TUUSANUUSKAT: Nääksää Nää Mun Kyyneleet (Fonal Records)

themilkman on Jul 8th 2011 01:35 am

Tuusanuuskat: Nääksää Nää Mun Kyyneleet

Nääksää Nää Mun Kyyneleet
Fonal Records 2011
05 Tracks. 36mins22secs

Amazon UK: CD | LP US: CD | LP Boomkat: CD | LP | DLD iTunes: DLD

From the vaults of the wonderland that is Fonal comes this collaborative effort between Es (Sami Sänpäkkilä, who is, amongst other things, head of the Finnish imprint) and Tomutonttu (Jan Anderzén, leader of polymorphic electro-folksters Kemialliset Ystävät), for which they embark on quite a remarkable journey during which their main aim seem to thoroughly destroy every last sound they come across, just, it seems, for the sake of seeing what happens. All this digital destruction is contained within five tracks and lasts only thirty six minutes, but in that time, they manage to create a brutally abrasive mix which also happens to be remarkably cinematic and pastoral.

On first impression, one would be forgiven for thinking they have inadvertently stepped in a newly found Pan Sonic noise experiment. Continue Reading »

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KEMIALLISET YSTÄVÄT: Ullakkopalo (Fonal Records)

themilkman on Oct 14th 2010 01:07 am

Kemialliset Ystävät: Ullakkopalo

Fonal Records 2010
14 Tracks. 42mins04secs

Amazon UK: CD | LP | DLD US: CD | LP | DLD Boomkat: CD | LP | DLD iTunes: DLD

Between broken folk, awkwardly oblique electronica and distorted pop, the weird and wonderful world of Fonal Records has provided a safe haven for Finland’s misfits for nearly fifteen years, who have in return distilled some of the oddest and most fascinating music around. Already responsible for quite a considerable number of releases in all sorts of formats across a wide spectrum of record labels, one of these misfits, variable collective Kemialliset Ystävät, which translates roughly as Chemical Friends, return to Fonal with their fifth album for the label.

Led by Jan Anderzén, Ullakkopalo was recorded with a fifteen-strong formation of musicians, and often sounds like an orchestra on the loose. It is quite difficult to tell exactly what is happening at any one time, such is the intensity of the sonic assault confronting the listener. Continue Reading »

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PAAVOHARJU: Laulu Laakson Kukista (Fonal Records)

themilkman on May 22nd 2008 12:44 am

Paavoharju: Laulu Laakson Kukista

Laulu Laakson Kukista
Fonal Records 2008
12 Tracks. 35mins03secs

Hailing from the small provincial town of Savonlinna in South Eastern Finland, Paavoharju are self-proclaimed born again Christians. Whether this permeates their music in any way is, for anyone who doesn’t understand Finnish at least, a total mystery. Whether this is even relevant to the music at all is anyone’s guess. What is clear however is that nothing could have prepared anyone for the oneiric pastoral beauty of the band’s debut album, Yha Hamaraa, released on Fonal in 2005. Neither folk nor pop nor experimental, Paavoharju blended all these and much more besides, carving extremely pretty melodies out of rough nebulous sound collages, in turn arranged into ephemeral songs and miniature cinematic vignettes. Yha Hamaraa was a magnificent timeless record with no real equivalent, a collection of unlikely pop songs with a very sharp edge.

Three years on, Paavoharju open the doors of their magic kingdom once again, eager to take anyone willing to step in by the hand and lead them through a labyrinth of sounds and atmospheres, pointing here at delicate reveries set in crackles and statics, or there at dense layers of fog stabbed by vibrant blades of ethereal vocals. Continue Reading »

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ISLAJA: Ulual Yyy (Fonal Records)

themilkman on May 30th 2007 01:46 pm

Islaja: Ulual Yyy

Ulual Yyy
Fonal Records 2007
09 Tracks. 39mins00secs

Islaja’s first forays into dysfunctional folk sounded like the wanderings of a little girl lost in a forest teeming with crooked trees, chilling winds and hairy monsters, with virtually no clear reference points for the listener to hang on to. Her short vignettes, paper-thin arrangements, acoustic guitars and found sounds predominantly, wrapped around matchstick-like melodies, were fragile and ephemeral affairs, the peculiar timbre of Merja Kokkonen’s voice, at times brittle to the point of breaking, at others almost accidentally falling in or out of tune, adding to the overall disjointed feel of her music. Continue Reading »

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