CD (ltd. 500)
The first release of a new sublabel of ZHELEZOBETON - Muzyka Voln - is a compilation of the same name, containing compositions from twelve Russian projects playing ambient / drone music. A selection of audio-tales in which each project introduces the listener to its own sound world he's living in: mystical stories, isolationism, altered states of consciousness, space landscapes, monotonous technogenic rumble, guitar passages and much more...
Specially for this compilation exclusive tracks were provided by: Anthesteria feat. Kaj?, Bardoseneticcube, Cisfinitum, Closing The Eternity, Exit In Grey, Hum, Instant Movie Combinations, Kshatriy, Lunar^Abyss^Deus^Organum, Necropolis, Polaris and RemoteBand.
This compilation may be useful for those interested in the Russian experimental scene and just for lovers of beautiful contemplative music.
The CD is housed in a six-panel digipak decorated with photos of Baltic Sea made by Pavel "fljõt" Pevnitsky.
Russia's Zhelezobeton started a sub-division called Muzyka Voln and here they present their first real CD, an overview of what is currently the trend in ambient and drone music from their country. A move that so many new labels make, which is understandable, but perhaps also a safe decision. Many of the names here are new, even to us, who have been at the Russian underground for some time. We recognize Bardoseneticcube, Cisfinitum and Hum, but names like Kshatriy, Closing The Eternity, or Lunar^Abyss^Deus^Organum are new to me. The strange thing is that listening to these twelve is like listening to the same band - maybe we are being fooled here? I doubt that. I was wondering about that; is it good or bad? There is something to say for either way. It's great compilation of contemplative ambient and drone music, which works well if you stick it on and let it play throughout. Some of the pieces are bit more crude or rough in their current state, but on the whole there is minor differences. The bad thing is that none of the bands stand out and make a difference from the rest. Aspiring A&R managers who no doubt roam Vital on a weekly basis in search of new talent to sign may a difficult time in finding out which are the best from the rest. See my problem? Luckily I don't sign for labels. I can sit back and simply have this music wash over me.
The Russian label Zhelezobeton decided it was time to create a new sub-label. It is unknown what the speciality for this label will be, but its first release is an ambient/drone sampler presenting 12 Russian composers doing their thing. And what mighty fine things they are...
The CD actually doesn't have a single dull moment during listing, and for a sampler covering different styles that is a very positive feature. The various styles are ranging from oldschool ambient to isolationist soundscapes to minimal drones and manipulated fieldrecordings. Not the cheeriest of styles, but it all fits within my personal taste.
Several of the names sound or are familiar to me, and little research shows that five projects already have had a release on Drone Records (Bardoseneticcube, Lunar Abyss Deus Organum, Cisfinitum, Hum and Closing The Eternity). This knowledge will already give you an indication in where to place the contents and direction of this release. From the other names only Instant Movie Combinations is known to me for the recently reviewed "Shipyard".
Quickly going through the tracks: Kshatriy opens the CD with a nice flowing drone with loads of overnotes. Exit In Grey shows a way more ambient approach; at moments it sounds like a huge kitty-cat snoring in the front of the audio perspective. Closing The Eternity gives you manipulated field-recordings over massive bassy structures. As with extreme sounds, and a positive point I might add, sometimes they hurt, a hum created a track with weird sounds which could have been used in an old science fiction movie - it sounds like being on board the S.S. Discovery while searching for the origin of the monoliths. "Necropolis" is the track which made me feel the most uneasy, with minimal atonal reference in an isolationist atmosphere.
Next on the CD is Cisfinitum, a well known name already and definitely a name to remember. His track is a heavy loop based drone with added field-recordings, slightly incremental towards the end. Anthesteria Feat. Kaj? is the project you might find 'unfitting' in this collection, as it exists from mostly guitars and it almost sounds folk-like in some way. Lunar Abyss Deus Organum opens with a mouthharp, maybe the most non-droney sound one can possibly think of and the track itself becomes a collection of sounds, reminding me of some things of Ghedalia Tazartes, albeit it way less cut-up though. Instant Movie Combinations' track "Boiler Pipe" is a nice and minimal analog sounding drone. Compared to the beforementioned CD it has a clean approach to the sounds and should be labelled minimal experimentalism.
Almost at the end of the CD we find Bardoseneticcube with bassy layers, nice and full sounding and very well produced. Bardoseneticcube delivers the longest track on this sampler. What to say about "Polaris"? Probably the one track you have to decide for yourself. For me the most ungraspable track in here... And the CD ends with Remoteband who created a nice and easy finishing of a great sampler. Maybe Remoreband doesn't deliver the best track on here but it is a valuable addition to the 'whole' for creating an overview of Russia's best sound-sculptures of the moment.
Muzyka Voln is the name of the Zhelezobeton sub-label and MUZYKA VOLN is also the title of their first compilation containing twelve bands/tracks coming from Russia which focus their sound on industrial/dark-ambient/drones music. First of all I must say that lately it is a bit difficult to find a dark-ambient project which is capable of creating a track which is able to catch your attention bringing you down through its world made of hypnotic and throbbing sounds. Also this compilation prove what I'm saying and if some projects composed their track using uniquely few humming sounds creating a dark atmosphere which grew little by little its intensity, some others tried to distinguish themselves adding a bit of melody, a treated guitar or some industrial sounds. The bands which convinced me most are: Kshatriy, Exit In Grey, Closing The Eternity, Nectropolis, Anthesteria feat. Kay?, Lunar^Abyss^Deus^Organum, Bardoseneticcube and Remoteband and eight out of twelve isn't that bad.
'Muzyka Voln' is first release of Muzyka Voln - sublabel of Zhelezobeton from Russia. It's a compilation filled to capacity with Russian dark ambient. Very classy compilation I should add.
The release starts with Kshatriy (to be honest I'm not familiar with this project) with "Orgamis" which is dark as hell, full of drones and metalic rasps. Good opening. Another track is equally fine. It's "Kosmorders" by Exit In Grey. Echoes of Lustmord, Visions or even Troum come to my ears, but the whole thing is very tasty. Closing The Eternity is a bit more known name. And again - darkness, drones plus some field recordings. But there is also good atmosphere, fog is fulfilling an environment and anxiety is growing with every second. Hum didn't charm me, very monotonous dark ambient/industrial. On the other hand Necropolis brings some melody. Very good, a bit "raison-like" fragment. What do we have next, let me see... Ah, Cisfinitum - the project which I always mixed up with Cyclotimia. And again buzzes, cracks in decent yet not extraordinary quality. Anthesteria feat. Kaj? - hmm, for the first and last time on 'Muzyka Voln' I hear some kind of a "human factor". Drones are pleasing to the ear and acoustic guitar bring some light into this dark Russian space. Very nice song but not quite fitting to the rest of the tracks. Lunar^Abyss^Deus^Organum - first two seconds sound like a theme from "For a Few Dollars More" by Sergio Leone, but later the whole thing becomes more and more bizarre, it turns at an unnatural angles, some looped child sings, an accordion sample which plays a fragment of Dead Can Dance song... Weird track, I don't think I can take an attitude towards it. Ultraminimalism is main feature of Instant Movie Combinations proposition which sounds the same in first and last second of the track. But I enjoy very much another track, "The Castle in a Fog" by Bardoseneticcube, which indeed brings to my mind a vision of foggy dawn in a wilderness somewhere in Russia. Polaris is again kind of abyssal droning, and last track by Remoteband is nice and moody ambient (not 'dark' anymore). My impression...? Oophoi and 'Hymns to a Silent Sky'.
Then the album ends and leaves me in good mood. It's interesting, educational and at the same time very listenable review of what's going on on Russian ambient scene. Most of the tracks are good, few are not that good, but the whole thing sounds very compact. Except mentioned above Anthesteria feat. Kaj? I didn't have an impression that every artist comes from different fairy tale. The album is surely worth attention and good music is completed with esthetic graphic design which presents atmospheric photos of Baltic Sea.
If Muzyka Voln, the inaugural release on the identically-named sub-label of Russian imprint Zhelezobeton, is indicative of the sub-label's direction, Muzyka Voln's focus will be dark ambient dronescaping. Twelve Russian artists—Kshatriy, Exit In Grey, Hum, RemoteBand, Polaris, and others—contribute to the seventy-eight-minute compilation whose moods range from peaceful (Necropolis's glacial “At the End of the Universe”) to brooding (Instant Movie Combinations' “Boiler Pipe”) to harrowing (Closing The Eternity's “Autumn Dream”). Helping the evocation process along, some pieces are programmatically titled (e.g., Bardoseneticcube's “The Castle in a Fog”) but the material alone is already evocative enough to do the job. The lonely and limitless expanses of deep space are realized convincingly by Cisfinitum's “Moon Room” while “In Gedanken an Russisches Drone” by Anthesteria brings the release back to terra firma with a combination of acoustic folk and orchestral elements that suggests a dark forest setting. If anything, the word cinematic is an understatement where Closing The Eternity's “Autumn Dream” is concerned; no visuals are needed when this gloomy soundtrack conjures so vividly the image of the damned drowning in the fiery waters of Hell.
Since a few years Russia has revealed itself as a forge for new generations of industrial, noise and dark ambient artists, well sponsored and distributed by several interesting local labels. One of them is Zhelezobeton, who has now launched a sublabel called Muzyka Voln, centred, judging from this introducing compilation, on dark ambient and drone productions. Most of the twelve artists featured on the CD are fresh newcomers who have been active for a few years now and have various released put out by different Russian and more or less obscure worldwide labels. The collection is opened by Kshatriy, presenting a deep, atmospheric track recorded live at 4:00 in the morning, immediately followed by the equally haunting sounds of Exit In Grey and Closing The Eternity.
Necropolis should be already known to dark ambient followers due to the reissue of their debut "Necrosphere" on Cold Spring, and gives here another proof of its ability with a sad and desolated tune, appropriately titled "At The End Of The Universe". The most original contributions to the collection are those of the bizarre Lunar^Abyss^Deus^Organum and Anthesteria feat. Kaj?, the former using a certain amount of noise and disturbing sampled voices, the latter adding acoustic guitars and other uncommon sounds to the drone matrix. As for the rest, most of these artists sound quite similar in the end, and it's often hard to find a real trademark in their style. Anyway, "Muzyka Voln" is a good introduction to this new-born label and the Russian scene, and will undoubtedly satisfy dark ambient and drone cultists.
Muzyka Voln is the first release by the new sub-label which carries th same name, a recent division of Zhelezobeton Records. Right off the bat I will declare that this is one impressive compilation. I only reserve such a word for music that truly deserves it and this is a real ehtereal record. Muzyka Voln is a collection of some of Russia's finest Dark Ambient, Experimental, and Drone artists. Even though Drone is listed in the flyer I received from Zhelezobeton Records, there is little drone to be found here because most of the tracks are so alive with fluidity. What I enjoyed most about Muzyka Voln is the emotional quality of the songs that tell their tales with sometimes little, but more often, no words at all. All contributions are exclusive to this collection. Within the matte digipack adorned by photographs of the Baltic Sea one can find a tracklist that makes an honest attempt to properly introduce most of the compositions. Included are elapsed time tables of the years and seasons the songs came into existence, a couple of dedications, and some small mentions that give insight into why and/or what inspired the work. Each listing has contact information for the artist. As It would be impractical to write about each of the twelve tracks, I have chosen to give special mention to the four that stand out the most.
"Kosmorders" by Exit In Grey was the first to really grab my attention. At first and for an instant I had confused the artists for their song names, and afterward I thought how Exit In Grey would have been an adequate name for this soothing piece. It sounds surprisingly optimistic, setting aside the fact that it's the darkest featured. The very next called "Autumn Dream" by Closing The Eternity is especially worth mentioning because of its sheer density, despite its minimal structure. Sounds include Japanese singing bowls, bells, a flute, rain sticks, and various steel tools. If you can consider such an oxymoron, there is serious atonal harmony in this one. The seventh, "Ingedanken An Russisches Drone" by Anthesteria featuring seemingly Neo Classical guitar passages by Kaj? quickly became my personal favorite. The sorrowful, cold atmospheres are balanced out by the tender, and tenderly processed, acoustic guitar. The track right after, ":Crystaline:Earth:" by Lunar^Abyss^Deus^Organum contains more pronounced electronic elements, including samples of both young and older female voices, all of which are reduced after half the song introducing then a more solitary breath of sound with minimal use of what sounds like vocoded male voice... There is somewhat of a decline after ":Crystaline:Earth:", and here I was met with my sole disappointment, called "Boiler Pipe" by Instant Movie Combinations. This number is dedicated to boiler-house pipes and happy childhood memories of climbing up and sitting atop them. Although this introduction made it seem like it would be one of the more emotive works on Muzyka Voln, it only contained a deep howl, almost motionless, and it is only two-thirds of the way through that an almost inaudible electrical hum can be detected. Perhaps it is a literal representation of what the author remembers hearing.
This is an awesome offering sets a high standard for this new sub-label. I will quickly mention that the closing untitled track by Remoteband was an excellent choice on behalf of whoever was responsible for the track sequence for this compilation. It makes a great closer that doesn't quite say goodbye, but left me looking forward to MV-2.
Here is the first release of MUZKA VOLN,which is a sub division label of Russian Zhelezobeton and what more auspicious debut album, that to release a compilation Cd ,including 12 of the most representative Russian projects dealing with ambient/drone/minimalistic ambient organisma,creating ghastly, spectral sounds. And it will take us some pages to make references about each one of the acts present in this release. KSHATRIY-with its dense surreal world. EXIT IN GREY-experiment with ethereal sounds as whispers from the other side. HUM-isolationism and frequencies mutating all the time. CISFINITUM-and its astral cosmic voyages in dense loops. ANTHESTERIA-through perpetual acoustic structures coming from a beautiful, melancholic experience. BARDOSENETICCUBE-and its drone based altered state of consciousness. Are just a part of the important artists developed here. The rest of them are: CLOSING ETERNITY, NECROPOLIS, LUNAR ABYSS DEUS ORGAN, INSTANT MOVIE COMBINATIONS, POLARIS and REMOTE BAND. To complete a total of 12 Russian artists developing all their talented and creative spirits for this release. A six panel digipack with grey, white,black colours giving us an idea of what desolation is all about. A perfect representation of ambient/drone acts from the always interesting Russian movement. Remember this release is limited to 500 copies.
St. Petersburg label Zhelezobeton started its sub-label Muzyka Voln and released the drone compilation with the same authentic title. Muzyka Voln presents 12 Russian experimental projects, its general style is formed in ambient manner.
While listening to the second composition "Autumn Dreams" by the project Closing the Eternity, the new horizons for another spaces traveling become visible. The best sounding of this music is at night, in total darkness, when only starts can be seen in the sky - high time to turn off the light and turn up the music. During all our life we rarely met so many releases developing this theme in parallel. For some unknown reason this music at once reminds me of Bill Laswell with dark compilation Divination Distill filled with three-dimensional ambient sketches, though very atmospheric at the same time. There is far more 'atmosphere' on Muzyka Voln and it's absolutely different, you listen to it and in your imagination you move to some desert sea-coast.
New impressions after such a travel are guaranteed - sound waves coming through desert landscapes, through the ruins of huge abandoned plants and factories, if we listen attentively we can hear much... The wind as usual twists the fans of rusty ventilator, it rustles with the divergent metal plates on the roof, and your mood becomes really odd and neglected.
You can easily lose your way among these thematic sketches, they are too faraway and close to reality. Faraway from this and close to that reality. Together with its desert flora and fauna it's somewhere nearby, but not here. The collection of Muzyka Voln's compositions is rather impressive, it was carefully and thoroughly collected. We may point out each of the mentioned projects and examine it in detail, though that's better for you to see and hear it on your own. Nice masterpiece for any musical collection.
"Muzyka Voln" means "Music of the waves" in Russian, so the name of the compilation is pretty romantic. However, the music here is not romantic at all. It is very dark, cold, and very unpleasant. It is Dark Ambient, and nothing peaceful and comfortable. Although the compilation itself is not bad, there are some disappointments. The major disappointment is that these tracks sound very similar to each other, some variety of emotions/styles could certainly help to enjoy this dark trip. But sometimes I caught myself being bored by the same sounds, and furthermore, same IDEAS of these tracks. "In Gedanken an Russisches Drone" is the best track here in my oppinion, as it offers more feelings than other tracks that sound too artificial. Overall, this compilation can't compete with the genre's classics, but for Russian Dark Ambient scene which continues to develop, it is not bad. I can recommend it for anyone who is interested in Russian ambient/experimental. Anyone who seeks something outstanding should probably look elsewhere.
Sticking to the same idea (concept) is called integrity. There are not many compilations (in any genre) that can demonstrate similar integrity in sense of sticking to one mood/style/direction throughout the whole story, which is what makes "Muzyka Voln" being one of the most important musical pieces in my collection. The music itself is sheer quality as well. Dark, droning yet lush atmospheres delivered by every track provide one incredible immersion. It envelops you, draws and leaves no chance to apply any resistance, leaving speechless.
Whoever is in charge for this compilation, this has to be one of the most significant and important things in my musical collection ever and - trust me - one of the best things to happen with Dark Ambient genre in the past several years. Only underground acts like Terra Sancta, Ionosphere (Stellar Winds notably) and other elite ones that deliver similar intelligent depth and immersion can match this. Being an active and devoted listener of electronic music for many years, this means a lot. It means extremely much.
Masterpiece. With big M. It can't get better than that.