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   February 20
Arts Calendar
Culture Reviews
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Culture Picks
Moscow's cultural scene is famously enormous and varied - but where to start? Our arts-savvy editorial team trawl what's on offer, to bring you our selection of Culture Picks for your leisure time. Current and upcoming recommendations are:
03.03.17  20:00 The Dire Straits Experience (UK)
It has been more than 35 years since the opening line of Sultans Of Swing was first heard being broadcast around the world. In the process, it introduced us to a majestic guitar player and songwriter in Mark Knopfler, and to what has become a musical universe unto itself: the music of Dire Straits. Over 20 years have passed since Dire Straits disbanded, leaving a catalogue of some of the finest compositions and musical performances that the heyday of rock ever produced. If anything, their reputation has only grown with time. Record sales of more than one hundred and twenty million albums continue to increase as new young fans discover the music and join the band’s massive worldwide following. An invitation to play a series of shows in New Zealand and Australia has seen Chris White and Terence Reis collaborating again for The Dire Straits Experience. Joining them is a stellar band of some of the finest professional musicians the UK has to offer. Read more
Crocus City Hall 
09.03.17  20:00 Chinawoman (Germany)
"Resistance to the charming magic of Chinawoman is in vain… she doesn’t resemble anyone living and is so remote from the world that one desires to believe recklessly: she exists" (Felix Sandalov, writer for Billboard Magazine). Michelle Gurevich was born in Toronto, Ontario, to Russian immigrants and was raised with Russian as her first language. Her father was an engineer in Soviet Leningrad and her mother a Kirov ballerina (the subject of Chinawoman's "Russian Ballerina"). Gurevich originally wanted to become a filmmaker and worked ten years in the industry before turning to music. "I eventually tried to write a song and found it was not only cheaper, but much easier to get a good result. Maneuvering between grandiose retro motifs and a surprising sincerity, Michelle Gurevich’s songs are tragicomic, melody-driven, sentimental and suspended in shadowy glamour. Read more
Sixteen Tons 
18.03.17  20:00 Róisín Murphy (UK)
Electronic Beats described Murphy as "this adolescent century’s true art-pop queen," writing that "her sensuous and ominous output is scattered across various genres and moods." AllMusic described her as "a purveyor of adventurous, omnivorous pop that blended influences as far-flung as disco and hot jazz." Australian publication OutInPerth called her "Ireland's queen of the avant-garde." Drowned in Sound's Giuseppe Zevolli wrote that "she’s merged pop, house, and disco with an avant-garde sensibility and a stunning, shape-shifting visual output that never ceases to provoke." Critic Mark Fisher located her music in a glam lineage that includes Roxy Music, Grace Jones, and the New Romantics, noting Murphy's attention to the cultivation of artifice and persona. The sound of Moloko's early work drew on electronic and trip hop influences before transitioning to a more organic sound. Her diverse solo work has included collaborations with experimental jazz composer Matthew Herbert and electronic producer Eddie Stevens, drawing variously on house music, ballroom culture, and avant-garde electronica. Murphy has a contralto vocal range, which has been described as jazzy. Heather Phares described it as "combin[ining] a wild variety of voices and textures, from impassively chilly to gorgeously lilting to gleefully offbeat." As major influences Murphy has cited Sonic Youth (especially Kim Gordon), the Pixies, Talking Heads and Grace Jones. Read more
29.03.17-30.03.17  20:00 Mumiy Troll (Russia)
Mumiy Troll, named after the character of Tove Jansson’s Moomin Troll books, is one of Russia’s most popular pop rock bands which has gained international popularity as well. It's not that the band possesses a particularly exciting biography, nor does the it really stray far beyond the standards of Russian pop, but somehow the group's music makes the listener think that there is something more complex about both Mumiy Troll and its leader Ilya Lagutenko than what appears on the surface of their songs. Besides Mumiy Troll, Ilya Lagutenko is involved into two more musical projects but nevertheless this band remains his main activity. They first gained immense popularity with the release of their first (official) album Morskaya (Marine) in May 1997, which showcased a combination of melodic hard rock and Lagutenko's offbeat lyrics and coy, androgynous performance style. Mumiy Troll of that time were all about brit pop, unisex and rockapop (term introduced by band’s founder Ilya Lagutenko)—and were tremendously successful with everything they did on the album. At that time they were supported by Russia’s two probably most influential pop music publicity & production specialists: Alexander Kushnir & Alexander Shulgin. On March 29th and 30th Mumiy Troll will celebrate 20-year anniversary of release Morskaya album. Read more
Crocus City Hall 
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