Volosy is one of two solo aliases for Russian experimental musician Vladimir Igoshin (Владимир Игошин), whom has received very little notoriety for his sparse work over the past decade. While very little is known about the artist — perhaps due to his own obscurity or due to lingual barriers — his work has been featured on three of the most arguably underrated labels that the post-industrial scene has to offer. Igoshin’s name didn’t come to be known until he joined up with the experimental collective Kratong, whom would eventually release their one and only album, The Bees of Psychic Province, on Wrotycz Records (whom also featured the artist last year on the Rose of Memory, Rose of Forgetfulness compilation tribute to T.S. Eliot). As Kratong quietly spiraled towards dormancy a few years later, Igoshin would again reappear after teaming up with the HORUS CyclicDaemon imprint for the release of the alchemical Mvsic for Solve et Coagvla under the Ossaserpia alias. This release would continue this habitual solitary notion of releasing an album only to disappear immediately after, and Igoshin would emerge only once more in 2009 for this, the release of Volosy’s Bathing ov the Leather Horse on Italy’s Ars Benevola Mater. It would also be, perhaps, of interest to some to know that, before Igoshin ever released a recording of his own, he took part in the production phase of Moon Far Away‘s celebrated album from the turn of the century, Satos.
Volosy’s music is exceptionally unique both in terms of its innovative spirit and the genuine musicianship involved in the complexities of every track. Though definitively aligned with an imagination geared towards an avant-garde approach, Volosy still retains an affinity for the melancholic, mixing elements of minimal electronics genres from ambient and drone to IDM with a style of medieval / baroque guitar as well as sparse accordion buried within the mix to create rich sonic landscapes that border on the psychedelic as much as they do the ethereal. Industrial qualities show up in every track through electronic background layers that seem neutral in mood, never appearing dark nor light, but simply existing in a sombre mood. The melodic end of the music comes in equal amounts of the aforementioned, often subtle baroque guitar performance, as well as textured synth that takes the music everywhere from a warm neoclassic tradition around fires at twilight, to cold surreal journeys into the vast atmosphere that any dark ambient artist worth his salt is able to incorporate.
This is the music of familiar dreams — hazy visions of the world we know, with only subtle deformities and missing pieces lurking within our distorted perception, left by architects whose true spirit and motives are buried only deep within the subconscious. Though the music is remarkably beautiful and performed to near perfection, the best of even the most adventurous of experimental efforts requires some sort of discernible theme. While I admire the artist’s openness to seemingly just be influenced by very separate, various parts of his own personal experience, it is impossible to grasp any meaningful concept behind the album as a whole. The title itself confounds, implying both life and death in a single instance (as a leather horse). The name of the project, which translates from Russian to “Hair,” doesn’t translate at all to the music itself. Even attempts to attribute esoteric meaning to the symbology of the title seem to lead to nothing more than contradiction. On a surreal level, the most famous of paintings can be explained in detail, radiant with meaningful substance. The lack of that very important soul behind any piece of art leaves this work unfortunately feeling as empty as a savant without the passion to utilize their gifts. For those for whom the music is all that matters, however, the beauty behind these compositions cannot be denied.
02) Of Girls and Guns
03) Of Guns and Girls
06) A Focus and a Heart
07) Pipers at the Gates of U
09) Op strand