Anton Koba a.k.a. Routine is one of the most interesting projects representing the new Ukrainian post-punk scene. Along with such names as Morwan, SadSvit, Metel’ and Ulitsa Vostok, Routine is building a peculiar interpretation of the genre inspired by the Ukrainian culture and its geopolitical situation. We spoke with Anton right before the release of his brand new music video Feeling Low directed by Andrei Kaplia. Check the interview and watch his live performance – a Fucking Young exclusive!

Hello, Anton, tell me a bit about yourself. How did you get into music and why?

My name is Anton, I’m 27 years old, and I’ve been involved in music since 2019. I’m from the city of Dnipro, a beautiful city in Ukraine, where I gained inspiration for all my future songs))) of course, that’s a joke. But the city fits well into the atmosphere of the genre.

Music has always been with me, but I never realized how powerful of a tool it is for expressing my inner world and a way to stay strong and show everything that’s hidden inside. My musical journey started in childhood when my older friend, a future guitarist, taught me to play the song “Moist Vagina” by Nirvana. It was the first time I picked up a guitar, and if my memory serves me right, I did pretty well.

After that, I became a local rocker and begged my parents for a guitar as a birthday present. Although I didn’t have much patience to learn new songs, I kept playing the same thing, and soon I got bored. However, I gained experience playing the instrument, and it came in handy about 10 years later.

Then the COVID-19 pandemic hit, and I had a lot of free time. During one of the FaceTime calls with the same friend, I started exploring music production software, and I created my first songs. Gradually, I began buying synthesizers, drum machines, and other equipment, gaining experience. I always had a flow of different instruments, and perhaps because of that, I have a clear idea of the sound I want to achieve. Year after year, I developed my skills, and here I am now.

Your current project is called “Routine.” Can you tell me the story behind the name and what it’s about?

Initially, “Routine” was the name of a tattoo studio. Under the influence of the surrounding culture, I started creating clothing, and it grew into a popular brand within my circle. Everything was great, but when COVID-19 started, everything I put my energy into came to a halt, and I needed something to occupy myself with. That’s when I started studying music production, and I really liked the word “Routine.” I decided that the band could be named the same – “Routine.”

“Routine” in one of its definitions means the slave-like adherence to established patterns. I decided that for me, “Routine” would mean an attempt to break free from this slave-like conformity, and I applied this idea to my music, combining hard electronic sounds with atmospheric guitar. Eventually, it turned into more calm music.

How would you describe the universe of “Routine,” and what is its message and ideology?

The universe of “Routine” is real, devoid of fiction and straightforward. Each song’s lyrics tell a story that, when listened to, can paint a picture and make you experience it. I believe that the main protagonist in the universe of “Routine” is the listener.

You’re also closely connected to fashion. Who are your biggest influences and inspirations?

I really love and draw inspiration from Thom Yorke. He’s one of the greatest musicians, and his creativity always resonates with me. I hope my music evokes similar emotions in someone.

As for fashion, I hardly buy clothes. I prefer comfortable and simple clothing, and many of my friends, including myself, create similar things. Mostly, I support their creativity.

What are your plans for the rest of the year?

This year, I wrote four songs. I plan to adapt them for live performances and do concerts in Europe. In August, I plan to record a live performance with the entire concert program. Perhaps in September, I’ll also do a concert in Los Angeles, but that’s not certain yet.

I’ll spend time walking my dog and continue to develop myself to write better and better music. Thank you!

Watch Feeling Low: