STRIDULUM, a musical project hailing from Upper Silesia, emerged onto the scene in 2019. Comprising Marita Volodina and Arkadiy Berg, this duo identifies themselves as a “retrofuturistic entity from the hopeless carbon fields of Southern Poland,” a description that intriguingly blends a sense of timelessness with a specific regional identity. Their sound, rooted in dark and cold electronic wave music, is characterized by a melancholic and minimalistic aesthetic.
Their latest single, “Astray,” featuring Parisian darkwave producer Manu of Distance H, boasts a dynamic complexity: the song’s skillful interplay of sombre tones and minimalist arrangements results in a distinctly immersive contrast between the frosty synth tones and the deeply emotive, expressive vocals provided by Marita Volodina. “Astray” delves into themes of despair, desire, loss, and transformation. This juxtaposition of minimalistic music against the multi-layered pathos of Volodina’s vocals imbues the song with a compelling dynamism – at once powerful and pensive, vulnerable, yet imbued with an undercurrent of strength. We hear the echoes of Linea Aspera, Hante., Minuit Machine, Selofan, and Kaelan Mikla in the sound.
The performance video for “Astray,” directed by Adam Mróz and Anaïs Novembre, was filmed across three distinct locations: Masłyk’s flat, Studio Pod Kasztanami, and La Guillotine Studio. This choice of settings adds layers of intimacy and artistry as it adeptly captures the band’s dynamic interplay of energies. By filming in these varied yet personal spaces, the directors have managed to create a visual narrative that complements and enhances the band’s atmospheric sound, showcasing the synergy between the members and their environment.
Watch the video for “Astray” below:
STRIDULUM made their debut with the EP Burial in April 2020, released via Bat-Cave Productions, exploring themes of beauty in pain and vice versa. This debut set the tone for their intricate exploration of emotional contrasts. They continued their journey into dark wave and dark electronics with their first full-length album, featuring ten songs, released in December 2021 by Manic Depression Records.
Paradigm represents a new milestone for STRIDULUM, blending their dark wave roots with broad radio appeal. The album features catchy, emotionally resonant songs, with Arkadiy’s versatile synthesizer work and Volodina’s powerful vocals exploring deep emotion. Released by Manic Depression Records, Paradigm offers a haunting yet satisfying listening experience, leaving an impression of pleasant desolation.
Paradigm is out now via Manic Depression Records