New garage, stoner, and doom rock recordings express a growing tension between dreams and actuality. The responses range from desperation to indifference.
In the wake of a garage and punk festival in Moscow, the question has arisen of protest songs. Is that style, volume level, and its violence synonymous with hopes of civic change? The answer is surprising.
In June a music event called "Pain Fest" will celebrate rock music from Serbia, Belarus, and - most importantly - Siberia. The bands from that part of Russia cultivate a link to the punk traditions of their home.
As a couple of Slavic rock bands admit a fondness for Bristolian trip-hop, the value of introspection is discussed elsewhere. It transpires that the same hushed lyricism - made public - still matters.
Four young bands embody a spirit of protest, yet they're unnerved by the feeling that rebellion rarely changes anything. That combination of outrage and anxiety leads to a healthy self-irony.
A selection of lo-fi or garage recordings this week in Russia and Ukraine suggests a common worldview. Various social, economic, and even spiritual injustices lead to loud, amateurish discord.
Some recent, ambient instrumentals from Watu (Minsk) led to angry debates over the finer points of post-Soviet geography. Over time, however, the importance of a concrete address fades away, no matter its name.
Two new recordings from St. Petersburg and Moscow reconsider Russian culture of the 1980s, plus a resulting fatalism. Two other releases take a different approach: they use noisy zeal in order to shun the weight of history.
A new album has appeared from Omsk in the "Garage or Culture" series. On this occasion it's dedicated to young performers from Novosibirsk; together they voice a range of alternatives to ostensible reality.
Four young guitar bands - all the way from Kiev to Vladivostok - speak about the energy levels needed in their craft. As job pressures - and cynical audiences - take their toll, staying "vigorous" can be a challenge.