Four Russian rock publications play upon aspects of a psychedelic heritage. They either draw directly from Western traditions or extend the meaning of psychedelia from its roots in the Soviet '70s.
Fading faith in modern life or politics leads these ensembles to look elsewhere for superior values. Better ideas are found in shamanistic culture, experimental drugs, and other distant realms.
Against the backdrop of a Russian tradition of politicized rock songs, four collectives in 2014 look for alternative values. They tend to be immaterial, in the best - and most romantic - sense of the word.
uSSSy is/are an instrumental duo from Moscow: Artem Galkin (guitar) and Pavel Eremeev (drums). As Galkin calmly announces his departure from the band, a central theme of absence reappears.
From Rostov-na-Donu comes psychedelic noise-rock that looks back with fondness to the earliest days of the Space Race. Heavy industry suddenly started to throw off the shackles of gravity.
Four new rock publications from Russian cities consider the likelihood of subversive song-writing in a culture where the weight of history seems great. Thoughts of sedition morph into acceptance.
In a range of new recordings from Moscow, Yekaterinburg, and Chelyabinsk, aimlessness comes to the fore. These young musicians have scant faith in social progress: "uselessness" becomes their goal.
The need for young musicians to hold down a couple of jobs can be trying. Related material complications lead, over time, to a celebration of immaterial values, such as wistfulness and a slacker ethos.
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 musicians from Murmansk and Moscow online encounter rudeness, disdain, or indifference, an alternative is needed to actuality. A reconsideration of '70s psychedelia does the job very nicely.