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Kasta in 2019
Kasta in 2019
Background information
OriginRostov-on-Don, Russia
GenresHip hop
Years active1997–present
MembersVlady (Влади)
Shym (Шым)
Hamil (Хамиль)
Zmey (Змей)

Kasta (Russian: Каста, Russian for caste) is a Russian rap group from Rostov-on-Don, well-known to Russian-speaking audiences in post-Soviet countries. The group's members are Vlady (MC and producer), Shym, Hamil and Zmey. Kasta has been notably influenced by New York City rap tradition. Kasta publicly condemned the 2022 Russian invasion of Ukraine.



Vlady, Shym and Hamil all started listening to rap at a very young age. Vlady created his first song when he was just 13 years old. In 1995, he and his friend Tidan (Тидан) made a group Psycholyric (Russian: Психолирик). One year after that Shym joined Psycholyric. In 1997, Psycholyric and other rappers from Rostov-on-Don made a group with the new name Kasta, the successor of Psycholyric (The name Kasta was created by one of the new participants, Basta, who soon left the group and started the solo career). Shortly afterwards, Tidan left the group. In 1999, Hamil joined Kasta. Kasta then created a group called Объединенная Каста (Obiedenennaya Kasta) which means United Kasta, due to the fact that the original group was becoming too large. Their first show was in Rostov's famous rap club Duncan and Comanchero.



Kasta is still a major group in the Russian-speaking rap scene. The group is well-known in Russia, Ukraine, Belarus, Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and in all countries of the former Soviet Union and countries where immigrants from these countries live. Six thousand people have been gathering for their concerts.

Kasta publicly condemned the Russian army's invasion of Ukraine on the very first day of the war and continues to express an anti-war stance. Kasta was included in the unofficial list of banned artists in Russia. The authorities have canceled all the band's concerts. The members of the group (Vlady, Shym, Hamil, Zmey) have emigrated from Russia and have been continuing to work abroad. In 2022, Vlady released his album "February Lasts," the first Russian-language album dedicated to the condemnation of the war. The album was marked by a large amount of press and attracted wide attention.

Kasta Concert in Munich on 8 February 2024


  • Vlady (Влади) — Leshkevich Vladislav, born December 17, 1978, in Rostov-on-Don
  • Shym (Шым) — Epifanov Mikhail, born January 25, 1979, in Rostov-on-Don
  • Hamil (Хамиль) — Pacechny Andrey, born October 19, 1979, in Rostov-on-Don
  • Zmey (Змей) — Mishenin Anton, born January 21, 1982, Rostov-on-Don. In 2005, he left the group Grani after the release of the album Kipesh and joined Kasta.




  • 2002: Громче воды, выше травы ("Gromche vody, tishe travy", "Louder than Water, Taller than Grass")
  • 2002: Что нам делать в Греции? ("Chto nam delat' v Gretzii", "What do we do in Greece?") [by Vlady]
  • 2004: Феникс ("Fenix", "Dank Kush") [by Hamil]
  • 2006: По-приколу ("Po-prikolu", "For fun")
  • 2008: Быль в глаза ("Byl' v glaza", "Facts to the Eyes")
  • 2010: ХЗ ("Fuck knows") [by Hamil and Zmey]
  • 2012: Ясно! ("Yasno!", "Clear!") [by Vlady]
  • 2015: Несусветное ("light bringing") [by Vlady]
  • 2017: Четырёхглавый орёт ("Chetyrekhglaviy oryot", "Four-headed eagle" / "Four-headed shouts")
  • 2019: Другое слово ("Drugoe slovo", "Another word") [by Vlady]
  • 2019: Об изъяне понятно ("The flaw is clear")
  • 2020: Чернила осьминога ("Chernila osminoga", "Octopus ink")
  • 2021: Альбомба ("Albomba")
  • 2022: Длится февраль ("Dlitsya fevral'", "February lasts") [by Vlady]

Albums of United Kasta (Объединенная Каста)

  • 1997: Первый удар ("First Strike")
  • 1999: Трёхмерные рифмы ("3D Rhymes")
  • 2000: В полном действии ("In Full Force")
  • 2003: Алкоголики ("Alcoholics") [by Zmey and Grani]
  • 2005: Кипеш ("Bustle") [by Zmey and Grani]
  • 2011: ЖаЗ дуэт ("ZhaZ duet") (EP) [by Jara and Zmey]


  • 2001: На порядок выше ("Vastly beyond")
  • 2002: Горячее время ("Hot time") [by Vlady]

Music videos

  • Мы Берём Это На Улицах ("My Beryom Eto Na Ulitsakh" / "We got it from the streets") (2000)
  • На Порядок Выше ("Na Poryadok Vyshe" / "Level above") (2001)
  • Про Макса ("Pro Maxa" / "About Max") (2002)
  • Горячее Время ("Goryacheye Vremya" / "Hot time") (OST Антикиллер (Antikiller)) (2002)
  • Ревность ("Revnost'" / "Jealousy") (Влади (Vlady)) (2003)
  • Наши Люди ("Nashi Lyudi" / "Our People") (Live at "Наши Люди '03") (2003)
  • Сестра ("Sestra" / "Sister") (2005)
  • Черви Ненависти ("Chervi Nenavisti" / "Worms of Hate") (Хамиль (Khamil) feat. Песочные Люди (Sand Men)) (2005)
  • Капсулы Скорости ("Kapsuly Skorosti" / "Speed capsules") (2006)
  • Глупо, Но Класс ("Glupo, No Class" / "Stupid, but cool") (Vlady feat. Gustavo) (2007)
  • Встреча ("Vstrecha" / "Meeting") (2008)
  • Радиосигналы ("Radiosignaly" / "Radio signals") (Vlady) (2008)
  • Вокруг Шум ("Vokrug Shum" / "Noise around us") (2009)
  • Номерок ("Nomerok" / "The tab") (Vlady feat. Крестная Семья (Godmother's family)) (2009)
  • Можно Всё ("Mozhno Vsyo" / "Everything's allowed") (Vlady feat. Animal Jazz) (2009)
  • Встретимся У Холодильника ("Vstretimsya U Kholodil'nika" / "Meet me by the Fridge") (Khamil, Iskra & DJ Hobot) (2009)
  • Закрытый Космос ("Zakrytyi Kosmos" / "Closed Space") (Khamil) (2010)
  • Метла ("Metla" / "The Broom") (Khamil & Zmey) (2011)
  • Самый счастливый человек на Земле ("Samyy schastlivyy chelovek na Zemle" / "The happiest man of the Earth") (Zmey) (2011)
  • Миллиард Лет ("Milliard Let" / "Billion Years") (2011)
  • Это Прёт ("Eto Pryot" / "It hauls hard") (Khamil & Zmey) (2011)
  • Такое чувство ("Takoe Chuvstvo" / "Such a feeling") (Khamil & Zmey) (2011)
  • Сочиняй мечты ("Sochinyay Mechty" / "Make dreams") (Vlady feat. Уля (Ulya) (Wow Band)) (2012)
  • Пусть пригодится ("Pust' Prigoditsya" / "Let be useful") (Vlady) (2012)
  • Тебе в прикол ("Tebe v prikol" / "Good for you") (2012)
  • Прощание ("Proshchaniye" / "Farewell") (Vlady) (2012)
  • Скрепы" (2017)
  • На том конце" (2018)
  • Сто-игра" (2018)
  • Прошел через" (2020)
  • Колокола над кальянной" (2020)
  • Выходи гулять" (2020)
  • Врун" (2021)
  • Под солнцем заnусим" (2021)


  • Grand Prix "Rap Music 99"
  • Russian Music Awards 2004 MTV - Best hip-hop, rap project.
  • Muz-TV Awards 2006 - Best hip-hop, rap project.
  • RAMP 2009 - Urbana.
  • Russian Street Awards 2010 - Best Acoustic ("Vokrug Shum" / "Noise around us")
  • "Legend of MTV" 2010 - A decisive influence on the formation and development of modern musical culture in Russia