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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Howdya Like Them Apples?

Tired of addressing grumpy old Communists in the State Duma, Grigory Yavlinsky has found another audience: screaming teenagers at the Gorbunov Club, one of the city's premier rock venues.

Yavlinsky, the leader of the Duma's Yabloko faction, is scheduled to appear as a special guest at the "S Novym Rokom!", or "Happy New Rock!", festival Friday, which has been organized by Yabloko.

The festival, which is meant to highlight up-and-coming Moscow bands, features six relatively unknown groups - Artel, Bely Shum, Kazemat, Los Paranoies, Orkestr 100 and Stena. There will also be appearances by a few established musicians, including Sergei Galinin of SerGa, Nikolai Arutyunov of The Blues League and Valery Skoroded of Mongol Shuudan. Disappointingly, Yabloko representatives said press reports that the legendary band Crematorium would be there were untrue.

Sergei Ivanenko, the deputy head of the faction in the Duma, said Yabloko was throwing the concert in support of "free democracy."

"We think all institutions of civil society need support," he said. "The market, competition ... and rock."

Festival organizer Tatyana Morozova said it was perfectly natural for Yabloko to be involved with a rock concert.

"You see, rock is a social phenomenon," she said, adding that this is not the first concert the organization has been behind. "We're helping groups who don't have money to actively promote themselves."

She said the six new groups were chosen out of more than 100 candidates by a special commission that went to clubs, institutes and rehearsal halls to find the capital's best young rockers.

She said the bands weren't chosen on the basis of political affiliation, but predicted that they were probably pro-Yabloko.

"Despite the fact that young people are quite apolitical, ... out of all political parties they, of course, choose Yabloko," she said.

Morozova said she didn't think Yavlinsky would be long-winded Friday night.

"Nobody talks long at such events," she assured us. "People are there to listen to music."

"S Novym Rokom!" starts at 7 p.m. at the Gorbunov Club, 27 Novozavodskaya Ulitsa. Tel. 145-8305/8098/9670. Metro: Bragationovskaya.

- Sarah Karush and Melissa Akin