Alamaailman Vasarat

Huuro Kolkko

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If it's true, there's a wonderful story behind this disc. It supposedly tells the tale of an unknown Finnish explorer, the Huuro Kolkko of the title, who was brought to the band's attention by a fan who was related to Kolkko and read through his journals. Given that it's all instrumental, it's hard to be sure, however, and the music gives few clues. It's progressive jazz of the Zappa and Zorn school, with a dollop of world music. The music is thrilling, with some marvelously heavy cello riffing on "Natiivit," for instance, but shifting moods to the closing melancholy of "Lautturin Viivat." The lineup offers plenty of variety, with a double cello attack, theremin, keyboards, drums, brass, and wind, including the tubax, a contrabass sax specially made for bandmember Stakula. A well-kept secret, this is a band that's ripe for wider discovery, and this disc could do the trick.