AUKTYON – the unique phenomenon on the contemporary music scene of Russia: in contrast to the majority of genre-challenged and as a rule stylistically within the framework of contemporary canons, this group draws its inspiration from such remote sources as ska, reggae, new-jazz, ethnic music of North Africa and Middle East, beat- and pop-music of the 60’s; in spite of the eternally present messianic idea in Russian rock and its inherited didacticism, this group did not teach as much as it entertained, which apparently resulted in it being the only representative of Russia on the European club scene.
In different forms and under different names, the group exists approximately since 1978, however, its current name, AUKTYON received only in May of 1983, when it was granted a membership in the Leningrad Rock Club, and its present appearance, style, and core musicians were formed in spring of 1986, when the group was triumphant on the stage of the 4th Leningrad Rock Club Festival in the following line up: Leonid Fedorov (guitar, vocal), Oleg Garkusha (dance, vocal), Sergei Rogozhin (vocal), Victor Bondarik (bass), Dmitriy Ozerskiy (keyboards, vocal), Nikolai Rubanov (saxophone, flutes), Nikolai Fedorovich (saxophone), and Igor Cheridnik (drums). In one year, AUKTYON was repeatedly successful in the 5th festival, after which Sergei Rogozhin left the group for the pop-band FORUM, while the percussionist Pavel Litvinov strengthened the rhythm section. The second guitarist – Dmitriy Matkovksiy from the cult band of the early 80’s MANUFAKTURA – joined AUKTYON that fall. During that period, the group attained acknowledgement on the scale of the whole country, performing at the rock-festivals in Kiev, Ekaterinburg, Vilnyus (“Lituanika-8”), and taking part in the cultural program of Moscow International Film Festival.
In 1988 AUKTYON recorded an album “Return to Sorrento”, which has not been professionally released until now; Igor Cherednik, who left for IGRY, was replaced by a hard-rock drummer Boris Shaveinikov; and the visual image of the group had acquired a new quality, when a gifted dancer Vladimir Veselkin joined the group. A significant role in formation of the image of AUKTYON during this period was played by a famous avant-garde artist from St. Petersburg Kirill Miller, who was responsible for the covers of the first albums: in particular “How I Became a Traitor” (1989), released in France by Voyla Productions, and “All Quiet in Baghdad” (1990), recorded in Russia at “Melodiya”.
In 1990 AUKTYON took part in grandiose ecological action “Rock of Clear Water”, and along with other participants went down the river Volga, giving concerts in Volga cities.
From the late 80’s AUKTYON began to regularly travel to Europe: in the last ten years they have had several hundred concerts in France, Germany, Denmark, Switzerland, Austria, Holland, and Check Republic. In the 90’s new work continues to appear: “Asshole” (Erio, 1990), “Hangover” (SNC, 1991), “Bird” (Dyadyushka Records, 1994), “Best Of” (SNC, 1996). Furthermore, AUKTYON discography also contains two collaborations with the Parisian artist, poet, and bard Aleksey Khvostenko: “Teapot of Wine” (1992) and “Mountaintop Dweller” (SNC, 1995 – based on the verses of the poet and language reformer Velemir Khlebnikov).
After the period of relative stability, in May of 1992, Vladimir Veselkin left AUKTYON, who began a relatively successful solo career (in 1991 his album “Impossible Love” was released by FeeLee), and in November of 1995, Dmitriy Matkovskiy has played his last concert with the group. Almost at the same time AUKTYON has invited a tuba player Mikhail Kolovskiy. The main creative force of the group – guitarist and singer Leonid Fedorov. His songs (which are usually written to the lyrics of the colleagues – Dmitriy Ozerskiy and Oleg Garkusha) have a characteristic melodic language, in which jazz and ethnic intonations neighbor with a straightforward “hit”-like key phrases, and where the rhythm allows you to stretch the most “unfit for the voice” phases.
For the extent of its biography, the group appeared in various films and documentaries: “Burglar” (Lenfilm, 1986), “Half-Official”(Germany, 1987), “Rock” (LSDF, 1987), “Let’s rock-n-roll!”(Germany, 1988). The main movie star of AUKTYON is Oleg Garkusha, who played in “Presumption of Innocence” (1998), and “Khrustalev! Get the car!” (1996). He regularly appears and reads his poetry and is an author of two collections of poems.
The many-sided and experienced musicians, the members of AUKTYON regularly participate in recordings and multiple projects – Rubanov and Litvinov together and separately played in JUNGLE, ADDIS-ABEBA, MARKSCHEIDER KUNST; Rubanov played in BEES AND THE HELICOPTER, TIME TO LOVE, and METAMORPHOSIS; Kolovskiy and Rubanov play in Z-ENSEMBLE and UNION OF COMMERCIAL AVANTGARDE; Fedorov played and recorded with Nizhniy-Novgorod bard Aleksey “Colonel” Khrynov; Shaveinikov played with Yuri Naumov, TIME TO LOVE, and METAMORPHOSIS; Matkovskiy recorded a series of albums of his minimalist experiments called “Hunting of …”