A growing number of Ukrainian musicians considers Europe and America as the target market. The number of groups, whose tour schedules include not only Ukrainian cities, is constantly growing. «Destinations» gathered a list of Ukrainian bands who have made a big international break-through in recent years.
If asked about the most popular music band in Ukraine, most people will probably answer «Okean Elzy». Formed in 1994, this music band gave birth to many hits that became simply iconic for Ukrainians. in 1996 Okean Elzy was the opening act for legendary Deep Purple at one of the European festivals. In September 1998 the band makes their first video of the song "Tam de nas nema». By that time the video of young musicians became something new and fresh, causing a lot of discussions. It is the first time when Ukrainian video is broadcasted on MTV-Russia and the France's MCM channel.
With its musical drive, combination of Ukrainian poetry, of Slavic melodies and powerful European sound, Okean Elzy breaks down linguistic barriers and conquers listeners irrespective of geography.
On December 14th, 2013 Okean Elzy performed live on the stage of Euromaidan. This concert is believed to gather over a hundred thousand of fans on Maydan Nezalezhnosti and all the surrounding streets. The performance became a strong emotional charge for all the protesters and the most spectacular and massive live music performance in the history of Ukraine.
Band’s 2017 world tour included New York, Miami, Chicago, Seattle, San Francisko, Los Angeles, Toronto, Riga, Tallin, Paris, Tel Aviv and many other cities.
One of the most famous Ukrainian bands touring abroad is Stoned Jesus that plays stoner and alternative rock. Their first European tour took place in 2012; since then year after year, the trio has been including more and more cool places to the tour schedule.
In 2016 the team played at Hellfest festival, along with the heavy music giants like Rammstein and Black Sabbath. During the first half of 2016, Stoned Jesus played 54 concerts in 16 countries of Europe and South America. They became the first Ukrainian team, playing the tour on the South American continent.
Read: Best November 2017 Concerts in Kyiv
DakhaBrakha has already made history by becoming the first Ukrainian group to participate in the main festival of the Old World, «Glastonbury."
Until you hear the music, the most striking thing about funky Ukrainian folk band DakhaBrakha is the headgear. Made of coarse black lamb’s wool, the group’s towering hats evoke a faraway world of Cossacks and shepherds, dramatically complementing the traditional lace wedding dresses, thickly draped beaded necklaces and embroidered tunics that make up their costumes. DakhaBrakha’s sound, which the group calls “ethno-chaos,” is an anarchistic reinterpretation of traditional Ukrainian folk songs blended with eclectic influences like Middle Eastern sounds and a touch of R&B. In 2017 DakhaBrakha’s song «Sho Z-Pod Duba» became a soundtrack to «Fargo», the popular TV series.
Brunettes Shoot Blondes is a Ukrainian indie rock band, founded in early 2010 and based out of Kryvyi Rih, Ukraine. The group gained international recognition in September 2014 for an animated music video to their song "Knock Knock». The video went viral, receiving more than five million YouTube views in the 10 days after its release. In early 2015, the band developed their unique music video style for the 'Bittersweet' song, made in partnership with German automobile manufacturer Opel. Brunettes Shoot Blondes currently has no contract with any record labels, instead promoting the band independently.
After Eurovision Grand Final show in 2017, the audience was simply awed by the interval act of the Ukrainian electronic band ONUKA. Many Ukrainians in their social media accounts wondered why ONUKA wasn’t the one to represent Ukraine in Eurovision 2017, while numerous international Eurovision fans said that all the contestants were great, but the live gig by ONUKA simply blew their minds. On Sunday (the day after Eurovision Song Contest grand final) Ukrainian band ONUKA invaded the iTunes charts in Germany (#11), France (#19), the UK (#26) and Switzerland (#28). The video of their performance became viral on Facebook.