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Distant or Elusive Aspirations: Clonki, x.y.r., SiJ, and More Oblakov
Within a number of Slavic electronic recordings this week, desire is an enduring theme. Alternatives to dull actuality are sought in local forests, on distant shores, or within classic literature of the Nineteenth Century.
A Gentle Light: Kai Engel, Poostosh, Vorobushek, and Be Smooth
Four electronic publications from Moscow and Yekaterinburg express concerns over the noise and crudity of present-day experience. As a result, retrospection and nostalgia both have appeal.
Reflection: Sohight & Cheevy, Lowkarma, Malish Kamu, and Zh. Kukoverov
Four very different recordings - spun from a lo-fi lyricism, '80s synth-pop and abstract beats - all look askance at the future. Various kinds of reflection and retrospection seem increasingly appealing.
Somewhere Else: The Just, MOGU, Satellite Dreams, and More Znaet
A lyrical strain runs through some Russian rock releases this week. It begins with wistful dreams of leaving home - and moves with increasing satisfaction to distant planets or a bottomless ocean.
A Mainstream Remade: Iiris, Red Milk, Wick Blaze, and Pyro Trees
As the Baltic press lists some promising names for the forthcoming musical year, a key question poses itself. Should younger artists promote their uniqueness or similarity with existing trends?
Four Minor Scales: X.Y.R., A Glaza-To Dobrie, Pur:Pur, and Midimode
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 Natural Chorus: Oleg Legky, Marina Nevgen', The Wright, and Bio Trio
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.
Dysthmia: Sergiy Cherepiho, Endless Melancholy, Melan, and King Imagine
One of the more enduring assumptions or stereotypes regarding Slavic songwriting would be that of sadness, if not misery. When melancholy does indeed make an appearance, what form does it take?
A Welcome Surrealism: The Retuses, Vihrea, 3000 Run, and AWOTT
Ranging from lo-fi wistfulness to noise-rock, these four collectives all look askance at social life. The only way for them to make sense of the outside world is through recourse to senselessness.
Landscapes and Loops: Pastacas, Iduvigik, Kago, and Mari Kalkun
The Estonian label Ounaviks continues to produce a wide and wonderful range of folk reinterpretations for a new generation. From within that antique heritage comes a reconsidered worldview.
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