As a range of obstacles, both private and professional, stop musicians from working uninterrupted, diligence acquires a new significance. It becomes a form of transcendence, far above material woes.
One of the most isolated places we've documented on FFM also has the potential to become one of the most promising: Yakutia. Skajite Michilu (Michil Ambrosyev) was raised 3,000 miles from Moscow.
The "Put' k Sebe" folk festival is held in Russia's Kaluga region each autumn. Some of the performers from this year's lineup suggest how ancient practice might correct various failings within modernity.
Emerging from distant Yakutsk, some glitchy instrumentals advertise themselves as a form of hypnosis. Other simultaneous publications, however, give way to a more fatalistic view of isolation.
Ranging from Yakutsk to Hrodna (Belarus), and then to Simferopol (Ukraine), new hip-hop recordings appear in response to local actuality. Rather than champion any regional issues, they instead foster a quiet form of solace.
Starting in the record-breaking cold of Yakutia, these four recordings imagine a life beyond ostensible (and onerous) reality. Talk of astronauts and star-bound cats soon emerges... but what principles guide those lofty realms?
A new compilation has appeared from Omsk, celebrating some rare activity among musicians in faraway Yakutia. Not surprisingly, perhaps, the levels of both aspiration and boredom can be overwhelming.