Vinyl Spring/Digital Autumn
Following their critically acclaimed 2001 debut, Between Two Mirrors, the Moscow based progressive rock group Romislokus return with an equally impressive follow-up, Vinyl Spring/ Digital Autumn.
Romislokus began in 1998 as a project of likeminded musicians in Russia who were interested in exploring the boundaries of 'art rock'. Blending organic and inorganic sounds such as cello and violin amongst electric guitars and synthesizers provides Romislokus with a unique, yet familiar sound. Though heavily influenced by such other experimental bands as Pink Floyd, pre 'And Then There Were Three' Genesis and post 'Rubber Soul' Beatles, the Moscow group successfully combines past stimuli with 21st century recording techniques.
For the most part, Vinyl Spring/Digital Autumn is laid-back and inviting as Romislokus creates melodic soundscapes. Even though vocalist/rhythm guitarist Yuri Smolnikov sings each song entirely in Russian with a haunting resonance, the record is so musically entrancing it is able to cross cultures without the dialect becoming a distraction. On tracks such as 'The Snow On The Rails', Romislokus embraces the technologically advances that were not available to their predecessors and go with an entirely electronic sound. 'The Face of the City' combines unobtrusive cello parts with moody guitar fills. Although '78' begins as an ambient journey, the band interjects a heavy rock guitar explosion. Violinist Anna Goya takes the spotlight with her lush vocals on the housey track 'Tuner'. Goya's vocals again resurface with Yuri on the ambient, Russian spoken-word piece 'Substance'.
Romislokus's has an obvious affinity for 70's progressive rock bands such as Yes, Alan Parsons Project and The Moody Blues, with an equal admiration for contemporary acts such as the Orb, Moby, and Meat Beat Manifesto. This band from Mother Russia successfully combines symphonic arrangements while blending textures of acoustic and artificial instrumentation to create a gratifying listening experience.