Mid-Year Favourites – Finland

It’s been quite a year and I haven’t been a very active music blogger for various of reasons. So I’ll do a very quick mid-year round ups of releases that I should have been writing about. Thank you music for keeping me relatively sane throughout this first half of 2020 and thank you dear reader for following this little music blog. Here’s a quick list of Finnish releases that I’ve enjoyed. I’m sure there’s plenty I haven’t even heard at this point and it’s very likely that I simply just forgot something awesome. Feel free to educate me before December and the proper EOTY lists.

Albums:

The new album by Laura Moisio has been my biggest favorite closely followed by Kalevi Suopursu and Puhelinseksi. Others are in random order and can share the fourth spot.

Laura Moisio – Laulaa kun ei voi muutakaan (Texicalli Records)
Kalevi Suopursu – Yksin Yksiössä (Helmi Levyt / Jukan Musiikki)
Puhelinseksi – Sydänkohtaus tanssilattialla (Svart Records)

Veli – I Am Changing (Evil Veli Recordings)
joku iiris – joku iiris (Humu Records / Jukan Musiikki / Hillotehdas)
Joni Ekman – Sinulle.. (Soit Se Silti)
Joose Keskitalo – Nukkekoti (Helmi Levyt)
Vasas Flora och Fauna – Möte Med Skogsgardisterna (Startracks)
Hermaja – Kultasuoni (Helmi Levyt)
Pöllöt – Taas vähään aikaan (Svart Records)
Toni Hautamäki ja Ydinrauha – Kaikki ei ole miltä näyttää
Guggenheim-projektz – Dersu Uzala (Helmi Levyt)
Pintandwefall – Your Stories Baby (Soliti)
Untogethers – Simple Math (Iso Pinkki)
Love Sport – And Justice For All (Soliti)
Ninni Forever Band – Uusi yhtye (Jukan Musiikki)
Neiti Olga – Minä, Aina (Luova Records)
Muuan Mies – Onni (Helmi Levyt)

EPs:

The most important Veli release is the new full-length debut, but this EP also has some should-be classics like Elokuussa and Ainoo Lapsi. Other four beauties are in random order.

Veli – Kotiäänityksiä (Evil Veli Recordings)
Rami Vierula – Kasetilla
Marian Valinta – Epäile
Tams – Aikahyppy 2
Sami Heikkilä – Kaunein muisto (Luova Records)

Songs:

Not so surprisingly, the song list looks pretty similar to the album list. The devastatingly beautiful and poignant Kaukana onnesta by Laura Moisio is my favorite Finnish song of the year so far. Before the release of J.E. Sunde’s I Don’t Care to Dance last Friday, it was also my favourite song of the year altogether. Now it can share that place with J.E. Sunde. Kalevi Suopursu and Rock Siltanen follow along with 60+ more that you’ll find one from this ongoing playlist that I just updated. No need to type them all down, because you’ll find them from the embedded playlist. There’s new favourites like Teini-Pää and Punomo and the long time favourites like Viljami Kukkonen and Mitä Helvettiä Nyt Taas. It’s slightly top heavy and some big faves are in the beginning, but the order is completely random after the first 10-20 songs. I’ll keep on adding songs throughout the year.

Laura Moisio – Kaukana onnesta (Texicalli Records)
Kalevi Suopursu – Sinä olet minun sunnuntai (Helmi Levyt / Jukan Musiikki)
Rock Siltanen – Tulevaisuus ei oo sitä mitä se oli (Joteskii Groteskii)

Playlist link

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Teini-Pää and Tvärtom

I’m fairly certain that I haven’t praised Teini-Pää nearly enough. I didn’t find their 2019 EP Täynnä kysymyksiä before January 2020 and that’s the only reason why it wasn’t the Finnish EP of the year and during the last month I’ve been equally obsessed with their new brilliant ABBA cover 112. It’s a B-side of their forthcoming 7″ single that will be co-released in June by Pop Antik Kustannus, Goosebumbs Records and Teinilevyt. This might not be the kind of music that I listen to that much these days, but I find their super catchy melodic punk rock totally irresistible. Oh and that vocalist is so damn good. I love everything about them. Here’s the new ABBA cover along with a couple of treasures from the 2019 EP.

Teini-Pää at Facebook
Teini-Pää Website

Another new Finnish band that I love dearly is Tvärtom, so why not use this opportunity to post their fabulous new single Järkytys. It’s a great jangly follow-up to their self-titled 2019 EP. I also had to repost the Iltariennot music video from the 2019 EP, because both the song and the video are rather perfect.

Tvärtom at Facebook

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Kalevi Suopursu, Guggenheim-projektz, Hermaja and Rock Siltanen

These quick spring release round-up posts now turn into a Kalevi Suopursu appreciation society. During the last few years I’ve learned that I love pretty much all music-related things that somehow involves Kalevi Suopursu. It don’t matter whether it’s Amuri, Guggenheim-projektz, Kalevi Suopursu Karaoke Show or just adding some VHS magic to songs by other beautiful artists. It’s all pure gold. Therefore one of my favorite albums of this spring has been the new solo album Yksin yksiössä that came out on Helmi Levyt on the 13th of March. A wonderful record that contain (should be) hits like Sinä olet minun sunnuntai, Mies Saabissa itkee ja Sotkin käteni vereen.

If you are hungry for more and quite frankly who wouldn’t be, one of his bands Guggenheim-projektz also released a great new album called Dersu Uzala. Here’s the lead track Matematiikon poika. Check out the whole album on the streaming services or buy a cassette version from Helmi Levyt.

Guggenheim-projektz at Facebook

Then a couple of other gorgeous Finnish releases with some video art from Kalevi Suopursu. First the debut album Kultasuoni from Hermaja that came out on the 8th of May on Helmi Levyt. It’s sad that there’s no Hullu Ruusu anymore, but thankfully both Merita Berg and Antti Hermaja are releasing equally wondrous music on their own / with their new groups. Here’s Charlotta Siren from the new Hermaja album.

Hermaja at Facebook

And last but definitely not the least on this little round up is the new magical single from Rock Siltanen. I was ready to spend the summer of 2020 singing along to a completely another song by Rock Siltanen, but that’s not what life had in store for us. We shall do the Uskon Huuhkajiin sing-alongs next summer, but Rock Siltanen has a perfect song for these current times too. Tulevaisuus ei oo sitä mitä se oli is warm-hearted, beautiful and full of empathy. A kind shoulder to lean on, if the anxiety tries to take a hold of me. Oh and be on the lookout for the Amuri debut album out in the fall of 2020. It will contain more magnificent songs from both Kalevi Suopursu and Rock Siltanen. If this blog / world still exists at the end of 2020, it might well turn out to be my album of the year.

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Dakota Theim, Mo Troper, Witch’s Wall and Untogethers

Over the years this blog has drifted towards roots-ier surroundings, but every now and then it’s good to go back to the actual roots of the blog and share a couple of fabulous pop songs. This little blog entry is heavily influenced by the new Dakota Theim album Somewhere Under the Sun, which came out on the 10th of January. I just found this Portland-based songwriter and his album last Friday thanks to American Standard Time. Read their long and detailed review here to get a better grip of why you should introduce your heart to these songs or just hit play below to hear a couple of melodic and catchy pop treasures. This is such a wonderful 60s / early 70s influenced pop album and I love every second of it.

Dakota Theim at Facebook
Dakota Theim Website

Another should-be hit record from Portland is the forthcoming Mo Troper album Natural Beauty that is due out on Tender Loving Empire on the 14th of February. The previous one Exposure & Response was one of the best power pop albums I’ve heard in recent years, so I have high expectations for this one. I think I already shared Jas from Australia in the latter parts of 2019, so let’s drop the other two singles here.

Mo Troper at Facebook

Witch’s Wall are from Birmingham, Alabama and they have a self-titled debut album coming out on the 3rd of April on Cornelius Chapel Records. I don’t know a whole lot about them yet, but I do know that this first single Lady Love is rather superb and comes also in form of a beautiful nostalgic video. I look forward to hearing their blend of dreamy pop, experimental rock and psychedelic vibes when the album arrives.

Witch’s Wall at Facebook

Last stop on this pop tour tonight is Tampere, Finland and the great new single The Peasant from Untogethers. A full-length album will follow in March on Iso Pinkki, but first we can enjoy this gorgeous 60s influenced pop song along with archive footage of Finnish lumberjacks doing some log racing back in the late 40s.

Untogethers at Facebook

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