Shogun Kunitoki

(Copyright © 2006 Piero Scaruffi | Legal restrictions - Termini d'uso )

Tasankokaiku (2006) , 7/10
Vinonaamakasio (2009) , 6/10

The stark, exuberant and propulsive organ-driven rhapsodies unleashed by Finnish quartet Shogun Kunitoki on the all-instrumental Tasankokaiku (Fonal, 2006) occupied a niche in between Neu's "motorik" rhythm and the repetitive patterns of minimalist music. The thin metallic keyboard loops of Montezuma evoke Terry Riley's spiritual minimalist Persian Surgery Dervishes. There is also an eerie nostalgic quality in their music: the organ of intones a bubblegum singalong in Leivonen, and Tropikin Kuuma Huuma mimics beach and orchestral music of the 1960s. The pulsation is protagonist of Daniel's mutations, from light boogie to pummeling industrial gallop whipped by galactic synthesizers. Towards the end the band runs out of ideas and the quality decreases significantly (the trippy and robotic Tucevaisuus - Menneisyys=1, the rocking 1918-1926) with the aimless drones of Piste even abandoning the rhythm.

Vinonaamakasio (Fonal, 2009) repeated the exploit with the same tools and more energy. Hence Mulberg is almost visceral by comparison with the spiritual and childish spirit of the first album. Riddarholmen spirals in a circular fashion halfway between a Bach fugue and a Velvet Underground jam. At the same time their roots are more evident. The manic propulsion of Svileto seems inspired by accordion-driven folk dances the same way that the stream of consciousness of Holvikirkko seems inspired by nordic folk chants. They toy with new concepts in the discordant raga Fuzzabeth Crackleby and in the swirling bolero of Nebulus. Overall the music sounds less spontaneous and poignant than on the debut.

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(Copyright © 2006 Piero Scaruffi | Legal restrictions - Termini d'uso )
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