Friday, October 31, 2008

Ignatz: 'The Water'

Ignatz: 'The Water' (2008)

From the Kraak Records release Ignatz: III CD/LP (K056). Ignatz is a Brussels-based artist Bram Devens.

Available from

Directed and cinematography by Sami Sänpäkkilä/Fonal Records.
Assistant: Julie Vanopdenbosh.

Chicks on Speed: 'Art Rules' on Latvian TV

Chicks on Speed: 'Art Rules' (from Latvian TV, Vilnius)

... but where's the new album?

  • pHinnWeb's hibernating Chicks on Speed page
  • "Black Vaseline" 12" on Harmönia

    Masters of Skweee @ Flowfestival 2008

    Skweee Like A Pig @ Booze Factory, Turku, Finland

    And another forthcoming Skweee release...

    Artist: Randy Barracuda vs. Mesak feat. Michael Black Electro
    Title: Black Vaseline
    Format: 12" HRMN 7
    Label: Harmönia
    Date: November 2008


    A1. Black Vaseline
    A2. Black Vaseline (Eero Johannes Kotkan Ruusu Mix)
    B1. Adult Games
    B2. Adult Games (Dub)

    Wednesday, October 29, 2008

    Esa Kotilainen: Ajatuslapsi (1977) Now Re-Released

    A treat for electronic ambient fans is provided by a long-awaited CD re-release of Esa Kotilainen's Tangerine Dream/Klaus Schulze-style solo album Ajatuslapsi ("A Thought Child") from 1977, which is now out on Love/Siboney, a company specializing in CD re-releases of the legendary Finnish label Love Records, which went bankrupt in 1979, leaving behind a large legacy in Finnnish rock, jazz, folk and also political music.

    The album was originally released as an edition of 500 copies, Kotilainen playing all instruments there. Alongside Tangerine Dream, Lobsang Rampa's controversial book The Third Eye is mentioned as its inspiration, Kotilainen visualising such tracks as 'Avartuva näkemys' as a journey of Tibetan monks in a cave of stalactites.

    Esa Kotilainen in 1979, introducing the electronic sounds of Moog

    Esa Kotilainen (b. 1946) is known as a keyboard wizard and synth veteran, who provided his contributions to Wigwam's most popular album Nuclear Nightclub (1975), also as a member of the band's latest incarnation, which is still in business. Furthermore, Kotilainen has provided his services as a session musician for such as Tasavallan Presidentti, Jukka Tolonen, Hector, J. Karjalainen, Nils-Aslak Valkeapää and many more. He has also been a member of Neum.

    Esa Kotilainen's career in electronic music started in 1974 when he expensively imported from Germany a MiniMoog, an instrument rarely seen in Finland those days. During this era Kotilainen was playing gigs on a ferry called Finnhansa, which sailed between Helsinki and Travemünde, and paid for the instrument 6.100 Finnish marks: the price of a small car those days. The first gig with Kotilainen's Minimoog was creating sound effects for the soundtrack of Spede Pasanen's film comedy Viu-hah-hah-taja (1974), and the first music recording was obviously for the solo album Robson of Frank Robson.

    Kotilainen's new career as a synth wiz got him loads of offers for background music in commercials after which his career was guaranteed in progressive bands like Wigwam, who were after electronic sounds generally favoured by the prog genre. Kotilainen is also said to have in his collection a Mellotron (an analogue predecessor of samplers, using pre-recorded tape loops played with a keyboard), perhaps the only one in this country.

    Ajatuslapsi CD features as bonus tracks two versions of 'Matkaaja' ("The Traveller"), a 1978 commissioned work from Kotilainen for the Finnish National Ballet. The CD booklet also includes English liner notes by Pekka Laine, where Esa Kotilainen shares his insights on the album's origins.

    Artist: Esa Kotilainen
    Title: Ajatuslapsi LRCD 196 (original LP: LRLP 196)
    Re-release year: 2008 (original LP: 1977)

    1. Unisalissa ("In a dream room")
    2. Avartuva näkemys ("The mind broadens")
    3. Ilmassa ("In the air")

    CD bonus tracks:

    4. Matkaaja (1978) ("The traveller")
    5. Matkaaja (1978) Kaiutettu versio (= A version with echo, 2008)

    Album credits:

    Esa Kotilainen plays on the album: Mini-Moog, ARP-2600, Vox StringThing, Fender Rhodes, Kouvola Casotto, kantele, Hammond B3, Leslie 251 & 145, Binson Echo, MXR 90 Phase, MXR 100 Phase, Maestro Phase Shifter, Foxx Wah Wah pedal, Indian bells, Farfisa organ, Polymoog.

    Recorded by Jukka Teittinen at Alppi-studio, mixed at Finnlevy Studios, Helsinki, summer 1976.
    Cover by Kari Sipilä.

    CD bonus tracks recorded at Esa Kotilainen home studio.
    CD remastering by Pauli Saastamoinen at Finnvox Studios, April 2008.
    CD layout by Japa Mattila.
    CD liner notes by Pekka Laine.

  • Release info @ Love
  • Esa Kotilainen @ Finnish Wikipedia
  • Ajatuslapsi @ Finnish Wikipedia
  • Ajatuslapsi @ Mutant Sounds
  • A review in Finnish by Jussi Niemi, Soundi 3/1977
  • Discography info @ FinnScene: The Early Years @ pHinnWeb
  • Monday, October 27, 2008

    Luomo: Convivial

    A new album from Luomo (a.k.a. Sasu Ripatti, also known as Vladislav Delay) is out on Ripatti's own label Huume Recordings. Featuring as guest stars Cassy (Panorama Bar, Berlin), Sascha Ring (Apparat), Jake Shears (Scissor Sisters), Finnish soul singer Johanna Iivanainen, Robert Owens, Sue-C and "one anonymous singer who hides behind a name Chubbs".

    You can read more on album at Luomo site; with reviews, interviews and the free 'Love you all' track featuring Sascha Ring a.k.a. Apparat.

    Artist: Luomo
    Title: Convivial
    Format: CD/digital download
    Label: Huume Recordings
    Release date: 24 October 2008


    01. Have You Ever, (8:02) w/ Cassy
    02. Love You All (7:11) w/ Sascha Ring aka Apparat
    03. If I Can’t (7:48) w/ Jake Shears
    04. Nothing Goes Away (6:49) w/ Sue Cie & Johanna Iivanainen
    05. Robert’s Reason (6:48) w/ Robert Owens
    06. Slow Dying Places (8:52) w/ Johanna Iivanainen
    07. Sleep Tonight (7:36) w/ Johanna Iivanainen
    08. Gets Along Fine (8:09) w/ Chubbs
    09. Lonely Music Co. (5:27) w/ Johanna Iivanainen


  • Dusted
  • Aton Flexi Disc

    "Aikamme musiikkiin kuuluu atonaalisuus, se kumoaa käsitykset sävelten suhteista. Aton on uudistaja, aurinko, voima. Elämme atonaalista, uutta ja uudistuvaa aikaa."

    This interesting curio just got into pHinnWeb's attention. A flexi disc perhaps from the late 70s or early 80s, advertising Nokia Cable Factory's Aton cables and featuring various appropriately electronic atonal sounds and some generic disco.

    Listen to it here.

    Thursday, October 23, 2008


    Ydintalvi ("Nuclear winter") is a Sonic Temple Assassins-related project, which classifies on its MySpace page as "hardcore / black metal / industrial".

    Artist: Ydintalvi
    Title: s/t
    Format: 5" CDR WBRCDR-02
    Label: We Burn Records (Finland)
    Year: 2008


    1. I
    2. II
    3. III
    4. IV
    5. V
    6. VI
    7. VII
    8. VIII
    9. IX

    NOTE: Contains two inserts; a small card containing the tracklist and an A4-sized poster of an exploding cathedral.

    Wednesday, October 22, 2008

    Levi Stubbs (1936 - 2008)

    The Four Tops: 'Reach Out, I'll Be There' (1966)

    The Four Tops: 'It's The Same Old Song' (1965)

    Just after Isaac Hayes and Norman Whitfield, another great soul man is gone. Levi Stubbs (born as Levi Stubbles; 6 June 1936 – 17 October 2008), the lead vocalist for Motown's legendary R&B group The Four Tops, has passed away. He was also the subject of Billy Bragg's song 'Levi Stubb's Tears'.


    Also gone: Neal Hefti (29 October 1922 - 11 October 2008), who wrote the memorable theme music to the 1960s campy TV series version of Batman.

    Arcadion: "Ghost Feeder" (DC Recordings)

    And yet another forthcoming DC Recordings release...

    Artist: Arcadion
    Title: Ghost Feeder
    Label: DC Recordings (UK)
    Cat. No: DCR97
    Format: 12" / digital download
    Release Date: 1 December 2008

    Press release notes from DC Recordings:

    Arcadion is the new incarnation of Alan Dobson, also known as Hungryghost (with releases coming soon on Nightmares On Wax's 'Wax On' imprint) and as an erstwhile member of scratch DJ and production team Def Tex. A resident of Norfolk and more recently London, Dobson's musical journey has taken him from a childhood of dub, blue beat records and Norfolk ditch-jumping via an obsession with computer technology and sampling to arrive at the swaggering electro boogie that you find on this debut release for DC Recordings.

    The title track "Ghost Feeder" comes on like a modern take on the go-go music of Trouble Funk or Tilt, following the tradition of dancefloor music fostered by Depth Charge in his formative years and therefore fitting neatly on the DC roster. These are beats aimed squarely at your pelvis with an aim to make the party move, coming to you here in their most refined and pneumatic form.

    Second track "Arc" delivers more of the same quality but utilises the motifs of electro boogie -- lilting electronic melodies riding a heavyweight percussive groove, augmented by the sound of vintage synths like the Octave Kitten and the Cheetah MS6, which bring a classic edge to this dancefloor pulse, creating flavours reminiscent of Bambaataa and early New York electro at its most futuristic!

    Friday, October 17, 2008

    Kompleksi's Debut Gig @ YouTube

    Part 1: '(I Ain't No) Lovechild'

    Part 2: 'Spiders in the Sky'

    Part 3: 'Porno Tampere' & 'Gothic Robots'

    Part 4: 'Metal Sky' & 'Bioluminescence'

    Part 5: 'Moscow 1980'

    Part 6: 'Sara Pain'

    Part 7: 'Slick Little Girl'

    Part 8: 'Battlestar Erotica'

    Our debut gig (and also the official record release party) on Friday 3 October 2008 is now online -- with warts and all (as Kate Bush put it: be kind to our mistakes) -- divided into eight videofiles. The gig was filmed by Tina Ulevik of Spul Films Australia, who also created the music video for our 'Sara Pain' in 2007.

    This gig took place at Lal Lal Lal Festival, organised by Lal Lal Lal record label which also released our first single back in 2005. The venue was the cellar of Kantis in Helsinki, a British-style pub/restaurant.

  • Video page @ pHinnWeb

    You can also order now from Lal Lal Lal a compilation tape released in occasion of the festival, featuring from us a track called 'Kompleksi'.
  • Wednesday, October 15, 2008

    Kompleksi's Album Out Today

    Kompleksi's debut album Sister Longlegs Dances In The Disco on Helsinki's Verdura Records (of Magyar Posse fame) is finally out today.

    Artist: Kompleksi
    Title: Sister Longlegs Dances In The Disco
    Format: 12" vinyl LP (limited edition of 500) VERDU-24
    Label: Verdura Records (Finland)
    Date: 15 October 2008

    A1. (I Ain't No) Lovechild
    A2. Spiders In The Sky
    A3. Porno Tampere
    A4. Gothic Robots
    A6. Metal Sky
    B1. Bioluminescence
    B2. Moscow 1980
    B3. Sara Pain
    B4. The Only Star In My Sky

    Length: 49 minutes

    You can order the album directly from Verdura Records.

    The album is distributed in Finland by Supersounds Music.

    And this is what Supersounds tells about the release:

    Tamperelaisen duon (Erkki "pHinn" Rautio & Mika "Mike Not" Paju) debyyttialbumi.
    -Yhtyeen oma kuvaus musiikista on "eclectro", eli monimuotoista ja mihinkään selkeään kategoriaan kuulumatonta konemusiikkia.
    -Omintakeista ja taatusti hämmentävää, tarttuvia kappaleita unohtamatta.
    -Laulaja Erkki pyörittää maailmanlaajuisesti tunnettua -konemusiikkisivustoa.
    -Lo-fi -estetiikka on kansia myöten hyvin hallussa!

    I will add later on more info about the shops where to get it and also the international distribution that is in plans too. For now, you can find the album for example at If Society Shop, Pitkämies, CD-Kauppa.Fi and Levyliiga.

    And the digital version (with a bit different track order and slightly longer versions of some tracks) can still be bought from Beatport.

    Meanwhile, if you live outside of Finland and want to get your hands on the album now, I recommend you contact Verdura directly for more. It's a shining black vinyl with a limited edition of 500, so act while the stock lasts!

    Also, the video of our debut gig of 3 October at Lal Lal Lal Festival (Kantis, Helsinki) can be seen at YouTube now.

  • Latest Verdura news, featuring Kompleksi
  • Album entry @ Discogs
  • Tuesday, October 14, 2008

    William Claxton (1927 - 2008)

    William Claxton: Jazz Life

    American photographer William Claxton (12 October 1927 - 11 October 2008) has passed away. Claxton was known for the book Jazz Life, featuring a series of photographs of noted jazz musicians he took from his travels around the USA in 1959 and 1960 with musicologist Joachim Berendt.

    William Claxton was married to Peggy Moffitt, one of the iconic and often-imitated 1960s models in fashion photography and a muse to fashion designer Rudi Gernreich (1922 - 1985): Claxton's photographs of Moffitt in Gernreich's designs became world-famous.

  • The official William Claxton site
  • Obituary @ Los Angeles Times
  • Obituary @ Taschen Books

  • William Claxton's Peggy Moffitt photographs @ Expo Lounge

    William Claxton: Peggy Moffitt in Rudi Gernreich's monokini (topless swimsuit), 1964
  • Thursday, October 09, 2008

    Jörn Donner: Mustaa valkoisella (1968)

    Kristiina Hautala: 'Kielletyt käskyt' (off Mustaa valkoisella, 1968)

  • More Kristiina Hautala @ YouTube

    It was nice seeing Jörn Donner's (a renaissance man of Finland's Swedish-speaking minority, who has worked as a writer, film-maker & producer and politician) Mustaa valkoisella ("Black on White", 1968) again last weekend on YLE Teema. Here the non-actor Donner (surely a lost Scandinavian cousin to Humphrey Bogart) plays in his laconic style Juha Holm, a 36-year old fridge salesman who gets into a relationship with a 19-year old female clerk called Maria Constanza (Kristiina Halkola) from the same company.

    We see in the film's very start how a magazine has chosen Holm, his wife (Liisamaija Laaksonen) and their two children "The Family of the Year", in a tightly cut narrative where a fussy voiceover tells about their immaculate modern family life; apparently a hollow facade which gradually starts to crumble during the film. Juha Holm, going through a mid-life crisis and being stressed by his job, is warned by his doctor about drinking and smoking too much. A surprisingly romantic and literary side of Holm, often appearing in the film only cold and detached, is revealed when he recites to Maria Constanza a love poem written by Pablo Neruda (a Chilean poet very much in vogue among the leftist Finnish youth of the day), only leaving her bemused and with no comment.

    Partly a drama on relationships, partly a social satire, especially juicy are the comical scenes where are followed the desperate efforts of Holm's workmates (played by other amateur actors, Jukka Virtanen, a Jack of all trades in Finnish entertainment, and crooner/songwriter/popular composer Lasse Mårtenson) to create a commercial film to sell fridges, more or less unsuccessfully using female models in leotards as accessories. The beautifully restored film copy in its bright colours (Esko Nevalainen's cinematography won Jussi, Finnish counterpart to Academy Awards) essentially captures the late-60s Finnish Zeitgeist (oops, another over-used expression). Kristiina Halkola later sued Jörn Donner over using a body-double of her in the erotic scenes of the film. Another Kristiina, Hautala, memorably sings 'Kielletyt käskyt' ("Forbidden Commandments"), a now-classic song with lyrics penned by Jukka Virtanen.

    Kristiina Halkola and "Jörkka" sharing a tender moment before meeting in court.

  • Tuesday, October 07, 2008

    Paavo Haavikko (1931 - 2008)

    Rauta-aika (1982)

    ("The Iron Age", an expensive TV production based on Finnish national epic Kalevala and written by Haavikko.)

    Paavo Haavikko, a Finnish Academy member and one of the most prominent Modernist poets and writers in Finland has passed away. Haavikko was also a playwright, essayist, book publisher and an avid social commentator.

  • Paavo Haavikko biography @
  • Friday, October 03, 2008

    Sparks: The Number One Song In Heaven (1978)

    Sparks: 'The Number One Song In Heaven' (@ Top of the Pops) (1978)

  • Long version | And even more versions

    This one is for Cocó Cielo ("cielo" = "heaven").

    The Best of Sparks compilation has been in my heavy rotation lately, and I seemingly can't get enough of this duo of the Brothers Mael, who started in the age of glam-rock but later gloriously turned coat and paved the way (alongside Suicide) to the whole electronic duo format that proved popular from the 1980s onwards, with such diverse acts as Yello, Soft Cell, Pet Shop Boys, LFO, Orbital, Altern-8, Coil, Pan sonic... you name it.

    Actually this German collection covers only the years 1971 - 1984; their huge 1974 hit 'This Town Ain't Big Enough For Both of Us' is naturally included, but here the emphasis seems to be on their later electronic output (featuring some gems from Sparks' less known albums), including their excellent late 70s singles (such as 'Heaven...' above) they created together with legendary (oops, that word again, but I guess it can't be avoided here) Giorgio Moroder. Such albums as the wonderful Indiscreet (1975) are not covered here, nor is their latest output, so I think there's at least some potential for a more definitive "Best of" as a 2-CD (or a box set; with over 20 albums made in over 35 years, there's a lot to cover). Well, I guess I could rave on and on about them, but more perhaps later on...
  • Wednesday, October 01, 2008

    Tampere Moods

    A loosely Tampere-themed post...

    Yo-Talo, 13 September 2008

    See what those crazy kids are up to at Yo-Talo these days, with DJs Infekto & Sami running the show in their guaranteed style. (I haven't been there myself in ages; having been too tired, exhausted & f*ked-up lately, but it seems the scene is pretty much the same as it always was).

    Big Pop 8 Years Anniversary Night @ Yo-Talo (October 2007)

    ... And more the same from the last year.

    Regina: 'Saanko jäädä yöksi?' (live excerpt from Klubi, Tampere, 5 September 2008)

    Also, a live rendition of Regina's new single 'Saanko jäädä yöksi?' ("May I stay for the night?"). Actually, Regina are based in Helsinki these days, but they started out here in Tampere, so I guess they can pass now.

    And finally, I just found this new-ish site on Tampere's current street fashion: Tampere Street Style. It seems to have been modelled after Hel Looks, a similar site on Helsinki styles.

    pHinnWeb Chart October 2008...

    ... can be found here.

    As you can see, most of these are still library records; many of which I just check out of curiosity. For example, the Quatermass record had an intriguing sleeve image, so I had to find out what that was all about. It was quite Emerson, Lake & Palmer type of prog rock; well-made stuff in its own style, but not quite my own thing. So, maybe all of these are not exactly my own big favourites; the chart only being a sort of log what I've been listening to every month. Of course there would be more
    12"s and current electronic stuff if I only had money to invest in them these days (Stereolab and Sparks CDs are actually the only record store purchases I've made in a long time, and Kelpe being a DC Recordings promo CD), and I haven't been DJing in ages, really, so getting huge amounts of new vinyl doesn't feel as relevant now as it used to be.