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Being Social: Obe Dve, Auroraw, EXIT Project, and Maskeliade Street Studio
Moscow's Anton Maskeliade has published recordings of his "Street Studio," in which passers-by are invited to perform whatever they want. These levels of social optimism are not widely shared.
Holiday Highs and Lows: The Afisha "NG 15" Compilation (Part Three)
As we conclude a third and final overview, the "NG 15" album appears in Moscow. Twenty-six performers are gathered together in order both to consider the meaning of New Year and help a children's charity.
Words of Continuity and Comfort: Afisha's New Year Songs (Part Two)
The Moscow magazine Afisha continues to gather a wide range of songs celebrating the New Year. All of the performers involved juxtapose their individual hopes and dreams with the unlikely prospect of civic improvement.
New from Sketis: Vasilyev Vecher, Baraka, Voronovo Krylo, and Bubamara
The Sketis label is announcing a series of new albums from both Russia and Latvia. They, in turn, draw upon a melange of folk traditions, ranging all the way from Siberia's criminal past to the Balkans or Tajikistan.
Antique Forms of Social Improvement: Šuma: "Zołak" (Minsk, FFM35)
The work of Belarusian folktronica ensemble Shuma (Šuma) is defined with an intriguing turn of phrase: "digital archaica." A new collection of remixes helps to explain that bond of tradition and hi-tech.
Obscurum Per Obscurius: The 2014 Schilling Festival (Estonia)
This year's Schilling Festival is about to start in Estonia. There's a special overlap between the festival's philosophy and the worldview of several Estonian bands taking part. Ideals and actuality coincide.
Alina Os: The Acoustic EP (Moscow, FFM13)
Alina Os is a young exponent of acoustic hip-hop from the edge of Moscow. Her songs, just like her address, promise a little peace, quiet, and dignity on the periphery of Europe's biggest city.
An Intuitive Gameplan: Roundelay, Cassiopeja, Vlad Veleev, and Wire Fish
As these performers list the professional or political obstacles facing their work, a nostalgia develops for intuitive, pre-adult experience. Those earliest years harbored some nameless values.
Portents: HAARPS, Natural Sequence, Mars Needs Lovers, & Marija Cheba
As performers make plans for the future, a tension arises between subjective desire and public crudity. The best way to foster hope (again) is to leave those heartless civic realms behind.
Four Voices: Cooper Phillip, Alpha-Beta, Race to Space, and Ameli na Meli
Four women from Moscow, Yekaterinburg, and Saratov offer new narratives on the ongoing struggle for self-determination. Those tales of increasing dignity stretch all the way to Los Angeles.
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