The city of Yekaterinburg has a proud connection to the rock and protest songs of perestroika. Do any local bands from that city share the same convictions today?
New drone and industrial recordings from Russia and Ukraine turn their attention simultaneously to anxiety and depression. Both, perhaps, indicate dissatisfaction - and therefore a burgeoning hope.
New rock recordings from disparate towns together suggest a philosophical shift - away from the classic songs of late-Soviet protest towards tales of consolation and empathy.
Four Russian rock publications play upon aspects of a psychedelic heritage. They either draw directly from Western traditions or extend the meaning of psychedelia from its roots in the Soviet '70s.
Two releases from Yekaterinburg and Petrozavodsk operate in different realms, yet find common inspiration. The silence of the night sky is peopled with cosmonauts and medieval angels.
Moscow's Anton Maskeliade has published recordings of his "Street Studio," in which passers-by are invited to perform whatever they want. These levels of social optimism are not widely shared.
Several key reference points connect these projects. Some of them originate in Poland, while others take us to Ukraine. Bolder still, however, is the overarching desire of these performers to leave home altogether.
As the New Year rolls around, a handful of Russian publications ponder the weight of history. Have regional events, in a number of different towns, led over time to a specific worldview or behavior, even?
Against the backdrop of a Russian tradition of politicized rock songs, four collectives in 2014 look for alternative values. They tend to be immaterial, in the best - and most romantic - sense of the word.
This week we're republishing a classic recording from one of Russia's most important and consistently surprising bands. It comes together with English translations and a host of contextual materials.