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Making Music Together in Belarus: The Mental Force Festival 2015
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.
A Permanence of Change: Heinali, Kai Engel, Pole, & Gardner + Salnikov
Beginning with an improvised recording from London, these new publications all share a conviction that telling patterns exist in natural disorder. What's needed to discern them is dedication and hard work.
A Fleeting Present: Aortha & Goron, Shortparis, and L.I.M.B. (FFM48-50)
Various inevitabilities gather strength around three releases from Moscow, St. Petersburg, and Minsk. In the face of diminishing liberties, a certain presentism emerges, celebrating the here and now.
Alternative Lifelines: Yayati, AWOTT, Albino Deers, and IC3PEAK
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
Random Magic: The "She Knows More Than She Thinks" Compilation
The Los Angeles label Not Not Fun has just published a compilation of six female electronic artists. Resident in both Russia and Ukraine, they offer a peaceful, creative alternative to recent events.
Joyful Change and Transience: Grave Board Clan's "Sample Pack" (Belarus)
Grave Board Clan is a Belarusian collective of electronic musicians, founded ten years ago. They just published a major "Sample Pack," designed to showcase the GBC and encourage collaborations.
Ideals from Nowhere: Suokas, Tram Drivers, Tsunadem, and Wick Blaze
The importance of silence and solitude appears in four new publications. They emerge across considerable distances, all the way from some lightless forests in Karelia to the quieter, cobbled streets of Ukraine.
In Flight: Polska Radio One, Dzierzynski Bitz, Ext, and Crimson Butterfly
Several key reference points connect these projects. Some of them originate in Poland, while others take us to Ukraine. Bolder still, however, is the overarching desire of these performers to leave home altogether.
An Aftermath of Time and Place: Hyperboloid, Ghostek, and Ptitsu Em
As the New Year rolls around, a handful of Russian publications ponder the weight of history. Have regional events, in a number of different towns, led over time to a specific worldview or behavior, even?
A Welcome Estrangment: Mujuice, Tiiiza, Nipple Tapes, and SV Hutor
Against a backdrop of civic unrest, several Russian and Ukrainian performers opt for a more restrained or "estranged" aesthetic. They begin with the cool, mechanical operations of an old Roland 303.
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