somehow I did not display enough of a journalistic zeal, and have not got this album until now. I have heard of novel23 earlier (at first - neurokinetic compilation, then, then a split with ambidextrous and of course a dozen or so other compilation appearances). this full length came out on pitchcadet back in 1999, but even now it sounds fresh with its elegant simplicity of tight percussion and rolling smooth melodies.
despite its softness, and warm analog glow, there is no excessively lush, melodramatic sweetness; the whole album has more somber, at times even spacey atmosphere. if there was a trademark sound for russian idm, this would be a good example of one of the trends. together with syntetika and ambidextrous, novel23 has always been a favorite of mine, with the deeply emotional sound that blends mathematical minimalism of percussion with graceful flowing melodies.
this is yet another one of those small gems that one encounters; i am looking forward to novel23 splits with vesna and bauri, judging by the split with ambidextrous, they would be something to look out for.