From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Sovietwave (also spelled Soviet wave[1] or Soviet-wave[2]) is a subgenre of synthwave music which appeared in a number of post-Soviet states, primarily Russia. It is characterized by themes associated with the Soviet Union and is part of the phenomenon of nostalgia for the Soviet Union.[1]

History of the genre[edit]

The first attempts to bring Soviet nostalgia to modern music began in the 2000s, when trance music was at the peak of popularity. PPK used the melodies of Soviet electronic music as the basis of their compositions. “Electrosound nostalgia" appeared in the mid-2010s, then the boundaries of the genre took shape.[3] The main inspiration for the authors are emotions and associations with the Soviet Union during the 1980s. Lyudmila Shevchenko, a scholar from the Jan Kochanowski University notes that the genre is one of the manifestations of the “nostalgic myth”, a “vivid, sensual and lively” mythical image turned into the close past.[4] Sovietwave popularity get about to the most post-Soviet countries in the second half of the 2010s.[5][clarification needed] It is related to global synthwave acknowledgement, and nostalgia for 1980s Soviet culture within previous Soviet-bloc states.[6]


This genre is based on modern electronic music trends such as lo-fi, ambient and synth-pop, as well as on electronic music of the late Soviet Union[7]. Despite the widespread use of excerpts from radio programs or speeches by politicians in tracks, it does not concern the political aspects of the USSR[7]. Sovietwave music has a less aggressive sound compared to synthwave. Sovietwave is about dreams for space and progress, which have disappeared with the USSR, together with positive childhood reminiscences and utopic philanthropy hopes[5][8]. This music is influenced by old Soviet films and cartoons, such as The Mystery of the Third Planet, Guest from the Future, The Adventures of the Elektronic, Courier, Leopold the Cat, Moscow-Cassiopeia, Office Romance, One Hundred Days After Childhood, Three from Prostokvashino, comedies of Leonid Gaidai, old episodes of Yeralash, etc.

The sound contains less bass, has a slow tempo and the specific noise effect. It makes the genre seem much like dreamwave and chillwave.

Common influences of the genre are soviet composers Eduard Artemyev, Aleksandr Zatsepin and music groups Zodiac, Alliance,[8] Bioconstructor, Mayak, Coffee, Forum, and New Collection. However, the influence of western artists, popular in the USSR, is also observed. Some examples include Depeche Mode, Digital Emotion, Modern Talking.[6]

Sovietwave music is characterized by an emphasis on the cultural, political, and scientific aspects of USSR citizen life[5][8]. Insertions from Soviet scientific and educational films or Soviet statesmen speeches are used to emulate a nostalgic experience for the listener.[5]


  1. ^ a b "Russia's musical new wave embraces Soviet chic: Nostalgic young musicians seek connection to culture of the past", The Guardian
  2. ^ "MUSTELIDE - "В Mustelide мне безумно нравится быть одной" - Звуки.Ру". Retrieved 2019-10-28.
  3. ^ "SOVIETWAVE - interview by Peek-A-Boo magazine". Retrieved 2019-10-28.
  4. ^ Szewczenko, Ludmiła (2019-08-08). "Ностальгия в системе базовых оппозиций „добро" и „зло" в автодокументальных произведениях Людмилы Улицкой „Детство 45–53: а завтра будет счастье" и Светланы Алексиевич „Время секонд хэнд"". Studia Rossica Posnaniensia (in Russian). 0 (44 t1): 53–62. ISSN 0081-6884.
  5. ^ a b c d REVIVAL OF SOVIET ELECTRO // «Boombarash» magazine № 7/2015 Интервью с группой «Артек Электроника»
  6. ^ a b Краснощеков, Владимир Александрович (2017-09-22). "Евродиско в России: из мейнстрима в андеграунд". Обсерватория культуры (in Russian). Retrieved 2019-11-10.
  7. ^ a b Ridus. RU. Andrey Krasnoshchekov: Electrosound nostalgia
  8. ^ a b c Yandex.Zen. Musical hearse: SovietWave - Nostalgia in every note

External links[edit]