Sebastian Redenz, Thinner
«Another newcomer on Thinner is Unit 21 from Russia.
Stanislav Vdovin was born and grew up in Nizhny Novgorod where he studied piano at music school for 8 years.
At the age of 13 he tried himself in composition, using a standalone digital synthesizer Ensoniq ts-10.
Three years later, in 2001, he went into experiments with music software, and finally founded Unit 21 in 2003.
The main creative object for unit 21 is to find a balance between unexpressed-by-words emotionality, delicate sound design and traditional structures of electronic music.
The idea behind the September-October EP is in sampling old (primarily early 80s) soviet manufactured vinyl records (pop and jazz), then combining processed samples with 4/4 static techno.
The song titles directly refer to the production dates as the tracks were composed in a period of joint performances with Sleepy Town Manufacture in Moscow (Peace Technologies event: Plastilin club), Izhevsk and Nizhny Novgorod.
The result is a half-live, half-studio lp ‘No Traces’, promising to be released in a near future.
It opens with an ambient edition of the ‘September, 26th’ track.
Distinctive crackling vinyl sounds and lots of hisses and pops swirl around the wide pianos of citated ‘September, 26th’.
Although the song feels light in it?s architecture the piano gives it a melancholic touch.
Incorporated is a piano part, performed by Stanislav himself in 2004.
A very nice opposite to the first track is ‘september 10th’, which turns out much more static and earthy with the marching bassdrum in the lo-frequencey area, giving it an industrial touch.
The flute samples add a lot of unusual atmosphere and the clock-like noises at the end is a self-recorded (pitched down) piano pedal sound.
On the virtual flip Unit 21 continues the sonorous atmospheres with ‘October 16th’, which is built on monotonous beats and slowly evolving pads and rest sounds of the piano.
As the song progresses with the hats fading in and the enlightment of the pads you can almost spot some ethereal sunlight.
The last song ‘October 18th’ is the most blurry of the four songs with it's cathedral-filling pads and dusty particles that become visible in the sunlight.
We hope you enjoy this grey aural cinemascope coming out of Nizhny Novgorod, Russia.»
Bernhard Straub, Windwalzer
«Thinner lehnt sich mal wieder ein ganzes stuck aus dem fenster, diesmal in russische klanglandschaften.
Mir scheint, Stanislav Vdovin als Unit 21 hat irgendwo ein paar scheiben Gas (Wolfgang Voigt) aufgetrieben und diese mit samples aus russischer pop- und jazzmusik aufgemischt.
besonders stark erinnert mich das wunderschone vierte stuck (October, 18th) an alte konigsforst-zeiten.
uber eine stetig dahintreibende bassdrum breiten sich wellen aller art aus, mal eher melancholisch im ersten stuck, duster im zweiten, luftig in October, 16th und sehnsuchtig im letzten stuck des releases.
Schade, die monate haben doch noch weitaus mehr tage, gegen ein paar weitere tracks hatte ich nichts einzuwenden.
Fur mich eines der interessantesten releases auf Thinner aus der letzten zeit!»
«New comer, originating from Nizhny Novgorod, new eldorado of the Russian experimentation with people like Holden and its Rathole project, Stanislav Vdovin (Unit 21) made a particularly remarkable entry in ambient soundscape.
Built starting from samplings cracking vinyl out of age, the 4 tracks of:: September-October, are the demonstration of a very great atmospheric control as an undeniable direction of the composition.
Beyond these invaluable qualities, Unit 21 is also extremely intelligently freed from this capacity to maintain these parts right in on this side surface of the reality, he knows what means the prefix : sub
A nice piece of work – welcome Unit 21.»
Slide, Sound Proector
«Independent unit of Sleepy Town Manufacture from Nizhniy Novgorod (Russia) – Stanislav Vdovin from time to time taking part in creative work STM and working at his own project Unit 21.
He released his original September-October with four tracks on German netlabel Thinner.
One half of the material was played by him alive during concert tours over the country, the second part – recorded at home.
However architecture of tracks gains uniqueness through its techno – reverie from STM, especially through debut halfambient album Melanoma.
Nevertheless there is hypothesis that Unit 21 likes very much this aspect in their early creativity.
Tracks of this mini-album include also a great amount of various lost piano passages, basis – minimalist static techno-rhythm in mixture with unreal number of clicks of old vinyl.
It seems that it became an indispensable attribute of lo-fi sound for such music and all its followers.
The first track “September, 26th” suggests its listeners to visit deserted urban corners of deserted outskirts not digging into them deeply but swimming by on a train or a boat.
Light dub-ambient stuff like mine fields surrounds a listener and draws his attention away from that happening outside – hypnotic trick necessary for the artist of contemporary life.
Melancholic gray, fuzzy sounds slide by like monotonous rambling sketches of real industrial landscapes and ruins which you pass by on your train.
There also appears techno-industrial basis for track “September, 10th”, it adds up even more drive to the mood.
At the same time it doesn't change anything in the movements of ripplings.
Something dark and clear from detroit minimalist techno can be evidently mentioned – constant strikes of bass drum, few changes in the composition's scheme.
Everything is minimalist and monotonous as well as in album Consumed made by Plastikman.
The only thing which is added and rejoices during the track time is a mixture of flute sounds and other wind instruments.
Their melodies are probably borrowed from Central Asia but not from Western regions.
It's a great finding for a musician – everything gathers into techno-shaman ritual and melts away like haze.
“October, 16th” begins with the sounds of ancient clocks irrelevant and forgotten nowadays.
With their appearing metal constructions start turning into ambient pouring landscapes with rushing and rolling rhythms of dance music.
“October, 18th” – true dance microelectronics with wonderful drums.
In general it is an obvious case of music of 90s.
Nowadays we can rarely listen to such tech/dub presentation – sunny track brings the picture in a special portal from any time-period which you want to visit and examine.
Perhaps in this very way the strains of autumn sun reflect on glass, dusty glass on neglected factories – any other variants for stalkers are possible.»
«Russische elektromusik gewurzt mit einheimischen pop und jazzelementen.
Das ist wieder ein neues release von Thinner/Autoplate, das man jedem liebhaber oder liebhaberin von elektronischer musik ans herz legen kann.
der musiker Stanislav Vdovin geht ganz unkonventionell mit russischer pop und jazzmusik um und legt darum einen reigen voll elektrischer rhythmen und klange.
Alle 4 titel tragen den namen September und Oktober.
Das die herbstzeit angebrochen ist kann man in den ersten beiden stucken schon erfuhlen, da sie etwas melancholisch gehalten sind.
Die beiden anderen titel sind eher lockerer und mit einem hauch sehnsucht.
Rundherum ein starkes album. Einfach reinhoren. Es lohnt sich.»
«My first appearance on a netlabel was with Thinner and grew from that experience, a lot of amazing friendships and many tours.
It would be silly not to follow every single releases they put out to see how they evolve ever since the beginning.
This new release from russian producer Unit 21, is more on the tip that I appreciate from Thinner: ambient, toned down music.
Not too on the dubby tech in your face 4/4 beats, this one is a nice kaleidoscopic imagery of sounds that seems to have many fragments of old or new samples, glitches and dirty chords.
Made me think of Kompakt’s Gas (Wolfgang Voigt) in the feeling…
If you never heard of Gas, you should really check it out, a must have.
All in all, this is a free release, go get it, it’s not a waste of time and it will suit your living room with a beautifully lush mood.»
TM, Cut Up
«Thinner is een succes binnen de wereld van netlabels.
Artiesten als mikkel metal, Off The Sky en Danny Kreutzfeld hebben er hun eerste werk geleverd.
Nu zitten ze bij City Centre Offices en Databloem die wel op fysiek geluidsdrager leveren.
De virtuele ep van het russische Unit 21 is niet alleen wonderschoon.
Het is ook een prachtige opsomming van het thinnergeluid dat voornamelijk dubtechno en ambient omvat.
September - October bevat beide. Op September, 26th deinen een stel beats in een trage stroom van plaatgekraak en schimmige pianomelodieen.
De beats worden vager, de melodieen worden troebeler en de stroom krijgt een Marsen Jules-achtige stroperigheid.
October, 18th bevat dezelfde geluidenstroom, dezelfde afloop, dezelfde melancholie.
Op de andere twee nummers blijven de bassen wel overeind tussen het klassiek geluid van klarinet en piano zodat een verfijnd geluidenspel ontstaat dat aan de beste momenten van dictaphone doet denken.»
«Track 4... This track in particular was my introduction to the Thinner label, and while I have yet to hear anything else on the label (which I love) that sounds anything like it...
Imagine you are hiking along a rocky face with absolutely nothing or anyone around you...
And the huge rock slab before you suddenly shudders and eyes open, as does a mouth...
As a chilly earthen wind blows from the crevice, you hear a voice swelling up from deep inside the cavernous orifice...
So strong it blows you back... deep, dark, powerful – and a sound you will never forget...
That's what this track makes me think of, and i have listened to it countless times now and it just doesn't get old...
Download this ep and couple it with Theodore Zox's pastels 1-4...
You will find it to be a wonderfully visual experience...(No, i am not on acid!)»