Octopus label / Ondine, Finland, released: autumn 2015
Two female singers interacting with rude noise attacks? Nope, not talking about Japanese Baby Metal… this Finnish release has much more to offer, despite the fact that the content would rather qualify as (Prog) Rock than Metal …
For those who still need to be introduced to Kimmo Pohjonen:
Yes, it is indeed an accordion which in his hands turns into something unique (literally) – a miracle machine, a magic tool where any audio-expression is possible, from a gentle melodic embrace up to the acoustic equivalent of a punch-in-the-face. An eccentric shaman of even more eccentric music, taking you onto a trip into different acoustic dimensions, therefore it’s difficult to pin down the genre. I do not recall if I spotted it in a record store or in a library, but they simply gave him his own section…
His latest release Sensitive Skin turned out to be a special album, not only because of the awesome crystal clear sound (produced and mixed by James Spectrum) and because Pohjonen gets to explore new territories with the help of numerous guest musicians, e.g. Kronos Quartet (string quartet), Samuli Kosminen (drums, percussion), Ismo Alanko (vocals), Lauri Porra (bass).
The abovementioned singers are his daughters Inka and Saana, who also assist to present this album live, playing guitars and drums. They seemed to have an impact on the result – besides the fact that Kimmo had enough time to plan and record at a comfortable pace and in his own studio. Compared with previous albums (Kielo, Uumen, Kluster), Sensitive Skin seems the most melodic, playful – even joyful – release so far, creating a mood of transcendance, as if the love for his family shines through and creates music that has healing powers (e.g. the majestic Sub).
Don’t get me wrong, there is still plenty of punch and groove comparable to a (Progressive) Rock Band Jam Session to enjoy (Cyclon, Emissio, Atomi).
Sensitive Skin has all the ingredients of a highly ”accessible” album, so to say, maybe even reaching mainstream audiences? It might be on the best way, as the album has reached nr 4 on World Music Charts Europe…
Listen to “Cyclon” on Soundcloud.