Ukrainian Field Notes IX

Beaver by Maryia Oksentiyivna Prymachenko

Episode IX of Ukrainian Field Notes sees us cracking (absurd) jokes with Andrey Kiritchenko, while looking at New Ukrainian Rave Culture courtesy of СПАЛАХ (and yes, the embedded doc comes with English subtitles).

We also sense Poly Chain‘s frustration in trying to convince her family in Kyiv to go to the shelters, and we discuss how war changes everything with SI Process, whose own 21 yo old brother is currently serving in the army.

Lu Joyce and Roma Khropko introduce us to their cats, while dj snork advocates being less reliant on hard drives and Vlad Suppish ponders life as a sine wave or feedback loop, a philosophical question that leads us to ask ourselves who we are. A number of psychotherapists strive to answer just that and unpack the Ukrainian mindset in the embedded documentary (and yes, it comes with English subtitles).

As part of our updates, we wonder around the ghostly AV installation TER.RAIN by Ujif_notfound; we encounter the Amphibian Man in Crimea courtesy of Muscut labelhead Nikolaienko, while Oleh Puzan revisits his back catalogue to celebrate 10 years of Dronny Darko, before joining forces with G M Slater to explore underground soundscapes.

Furthermore, we catch up on brainhack_musicbox and 58918012‘s latest releases and we listen to the new episode from Nina Eba‘s excellent Air Raid Siren podcast dedicated to the city of Kharkiv. For the more club orientated amongst us, there’s S.A. Tweeman‘s podcast brought to us by BCCO.

If that wasn’t enough, we add another 13 fundraising compilations to our ever growing list, with former ACL writer Pie Are Squared contributing his own reworking of a field recording by Stas Teterevlev on Siren Songs. Keep ’em coming, we say!

And when considering donating directly to the charities supported by these compilations, local volunteer organisations operating on the ground are the most effective.

As the Humanitarian Outcomes report by the United Kingdom Humanitarian Innovation Hub indicates, “Most of the aid that Ukrainians have been able to access during the first three months of the crisis has come from informal volunteer efforts. An ‘organic’ humanitarian response, these volunteer groups have sprung up across the country, and especially in areas where fighting has caused dislocation and disruption of daily life.”

Moreover, “Volunteers report that they are ‘burning out’, physically and emotionally, and their financial resources are drying up having gone through ‘everything we had in our own wallets’ and initial donations.”

Isobel Koshiw puts things in perspective in this article, The informal volunteer groups leading Ukraine’s aid effort.

To support Ukraine visit: https://supportukrainenow.org/

 

JUNE 23 2022 – KYIV

Andrey Kiritchenko

Long story short, I’m a musician born in a small village in Kharkiv region, Ukraine. Released quite a few solo albums and collaborations, composed for several documentary and short films, founded and ran a label, founded and ran a festival in Kyiv.

I have a musical family and getting into music was a natural thing for me so I started to make my own songs when I was 14 years old.

I used to love software synths like Reaktor and Max/MSP, but now into hardware synths and I have quite a few of them at home: Roland V-Synth, ASM Hydrasynth, Access Virus TI, Dave Smith Tempest, Elektron Analog Rytm, Elektron Digitone, Korg Wavestate, Waldorf Blofeld, Elektron Oktatrack.

Have you experienced any eureka moments in your artistic development? Also, after completing an album, do you ever think, “I could never do that again?”

Most of my eureka moments happen while trying unusual or new approaches to sound design and composition that I never tried before. When creative ideas come to my mind they sound great inside of my head but not all of them work well when being executed. A lot of cool results were unexpected and not planned in the first place, but I’ve also learned to throw away the garbage.

I don’t know if any of the musicians experience the same feeling but when I listen to my works from the past, sometimes it’s like, “Wow, how did I do this?”

artwork by Denis Koin

You released two albums back in 2021, Feral and Cerebral. Have you been able to work on any new material since the invasion?

To be honest, it’s not an easy time for my creativity. I have very little energy, motivation or inspiration for music. Since February 24th I have completed only one musical piece and that was a work for an Italian project called Stazione Confini. This project is dedicated to railway stations, borders, travels, departures, arrivals and meeting of cultures. My piece was supposed to be a soundtrack for a story by Italian writer Anna Dazzan and it happened to be my musical reflection on the theme of refugees, the people that were forced to leave their homes looking for a shelter abroad. The making of this soundtrack exhausted me, really. But I’m slowly getting back to live and I’m now starting to prepare for future live performances.

What do you remember about February the 24th and how would you say the war has changed both your life and you as a person?

My life will never be the same again. My faith in common sense and the ethical progress of humanity was destroyed. When you see what happened in cities like Bucha or Irpin you realise that many people are not that far from aggressive chimps or even worse, they are basically psychopaths. Ukraine will never be a safe place for many, many years to come and we all need to find our way to live with this.

Have you received many interview requests and offers to appear on fundraising compilations in the immediate aftermath of the invasion and are you afraid that interest in the war is waning?

Indeed, the number of fundraising compilations has decreased this month. But I’m not really a big fan of such fundraising anyway, since Bandcamp and PayPal keep some of that money for themselves and it’s much more effective to raise money for specific purposes for the frontline or humanitarian aid by sending them directly to volunteers. Like many people, I am in my own bubble, where interest in the war has not abated. My relatives are quite close to the front lines, my friends live in towns that are under constant russian artillery fire, civilians are left homeless, many people are dying, and military personnel defending our country are killed. Although I understand that it is difficult for people who live far away and have no friends or relatives in Ukraine to keep their focus on this war all the time. But there’s still a lot of support and I am grateful for all the help we get from people all over the world.

What would you consider the most frequent misconceptions that the West still holds in terms of the Russian invasion?

The West has its reasons, but sometimes it’s amazing how ignorant and narrow minded some of the west politicians can be. Looking at all the atrocities that are happening in Ukraine they want to appease the russian side by giving them what they want. Imagine a police officer letting a criminal cut off the victim’s legs and make him promise to save the victim’s life. That’s not happening in reality, right? We expect police officers to stop the violence against us, to seize a felon and protect our life and our health. Instead of converting the war into a frozen conflict we need to stop it, russian military forces must be withdrawn to recover Ukrainian borders.

I have just finished watching the documentary Нова українська рейв-культура (New Ukrainian Rave Culture) by СПАЛАХ. A few things stood out. At one point Nastia talks about Ukrainians having “a national complex” and details the work it took for the general public to start appreciating Ukrainian producers. With the current wave of national pride, do you believe Ukrainian producers are finally getting their dues, both at home and on the International stage?

With a certain regret I must agree that many Ukrainians have a national inferiority complex and that is not only because of our past with the USSR and our 70 years lag due to the lack of cultural exchange in Soviets’ “iron curtains”. There’s an obvious domination of a western culture in Ukraine. And even with a broader look: science, technology, medicine, jurisprudence, not to mention democracy, all of that came from the west at some point. I guess it’s a natural thing for us to look after and clone what is happening abroad. Hopefully, the cultural clones will not be exactly the same as their originals. Still, I must say we need to pursue a bigger goal and make distinctive cultural products to stand out on the international stage. When all the present attention to Ukraine fades away we must be remembered with a strong and engaging art. The current wave of national pride can help to achieve this goal.

The documentary also makes the point that the comparison made by many Western journalists between Kyiv as the new Berlin was misleading and also suggests that the connection between the revolution and the desire to forget about rave culture was invented by European journalists but that the crisis of those years still affected rave culture and especially the music. How do you view the events of the Orange revolution and Maidan in the light of the current war and what role can music play at present?

Obviously, the war became a main theme of many musical works performed and released these months. People experience a storm of emotions that are sublimated into art, used as a personal statement or used as means of expressing social involvement. But those are not the only effects we experience at the moment. Music is not only a form of art, a self expression but also a manifestation of contemporary social trends and attitudes. The Orange revolution, Maidan and the war are, in my opinion, the consequences of the growth of national consciousness and the desire of our people for an independent existence. There’s now an ongoing serious criticism of those artists who do not condemn the aggression of russia or remain silent on social media. They are deprecating an enormous price we pay to be considered Ukrainians and live in an independent country and as a result their reputation and future musical career in Ukraine is being damaged. The landscape of Ukrainian show business is changing. I can’t say it will change dramatically but it is still worth mentioning.

Finally, the documentary ends on a sobering note with the pandemic threatening the thriving club culture in Ukraine. With the current war raging, what are the prospects for the Ukrainian electronic and experimental music scene?

In general, I’m quite optimistic and look to the future with great hope. When the war is over, I am sure we will have more support for cultural events. This will enable us to create great festivals and cultural events with high quality content and in the long-term perspective will be the ground for cultural progress in Ukraine.

painting by Oleksander Roytburd

Last couple of things, what book / film / artwork / podcast / TV series / landmark / best captures Ukraine for you? And who should I interview next?

My favorite movies are Shadows of Forgotten Ancestors (1964) and Man with a movie camera (1929), poetry by Serhiy Zhadan, plays by Les Podervianskyi, “Cult” – a book by Liubko Deresh, paintings of Oleksandr Rojtburd, Ivan Marchuk [see the embedded documentary on Marchuk at the end of tha article with English subtitles] and beloved Maria Prymachenko.

I’d suggest interviewing Alla Zagaykevych or Georgiy Potopalskiy [Ujif_notfound].

To end on a lighter note, I was listening to a Ukrainian World podcast with Volodymyr Yermolenko the other day, where they talked about Ukrainian humour, amongst other things. Could you tell us a joke that might just work in translation?

There is an absurd one that I like.
 “A task: Two crocodiles are flying. One is green and the other is flying to Africa. Question: How old is the hedgehog?”

 

JUNE 23 2022 – BERLIN

photo by Nastya Platinova

Sasha Zakrevska – Poly Chain

I have been doing music for quite a long time, starting from piano school in early childhood through a rock band and now, here I am, producing tracks and playing around from small cozy clubs and different kinds of festivals, ending in serious galleries.

What are your musical inspirations?

I can talk a lot about inspirations, it was very different over the past few years. Modern classic experimentalists like Hauschka or electronic music punks Prodigy. The main thing was always curiosity.

What is your current studio setup?

Roland TR8S, Prophet08, Deepmind12, Korg Minilogue, another Roland — TB03, a small modular box with Erica black sequencer and a couple of FX. All these things are going to MOTU mk3 soundinterface to my laptop for a final touch.

What do you consider the most important aspect of your sound?

Bass. Sic Snaredrum. Melodies out of space.

Dogtooth by Poly Chain – Artwork by Bartosz Zaskórski, design by Sasha Zakrevska

Have you had any “Eureka!” moments in your musical journey and was there a moment when you thought you had finally found your “voice”?

I guess I have eureka moments with all my instruments, especially when they’ve just arrived and we have our first couple of dates. About the voice — look at the above answers.

What do you consider your most memorable live set and what is the secret of a successful live?

I prefer satisfying over success. Hope the most memorable one is somewhere in the near future.

How would you describe the electronic and experimental music scene in Kyiv in relation to neighbouring countries (I know you spent time in Warsaw, for instance) and have clubs like and parties likes Veselka succeeded in creating a more inclusive and safer space?

I had ups and downs with ∄. It happens in this business also, just like in any other field. I hope they’re all fine and I hope to see them back in our hometown throwing events.

As for Veselka — it is a very well made project and party. I really liked the episode in Kyiv River Port, a very cool building as well. And the night with Herrenssuna, when Héctor Oaks played a long vinyl set alone in the end (there was some issue with flights for two other participants I guess) in Kyiv’s club Otel. It was a very good set and crowd that night.

I also love the Georgian scene. They are into electro as much as I, and the local Kyiv scene.

photo by Nastya Platinova

You have relocated to Berlin after the Russian invasion of February 24. What were the  biggest challenges you faced, getting out of Ukraine, getting a visa, finding accommodation or any other?

Fighting russia is as challenging  as asking your relatives, who have lived in the capital for five generations, to go to a shelter.

I am a small person with little physical strength and no military skills. It feels a bit useless at times, so I better keep representing Ukrainian culture, which I did for the past 7 years abroad, and keep donating to the army and volunteers.

Other things are just a small episode. Shoutout to all the people who offered me and my close ones a place to stay in this challenging moment.

Aside from relocation, how would you say the war changed you and what impact has it had on your life and that of your loved ones?

I am alive and I love it. That’s enough.

Artwork & layout by Paulina Ufnal & Janek Ufnal (with elements of Larry Cuba’s Calculated Movements)

What would you say are the common misconceptions that the West still holds in relation to Ukraine and the Russian invasion?

My job is to make music, not to educate the West. But it looks like I have to add an extra fee for the lectures.

You recently played at the Unsound Ephemera festival, amongst others. How would you say the International festival scene has reacted to the war and have they been doing enough to support artists from Ukraine?

I played at Unsound 4 times before and the first time on Ephemera. It was very nice to see so many friends and get so much support. Feels like some people really came to see me doing my thing.

The Polish scene in general is very supportive since Poland came through the communist regime and was also threatened by russia recently (same as the Baltic countries). What I saw and the vibe I felt from the crowd around me was very warm. I would like to connect on that level even more in the future.

How Deep is the Black Sea and do you still feel like a tourist in your hometown?

The Black Sea is the only thing which can save me from my physical ailments. So you can only imagine how much of a tourist I feel everywhere.

What book / film / podcast / TV series / blog / artwork / meme best describes Ukraine for you?

Mariupolis 1 and 2 by Mantas Kvedaravičius, the Lithuanian film director who was murdered by russian soldiers in Mariupol. “Bucha 22” also will be out soon.

 

JUNE 24 2022 – KYIV

photo by Gennadiy Chernomashintsev

SI Process

I have been making music all my entire life. At the age of 11 my parents let me go into musical school to take percussion classes. That was the start of my path in music.  The most important milestones in my career are  jazz core trio DOK and VGNVJ band, where I play at this moment.

I became passionate about electronic music and the idea of making an electronic solo project some years ago.

SI Process project is the process of my interaction with the world. My debut EP Signals was launched in 2020. After the launch I was working on the transformation of studio materials into a powerful/strong concert live sound. That is how the concept of the synergy between electronic sound with the live organic power of drums was born.

In August 2021 I performed my project for the first time during Brave! Factory Festival in Kyiv and continue to do it. My live set-up is my studio. It consists of laptop, sound card, midi keyboard, vintage monitors, triggers and drums set. From the beginning of the year, I became an official endorser of Paiste cymbals and Ableton.

photo by Alexander Dobrev

You’ve released EP/2 on Salon Imaginalis, the second part in an intended trilogy. Could you talk us through the making of the album and the way you went about scheduling its release, since it was already completed by January? Also, will the sound on part 3 be influenced in any way by the current situation?


First versions of these tracks I performed during my debut on Brave! Festival in 2021. By the way, on my YouTube channel some live versions are available. Launch of EP/2 we planned with Salon Imaginalis prior to the Boiler Room performance in Kyiv in March 2022, where I was invited. Unfortunately, the event was cancelled. I have no doubts that it will be held after our victory in free Ukraine.

All this time I feel the irrelevance of this launch, but in 3 months I realised that all I have is this concrete moment, and this is my weapon now. I need to do it and go further. I started the work before the war and continued in May, when I felt again that I have internal resources and need to continue doing my job.

For sure the war influence is reflected a lot on the final sound of this album.

photo by Yuri Gryaznov

How would you say the war changed you and what impact has it had on your life and that of your loved ones?

War kills the ability to think about the future. You can live only in the moment, which is now. I left my house after a week spent in the shelter in Kyiv, with the aim to evacuate my 6 yo daughter and my wife to the Western part of Ukraine, where it was supposed to be safer. But in 3 days, a small town where we were located was shelled by several missiles, we felt it to the fullest, again spending the night in the shelter. After this you understand that you can’t postpone things you want to do. My younger brother who is 21 years old is fighting for Ukraine now in our great Army of heroes. The war changes everything.

Are you still in Kyiv and what is the current situation on the ground?

Yes, I am in Kyiv. The city is alive and continues fighting for the bright future of our country. I wonder how deft we all can be, we are used to aid raid sirens, people continue doing their daily tasks despite constant danger. Last month was quite calm, but just 2 weeks ago I personally saw a rocket under my house which exploded 5km from my home. So, everything is unpredictable, there are no safe places in Ukraine.

 

photo by Alexander Dobrev

How would you describe the electronic music scene in Kyiv and Ukraine in general?


Unfortunately, all the representatives of the UA electronic scene I know, instead of planning full scale concerts and releases, need to be volunteers, and fundraise to help people in need, or they join the Army. But we all are acting as one organism (system), with the only aim to help our country win the war.

Musicians are donating proceeds from their releases, and my release has the same aim, so I am very grateful to all who are buying the album on BandCamp.

I am confident that after the war there will be a lot of interest in UA music and artists, so we will all meet again at concerts in a free Ukraine.

You’ve done a few remixes, who would you like to tackle now?


Remix is for me a special process to re-think the initial idea of the author. You are trying to find in it the space for your thoughts. There is a certain mystery in it. My first remix was done for the amazing DakhaBrakha, after this I was asked to create the remix for the band from Estonia – TradAttack. Also I created a remix for Ukrainian singer ONUKA, I hope you will hear it soon. I am open for any experiments with different musicians.

photo by Alexander Dobrev

You will be performing in Estonia at the Treski Festival on August 13. How did this come about and have rules changed to allow artists to travel abroad to perform or were you already abroad when the invasion happened? Also, do you believe international festivals are doing enough to support artists from Ukraine?

This festival is organised by Jalmar Vabarna, the participant of TradAttack band. I am very thankful to him for this invitation and support. This is a great opportunity to tell the world about Ukraine, show our culture and financially support the country. That is why the Ministry of Culture allows Ukrainian artists to cross the border for a limited number of days with obligatory return for sure to be ready for mobilisation in case it will be needed.

It is difficult to speak of the support of international festivals. In my case it is more about personal relationships with great people from different countries, who want to help. I would be glad to perform more concerts abroad to support my country, that is why I am searching for a booker agent.

What would you say are the most common misconceptions Westerners have of the war and of Ukraine in general?

Thanks for this very important question. The biggest misconception of Westerners is that the peace agreement between Ukraine and Russia is still possible. Russia lost any credibility forever. Its mind is thick and corrupted. The history is cyclical and proved it several times. Google Bucha, read about Mariupol and there are a lot of places like these in Ukraine now. They destroyed whole cities, they disappeared after russian bombs. A peace agreement will let them accumulate resources to make another fight round. That is why russia should be cut from all civilised world, it should be ignored mentally and economically with full RU oil embargo.

Ukraine is perceived and known more for its courage and ability to fight, but we don’t want to be in a constant war, we want to develop our country in other aspects, as we have a lot of other things to be proud: culture, agriculture, history, IT sector, etc.

A lot of Ukrainians are losing their lives on the front line, not even being professional soldiers. We fight for our land, our homes and the future of our children and our normal life, which was stolen. That is why we should be united with all the world to fight against a terrorist country.

What book / film / animation / artwork / joke / podcast / TV series / traditional dish / landmark best capture Ukraine for you?

Polk Azov.

 

JUNE 28 2022 – ODESA

Lu Joyce

Before I started doing electronic music, I was interested in folk music, if you can call it that, in particular, American primitive guitar (there is a collection of John Fahey vinyl records) where I first encountered alternative guitar tunings. Also interested in the Velvet Underground Proto Punk scene, Niko, Syd Barrett and colder music like Scott Walker. Later, the attention turned to ambient (I really like what the Home Normal label releases, also the new Italian scene by Giulio Aldinucci, Fabio Orsi, Andrea Belfi).

You’ve used modular synthesisers, electric guitar and tape reels in your work. What is your current studio setup and what would you say is the most important aspect of your sound?

At the moment my studio uses: electric guitars (Fender Jazzmaster, Silvertone U1) they are either used in tape loops or I play them in real time while recording;  Modular synthesizers; and a Nagra 4.2 reel-to-reel tape recorder where I record all the material. The most important aspect of the sound for me is the tuning of a guitar or a synthesizer, I think that the tuning is the heart of the track and it gives the main emotions, although there are tracks where fine detailing of random sound events is based

photo by Oleksandr Proletarskyi

You’ve just released a new album, Sisyphus, on Corridor Audio, not long after Misternal, also released by Corridor Audio. What can you tell us about the new album and has the war had any effect on the way you’ve shaped its sound and concept?

Sisyphus was being written before russia invaded Ukraine and started bombing our cities. Initially, this album is based on the Myth of Sisyphus by Albert Camus and my subjective attitude towards it, my memories from my youth. The only objective track Never Forget Us was written in a sense of the inevitability of war, it is like a prayer and a spell, there is no request in it, but there is a firmness of faith.

You are also part of Rudnic Ore together with Oleksandr Khodosevych. Are you working on new material?

Rudnic Ore has started recording an EP at the moment (because all the members have financial difficulties, we are at the stage of accumulation of material).

photo by Oleksandr Proletarskyi

How would you describe the electronic and experimental music scene in Odesa and Ukraine, both in terms of labels and venues, and how can you see it developing in present circumstances?

There are few venues for experimental music in Odesa, I can single out the underground club More Music Club, and the Muzeon experimental center (unfortunately, it has closed at the moment), there used to be a great place for experimental events in St. Paul’s Cathedral, this was done by Valeria Vinogradova. Of the labels in Odesa, I only know Khatacomb.

Are you still in Odesa and what is the current situation on the ground? I have also read that some people still go for a swim in spite of the mines. Is that something you miss?

I have been constantly in Odesa since the beginning of the war, a couple of times I left the city when I took journalists to Nikolaev, when I went to Kyiv to present Sisyphus on Gasoline Radio, and when I went to commemorate a friend who died in the war (I don’t wish such an experience on anyone).

As for the sea and beaches, I don’t want to see the sea right now, the sea that is at war. In the first month of the war, I loaded sand on the beach, which was then transported to barricade the city, only then did I see the sea.

 

photo by Oleksandr Proletarskyi

How difficult have you found it to listen to new material after February 24 and to produce new music?

Since the 24th, I have not listened to new music, and music in general. New material, when you write it, is more concise and strict. After any explosion, for a couple of days you don’t want to sit down and play your instruments, same as when you find out about the shelling of civilians…

Is the international music community doing enough to support artists from Ukraine?

I see support in the music community. For example, the label Sideline provided financial support to Ukraine and our project Rudnic Ore, there was also support from The Quietus. Constant support from the dub producers community.

What book / film / podcast / TV series / blog / artwork / meme / design work / traditional dish / best describes Ukraine for you?

What describes it personally for me is: Mikhail Kotsiubinsky‘s book Intermezzo; film Shadows of Forgotten Ancestors by Parajanov; a country road, a willow over the water by the river.

Who should I interview next?

Splinter UA; Friedensreich

 

JUNE 29 2022 – KYIV

Roma Khropko

I was born in Kyiv and have lived here almost all my life. I was raised with a love of knowledge and all kinds of arts except music, because none of my family members was ever involved in music, or played any instrument. So I started discovering this world of sounds only after 16. Then one day I went to a music shop and bought a guitar and swore to myself that I would be the next Jimmy Hendrix and practice every single day no matter what, even if I have just a few minutes for that.

Actually I was doing that for 5-6 years and then I discovered different DAWs and brought my ideas to the next level. I was always learning everything by myself. That’s a pretty long and hard way to go about it, but as a result you build a good system of knowledge in your mind.

My cat checking if all the channels have the right gain level

You equate music to mathematics and you view the practice of making music as problem solving. What gives a sense that you’ve finally cracked a problem? In other words what makes a track work for you and what is the most important aspect of your sound?

I would say that composition (music, literature, art…) is something like an equation. Even better to say that your idea of composition is an equation that could be simple or complex and contains some X, Y that you need to find, so that your equation will look good and will be equal to 1.

For example we can look at some usual ways of producing electronic music. You are making different patterns for different instruments. The number of patterns and instruments that you used could be those Xs and Ys in your “equation”. And if you made everything right, on the arranging stage you will probably see how easily and beautifully your composition is developing through the timeline.

Sometimes you just need to change the order of patterns and your music becomes more “readable” for the listener.

Another example could be the situation when you have finished the track but you still feel that it is pretty complex and not so “beautiful” as it could be.  So you need to make it more simple for the brain of the listener. I also imagine the computer in our head that reads the “code” of the track. So that “code” should be simple and optimised like in a good application, that’s why sometimes you need to delete some even good instruments, parts, patterns  to keep the whole idea simple and nice.

I would rather say that all those Rhythm Equations releases are something like composition exercises.

I gave you just a very brief and simple vision of this connection between mathematics and music.

I am pretty sure that there are already some cool works about this topic. Hope I will have enough time and enthusiasm to discover that more in the future.

How would you describe the electronic and experimental music scene in Kyiv and Ukraine, both in terms of labels and clubs, and how can you see it developing in present circumstances?

The quality of the scene is really great. We have dozens of people who “swear” to this kind of art and try to develop the culture in all possible ways. We have a pretty developed club and experimental scene. Dozens of artists were regularly playing all over the world and we have a lot of names that are well known abroad.

But the problem is that we have a very small market. So if you are a musician, sometimes there can be some problems with the income.

“Supply” is a little bit higher than “demand”.

But as you may know we have got a few already legendary places and events here. I mean some clubs and some festivals. Thousands of tourists were coming back here to have a good time.

Nowadays the scene is frozen (at least from my point of view). You can still find regular parties in western part of Ukraine (mostly in Lviv). That part of the country is pretty far from the war zones. Of course there is still the danger of rocket shelling but the reality shows that people need to relax anyway (this is also an interesting and big topic to be discussed).

In Kyiv we also have some pretty big events once every few weeks, but I would say that most of them are focused on art in the present situation. There are photo exhibitions, lectures, films, performances connected with the current war. Among them there are always some DJ floors with ambient and experimental music, which helps spreading those music genres. Also, a lot of new young artists can find themselves and make good performances in these conditions.

Apart from that you can still find some parties in small clubs. They are not so public, because there are different opinions in society about how people should spend their leisure time nowadays. But at all these parties you can usually  find a few military personnels who came to listen to the music. (But I haven’t met anyone who came from hot spots and the frontline, and wanted to go to such events. It would be interesting to find out their opinion). But from some facebook posts written by the people who are on a frontline, we can see that they are not so bothered with that at all. Actually, they are fighting for peace and for the future, so people can be happy again and continue to live their normal lives (I think that would also be a good topic to develop. I mean the attitude of people to different things during the war).

And don’t forget that we have a curfew from 23:00 till 05:00. So most of the events are over by 21:00.

And it is also important to mention that all those events always collect donations for our armed forces or volunteer organisations.

Where are you at present and have you been displaced by the war at any point?

I am in Kyiv right now. I got back here at the beginning of April. Before that I spent most of the time in Lviv. I would say that my friends and I got there more by accident than design.

As you may know, even a few weeks before the war most of the people didn’t believe that all of this would happen, even if everyone was still living with a great feeling of anxiety already from January. I was sure that there would not be a war, but there could be some massive attacks from russia. So I decided that it would be better to move to Berlin for a few months and come back when the situation stabilised. My thoughts were also shared by my friends, girlfriend, and Vlad (my mate from Criminal Practice group). So when the war began we were ready to leave immediately. But the borders were closed in the evening of the first day of the invasion, and we had to find some place to stay. Luckily for us, we had a lot of friends from the music community in western Ukraine who were happy to put us up.

How would you say the war changed you and what impact has it had on your life? Has it changed your relationship to time and space? Are you able to sleep, do you still watch the news compulsively, are you subject to triggering sounds?

It has definitely changed the relationship to life. I have understood more clearly how some mechanisms work in our world. I have lost most of my dreams at the beginning. But that is also a good chance to refresh the mind and to start dreaming from scratch. Find yourself again and understand what you can do for Ukrainian people and around the world.

I would say that me and most of the people here are still feeling ok (mostly it depends on personality psyche), because humans can accommodate nearly everything. I hope we will all be able to return easily to better condition too.

I was going to say that mostly I can’t be triggered by sounds, but while I was writing these lines, a massive thunder rumbled  in the sky (it is a warm sunny day outside, 2 p.m.). So yes, at first it made me think that there was an explosion near me. Fortunately it was nature.

You’ve contributed to @Mystictrax‘s latest fundraising compilation in favour of Hospitallier with a track recorded in Lviv with air raid sirens sounding in the background. What can you tell about this particular track and the way it came about? Also, how do you feel in general about the number of fundraising compilations out there?

While I was in Lviv, one girl was  moving to Europe and stayed at our apartment for a few days. I gave her my recorder, so she could have some fun, record the city, sounds and so on. She also recorded some poetry reading. I used one of them on that track.

I remember how I saw her at the back of the room, with a recorder and headphones, whispering something to the device. And then suddenly the raid alarm started ringing. So it was naturally recorded in the background. To be honest, I am totally against adding such trigger sounds to tracks, but in this case it was so natural and happened at the right moment. I would say that this is how real art could come into the world. At least everything there is real. I had an idea to make some “intro” track (or call it whatever you want), and when I used those poem readings, I was happy how they fit with the music, and awakened some emotions.

I can’t say a lot about this kind of compilations. They are not on my radar at present. But it’s definitely a great thing. In some way they are showing to the world our union against evil.

Criminal Practice -[left to right – Roma, Vlad (Ghetto Sunrise), Vlad (Hopper Field)]

You also run Criminal Practice together with ghetto sunrise and Hopper Field. Now that showcases are allowed again, what are the plans for the label and how does it feel to be playing live sets again?

We have finished our fourth release and it will be published in a few weeks I hope.

I played only once at a small event. It was pretty nice, but I was feeling in some way empty insiede. I don’t have much to say to listeners with a DJ set at the moment. So I’m turning down all the invitations right now. Or I would rather say that I don’t want to share my current emotions with listeners, I think they deserve something more positive from a DJ set at present. But I am sure this will not last long and I that I will found a solution.

We also can’t play as Criminal Practice at the moment, because one of our members was  already abroad when the war started, which means we are temporarily separated. But thanks to digitalisation we can keep things going.

How difficult have you found it to listen to new material after February 24 and to produce new music?

I made a pause with producing for a few months, and focused more on finishing previous projects, and  improving technical skills. So when I’ll get back to work I want my music to be on the next level. I could say that everything that I have made before was some kind of training for me before the real work.

I stopped listening to music after February 24, but now this desire is coming back.

Is the international music community doing enough to support artists from Ukraine?

It is hard to answer from here.

I don’t really know in which way the community should support us. I would be happy if someone from foreign countries just asked me how we are doing here, that is a good attention gesture. Also, it’s really great that you are interviewing people from Ukraine like me in such a way. So I think that the support is reaching us in some way. And I am thankful for that.

What book / film / podcast / TV series / blog / artwork / meme / design work / traditional dish / best describes Ukraine for you?

The Russian-Ukrainian War Compass.

But I have an even better example. Few days ago one сharity foundation started the campaign to collect 500 million hryvnias ( ~ 16 million in USD) to buy 3 UAV fighters “Bayraktar” to help Ukrainian Air Forces. Ukrainians  donated more than 600 millions hryvnias in three days.

I think this describes how people are united byt the will to stop aggression and defend our land.

(By the way, the manufacturer found out about the campaign, and gave those UAV for free. Second slide here.)

 

JULY 1 2022 – FASTIV

Vladlen Mytianskiy – Vlad Suppish

My real name is Vladlen Mytianskiy, I’ve been making music since 2008 under the moniker Vlad Suppish and haven’t changed it since. That’s where ‘continuous sound entity’ in the artist description came from.

I’m a self-taught musician, and have no academic music education. It started under the influence of Sean Deigh, he was searching for musicians for his band Batcave 13. I agreed to try it out as a keyboardist and that’s basically how it started. My passion for synthesizers and synthesis was only growing through time.

Concerning early influences – they were numerous. From old school post-punk and gothic rock to ‘Berlin school of electronic music’ (especially Klaus Schulze, my grandpa is a fan, introduced me to his music when I was a kid and I’m hooked ever since), dark ambient and drone music (Lustmord, raison d’être) and even progressive rock (occasionally listening to King Crimson & Van der Graaf Generator even now).

And Sean’s music of course. Also, he made me realise that it’s possible to make good music with minimal technical means.

March 2022, Fastiv. That’s more or less how Bergamot Lyre was recorded

What is your current studio setup and what would you say is the most important aspect of your sound?

Currently it’s mostly a eurorack modular setup, relatively small but efficient. Hence I know every module quite thoroughly and the possibilities still seem endless.

I’m adding some software once in a while but it’s more for the studio environment, to keep myself on the edge learning something new and adding it to my sonic vocabulary.

The most important aspect in my music is atmosphere. Which is created by timbres and textures. A cinema for the ears – that’s probably the thing I’m trying to achieve with my sound.

solo live at Plivka, around 2017-18

How would you describe the electronic and experimental music scene in Kyiv, both in terms of labels and venues, and how can you see it developing in present circumstances?

That’s a VAST topic for discussion. Lots to say here really, lotta great artists, labels and venues. Mystictrax/Noneside records, Systema, Kashtan, 20ft Radio, Subself records and the MachineRoom community/store, venues like Collider, 2C1B, Keller bar – those are first that came to my mind but there are a lot more labels and venues really.

Concerning our present circumstances, I’m expecting for the old ones to grow and new initiatives to appear (Gasoline Radio is the most notable example for me now). When the war will cease a bit – it will be noticeable. When Ukraine will win – even more so.

Batcave 13, October 2010, Inna, Sean and me

You are from Bucha and you were there when Russia invaded, while your girlfriend was in Irpin. From there you managed to flee to Kyiv and you are now in Fastiv, but you have been back to the area. What would you say is the percentage of destruction in terms of both housing and infrastructure and what is the current situation on the ground?

Important clarification first – I was with my girlfriend in Irpin almost the whole time since February 24. I was riding my bicycle between Irpin and Bucha for the first week but all hell broke loose pretty quickly and me and my girlfriend had to leave Irpin as fast as we could.

Yes, I was in Irpin and Bucha after deoccupation a few times already. Irpin was hurt real bad, the scale of destruction is much worse than in Bucha. But I must remind that Irpin was the town that wasn’t captured and the Ukrainian army there held the ground and stopped the enemy’s advance to Kyiv.

Bucha train station photo by Leonid Andronov

Has the local population been able to resume their everyday life? And is the monument to Bulgakov still standing and is the train station still operative? And have you been able to process those events?

The current situation is stable but a lot of houses and infrastructure are still in ruins. Slowly but steadily people are rebuilding it and normal everyday life is back. Not like it was before the war apparently but some wounds need time to heal.

The train station is still operational but with fewer trains. And I don’t know about the current situation with Bulgakov’s monument. I’ll visit it when I’m next in the vicinity.

And yes, I’m able to process all the events now. Time heales.

February 4, 2022, my last live at ‘Reunion’ party, Collider, Kyiv. It was my 33rd birthday and everything was great

How would you say the war changed you and what impact has it had on your life?

The war changed everything for me very suddenly. In hindsight the impact was (and is) very much Ballardian. The thin veil of quotidian that fell abruptly and showed raw, harsh and naked reality. Under peaceful circumstances that’s the great process that makes me re-evaluate reality and reinvent myself. When it’s war, the price that Ukrainian people have to pay is too high. And this knowledge makes me really sad sometimes. But not desperate. And I’m quite optimistic now, even more than before the war.

You have released new material since February 24 and you’ve produced a “making of” video for Bergamot Lyre. This is a track you’ve dedicated to your friend Sean Deigh who passed away from cancer at the age of 27, eight years ago.

You have included the sounds of explosions from Irpin using them as beats. Was that a subconscious way of exorcising this type of sound? And where does your inner urge to spread knowledge come from?

It was mostly a conscious way of doing things, albeit I wasn’t planning everything initially. Controlled random (or random under will) – that’s the best short description of what I’ve managed to achieve with Bergamot Lyre.

And that inner urge to spread knowledge is something that I like to do for most of my life. From sharing ‘fatality’ combinations in Mortal Kombat to making a workshop about modular synthesis last year at V:Uncase residency.

May 2022, recent jam with MachineRoom, back to modular, met my friends again, wondering what will come next

You have taken part in a few fundraising compilations. How do you feel about them in general?

In general I feel good about them, of course. That’s awesome when my music finds its place and makes some money for our victory. Music is a kind of weapon too.

Is the international music community doing enough to support artists from Ukraine?

At the beginning of the war – more than enough. But as time goes by the amount of support is dwindling. That is a normal process, people are people and can be tired, especially when it seems that it’s never enough and nothing helps to end this nightmare. But I don’t like thinking in quantities. As well as nitpicking and counting all the curses and blessings is not my cup of tea. Everything starts with small amounts. Every little bit helps, thanks a lot to everyone who helped and are still trying to support Ukraine.

Batcave 13 live, 2010

Is life more like a Sine Wave or a Feedback Loop?

That’s a good question, thanks! It made me think for a bit but the answer is in the order of tracks on ‘Life Shrugs and Waves’. First it’s a sine – a basic waveform from which all other waves are coming. Including feedback loop. And life during war resembles the sine wave even more than before. But the speed with which good and bad news are changing one another now resembles more an audio rate modulation with a sine wave.

How do you unwind?

I’m avoiding doom scrolling in every possible way – talking with my girlfriend and cats (also patting them, playing with them or rather they play me, but it helps to unwind every time), patching my modular system and doesn’t record anything (but sometimes I press rec when something interesting is brewing here), reading books and comics (Neil Gaiman’s The Sandman was particularly good choice for it), playing video games sometimes and often walking in small cozy towns like Fastiv. Waiting for return to Bucha, I still have my bicycle there, riding it is really good for unwinding too.

Irpin by Natasha le

What book / film / podcast / TV series / blog / artwork / meme / design work / traditional dish / best describes Ukraine for you?

Book – Ivan Nechuy-Levytsky ‘Kaidash’s family’ + there’s a TV series on it.

Film – ‘Who are we? Psychoanalysis of Ukrainians‘.
Really nice documentary, can’t but recommend to anyone who wants to know more about recent history of Ukraine and our people’s mentality.

Artwork – Ukrainian cities as warrior girls by Natasha le.
Very powerful art series on Instagram. Konotop, Chornobayivka and Irpin are my favourites.

Meme – ‘in Ukraine we don’t say’.
It’s funny because it’s true.

Traditional dish – borsch with lard and garlic bread [the ‘Culture of Ukrainian borscht cooking’ has now been inscribed on the List of Intangible Cultural Heritage in Need of Urgent Safeguarding by Unesco]. It may seem like a cliché, but damn it can be delicious. A tasty teleport to my childhood.

Who should I interview next?

I’d recommend Andrey Sirotkin – great Ukrainian soundproducer, DJ, my friend and a great person overall. I think he has a lot to say and even more great music to play.

 

JULY 7 2022 – KYIV

Konstantin Kotov – dj snork

I’m a Ukrainian graphic and sound designer. In the past – I had some experience in event promotion, sound engineering, artist hosting, booking etc.  Nowadays I’m running an ID studio called ratx.cc and also, curating a Kyivan community called ejekt – a group of djs, sound designers/engineers, musicians, and other enthusiasts of the Ukrainian exp music scene.

What is your current studio setup? And what do you consider the most important aspect of your sound?

The circumstances of life in wartime force you to be ready to leave your city/home/apartment at any moment and, possibly, never return to your home again. All this goes against the classic concept of a “music studio” and its setup in general. I won’t say it’s new to me as I was “lucky” to have a similar experience far earlier before the war started. At the same time, for me it is very important qualitatively strives to achieve the same sound that in an acoustically prepared room, having good monitoring and using hardware. It all goes back many years, when, at the very beginning of my career as a producer, I used to have “adventures” with my laptops – they broke, burned, sank, etc. all the time. But thanks to such circumstances, I learned to work without being tied to specific hardware or resources (such as any software or sound samples). That’s why I try to store more in my head and less on my hard drive.

Have you had any “Eureka!” moments in your musical journey and was there a moment when you thought you had finally found your “voice”?

I don’t find any approach is truly correct, it’s extremely short-sighted to rely on chance or luck. I suppose to be more inclined towards the concept when you increase skill day after day year after year by working a lot and struggling hard. There’s no know-how, but if you know what you’re doing, there is no need for luck with it.

 

You also curate the label ejekt and have released one of the most distinctive, cohesive, and compact fund-raising compilations. How is the label run, what are its plans for the future, and how do you feel about the number of fundraising compilations currently out there?

Initially, ejekt was planned as an event series. We had our own venue, technical carte-blanche, a lot of enthusiasm, and a desire to educate and develop the local club scene. It was a golden time. Since then a lot has happened, and this could not leave an imprint on us, so the project was on hold. Only when social activity completely sank to zero due to the pandemic, I realized that is the right time to move all activity to the web and continue them virtually.

There is no need to talk about any long-term plans until we win this war. But if we talk about short-term plans, then we have several releases planned before the end of the year, the nearest of which is my LP which comes out on 1st August but is already available for presale, so you can support us directly, by preordering it at our Bandcamp.

BTW, we transfer 1/3 of all income on all our releases to the comebackalive foundation.

You also work at ratx.cc, a Ukrainian identity studio, that designs all the artwork for your label. Do you see your practice at the intersection of graphic and sound design?

Actually, I’m co-running it with my partner Ira Kravets, it’s like a family business, kind of… hehe.

I always was more into graphics, so creating a standalone design studio has always been a matter of time. It also answers why all ejekt visuals were curated by me, from the beginning. Although now I try to delegate more. But, you know, it’s like a baby, parents know best about its needs. So the delegating process goes by small steps, will see how it goes then…

How would you describe the electronic and experimental music scene in Kyiv and how can you see it developing in present circumstances?

Everyone is in places, fighting on their fronts, as every Ukrainian does. So I’d better do more and speak less about it… All I want to mention is that the local scene is still too young to make any conclusions.

Are you currently in Kyiv and did you stay there throughout?

I was out of Kyiv for the first month of the war, and even tried to keep working on the studio’s graphic projects and also resume composing sound for ads, it was very unproductive and every day felt like a groundhog day. So coming back to my motherland meant a lot to me, I was so happy with it, no matter that it was dangerous to be back here because fighting still took place on the city outskirts. I even remember that first day in Kyiv: the sky was black from smoke that turned day into night, explosions were very loud and were from all sides, but I was so calm and relaxed… I’m home.

How would you say the war changed you and what impact has it had on your life and your practice?

It became clear to me why to live at all, what is the fundamental value, what goals to set for myself, and even what language to speak.
How important it is to always remain human and help everyone, whatever happens around us. To appreciate every day, with its little joys and challenges.

How difficult did you find it to listen to music and produce new material after February 24?

It takes a few weeks to get back to the usual processes regarding sound des, but only in commerce scape not at my own projects. Producing sound design is less emotional and more about following some function. It depends on the emotional landscape around you. So when concernity escalates (for example when the risk of rocket shelling highly increased in the last few days in Kyiv, and everyone around is stressed), you feel it and can’t ignore it. Also, working with headphones on is still very complicated, because to feel safe, you need to hear what is happening on the street all the time – not the worst effect of PTSD…

What book / film / podcast / TV series / blog / artwork / meme / design work / traditional dish / best describes Ukraine for you?

Our nation and its deeds describe the country.

And finally, who should I interview next?

I prefer to recommend my all-time fav from Pepgaffe collective such as Artem Illin aka TofuDJ and also Vlad Bergman from a sound design studio called audiodrag.ws. Both of them are working on a documentary about war, so they might have some stories to reveal.

[All photos by Konstantin Kotov]

 

UPDATES

TER.RAIN – Ujif_notfound

“TER.RAIN
AV Installation

The work was created before all these events that changed us.
It is connected in one way or another with death, which has now settled among us. Initially, the work was dedicated to cities, their abstract geometric component, as a graphic abstract interpretation, but over time it acquired a different tragic meaning. Many cities have become ghosts. Cemetery. A living monument to death, despair, injustice. The events that brought so much grief at the same time sobered and rallied, giving a vivid contrast between good and evil.
No one has the right to encroach on the main human right – freedom.

Glory to Ukraine.”

 

Amphibian Man II

For fans of 50s sci-fi and cold war paranoia, this release by Nikolaienko, is a gift of an album tackling the Amphibian Man, the 1960s film adaptation of the novel by Soviet writer Alexander Beliaev, originally published in 1928. The film recorded 65 million ticket sales becoming one of the most admired movies in the USSR. Filmed in Crimea, it now takes on new layers of meaning in its “beauty and the beast” conceit mixed with themes of exploitation and physical survival.

As conceived by the author, the music is a soundtrack for the non-existing sequel had it been filmed in 2084, with house, techno and dub variations on two tracks.

 

10 Years of Dronny Darko

When I first started researching the experimental music scene in Ukraine at the time of the Revolution of Dignity, Dronny Darko was already a distinctive presence having emerged fully fledged two years previously. It wasn’t long before he was promoted to the Cryo Chamber roster. This retrospective album shows an artist consistently honing his craft over the course of a decade, but rather than going for the highlights, Oleh Puzan showcases the full palette of his trademark Dronny Darko sound through remixes and collaborations. This is an album that feels both familiar and distinctive at the same time.

 

Dissolving Into Solitary Landscapes – Dronny Darko & G M Slater

“The global climate repair project of 2036 was a success in that it united warring countries, ended droughts, and cooled the planet. Unfortunately our celebrations and achievements were short-lived, as we discovered the increasing toxicity in the perpetual rains it caused. Within two years we were all forced underground to escape certain extinction. My beautiful world was gone, and replaced with complete artificiality, the incessant roaring of air filtration systems, and daily fights for sustenance. For the young children growing up in this new environment this has all become normal, but for those like me who remember what used to be, life is no longer tolerable. I have tried to adjust for five years now, but I hear the ringing of the infinity bell more loudly each day, beckoning me back to the surface. I know that the journey will result in a slow withering death, but I am ready. It is now my time to rejoin what is left of the nature I so loved, and dissolve into the solitary landscape. Remember me.

-Martin Ratliff, 2043”

 

A Spot 58918012

It’s not the first time that Yurii Popov finds himself in a forest dark. Previous works like Needle Tip (March 2022) already hinted at the more abrasive side of Popov’s ambient project 58918012. From the opening bars of A Spot, it now becomes clear that the “straightforward pathway” has been lost. The meditative quality and lighter tones of Different Colours (April 2022) have dissipated to reveal “this forest savage, rough, and stern, which in the very thought renews the fear”.

To confront the events of the past few months, Popov crosses the Acheron in a dark and desolate journey that feels far from resolved, but acts a necessary step in a quest for a more luminous future.

 

Phase II brainhack_musicbox

Back in March, Stanislav Bobrytsky only just made it out of a ravaged Irpin and has been trying to make sense of his experience ever since. Working on his own and with a reduced studio setup, he’s now released his second EP, produced just two months after the invasion. Whereas the previous album On Fire was an alloy of irregular beats, floating tempos, harsh timbres, angular melodies and atonal harmonies channeled through analog robot improvisation, Phase II, is a stripped down meditation on the brutal impact of war pulsating with anger.

The core of the album is made up of Battle Goose, a suite in four parts, where the rational mind reaches an impasse and short circuits while trying to resist a pummelling attack. And yet there’s fragile beauty within the madness, with Curfew providing respite and emerging as a defiant moment of vitality. The closing track Deoccupied evolves into a more elaborate sequence of unfurling impressions spiralling free from obsessive thoughts. Ultimately, Phase II could be seen as an attempt to regain balance when the ground gives way.

Recorded in a single take on super minimal setup: OP-1 synth + Memory Man delay/looper pedal.

 

 

 

FUNDARAISING COMPILATIONS

Hospitallers – mystictrax // electro, techno, Chernobyl

“Mystictrax pleased to announce the 3rd release, aimed at raising funds for our brave friends. This time 100% of the funds will go to the hospitallers.life – a volunteer organization of paramedics, that, at their own expense, go to hot war spots and take out the wounded.

The release features musicians known to you from previous releases of the label: Roma Khropko with beautiful & scary ambient work, recorded during air-strike in Lviv (yes that siren is real), Monotronique & Clasps with monster tracks which has the infinity power, that makes us strong in this hard reality; Data Molfar with romantic tune, that shows us mystic side of Ukrainian electro, Zagroza released her first techno hit with well-known sample ‘Good evening, we are from Ukraine’ – hit of the nowadays, which will rock Europe this summer, and Dagilis gave us his high-speed intellectual track, dedicated to the first day of the hot phase of the war started by russian fascist invader against brave Ukrainian people.”

 

V / A – Yhdessä: A Fundraiser For Ukraine – Sävy Records // electronic, house, trance

In response to Russia’s violent invasion of Ukraine, this 21 track V/A compilation has been assembled in a show of support and solidarity with the people of Ukraine and everyone affected by this brutal and unjust conflict. 100% of the funds raised from this compilation will be donated to UNICEF and Save The Children.

Entitled ‘Yhdessä’ – Finnish for ‘together’ – this vibrant compilation brings together a dynamic range of established and emerging artists, all of whom are closely connected to Sävy Records. Expect forward-thinking, boundary pushing productions that span techno, breaks, acid, jungle, electro and hard-hitting experimental sounds, creating a powerful and defiant mood that reflects Sävy Record’s support and solidarity for Ukraine.

 

Sunflowers Vol I // electronic, dance, experimental

Ebullient and feisty compilation with a balanced amount of quiet moments and experimentation that achieves a cohesive dialogue between different parts. Proceeds go to carefully selected local charities operating on the ground supporting refugees and minorities.

Biblioteka Kyiv ~ An independent library in South East London who are organising medical supplies for Ukraine

Insight ~ a Ukrainian LGBTQ+ and feminist NGO supporting LGBTQI+, providing psychological and legal support, medicines, hormones, food, relocation, safe houses for permanent stay

Grupa Granica ~ A Polish organisation supporting non-Ukrainian refugees currently trapped at the Poland-Belarusian border.

 

United Electronic Music Artists for Ukraine (Various Artists) by Mario Reijnen | RAM IO Music | Mecanik Records // ambient, modular scapes, electronica, techno

“The compilation contains 20 artists from different genres across the world. The idea behind the multiple genres is to show unity as one, as electronic music artists, leaving borders of genre for what they are.

It’s amazing how quick artists in my network responded on this and wanted to colaborate and participate on this project to support help troops for Ukraine. 💪💪

All proceeds will go to help for Ukraine. There are some direct goals for funding on our map, so the money will go straight to the destiny.” [Mario Reijnen]

 

STOP WAR IN UKRAINE! – Path of Doom Radio // Doom, Stoner, Psych

“My country, Ukraine, is attacked by Russia. Our territories are occupied by this country. Virtually all cities are bombed daily from the air. Our armed forces are holding them back courageously… but millions of civilians are forced to leave their homes and run away from the bombing… thousands of civilians have already died, hundreds of children have already been killed or injured by this aggressor country… and because of this, our country is on the verge of a humanitarian catastrophe.

We very much ask you to buy this compilation! All the money received from its sale will be directed not to military needs, but to targeted assistance to families with small, infant children. You can refuse one cup of coffee on the way to work, or one serving of evening beer and perhaps this will allow one of the Ukrainian kids to fall asleep not hungry. We say “there are no other people’s children.” Please, get this compilation, don’t remain indifferent and I’m sure the sun will smile on your children too!

We ask you to spread the information about this compilation so that as many people as possible know it!

This project was created by Eugene Voron and his family, with technical assistance from Jorik Arts.”

 

Tamiras VA Fundraiser for Ukraine – Tamiras // electronic, minimal techno

“The Tamiras family decided to support the cause the way that us and the community know best – through the music we love. We are forever grateful for the artists in the scene who put their time and work to contributing to this VA release – and of course any of the Tamiras community who purchase this release for aid.

This release is a collection of powerful tracks that represent a wide spectrum of the minimal sound. We have kept the release price low for affordability reasons. Higher donations are welcomed with open arms.”

 

Love For Ukraine – H24 Musique // deep house, minimal

“The last three years have been incredibly difficult on us all, and it is inspiring to see our united music scene come together once again in response to the atrocities in Ukraine. We hope for peace as soon as possible, and we must prepare to rebuild and help the affected people to recover from this tragic conflict.

Many thanks to Chiodan and Enzo Leep – who have taken on the mammoth task of mastering this body of work, as well as those who have provided us with Master files already.

Love for Ukraine”

[All proceeds go to the Closer club in Kyiv, who are raising money for a number of associations and helping people directly.]

 

Together For Ukraine – Voyeuristic Disorder // electronic, industrial, ebm, techno

“The Album ‘Together for Ukraine’ is our call to help people who got into trouble through no fault of their own.

Our project is non profit but we would be very happy if you donate as much as you can to organizations like, National Bank of Ukraine; Red Cross Ukraine; Amnesty

 

GW018 – НЕТ МОЛЧАНИЮ – Russian Music for Peace – Global Warming Records // house, downtempo, electronica

“With the belief that the underground music scene should always be a place of safety, mutual support, peace and equality, artists from the Russian underground music scene have united to raise attention and money for those who have suffered from military actions in Ukraine.

We think that everyone has to be heard, and the modern Russian youth has a lot of things to say. We’re glad that despite unprecedented pressure, they decided to come together and speak out to support those whose lives are in danger.

With the support of Malcolm, London based DJ and Global Warming Records founder, and curation of Yssue, previously Moscow-based producer and member of Russian collective Esthetic Joys; this release brings together 22 artists, bands, producers and graphic designers with a broad genre palette and from all over the country.

100% of the sales will be sent directly to War Child‘s emergency aid in Ukraine.”

 

peace is power – a Musique Concrète fundraiser for Ukraine // atmospheric ambient, downtempo, hypnotic techno

“Hey Everyone,

We all hope everyone is keeping well and safe in these intense times.

Like many of you, music is our language of expressing ourselves, and in trying times it is more important than ever to do so.

We wanted to make do that – and make a positive contribution to the Ukrainian people, believing that if everyone can make a small contribution, we can positively impact some peoples lives.

With that being said, we’ve put together a Compilation, with tracks from Musique Concrète residents and friends – with all proceeds to be donated to Save Life in Ukraine”

 

Rave For Freedom – Fundraising Album – Kos:mo, A.V.D. (GER), Nico Cabeza, Rony Golding, Gilles Bock, JK REPTILE, weltenseele, Maurin // break beat, deep techno, drum & bass

All profits go to: Red Cross

“This album was curated by Kos:mo in order to stand with and support Ukraine and share the message and vision, that we want to live in a world without war. Those who suffer from war need all available help and we need to be active, open-minded and meet others with love. Music is a powerful tool – music expresses, understands and heals our feelings and connects people from all over the world, no matter which language they speak or which cultural background they have.”

 

This Machine Confuses Fascists Volume 2: For Kyiv – Prosthion Recordings // ambient, electronic, experimental, noise

Uncompromising, and baffling at times, with moments of gentle beauty, this compilation swells and shrinks with tracks ranging from over 16’ down to just under 2’, providing enough food for thought in the process. Noise and doom sit side by side with experimental and ambient music rounding its edges.

And always good to see Olesia Onykiienko (NFNR, Women’s Sound Kyiv) name checked in the liner notes, with all funds collected going to civil defence supplies (communication devices, drones, medical, etc.)

 

Siren Songs: Solidarity With Ukraine – mailbox // ambient, experimental

“On the 3rd March 2022, I received the following email through Bandcamp:

‘Hello, I’m Stas Teterevlev – I live in a boat on an island in the middle of Kyiv. I really love what you do. I’ve been listening to your work today, it helps me a lot. I recorded this ambience and would be very happy if you would like to use it’.

The recording was the moment Russia began their assault on Kyiv/Ukraine, 24th February 2022.

I watched on television – like everyone across the world – the horror of the invasion unfolding; however, hearing it as audio in the strange context that a resident there had captured it as it was happening – and me then listening to it from the safety of an apartment in England – was incredibly haunting and absolutely moving.

I took Stas’ message to heart – flattered he’d included me amongst several other musicians he’d sent the recording to – and considered whether or not if his recording could be worked into music of my own, like he suggested. Instead I put out a call across social media for collaborators to help put together a compilation of their music that utilised the recording. I’m incredibly proud to announce that ‘Siren Songs: Solidarity With Ukraine’ is the result.

It’s amazing how all the contributors involved in this, simply took on their own project with Stas’ recording; exploring it through their own music with such creative and poetic results.”

Proceeds go to Sunflower of Peace.

 

Who are we? Psychoanalysis of Ukrainians (with English subtitles)

“A collective psychotherapy session in the form of a movie, during which we must remember what happened and understand how it affected us. We have to work through our traumas to become a healthy and successful nation. And this is only the first step.”

 

Who is Ivan Marchuk? (with English subtitles)

This is a story about one of Ukraine’s most famous contemporary artists — Ivan Marchuk, who has created thousands of works of art and invented his own technique — Pliontanism. Due to constant persecution from the KGB under the Soviet Union, Marchuk had to temporarily emigrate and returned to Ukraine in 2011. He is the only Ukrainian to make it on the Telegraph’s list of Top 100 living geniuses in 2007.

(Gianmarco Del Re)

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