Soviet: Spies in the House of Love

Soviet: Spies in the House of Love
Title: Spies in the House of Love
Label: CD Baby

"I had to get away from the madness of New York." So explains Keith Ruggiero of Soviet his reasons for relocating to the opposite corner of America, with his move from New York to Los Angeles. A fresh start was needed - the proverbial clean slate. California beckoned, as Ruggiero unearthed the roots he had long cultivated in urban East Coast soils. His move became an emotional and mental sabbatical from things that had gone awry, but the music never went away. Whether it was fully intentional or subconscious, this leave of absence also became the panacea for his continuation, if not a new beginning altogether. Slowly the music began to bubble up to the surface again. Now to the delight of fervent fans, the second official Soviet album is completed. "The Foal" comes out Fall 2005 on a Florida based label called Kinetic Media, bearing a darker vibe, still in keeping with Ruggiero's previous soundscapes, and timeless pop ethos. "It's a bit like shoegazer meets electronic pop, with a bit of Echo & The Bunnymen mixed in," Ruggiero clarifies. The new album is the product of breathing room, and the much needed hiatus in Los Angeles. Ruggiero has found a rejuvenated desire to take Soviet out of the casket that it was nearly buried in a few years ago. "For the first time in years, I've had the privilege to step aside from the confusion and all the voices pushing me in different directions and was able to make a record that has Soviet written all over it." Ruggiero and another college comrade, Christopher Otchy, originally converged over their mutual love of Soviet filmmakers. Their musical attempts to make cinematographic, and Slavic-influenced synthpop led to the first album, "We Are Eyes, We Are Builders," which fused human emotions with embellished keyboard melodies, luscious synth layers, and austere beats. Patterning his sound after all the acclaimed bands that were often forgotten too soon, (Heaven 17, OMD, Japan) Soviet took a new swing at the most sparkling, and pure remnant sounds of the eighties, and made them it's own. Eventually Soviet became a five-piece band with Otchy, Kenan Gunduz, Greg Kochan and Amanda Lynn, and even though Ruggiero had conceived Soviet in the late 90's it was the over-hyped Electroclash media frenzy that finally gave them to notice by the press. Hard work, amiability, and actually writing good songs allowed Soviet to use the electro-scene as a vehicle to recognition, whereas many of their so-called peers fell prey to the monkey-see-monkey-do attitudes. Being lumped in with the trendy NYC acts on the electronic trash-wagon, the Connecticut native and Syracuse grad, found himself being pushed into working with management, a big-time lawyer, and record labels promising the moon and the stars. Few results, broken promises, and undue stress after his first album, extensive live performances and tours led to Ruggiero nearly pulling the plug on all things Soviet. The Petri dish that was the strenuous "final tour" in 2003 was already growing with tense interactions, an irreparable van left behind in Seattle, and an emotionally and physically exhausted band finally returning to New York. Also weighing on Ruggiero was a brief, fizzled romance with another band member. The final show was played, and one bandmate practically vanished, one got into the film industry, and another moved to Thailand. The band basically dissolved at that point, and thus came Ruggiero's relocation to L.A. "It was the perfect time for me to leave everything behind and start fresh- all the drama, the scene, the hurt, the jealousy, the labels, the people. It's like I had grown out of what was tying me to a place that wasn't giving, but sucking me dry. I needed to get away and look outside the fishbowl to understand myself again. I had to soul search, begin a new chapter- all the reasons that drive people to a new place." But with Soviet now rising again from the remnants of the Electroclash fallout, they will undoubtedly find favor with the fans and press that already adored them before. Copies of the out-of-print debut album still fetch upwards of $50 on E-bay. Critical acclaim followed them across the country during nationwide tours with Add N to X, and Stereototal, not to mention playing with the likes of Peaches, You Will Know Us by the Trail of Dead, The Faint, The Yeah Yeah Yeahs, The Fever and Fischerspooner. New York's Village Voice correlated Soviet to "Depeche Mode mating with the Psychedelic Furs." Spin described Soviet as "synth-wave's dark romanticism, and earnestly melancholic melodies..." Fader found appeal in Soviet's "charming, sincere, and easy to sing along with" music. Paper exclaimed that this was "the sort of wistful synth stuff that would sound retro if it weren't so fresh." NME called them "Loveable ... like Roxy Music meets Suicide, but with more Duran Duran" and "beautifully arranged, genuinely great pop songs." New York Magazine commended them on "evok[ing] the synth-pop era so well." Sleazenation told their readers that Soviet is "speaking a new language," and Unnatural were fully convinced that they were actually "forgotten 80s superstars with a dozen hits and millions of fans." Soviet fans may not number in the millions yet, but they are eager to hear the fruit of his restorative period. The catharsis of new beginnings has given Ruggiero the means to move forward. Synthesizers, guitars, and vocals can only be mere elements of music until the human soul touches it, and transcends the rigid constructs of time, meter, beat, and chords. Soviet did all that once before, and now breathes life into it again. "Pure emotion, true feelings, it is all about the human condition - that's what I had forgotten about and needed to go on this journey to rediscover. It's what I always had right here in my heart."

1.1 Radio Kursk
1.2 Involuntary Genius
1.3 Photographs
1.4 Falling Water
1.5 Waves of Understanding
1.6 Wake Up
1.7 Dear Friend
1.8 Stand Still
1.9 Coming Up
1.10 Felton Jarvis
1.11 Strike
1.12 Crash

Soviet: Spies in the House of Love

Regular price Sale price $9.66 $10.98

Recently viewed