Title: Ivana Kupala Night
Release Date: 2014 Nov 15
Genre: Indie Downtempo
License: CC BY-NC-SA
Label: Souther City’s Lab
Crossworlds is the duo of Alexey Mikryukov (King imagine) and vocalist Irina Skrypnikova from Kiev. They began collaborating and experimenting using traditional forms infused with downtempo style a little over a year ago. The result is documented on Crossworlds Ivana Kupala Night.
Crossworlds Ivana Kupala Night
From the opening purr of ‘Cat Lullaby’ I was immediately enchanted with this release. Irina’s vocals cut through me in a way no vocalist has managed since Jennifer Folker’s vocals on Obsidian by Banco De Gaia. The delicate bells, cat’s purr set the mood for the bass and drums that enter and accompany Irina’s vocals beautifully.
As this lullaby leads entreats the listener fade off to sleep the opening of ‘Vostorg’ surrounds you with the mild clicks and soft vocals that take you into a deeper meditative sleep. Within this hazy state of sleep the listener is seduced to stay in throughout this release. You might feel a little more uneasy during the title track ‘Ivana Kupala Night’, but even the fitful sleep of this piece is not one of nightmares.
After that little uneasiness (complete with purred vocals recalling the opening lullaby) you find yourself in the company of a Mermaid. But, eventually dreams and sleep end, and you find yourself waking slowly to ‘Dream Is Gone’.
I found two things that kept me from giving this release a 10. First, it seems like some of the patches / stems are a little too hot on ‘Cat Lullaby’. I don’t know if this is a matter of the source being too hot, or if something happened during mastering, but the levels were high enough that I heard some static when listening with headphones.
The other issue I had with this release is something that I’ve mentioned before on other releases. This is just way too short. I didn’t want to be pulled out of this exquisite music after only 25 minutes. Even the more experimental pieces, such as ‘Mermaid Song’ left me wanting to hear more.
I was so enthralled by this release from beginning to end, I know that I should be happy with Crossworlds Ivana Kupala Night as it stands. The excellent composition and musicianship throughout this recording is nothing short of amazing. And at least with this release I know that I will want to keep Crossworlds on my radar for any future music from Irina and Alexey.