One of the most enduring motifs of Soviet culture within Russian popular music has been the so-called "Space Race"––the competition between Moscow and Washington to explore the cosmos.
Several new rock recordings, all the way from Saint Petersburg to Simferopol, express doubts about grand spectacle. Better, smaller forms of interaction are found both in memories and on stage.
All the way from Moscow to the villages of Siberia, a common idea finds voice in a handful of dance floor publications. In four of these releases, the romance of nostalgia and happy stasis proves most persistent.
Alexander Zaitsev's new instrumental recording refers to modern spirituality as a faint, flickering light in a tunnel. Some other Russian electronic releases this week concur.
The Belarusian label Ezhevika has just published a compilation album, "I MIRACLE." It gathers nineteen recordings from towns both near and far; together the tracks create a workplace philosophy.
As new recordings appear for dance floors across Russia and Ukraine, one would expect hedonism and jollity to predominate. The challenges of a touring musician quickly change the mood.
Marxist rhetoric, when addressing social change, likes to codify the passage of quantitative civic changes as qualitative. Four new recordings from Russia and Lithuania adopt the same spirit.
New dancefloor publications from both solo artists and ensembles this week underscore the importance of support systems, either in childhood or when professional obstacles loom later on in life.
One primary impulse in contemporary East European music is the desire for soundscapes to counter actuality. Four new recordings look askance at whatever is going on outside the front door.
This week a handful of recordings in Lviv, Novosibirsk, and Omsk all struggle to remain optimistic. A number of material obstacles stand between a sunny view of the future and its realization in actuality.