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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 Prior Humility: Long Arm, AL-90, SBPCh, and Information Ghetto
As an implicit reaction to the growing pomp and circumstance of primetime Russian media, four new releases look back to the sounds and stories of childhood. Not with sentiment, but with purpose.
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.
Retreat: Universe Inside, Cao Sao Vang, Low Orbit Satellite, and Radiokoala
Placed end to end, four new electronic recordings from Russia and Belarus advocate a retreat into silence. Nothingness holds more appeal than specificity.
Light, Airy, and Meditative: Seven New Releases from Subwise Records
The Subwise label in Saint Petersburg remains as busy as ever. We have chosen seven new releases from Russian and Ukrainian artists, as proof that a common worldview is developing among them all.
Motion: Appolinaria Lovegood, Hmot, Valotihkuu, and Hamlet His Highness
Empty realms, such as the forests of Karelia, have differing meanings for these artists. Nonetheless, a shared conviction transpires that movement into nothingness at least symbolizes potential.
The Pull of the Past: KSKY, 130 Vespa, Komba Bakkh, and BMB Spacekid
A couple of northern projects look with fondness at Soviet culture, given the failings of the present day. More powerful than childhood retrospection, however, is the invocation of an ancient tradition.
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.
A Growing Sense of Silence: BAIKAL, I Delfiny, Vakula, and Foresteppe
Two recurring reference points in Slavic electronica are childhood and the open landscapes that symbolize an early liberty. Four new releases interweave these motifs, whilst mourning the clamor of modernity.
The Light of a Distant Sky: Sasha Gagarin and K (Ivan Kamaldinov)
Two releases from Yekaterinburg and Petrozavodsk operate in different realms, yet find common inspiration. The silence of the night sky is peopled with cosmonauts and medieval angels.
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