Letov, as all punk artists, proved to be inconsistent, capricious, and unpredictable. He quarreled with us in 1996, came back to party later, then went to his own punk solitude. Sometimes he is declaring himself Red and National-Bolshevik, sometimes he makes believe he doesn't know us. But his presence in leadership of National-Bolsheviks Party gave Party thousands of recruits over the years. Not all of them become hard-working party activists, some just have passed through Party, but punks were skeleton of Party organizations in first years of our existence.
Loud denial of so-called values of civilization, grotesque, trash, screamigns, some borrowings of Rightist aesthetics, were common for New York City punk movement of 1970s as well as for first National-Bolsheviks in 1990s. Beside of Egor Letov dozens of violent musicians were incorporated in NBP. "Pauk" Sergei Troitski of "Korrosia Metala," Dimtry Reviakin of "Band of Fours" and "Day of Donor," as well as my defunct wife Natasha Medvedeva and leader (also defunct now) of "Pop Mechanics" Sergei Kuriokhin were among National-Bolsheviks.
Newspaper of National-Bolsheviks Party "Limonka" was in 1990s the most radical and most punkish of whole world. With its slogans like "Eat the Rich!" or "Good bourgeois is a dead bourgeois!" or "Capitalism is shit!" we were in punk tradition, what else?...
The official invitation to join NBP had the slogan: "Don't take a piss! Join the NBP!" illustrated using a man with a death skull, wearing a tie and the arm band of the NBP. Dozens of writers were raised in the climate of the radical newspaper "Limonka." Some of the writers' NBP works are available in a book called "Generation of Limonka," other names became well-known, such as Zarhar Prilepin, author of the novel "Sankia," about a life and death of NBP activist, or Alexei Tsvetkov, author of numerous books.
NBP's actions, however non-violent, are bearing aesthetics of punk, for example occupation of Bolshoi Theater on May 7, 2004, the day when Putin was inaugurated. Putin was expected at Bolshoi that evening, so National-Bolsheviks erupted on stage, took over president's box. They were burning fires as football hooligans, wearing flags and screaming slogans. That was beautiful. That was punk.
So, my friend Mark Ames, you were absolutely right in your guess about punk origins of National-Bolsheviks. But National Bolsheviks Party story is going on. I believe one day NBP will be thoroughly analyzed, scrutinized. Many heavy books will be written on subject "NBP and Punk." I just made a sketch.