Muscovite Roman Kalitkin, aka Sounds of Sputnik is one man who clearly benefited from Perestroika during his formative years as a sea of previously frowned upon Western music headed east, waking up his sleepy Russian hometown of Rostov-on-Don. His appetite whetted, developing a taste for that classic British indie guitar sound of the shoegaze era (recently recreated by Real Estate in such fine fashion), he needed no further encouragement, spending the next couple of decades in an assortment of bands before setting up on his own, adopting a moniker that pays homage to one of his motherland’s finest hours.
His debut long player ‘New Born’ (well I say long player….it’s actually 5 original tracks and 8 remixes) sees him team up with Ukrainian-Canadian boy girl duo Ummagma, and some of the results are startlingly good. Opener ‘New Born’ sees Shauna take the vocal in a fine track with an overblown post-rock feel. ‘Overdrive’ is even more alluring, blending dreamily gothic vocal with swirling guitar and urgent driving rhythm to splendid effect, one part Sonic Youth, a pinch of Ride with a hint of Siouxsie thrown in for good measure. Instrumental ‘Shades of the Cosmos’ has a bit of B-Movie about it, ‘Blizzard’ goes into post rock overdrive and ‘Light Scheme’ gives us a bit of male vocal combined with a hint of Pixies….even the remix tracks are above average…..promising.
Words - Mike Price
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