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A Prior Humility: Long Arm, AL-90, SBPCh, and Information Ghetto
As an implicit reaction to the growing pomp and circumstance of primetime Russian media, four new releases look back to the sounds and stories of childhood. Not with sentiment, but with purpose.
A Northern Minimalism: Zimne and Andrey Porubov (FFM46 and 47)
Two new releases from FFM originate in distant places: Novosibirsk and the Kola Peninsula, above the Arctic Circle. In both cases, the musicians' address brings more benefit than inconvenience.
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.
Deliverance: Polska Radio One, Snakecharm, Elecman, and Analog Sound
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.
Seaward: HAARPS, Raskureal, Sun Goes Nova, and Yaroslav Konoplya
The symbolism of Russia's Pacific Ocean appears in two new recordings. It is a gentle counterpart to some daunting evocations of the Far North and outer space, even. The sea looks more welcoming than the stars.
A Light Touch: Epifolium, MKRV, Brodsky, and Jhoni Foxx
Four new semi-acoustic recordings consider the benefits of small-scale dreaming. Easy-going reverie may promise a simple existence, but it's also accompanied by material risk. Romance, so to speak, does not come cheap.
Thoughts of Escape on Arctic Dancefloors: Playone, AN:TI, and [Scio]
Some tech-house and dubstep recordings, released simultaneously in Kiev, Murmansk, and Tallinn, all give voice to an escapist aesthetic. They speak, however, with varying degrees of confidence.
Fullpanda and Emptiness: Andrei Oid, Khz, Stanislav Tolkachev, and AN:TI
Fullpanda is a label operating between Paris, Berlin, and Moscow. Although its founder is a long-time resident of the West, the techno sound of Fullpanda still owes much to the Russian context.
Songs in Constant Motion: Pent Haus / Hearts, Guys & Guitars / Mari! Mari!
Some bands living or working far from Moscow's glare adopt a specific attitude towards geography. It emerges from two unavoidable conundrums encountered in the provinces: What to do - and in which direction should we travel?
Pure Polar Minimalism: "TRIOgrooveSOLNYSHQO"
The name of this band needs to be sorted out before we say anything about their work. Thanks to a little typographical help, it is at least visible that the nineteen letters of TRIOgrooveSOLNYSHQO constitute three separate words: "trio" and "groove" are clear enough, but "solnyshqo" is, pre...
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