Sal Solaris & Majdanek Waltz : tenebrae
- Release year 2012
- 5 tracks, 42 minutes
- CD in Jewel Case.
A collaboration album by two prominent Russian post-industrial projects Majdanek Waltz and Sal Solaris. The conceptual core of the record is the poetry of Paul Celan, one of the major German-language poets of the post-World War II era. His cryptic fractured lyrics spoken in a specific estranged way by Pavel Blumkin is enchased by a weird fusion of avant-garde neoclassic and dark ambient music.This record will seem unusual even for those who are already familiar with the works of both projects. Here you won't find neither soulful neofolk songs, nor strong power ambient - instead the decadent sounds of violin, cello, clarinet, piano and bayan from Majdanek Waltz blend with shimmering electronic drones and uneasy soundscapes of Sal Solaris in paradoxical unity making your heart throb painfully. The last track features the haunting voice of Rada Anchevskaya (Rada & Ternovnik).It won't be so easy to fall in love with this album from the first spin. It's like an eerie irrational dream able to frighten and cause a desire to wake up somewhat quicker. But the depth of this dream lures and makes you return and experience it again and again.
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On Tenebrae, Majdanek Waltz and Sal Solaris, who have already worked together before, finally redeem the promises made by their earlier material. It is drone ambient decorated with separate organic instruments, such as piano and strings, and with poetry-like speech segments. Style-wise, excluding a couple of moments, it comes very close to Donis’ divine Alexandreia (2007), even as it does not reach that level of perfection. Tenebrae is beautiful in a cold kind of way, and at least for a listener who does not understand Russian, it has something distancingly powerful. It is as if one would observe sacred ritual from afar, seeing just its beautiful structure, but without understanding its meaning or true content. At least as such, it works really well, particularly whenever either the piano or the violin is in a prominent position. The German-spoken parts of the ending track do work, too, and it has a nice melody in it, but it does not reach the intensity of the Russian-language parts. Fine, emotional music where organic instruments, restrained use of machines and good vocals join together into a beautiful whole. This is the best I’ve heard from either of the bands, together or separate. (Jiituomas, Kuolleen Musiikin Yhdistys.)