ПРЕДСМЕРТНАЯ КАДРИЛЬ: ГОРЕТЬ КРАСИВО UKR DL 
[Dying Quadrille: To Burn Brightly]
- Гореть красиво [To Burn Beautifully]
- Мертвые смотрят вверх [Dead Look Upward]
- Не так [Not Thus]
- Пустоты [Voids]
- Странные танцы [Strange Dances]
- Я выпускаю людей [I Let Out The People]
Today’s posting is well timed in following one on Killing Joke. A few weeks ago, I received an email informing me about the new release from a Ukrainian Post-Punk band and maybe I would like to review it? At the time I was traveling and since then I’ve been working on some REVO goodness that will be soon forthcoming, but I’m certainly game to investigate. Last night I finally had some time to spend doing so. I did not have to listen for more than half a song before I was hitting the “buy” button.
The band had formed late last year and have already released their debut EP and they’re proffering extremely zesty goods of a slightly gothic Post-Punk variety. The band list their influences as The Cure, Joy Division, Cold Cave, and Russian band Xyro-Yro. Most of us know the first three [I hope] but when I played “Гореть красиво” what came to mind as a potential influence for me were The Chameleons. This music had that same glorious, dark, intense sound. If the band arrived at that with no foreknowledge of The Chameleons, then they must really be on fire creatively! The drumming, from Andrej, favored fluid tempos that mutated throughout the duration of the song; beginning as a shuffle and then ramping up with intensity and tempo into a furious pace as the guitars of vocalist Alex and lead guitarist Igor corralled the song’s initially languid energy into a tightly focused torrent of intensity before the song plateaued into oblivion.
“Мертвые смотрят вверх” next offered a faster paced energy than the opener had begun with. Igor’s guitar tone was gorgeous and lyrical as the rhythm section once again began to concentrate the song’s energies into tighter focus. In particular, the bass of Dasha was throbbing and pulling the song forward. The music here was dark, but energetic with a mordant yet defiant edge that, now that I know it, perfectly reflects the band’s manifesto as included on their Bandcamp page.
“Split in society, a splash of oppressive injustice and inequality, human indifference, cynicism prompted us to create a band. To confront consumerism, materialism and other negative isms into the abyss, to drown the pain and despair in the rhythm of strange dances.” – ПРЕДСМЕРТНАЯ КАДРИЛЬ
Works for me! The dark beauty of “Не так” was deceptive in its initial peacefulness, As vocalist Alex entered the song, it began to build up in intensity until the guitars were slashing like scalpels, only for the energy level to plateau at the song’s mid-point. Then it began its inexorable climb to the summit once again. “Пустоты” was more content to slink in the shadows, sounding like a Banshees B-side rather than the earlier punk anthems on offer. “Странные танцы” struck out from a left-field position as Igor’s guitar veered tantalizingly close to surf-twang territory while the song’s tempo swung malevolently as opposed to the thrashier tempos that began this EP.
The EP concluded with “Я выпускаю людей” where the guitar probed pensively amid occasional stabs of drum before the song coalesced into dreamlike form. Igor’s guitars in the triumphant climax sounded gorgeously defiant. Even though I don’t know a word of Ukranian, it’s not necessary to feel the hope that the music strives for here. Sure, it’s got more shadow than light, but it just reflects its surroundings honestly, and never wallows in despair. The tone of the music really managed to capture the power and disposition of The Chameleons for these ears. It also bears mentioning that the actual recording sounds magnificent. It delivers great songs, well performed and expertly recorded. It sounds like it might have been made in 1983. I can give no higher praise. Listen [and buy] below.
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