Duo with Lauri Hyvärinen

photo by anna antipova

Ilia Belorukov (Saint-Petersburg) - alto saxophone or fluteophone, objects, electronics or modular synth
Lauri Hyvärinen (Helsinki) - acoustic or electric guitar, effect pedals, objects

Ilia Belorukov and Lauri Hyvärinen met in 2012 at a jam session in Helsinki, a starting point for their long-term friendship and work. Together they played with a variety of musicians before starting their duo. Starting from free improvisation traditions and continuing with quiet contemporary composition, the musicians now approach their music from a more compositional point of view, carefully choosing each sound they produce. The range of sounds used is very wide, from using the surfaces of acoustic instruments such as saxophone or guitar to pick up sounds, to feedback in effect pedals chain or software/hardware modular synthesizer. The duo has several releases on Hemisphare (AU), Pan Y Rosas Discos (USA), Attenuation Circuit (DE), Paahtimo Sounds, Rypistellyt Levyt (FI) and Spina!Rec (RU) labels. They did first big tour in November 2017 in Holland, Germany, Austria, Czech Republic, Slovenia and France after some smaller ones in Finland, Russia and Baltic States. In 2018 duo played at Noise & Fury 17 Festival in Moscow. In February 2019 they played in Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Czech Republic and Germany. In October 2023 they met again after years in Helsinki and Novi Sad where Ilia is based since 2022.


lauri hyvärinen & ilia belorukov // 04.12.2016 // chance meeting festival, helsinki from spina!rec on Vimeo.

"The A side was recorded in Helsinki in 2015, and features our good friend Ilia Belorukov, the ubiquitous Russian, wielding his sax and electronic setup in the company of Lauri Hyvärinen, the Finnish improvising guitarist. The label describe this noise as “slowly unravelling acoustic and electric sounds”, and point out that it was recorded in a concrete bunker, as if that really made any difference. It’s a dud in any case; the duo’s attenuated electric whines and clattering junkyard scrabbles completely fail to cohere for me, but it sounds as though Lauri Hyvärinen has a unique approach to playing the guitar."
(Ed Pinsent about split on Rypistellyt Levyt, The Sound Projector)

"...on the first side we find Ilia Belorukov (alto saxophone, electronics) & Lauri Hyvärinen's (acoustic guitar, electronics) with a live recording from Helsinki, inside a 600 square meter concrete bunker. While this is some damn fine improvised music, the fact that it is recorded in a big bunker is something I didn't hear on this recording. There is a fair amount of grittiness to the music, especially with Belorukov playing something that reminds the listener of sine waves leaping
into feedback, while occasionally Hyvärinen's is a damn loud acoustic beast. But they keep their set quite balanced; it can also be very quiet.
Both of these sides are quite similar and it's not too difficult to see why appear on a cassette together. We have here the fine combination improvisation and musique concrete/electro-acoustic music, in the space of two concerts from two different locations by four excellent musicians."
(Frans De Waard about split on Rypistellyt Levyt, Vital Weekly)

"On side one (I have to assume, as neither side I marked on the tape) we hear the duo of Ilia Belourkov and Lauri Hyvärinen playing four tracks that were recorded in Helsinki some two years ago now. It’s improvised noise, made with saxophone, electric guitar, and amplified objects, and it projects that particular form of abrasiveness and cold despair that the Russians (and the Finns) do so well. If hearing English improv is like taking a bath in 5 gallons of lukewarm tea, this tape is like being washed in ice-cold water and scrubbed with wire wool. The guitarist Lauri has been active since around 2009 and has performed in lots of bands, projects, and collaborations, including Neue Haas Grotesk – a promising sounding synth-guitar-drum noise band. Here the duo describe themselves as “a creative unit dedicated to acoustic improv with the involvement of small electronic devices.” A splendid instance of bitter, abstracted, cold music."
(Ed Pinsent about split on Spina!rec, The Sound Projector)

"The last release is a bit older, from 2014, but now comes in 'black edition' of twenty-five copies. Lauri Hyvarinen we met recently for the first time, with his release with Naoto Yamagishi (see Vital Weekly 987), and here also plays electric guitar and objects, whereas Belorukov has his alto-saxophone, contact microphone, mini-amp and objects. The music was recorded in Helsinki in July 2013 and they have been playing before. The music is quite a wild ride of improvised music bordering on the noise end of things, but not necessarily is all about screaming feedback. They have four pieces, ranging quite chaotic, wild and free, to introspective, quiet and also free, maintaining a fine balance between both ends. An excellent improvised set they play here, perhaps edited a bit but retaining a lot of its original power."
(Frans De Waard about split on Spina!rec, Vital Weekly)

photo by james andean