Secret Thirteen Mix 177 - Vladislav Dobrovolski

DJ Vladislav Dobrovolski Saint Petersburg

Russian sound artist Vlad Dobrovolski

Russian sound artist Vlad Dobrovolski shares a kaleidoscopic selection showcasing the capabilities of the human voice across diverse sonic experiences (listen/download now)

Another winning New Blood entry comes from Vladislav Dobrovolski, a multidisciplinary artist born in Omsk, Russia. Vladislav is known not only for his sound and visual works, but also as a Cyland Audio Archive curator. CAA is a Saint Petersburg based project initiated by a non-profit organisation called Media Lab Cyland. It is not your usual record label though as all its releases are pressed on 7.5 inch polycarbonate 1950’s American vintage lathe cuts. Among its vast array of experimental music releases ranging from Akira Rabelais to Nick Edwards, it also includes a hazy retrofuturist ambient EP by Vlad. Apart from his own name Dobrovolski operates on quite a number of monikers and is involved in several other projects. He crafts mellow, introverted and bright techno under the Derski moniker and drowns us in nostalgic sunshine drones with Fitz Ellarald. He also takes part in the spaced-out synth trio Kurvenschreiber, creates playful improvised soundscapes by manipulating lost tape artefacts in the S A D duo, participates in Las Kalugas and Piam. Vladislav’s sound world is spacious, nostalgically beautiful, and improvisationally spontaneous.

Secret Thirteen Mix 177 is a nice continuation or complement to Vlad’s own creative endeavours. It showcases the varieties and capabilities of human voices, their interactions with technology, different cultures, contexts. It is incredible to hear cinematic spoken word passages stretching across a colourful and organic world of sound. The mix passes like a slightly surreal movie, where continents shift along with people and experiences. It retains this heartfelt, human and emotional feel. Even though it is carefully assembled from various parts, it flows very organically and merges different sonic traditions and cultures. It kicks off with the dramatic German “Hör!-Spiel” by Anestis Logothetis, which is dissolved into a blissful ambient piece, while further on we have the genuine and socially-minded funk/jazz of Chicago community group La Mont Zeno Theatre. The concrete wanderings of Af Ursin give way to spiritual excursions from Estonian composer Sven Grunberg. The mix has shiny undertones with the Nuno Canavarro or Fitz Ellarald pieces, while also delving into darker spheres with Charles Cohen or Robert Ashley’s haunting closing monologues. These are just a few examples of the charming variety of this stunning selection. With its haziness, cinematic drift and picturesque atmospheres it is reminiscent of Terry Frost’s work “Tree, Tree”.

Author’s description

“This is a compilation of music dealing with various applications of the human voice, i.e., spoken, hiccuping, coughing, which are multi-tracked, processed or retaped. Some of these people have appeared on other records and are involved in various other kinds of music/activity (electronics, improvisation, rock, dance, theatre, poetry, performance, etc), so this is in no way an accurate representation of what they all "do". What they all have in common is an interest in using voices in one way or another to make music.

Parts of Mouth Music are composed of the human voice paired with, or superimposed upon, electroacoustic music from the 60’s to the present. Other portions of this excogitation draw on western music influenced by non-western sonorities. One of my own unreleased tracks and synthetic environments are scattered throughout.”


01. Kiyohiko Semba - Take Me to Your Leader (Sony Records, 1996)
02. Anestis Logothetis - „Hör!-Spiel” (Musikalische Jugend Österreichs, 1974)
03. Herbert Brün - U-TURN-TO, for computer (Electronic Music Foundation, 1998)
04. Baldruin - Keine Körper, Aber Seelen (Wounded Knife, 2015)
05. David Rothenberg, Korhan Erel - Interfused Upon The Silentness (Gruenrekorder, 2015)
06. La Mont Zeno Theatre - Black Fairy Returns (Taifa Records, 1975)
07. Orquesta De Las Nubes - Parte IV, Tiestos (Linterna Música, 1983)
08. Alan Watts - Onion Chant (MEA, 1962)
09. Astarius - Dream Awake (Astarius Productions, 1997)
10. Anthony Manning - Chromium Nebulae 6 (Irdial Discs, 1996)
11. No Artist - Masochism (Vitrine, 2015)
12. Francesco Cavaliere - Asath! (Hundebiss, 2015)
13. Revolutionary Army Of The Infant Jesus - Tales From Europe (Probe Plus, 1987)
14. Jan St. Werner - Scene 2 (Thrill Jockey, 2015)
15. Af Ursin - Schijngestalten (La Scie Dorée, 2014)
16. Sven Grunberg - Tibet (Erdenklang, 1993)
17. Cosmic Neighbourhood - Owl (Kit Records, 2015)
18. 頭士奈生樹 - 前瞑想的音楽 (Org Records, 1998)
19. Pardon Kimura - Jazzmaster #7 (P-Vine Records, 1999)
20. Vuptes & Broshuda - Zahflussiger Koloss (Phinery Tapes, 2015)
21. Nuno Canavarro - Untitled (from Plux Quba, Ama Romanta, 1988)
22. Ramuntcho Matta - El Tren (Maat, 2005)
23. Anton Mobin - Extension Idiomatique (Anton Mobin Self-released, 2015)
24. Elysia Crampton - Moth (Boomkat Editions, 2015)
25. Fitz Ellarald - Getting Fy Charm (Unreleased, 2015)
26. Stephen Mallinder - Going Out (Doublevision, 1985)
27. Luis De Pablo - Segunda Parte (Clave, 1970)
28. Frank Gartner - Whirling Winds (Bosworth Music, 1973)
29. Charles Cohen - Mankind And Mannequins (Morphine Records, 2015)
30. Terry Riley - Mescalin Mix (Rec. 1960-62, 2000 by Cortical Foundation)
31. Robert Ashley - Purposeful Lady Slow Afternoon (Lovely Music, Ltd., 1979)

About Author

Paulius Ilevicius is a Secret Thirteen journalist, editor and occasional DJ focusing on more dreamy and melancholic soundscapes. Born in post-industrial town of Pavevezys, currently he lives and works in Vilnius, Lithuania.

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