Several new Russian and Ukrainian recordings are framed by talk of professional difficulties. Failings in the outside world are countered with calm acceptance and an emphasis on introspection.
The St. Petersburg community known as "We Are Russians" is busy gathering electronic projects with a special fondness for the 1980s. The soundtrack to perestroika continues to have great relevance.
A number of publications this week display an interesting tension between grand romance and self-deprecation. By understating their heartfelt values, these artists stress a stubborn fidelity to a fading cause.
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.
Romantic metaphors inform these new recordings, all borrowed from discussions of open forests, boundless oceans, and "schizoid" thought. Daily life, however, stubbornly refuses to cooperate.
Interviews surrounding several new dancefloor publications focus on the creation of local scenes. It slowly becomes evident that the role of friendship and collaboration is key in nurturing regional optimism.
A new compilation of dour electronica appears from the Full of Nothing label near Petrozavodsk. Amid all the stereotypical assumptions of northern misery, an optimistic worldview takes shape.
St. Petersburg has a new club - Heisenberg - which has grown from the local Squat Academy and iTech Sound System. Running the show are Sasha Kaktus, DJ Pitters, and their colleague Yuri Skiff.
Four new recordings across Russia turn to the landscape for inspiration. While the natural world proves uplifting, mankind's invasion of the ecosphere - for material gain - ruins any fantasy.
As Yungchen Lhamo and Anton Batagov promote a collaboration grounded in Tibetan prayers, other Russian artists have a different view of distant places. Hope and horror begin to alternate.