December 01 2015

From Russia with Kedr

New York-Le Bain
Mike Simonetti reveals the new signature of his label 2MR, the Russian Kedr Livanskiy, and takes us to the strange and romantic Russian Winter, before he returns to Le Bain Friday, December 4th.
LE BAIN: How did you get in touch with Kedr?
MIKE SIMONETTI: Actually she was discovered by Adam Gerrard, who runs the label with me. Her track showed up randomly on his Soundcloud feed...
ADAM GERRARD (jumping in): Yeah, I was listening to a Finnish artist that a record store guy from Australia sent me and when that finished it started playing Sgoraet by Kedr and I was blown away. 
Kedr Livanskiy Sgoraet (Burning Down)

Mike, had you traveled to Russia before? 

I’ve been to Russia at least 5 times since the early 2000's. The last time I was, was there I noticed more of an underground brewing... It is definitely growing more and more every day. Kedr is involved in an entire scene of artists, and there is some really good stuff coming out from her crew.  

You said "I don't know how anyone could not like this music”...
I meant that more facetiously than anything else, because the music had a certain mood that captured me… I think it's her use of melody mixed with the lo-fi, mystery aspect. They say there are certain musical keys that draw people in. Our brains respond to certain sounds a certain way. It's always great to discover someone unknown! But that seems to be what our label 2MR is about.  

Kedr Livanskiy On The Road Again (Burning Down)

KEDR LIVANSKIY: I was born on October 4, 1990. It was a very interesting but critical time for Russia—a time of great change. The Soviet Union was no more, and old values were anathematized because of the reconstruction. Of course the big problem was perpetual drunkenness—people would drink themselves to death. 

In my early teens no one seemed to understand me in this world (I thought), so I read Washington Irving novels and listened to The Cure. At around 20 years old I felt a real need to find myself, so I entered the directing department of the Moscow School of New Cinema. At the same time, electronic music fascinated me completely.

Kedr Livanskiy

Kedr Livanskiy

A small circle of my friends formed around a mutual interest in music. We always went to concerts together—mostly international artists like Inga Copeland, DJ Spinn and DJ Rashad, Legowelt, Death Grips, Florian Kupfer, Dean Blunt, etc. It wasn’t long before we organized the community and DIY record label known as John’s Kingdom. It’s not only about music; it’s also a channel for art, videos, and lifestyle. Now it’s the most alive and honest thing in Moscow.

My music is strongly inspired by Autechre, Aphex Twin, and Boards of Canada, but with the lyrics and mood of Mazzy Star. I admire contemporaries Inga Copeland and Laurel Halo. However, my songs are more pop-leaning because of the powerful influence MTV had on my adolescence.

Friday, December 4th, Le Bain presents That Work featuring DJ sets by Mike Simonetti (2MR) and That Work. Doors 10pm. The Standard, High Line.