A handful of new lo-fi or DIY recordings leads to a discussion of "peripheral" enterprise, far from any center of national media. For all the problems that causes, there are also discernible benefits.
These four new releases from Russia and Ukraine all lean towards a validation of smallness. There are various reasons not to be loud, arrogant, and self-assured. Local history is one of them.
A range of new electronic releases from Russia and Ukraine this week endorse a hushed and understated aesthetic. There's a shared conviction that greater insight lies within less noise. The quieter, the wiser.
Four house releases from Russia, Ukraine, and Moldova combine the traditions of Chicago and Detroit with Soviet history - in order to fashion an alternative to local, industrial reality.
Despite assumptions that Russian noise- and garage rock might might be interested in a range of social agendas, some new recordings suggest that an apolitical stance means more.
Four melancholy releases all find solace by imagining a grander, quieter realm. Private anxieties fade away. The same consoling process is evident in new folk recordings, born of a parallel experience.
The British magazine Wire has just published a very important and impressive compilation of new electronic music from Ukraine. Entitled "Zikro," it has been curated by Andrey Kiritchenko.
St. Petersburg's Microcosmos Records has published a chillout compilation that serves to illustrate the meaning of downtempo modes in Northern Russia. Reverie travels very far from home indeed.
А sneaking suspicion that actuality is increasingly loud and intolerant leads to the search for other options: quieter love songs, wanton surrealism, or an escape into the realm of virtual bands.
Two Russian electronic recordings speak of the search for "a new language" in the gaps between various genres. They're equated with a civic absence or lack. In Estonia, two kindred recordings take a more optimistic view.