Music Reviews

Artist: Rutger Zuydervelt with Ilia Blorukov and René Aquarius
Title: The Red Soul
Format: CD + Download
Label: Sofamusic
“The Red Soul” is the soundtrack album to a documentary of the same name, the film being an attempt to portray the psyche of modern Russia. Zuydervelt offers up a selection of avantgarde sonic atmospheres formed primarily of hums, drones and light arhythmic percussive sounds (from René Aquarius of Dead Neanderthals), diced and sliced with occasional bakelite Stalin recordings, looped sections of folksy old choral recordings and other brief found sounds. On top of this, Ilia Belorukov contributes some very occasional, solitary and breathy saxophone sounds, that flirt with but never fully engage as a melody. In the second half some of the synth tones border on structured electronica, fleetingly.

The single 34-minute piece feels like a series of sketches, no one environment lasting more than a couple of minutes before fading away. Perhaps this is in response to the pictures that it was intended to accompany, but as an audio-only experience it gives it a particularly staccato feel that prevents the listener from getting properly entranced- more like a sampler EP than a fully-formed work, it leaves you wanting more, with in this case is mostly but not wholly a good thing.

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