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Tales of Independence: Gorbach, Niklavz, Despotin Fam, and Beatcase
From Latvia, Lithuania, and Russia, four new releases appear, all inspired by a hip-hop tradition. They also voice a connection to other musical events of prior decades - together with their social impact.
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.
An Outsider Soundtrack: The Beryoza "Old New Year Compilation"
Moscow's Beryoza project releases another fine example of Slavic "ghetto" tracks, playing upon the meaning of provinciality in Russia and Ukraine. Humor and anxiety often coincide.
Wider Vistas: WuMeiGui, Pixelord, BWWWOYS, and Illuminated Faces
As musicians move away from a distant hometown, the web promises greater connectivity. If, however, technical obstacles inhibit the romance of digital interaction, what options then remain?
Seventeen Smiles: Ashnikko, Edgars Zilde, Kask, and Sander Mölder
Seventeen promising DJs, performers, and producers from Latvia, Lithuania, and Estonia come together in order to improve the general atmosphere of collaboration. A common worldview transpires.
Friends, Neighbors, and Colleagues: The Baltic Trail Compilation
"The Baltic Scene" has just published an LP bringing together producers from Latvia, Lithuania, and Estonia. The result does much to emphasize both individual modesty and collective hope.
Wistful Enigmas: Days of Funk, Gillepsy, El Ched, and Sunday Morning
A number of Russian electronic releases this week are all tied to thoughts of distant times and places. Those same dreams remain deliberately vague, since actuality is unpleasingly obvious.
A Vague, Distant Promise: Aleph, 813, Valotihkuu, and PCのMuseum
Some leading exponents of Russian electronica publish a range of EPs that overlap philosophically. They all, to some degree, consider the nature of desire - and whether the best dreams never come true.
Accidentally Mystical: Silver Calx 8, Coaxil, ABC Galaxy, and Cao Sao Vang
Electronic works from St. Petersburg, Izhevsk, and Moscow play upon themes of improvisation, accident, and chance. The more that logic is removed from stagecraft, the greater the likelihood of revelation.
The Great Outdoors: PK Jazz Collective, Moa Pillar, U.I., and Niklavz
It's impossible for young Slavic or Baltic performers to operate without some concern for physical geography. The issue of distance frustrates "real" interaction yet - paradoxically - nurtures a digital craft.
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