Tuesday, May 7, 2019

Theodor Bastard - "Vetvi" [2015]

Artist: Theodor Bastard
Title: Vetvi
Genre: Darkwave, Ethnic Electronica, New Age, Trip-Hop
Country: Russia
Release date: 2015

Track List:
  1. Umbraya Erze
  2. Vetvi
  3. Salameika
  4. Kukushka
  5. Aion
  6. Niti
  7. Veter (feat. Namgar)
  8. Yaard
  9. Beliy Gorod
  10. Kolodec
The best known Russian ethnic electronica band which most likely was a major source of inspiration for projects like Lovozero. Theodor Bastard started in the second half of 90s inititally as an experimental industrial/noise project in the vein of Coil and Nurse With Wound, and the later album "BossaNova_Trip" (2001) at times sounds surprisingly similar to much later works by Access To Arasaka. By 2004, Theodor Bastard became a full band and radically changed their sound in favour of darkwave and neofolk, which brought them worldwide recognition. During the second half of 2000s, they actively toured Europe and have shared the scene with such high profile bands as Nine Inch Nails, Spiritual Front and Von Thronstahl.

"Vetvi" is their latest up to date LP, strongly inspired by the atmosphere of Russian North, especially Karelia. The album name is a reference to the branches of the mythological World Tree (Arbor mundi). Another prominent lyrical topic on "Vetvi" is the theme of death (especially of the loved ones). Musically, it's ethereal/darkwave kind of world music, strongly inspired by Dead Can Dance and early Massive Attack, but rooted in the folk tradition of Russian North. The members of Theodor Bastard travel extensively, and draw the inspiration from various folk traditions from Russian North (which is my favourite travel destination as well) to Middle East.

The best song on "Vetvi", in my opinion, is the opening one "Umbraya Erze". It sounds very beautiful, although I have no idea about the language of the lyrics (someone has said they're in Old Norse, but I'm not sure about it at all):

Some more music videos off this album:

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