These four new releases from Russia and Ukraine all lean towards a validation of smallness. There are various reasons not to be loud, arrogant, and self-assured. Local history is one of them.
Some new publications reflect a struggle with institutionalized hassles: the academy, journalistic dispproval, issues of copyright, and "grown-up" cynicism. An alternative is needed.
One of the more enduring assumptions or stereotypes regarding Slavic songwriting would be that of sadness, if not misery. When melancholy does indeed make an appearance, what form does it take?
Ranging from lo-fi wistfulness to noise-rock, these four collectives all look askance at social life. The only way for them to make sense of the outside world is through recourse to senselessness.
From St. Petersburg to Vladivostok, four lyrical songwriters consider the benefits of stagecraft over actuality. Imagination enjoys more freedom behind a writing desk or beneath limelight.
Four recordings from three Russian cities show increasing concern about the promise of adulthood. Greater hope emerges from literature, retrospection, and even thoughts of "prenatal" oceanic life.
Using everything from pre-revolutionary photography to Miami synth-pop and dusty video games, these musicians all cast a glance backwards. The past promises more than an "anxious" future.
The passage of time leaves its mark on the work of many performers, especially during the transition from youth to adulthood. These recordings try to hold keep those changes at bay.
As some new electronic releases focus on the passage of youth, various ideals appear both fleeting and ineffable. They are, say these performers, better captured visually than verbally.
The gallows humor in much Russian songwriting today bears a grain of truth. Grim quips about social existence come from a genuine dissatisfaction; as a result, collegiality is valued highly.