As a number of Russian, Belarusian, and Ukrainian artists consider their future plans, it transpires that the most hopeful songs grow from the greatest failures. Frustrations breed aspirations.
For reasons both social and philosophical, four Russian projects release new recordings with zero promotion. The logic of material wellbeing is sidelined in favor of a quieter worldview, hinted at in quotations.
Against the backdrop of recent geopolitical events, one might understand why minorism would have a marked appeal. Four collectives from Russia, Ukraine, and Estonia place smallness front and center.
Two new releases from FFM originate in distant places: Novosibirsk and the Kola Peninsula, above the Arctic Circle. In both cases, the musicians' address brings more benefit than inconvenience.
Two new releases from FFM originate in Moscow and Kiev. A couple of solo performers travel parallel trajectories from self-doubt to a less disconcerting state, somewhere on the edge of aspiration.
Sugar God (Evgeny Pozdnyakov, Moscow): "I've tried to create the atmosphere of being in outer space, or of a bird's flight. It's a combination of romantic solitude and nostalgia"
Aleksandra Obraztsova's intriguing stage-name is a play upon the title of Jean-Pierre Jeunet's 2001 feature "Amelie." Obraztsova authors her hushed, pensive songs using the alter ego of "Ameli na Meli."
A student at Saint Petersburg's Rimsky-Korsakov Conservatory, Olga Glazova has won a wide range of competitions, both domestically and internationally. Her new album is released through FFM.
Humility and understatement color a number of Russian instrumental releases. Their audible modesty is prompted by childhood memories, an eco-aesthetic, and disorienting experiences online.
Several new jazz and instrumental releases find good reason to celebrate complexity or surprise. They all share a desire to avoid the predictable crudity of commerce, mass media, and modern politics.