I have been quite fond of the material that has been released through Zhelezobeton and its sublabel Muzyka Voln; they have been consistently putting out solid dark ambient and experimental works, so I was interested to hear what this release would bring. I was unfamiliar with this project, but the label describes it thus: 'The music of this duet coming from Rostov-on-Don and Moscow combines the elements of dark, often space ambient, post-industrial and power electronics, a collage approach and a dense saturated atmosphere, not relaxing but rather stimulating the listener.' Sounds like a plan.
We enter this disc with ominous, plodding, methodical, slow moving soundscapes. This is what I expected from this label, so when we kicked into 'Class On Dreaming / Ð£ÑÐ¾Ðº Ð¡Ð½Ð°,' I was surprised to hear piano and male vocals that would not sound out of place with Black Tape For a Blue Girl. This then shifts to excellent dark ambient at around 8 minutes. 'Battle Swans' is a remix of themes from Tchaikovsky's 'Swan Lake.' I was very interested to see what Sal Solaris would do with this, since Swan Lake contains my favorite piece of music and if you're going to mess with something as iconic as Swan Lake, you'd better bring your A-game. It was good, but didn't really seem to push the envelope very much. With 'With Me / Ð¡Ð¾ Ð¼Ð½Ð¾Ð¹,' we get some noisy experimental before kicking into a distorted remix of Depeche Mode's 'Rush.' Now I'm no spokesman for Depeche Mode, but I think that they might like what Sal Solaris has done with this, considering the fact that they chose to tour with Nitzer Ebb on their Violator tour. We finish out with more noisy experimental. Overall, this is an interesting compilation of work that demonstrates the variety of Sal Solaris's style. Although it doesn't hang together like a standard studio album would, it makes me want to check out more of their stuff, which is always a good sign for a retrospective of rarities. This album weighs in at around 77 minutes.