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Paavoharju — Joko sinä tulet tänne alas tai minä nousen sinne (2013)

 Paavoharju — Joko sinä tulet tänne alas tai minä nousen sinne (2013)

Paavoharju — Joko sinä tulet tänne alas tai minä nousen sinne
•   ”Mistä se johtuu että unet joita nään päättyvät aina sinun syliin vaikka loppujen lopuksi ei siihen ole lupaa ja minä kyllä pääsen sen yli Kulta, olet maailman syli” — Joose Keskitalo
Genre: Electronic/Ambient/Experimental/Folk/Psychedelic/Lo-Fi
Location: Savonlinna, Finland
Album release: October 18, 2013
Record Label: Svart/Fonal Records
Duration:     37:45
Tracks:
01. Metsän hämärä     3:32
02. Patsaatkin kuolevat     3:12
03. Krabat     1:28
04. Sä olit     3:55
05. Tumulus     4:29
06. Kuolon uni     1:34
07. Tattarisuo 1931     3:48
08. Penuel     1:30
09. Valkeat majat     3:28
10. Olet maailman syli     4:04
11. Minä nousen sinne     3:54
12. Kolmas voim     2:51
Members:
— Lauri Ainala
— Olli Ainala
— Henri Pulkkinen
Description:
•   Psychedelic music born of cabin fever. Weird pastel electronica. Bizarre cut and paste loops. Hazy, mist-clad experimentalism. Eternal drone theatrics. The music of Finland's Paavoharju, now preparing for the release of their 3rd album, is difficult to pin down. The Wire dubbed the music as "home-taped experimentation married to pop ecstasy", and the albums "Yhä hämärää" (2006) and "Laulu laakson kukista" (2008) found the band worldwide cult fame in the indie scene.
•   October 2013 sees the release of the band's third album, titled "Joko sinä tulet tänne alas tai minä nousen sinne" on Svart Records. Main composer Lauri Ainala's penchant for progress and experimentation found him at a point where it was necessary for Paavoharju to renew itself.
•   The major stylistic change on the new album is the inclusion of hip hop elements, with rap vocals performed by Paperi T (also of the Helsinki hip hop group Ruger Hauer), but the handling of these influences is unconventional. Paavoharju's brand of hip hop is far removed from its roots, taken off the streets and thrown into the nocturnal forests of
Finland.
•   Familiar building blocks from the group's previous work, such as the array of female voices and troubadour Joose Keskitalo, are still there, but they are distant, often drowned in swathes of electronic haze, sometimes just barely audible as if a faded memory of something that once was. The major theme on "Joko sinä tulet tänne alas tai minä nousen sinne" is alienation — how things familiar turn into things distant and strange. Speaking of the album, Ainala compares it to an old family homestead to which one returns after decades and in whose decayed state there is both horror and beauty.
REVIEW
By Matthew Murphy; October 28, 2013;  Rating: 7.1
•   It’s been five years since the outside world has heard much from the enigmatic Finnish group Paavoharju. Since the release of their second album, 2008’s Laulu Laakson Kukista, Paavoharju have apparently been taking the concept of “woodshedding” to a logical extreme. Their latest album Joko sinä tulet tänne alas tai minä nousen sinne was conceived and recorded in a variety of abandoned buildings, including in a self-built sauna deep in the Tattarisuo swamp that might be reasonably described as a literal shed in the woods. The resulting album is every bit as atmospheric and inscrutable as that process might suggest.
•   As with their previous work, Paavoharju’s music on Joko is a mass of internal contradictions and counter-intuitive decisions. Though the group is still typically described in the press as a collective, the bulk of the music is composed and assembled in solitude by Lauri Ainala. The exact process is likely known only to Ainala himself, but most of the music here is a dense weave of submerged tape loops, crackly field recordings, and disembodied snippets of voice and shadowy instruments. The ground shifts continually beneath the listener’s feet as the various sound elements emerge and are allowed to decay and dissolve into one another. The sense of dissolution is broken by waves of casual synchronicity, leaving an impression similar to that of tuning your dashboard AM radio to a crowded spot on the dial where traces of multiple distant broadcasts intersect to create spontaneous new compositions.
•   The biggest change this time is that here one of those distant AM stations is broadcasting an alien strain of hip-hop. Finnish rapper Paperi T, of the Helsinki group Ruger Hauer, makes several appearances throughout the album. His rap and/or spoken word contributions are purposefully de-contextualized, removed entirely from any urban origin and forcibly transplanted into Paavoharju’s disorienting landscapes. It adds an interesting wrinkle to the group’s formula, although I’d be hard-pressed to declare it an actual improvement. At the very least, Paperi T’s presence ensures that this is Paavoharju’s most lyrically-dense music to date, something that is an obvious obstacle for listeners who speak no Finnish. In this environment, his vocals can’t help but take on something of a theatrical appearance, calling to mind something like a Finnish version of Mike Patton and somewhat diminishing the album’s general out-of-time quality.
•   Joko sinä tulet tänne alas tai minä nousen sinne translates roughly to “Either you come down here, or I will ascend there.” According to a recent interview, Paavoharju borrowed that title from a quote by Tampa-based evangelical minister Rodney Howard-Browne. As with their use of hip-hop, Paavoharju’s re-contextualization of this quote indicates their canny ability to blend their seemingly insular musical vision with a global array of influences. Or perhaps it might be more precise to say a universal array of influences — throughout these pieces there exist layers of wordless vocal samples that are not readily traceable to any one cultural source, some of them so disquieting it can feel almost like listening to EVPs or other paranormal field recordings.
•   At their best, as on such tracks as “Kolmas Voima” (“Third Force”) or “Valkeat Majat” (“White Tents”), Paavoharju are able to conduct tricks of memory similar to those triggered by the Caretaker or the artists on the Ghost Box roster. Obscure musical elements, spectral voices, and stray bits of traditional Finnish song and folklore are combined to create works that can seem at once deeply alien and yet tantalizingly familiar. In the end the album’s most intriguing paradox is the way Paavoharju are able to juxtapose so many noises and ideas against one another that it reaches a point where these collisions cease to be jarring at all, creating instead an immersive environment ready to be explored again and again.
Fortaken: http://pitchfork.com/
MySpace: https://myspace.com/paavoharju
Label: http://www.svartrecords.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/paavoharju.savonlinna
Also:
Niko Peltonen; 17.10.2013
http://www.nrgm.fi/kritiikit/paavoharju-joko-sina-tulet-tanne-alas-tai-mina-nousen-sinne/
Heikki Kivelä; 21.10.2013
http://www.ksml.fi/uutiset/viihde/levyt/paavoharju-joko-sina-tulet-tanne-alas-tai-mina-nousen-sinne/1693169
Discography:
— Yhä hämärää (2005)
— Laulu Laakson Kukista (2008)
— Ikkunat Näkevät (EP of rare and unreleased tracks, with three new songs) (2011)
— Joko sinä tulet tänne alas tai minä nousen sinne (Svart Records, 2013) •  
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Paavoharju — Joko sinä tulet tänne alas tai minä nousen sinne (2013)

 

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