Various Artists — Tuonen Tytär - A Tribute to Finnish Progressive
(Mellow MMP 385 AB, 2000, 2CD)
by Jon Davis, Published 2003-02-01
It’s always fun to review a tribute to music you’re not familiar with. For the most part, I can’t compare these covers to the original versions, so I’ll just describe the music I hear. While Finnish prog doesn’t have the recognition factor that Italian or French or even Swedish prog generally enjoys, there has obviously been some good stuff that many of us have been missing. Most of the 22 tracks here were written by Wigwam (4), Pekka Pohjola (4), and Tasavallan Presidentti (3), with Haikara and Piirpauke also getting multiple coverage. The quality of the performances it generally quite high, with only a few duds in the mix. Gems include Haikara covering one of their own tunes, Progele doing a Pekka Pohjola piece called “Armoton Idylli.” Circle provides a driving version of a Haikara song with odd vocals and a psychedelic edge. Pleromah puts in a Tasavallan Presidentti track that is both folksy and jazzy, with some interesting steel pan drum. Latvia’s Holy Lamb alternates a solid rocking riff with ethereal sections for organ, vibes, and female voice. American act Man on Fire contributes a sample and loop heavy take on Wigwam’s “June May Be Too Late” which sometimes sounds a lot like The Fixx, a borderline contribution. Five Fifteen presents a typically rocking live take on the Royals’ “High.” What can I say? 22 tracks and only three or four duds makes for a pretty good bargain in my book.
Holger Czukay RIP – Holger Czukay, a musical experimentalist without boundaries who has been involved with expanding the sound palette of rock music since the late 60s, has died at the age of 79. After studying with Karlheinz Stockhausen in the early 60s, he became fascinated with the possibilities of rock music, and was a co-founder of the pioneering group Can. He leaves behind an impressive body of work both as musician and producer. » Read more
John Abercrombie RIP – Another of the greats of jazz guitar has left us. John Abercrombie plied his way through a beautiful series of albums on the ECM label as well as bringing his talent to bear on albums by many of jazz's greatest artists. From his early work in the group Dreams to Gateway and outstanding work with Billy Cobham, Jack DeJohnette, Kenny Wheeler, and many more to his own trios and quartets, he brought a unique instrumental voice to the world. » Read more
First ProgStock Festival Set for October – October 2017 will see the inaugural edition of a festival called ProgStock in Rahway, New Jersey at the Union County Performing Arts Center. With a definite slant towards neo-progressive music, the event is sure to please many fans with the inclusion of such artists as Echolyn, Glass Hammer, and Aisles. The festival will take place October 13-15. » Read more
Clive Brooks RIP – Word reaches us today of another sad passing in the music world. Drummer Clive Brooks, best known as a member of such Canterbury bands as Egg, Uriel / Arzachel, and Groundhogs, has died at the age of 67. Details are sketchy at this point. The news was reported on Nick Mason's Facebook page — Brooks was Mason's drum tech. » Read more