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CD: Kaukolampi - 1 | reviews, news & interviews

CD: Kaukolampi - 1

CD: Kaukolampi - 1

Heady first solo album from Finnish musical mainstay

A diffuse Timo Kaukolampi on the cover of '1', his debut solo album

“The Prodigal Son of Magnesia” is an attention-grabbing title. So are “Three Legged Giant Centipede” and “Public Execution of the Sleeping Lotus Eater”. Each suggests that the album from which they are drawn could be a prog rock epic inspired by conflating existing myths with newly made-up fancies. Track lengths exceeding 10 minutes further the impression. Yet despite surface impressions, 1 is not a showcase for instrumental prowess or tricky arrangements. The first solo album from Finland’s Timo Kaukolampi is instead about immersive, intense atmospheres.

Kaukolampi has form. As a producer, he has worked with Norway’s pop-dance star Annie. His band K-X-P has issued four albums pummellingly fusing the Glitter Band’s stomp, motorik and heavy metal attack. Crucially for 1, they issued an EP in 2014 titled History of Techno.

Building on everything Kaukolampi has done to date, 1 points it in a different direction. Most reductively, the album looks to the impressionistic side of Tangerine Dream c. Atem, adds a large dash of early techno, the bloopiness of early acid house and infuses the resultant stew with echoey washes of synth. Although billed as a solo album, Kaukolampi’s fellow musical travellers include bowed lyre player Peko Käppi, percussionist Tatu Ronkkö (who also plays with Efterklang side project LIIMA) and vocalist Ringa Manner (who records as The Hearing).

Though clearly modern, 1 sounds ancient, as if it were the soundtrack to a primeval excursion into forbidding, uncharted territory, and is best played through from beginning to end as an album. “The Prodigal Son of Magnesia” is a nine-minute overture setting the scene for the pulsing “Three Legged Giant Centipede”, whence the trance takes over. Heady.

‘1’ could soundtrack a primeval excursion into forbidding, uncharted territory


Editor Rating: 
Average: 3 (1 vote)

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