New electronic recordings from Belarus, Russia, and Ukraine - via Berlin - question the liberties of commercial and noncommercial enterprise. The same questions are framed ecologically.
Four solo electronic projects from different Russian cities display varying degrees of displeasure with actuality. As faith in civic promise dwindles, the need for wistfulness to provide a valid alternative grows.
The Mental Force Music Festival takes place in Minsk on May 22-23. It is designed both to showcase the best of Belarusian electronica and discover some productive overlap with Western colleagues.
Placed end to end, four new electronic recordings from Russia and Belarus advocate a retreat into silence. Nothingness holds more appeal than specificity.
The Subwise label in Saint Petersburg remains as busy as ever. We have chosen seven new releases from Russian and Ukrainian artists, as proof that a common worldview is developing among them all.
The physical destruction in Donetsk is only one form of material failure encountered by Slavic musicians today. Together they head for digital realms instead.
Empty realms, such as the forests of Karelia, have differing meanings for these artists. Nonetheless, a shared conviction transpires that movement into nothingness at least symbolizes potential.
As the socioeconomic situation worsens in Russia, so do attitudes towards society. Civic activity promises less and less. Consequently, several artists speak in support of minimal interaction.
All the way from Rome to Moscow and Sochi, four new electronic recordings look askance at social convention. Some respite from tedium is found in a number of absurdist or even "terrorist" tactics
New dancefloor offerings from Russia and Estonia struggle with viable forms of optimism. "Escapism" becomes less a matter of hedonism and more a conscious response to unsatisfying actuality.