If you’re not familiar with the ISO50 blog, Scott Hansen (from Tycho) and some of his pals share their inspirations with the world, be it art, photography or music. ¬†I’ve gotten into a lot of really great artists and bands through the blog, and today I stumbled across Finland-born musician Jaakko Eino Kalevi¬†¬†and immediately loved him. ¬†His single,¬†“No End”, is impossibly enjoyable, ripe with saxophones, vintage synthesizers and a creeping, steady bassline that reminds me of a poppier version of Dirty Beaches.
It came out in 2013 (sorry ’bout that), and it appears to be sold out in most of the distro sites. ¬†Norman Records has some copies, though, so if you enjoy this stuff as much as I do, get after it.
Self-taught multi-instrumentalist and part-time tram driver Jaakko Eino Kalevi already has a number of releases to his name but very few of them have so far found their way out of his native Helsinki. The four-track Dreamzone EP is his debut for Weird World and it is stage one of their plan to launch him onto a wider marker.
A long-player is due early this year, and if the varied Dreamzone is anything to go by it could be quite something. EP opener, ‚ÄúMemories‚ÄĚ, is full of smooth synth work and a straightforward beat nicked from ‚ÄúBillie Jean‚ÄĚ. It then becomes a lush exercise in outsider pop, borrowing weirdo psyche-pop manoeuvres from kindred spirit Ariel Pink and equally recalling the more recent works of Dan Bejar‚Äôs Destroyer ‚Äď all be Dreamzone a little more shoestring. Next up, ‚ÄúUu uu uu‚ÄĚ, which really should read ‚Äúooh ooh ooh‚ÄĚ, is supremely funky, bringing soft-focus bossa nova vibes to Kalevi‚Äôs Casio programmes and castanets.
Obviously it‚Äôs all very 80s, even on the understated ‚ÄúNo End‚ÄĚ, its nebulous electro-pop having echoes of acts like Helado Negro, but ‚Äď warning ‚Äď so too does it contain an indulgent dose of electronic sax and an auto-tuned dial-tone during the out-there finale. Seeing through Kalevi‚Äôs threat of being influenced by none other than classic ‚ÄúRoad To Hell‚ÄĚ crooner Chris Rea, the wistful closer ‚ÄúWhen You Walk Through Them All‚ÄĚ has plenty of late-night FM in its DNA, not to mention a dash of mute disco and more sax. As likely then to be hated as he is loved, Kalevi is nevertheless exploring a singular passion and doing it with credibility ‚Äď which when you think about the context of his experiment is no mean feat at all. That forthcoming LP could be indeed be quite something.
- Maybe Buy
- Not My Style
- Too Expensive