Mears has been linked with various projects, including Bluprint, Mellafone and latterly The Cinematic Underground. After taking several months to tour the US with The Cinematic Underground, Mears has recently (06/07) been working on a new Volunteer album. (3) Secretive sonic pranksters Volunteer are Martin Andrevian, Emira Feensky, Marco Hackenov and Krzysztof Shadenkin. Allegedly formed in Odessa, Ukraine in 1972 with original vocalist Genaddi Romanov, they outraged the communist world when they performed a cacophonous Industrial rendition of 'The Red Flag'. Following Romanov's suicide in 1977 they went on to record a series of records for the Soviet state record label Melodiya, as well as on various labels in Bulgaria, Czechoslovakia, DDR, West Germany and Belgium.
Their sound has been described variously as Suicide meets Throbbing Gristle at Shaun Ryder's house. Splitting acrimoniously in 1991 over a pedantic argument concerning Green Tea (!), they recently resurfaced on the Projector Records compilation 'Know Your Monkey', and released a split single, featuring the poppy 'Safety in Numbers' and 'Street' with fellow sonic abusers Death Biscuit, MFU and Spanish Karavan. Some vicious rumours are abound that they are really called Martin Andrews and Chris Shade; and that they're not really middle-aged noise veterans are easily discredited by various falsifications on their work-visas to play in the UK, and their young looks are explained by their strict vegan diets and drinking their own urine. Another intriguing fact is they were allegedly targets of KGB and CIA assassination squads. The band, now expanded to a four piece with drummer Marc Hackworthy and bassist Emma Feeney, also appear on the 'Robopop the Return' compilation alongside Goldfrapp, Tiga, Robots in Disguise, Matinée Club and The Knife. They release a new EP in Feburary 2007 featuring 'Sweet Love', 'Final Hour' and 'Hero in Waiting'. More information can be found at www.myspace.com/infovolunteer.
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