Help! I think I like this!
Or maybe not.
But it holds many mysteries. For example: who thought this disc would sell in America? It comes with 19 page full-color booklet with English translations for the album title and the names of the major players (but no translation of the massive liner notes), similar to some editions of Ramses IV. But while the psychedellic Ramses IV was released in 1993 and had (still has) musical appeal—this was released in 1997. Who in 1997 thought an art-house Russian guitar-poet adaptation of very early Boris poems would sell to non Russian-speakers?
Have a few of my selected reactions:
- Prologue: Not-quite-Zhanna vocals over pseudo-rock-to-jazzy-muzak piano, guitar and drums. Not entirely unendurable, but unlikely to inspire me to pull the CD out of its dusty case months down the road.
- Act I: Only a few notes passed before I had a beautiful vision of my own gory death in great detail... but would I die before or after Act II?
- Innokenty Saves One or Two Girls: It starts with a scream, but soon the smoke in the tiny 1950's coffee shop cannot mask the sincere expressions on the beatnik customers who are oh so certain they should be enjoying this...even as their subconscious minds line up for tract housing at Levittown.
- Innokenty in the Mountains: The smoke. The sincerity. The guitar poet diva's gold-toothed smile. How does Innokenty resist the urge to jump?
- Innokenty Rides the Tram: Where's the tram headed? It's going up the country with Country Ivanov and the Ðûáû. Why does nobody shout "yeehaw!" when the lady with the moustache comes to take our tickets?
- Innokenty Contemplates the Stars: Help! I'm being clubbed with a beret. Strangely, I find I am enjoying the experience. Well, maybe not all that much.
- My Star: Tortured. Tortuous. And I thought I sang a bad version of this song. I feel redeemed.
Wait, hold the presses. I changed my mind: I hate this. Run for your life!