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Written in fRoots issue 216, 2001

Winter In Moscow

Jaro 4235-2 (2000)

Reprehensibly it's not made clear, but this is a reissue, with one track difference, of the fine 1992 BMG Ariola Norway album Møte I Moskva, featuring three songs in which Boine and band collaborate with Zhelannaya, Starostin, now of deserved Farlanders repute, their band Allians et al., plus one Boine number recorded in Oslo, three from Allians and one from Andrej Misin.

© 2001 Andrew Cronshaw

The above is the short review that I sent to fRoots and was published, but I'd also written a longer review which I didn't send. Since it's more informative, here it is:

The booklet notes don’t say so, but this is a re-release, with one different track, of an album that came out on BMG Ariola Norway in 1992 called Møte I Moskva. Be that as it may, now, particularly as the old Mari Boine band is no longer together and Russians Inna Zhelennaya and Sergey Starostin and their current band Farlanders have gained some deserved reputation on the world music scene, it’s a well-timed reissue that stands up well as a new release.
      On a trip to Moscow in 1990 Norwegian radio producer Sigbjørn Nedland had come across Inna Zhelannaya and the band she sang with then, Allians. Excited by the way they were combining rock and roots to make a Russian music far different from the Western-cloning that was going on in much of the Russian rock scene, he had the idea of getting them together with Mari Boine and her band, and in 1992 they met and spent a week in Moscow recording
      Actually only the first three tracks, recorded for Nedland’s NRK radio programme, feature musicians from both countries: a song of Mari Boine’s, which involves members of Allians plus Starostin’s voice and cowhorn, and a Russian female choir, a song by Andrej Misin and an improvisation in the studio corridor, both the latter involving all the vocalists. It’s not made clear whether the remaining five were specially recorded for the project or are taken from other sessions, but there’s one Oslo-recorded Boine band number, using lyrics by Native American Dianne Meilli, partly in English, plus three Moscow-recorded items from Allians with either Zhelannaya or Starostin, and one from singer-keyboardist Andrej Misin.

© 2001 Andrew Cronshaw

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