Recent downtempo and trip-hop releases consider a common object of their varied desires. Distant towns - and even some unnamed stars - seem a pleasant alternative to the here and now.
Four projects from three cities (Minsk, Moscow, and St. Petersburg) have new material to offer. In each case, a quiet register is the result of considerable humility before the past and/or inspiration itself.
A number of house and chillout projects from Russia and Ukraine this week address the issue of hard work. In an unpredictable environment, what makes more sense: diligence or spontaneity?
Warm On is a hip-hop community on Moscow's northern edge. The group's members and colleagues operate in a wide number of Russian or Ukrainian cities. They all share a common philosophy.
The Tallinn Music Week 2013 has just wrapped up, offering a valuable showcase to many young performers. Here we examine eight of them from a predominantly acoustic realm.
The promise and scale of Soviet science fiction continue to inspire a wide range of young musicians. On occasion, the daunting distances of local geography foster similar imagery.
Over the course of several electronic recordings from Perm, Krasnodar, Tula, and St. Petersburg, a fondness emerges for the lo-fi technology of the 1990s. Bad machinery recalls happy times.
Three inherently acoustic traditions are subjected to a process of change. The more those variations come to light, the more they aid self-expression. The broader one's vista, the more subjectivity benefits.
Two new St. Petersburg recordings romanticize the homeless, aimless experience of cosmonauts. Even in Moscow, a related desire is audible, even among the most goal-driven musicians.
Four recordings from Russian and Estonian bands consider the relationship of language to their location. Does it matter whether one sings in a native tongue? If not, then why choose English?