparat, Radiohead, Nirvana.
What can you tell us about your live shows?
We had our first gig on February 18, 2020, at PC “Masterskaya” in Kiev (Ukraine) where we presented our album “Back Two Me”. We were planning to have gigs on different Ukrainian festivals this year but now we don’t know at all what we’ll have this year because of this terrible situation with the coronavirus.
What do you think sets you apart from other bands?
I am sure that there are no two identical bands. As there are no 2 identical people. Therefore, we are by definition different. And only suitable for those who are looking for us.
Why do you think a new listener should give your music a go.
I think that he shouldn’t. But he’ll be able to do this only in one case – if listening to us, he will feel something in his body.
What has been your biggest achievement as a band, so far?
This is a June song dedicated to my father, who died in 2016 from cancer. I’m really proud that I could write such a light and sensual song in memory of him.
You can listen to it here:
What else do you hope to achieve?
I’m going to stay happy. In my life there is much more than music. But as for music, I’m going to write songs sometimes… and sometimes record them. Maybe I won’t even have concerts anymore. Because my point is not that.
Where can fans find you online?
Please, find all necessary links inside:
And remember this – any of our activities in life is just a way to get to know ourselves deeper. Therefore, choose only what you really like. Otherwise, you will never know yourself and live this life in vain. Because you will never have the energy to do what you do not like. I am sure this is quite clear. So why do the most of people live horribly? Tell me something about it: firstname.lastname@example.org
Thanks for your time today!
Cheers! And many thanx for your time and your attention – Stas.