Saturday, 7 July 2012

Nice Guys Finnish Last - Joose Keskitalo

Joose Keskitalo supports Bon Iver on the opening night of Flow, and initial listens show why the Finnish act has been paired with the US indie superstar: plaintive melodies accompanied by electro-acoustic guitar. Here, though, there is the added interest of harmonica and some dips into barroom shanties like Esineet and Pimeydestä pimeyttä vastaan

At times Kekitalo appears to be aiming for the accolade of 'Finnish Jack Johnson', especially on Luultavasti jäit junan alle. This is faint praise indeed, but a listen to Luultavasti jäit junan alle should actually remind you of the time that we all liked Jack Johnson to begin with, not when we wanted to tear our ears of after 'Better Together' got its ten-millionth play. A more flattering comparison is with Beck, whose track Asshole he borrows from liberally on Peer Gynt.

Even more enjoyable is the relatively poor quality of Google Translate when it comes to Finnish. There is little information about Keskitalo in English, so we're having to base our research on phrases like 'Equally, his songs, often about death, only to sound like her, of course.' This doesn't bode well for our understanding of what on earth is happening when we make it to Helsinki.

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