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31 Aug 2016

Kalevala "People No Names" 1972 Finnish Prog monster

Kalevala "People No Names" 1972 Finnish Prog monster


Kalevala's debut album People No Names, from 1972, is not only one of the rarest but also one of the most remarkable Finnish Progressive Rock albums.. 

As some might know, Kalevala (Kale's Land) is the name of a Finnish cultural treasure - a collection of written mythical legends about the hero Kale. “People No Names” (1972) is among the best of Nordic albums from the 70s. Included were several beautiful instrumentals evoking pictures of freshwater lakes and pine forests, such as "Where I'm From" (first and last part), "Waves" (a fantastic impersonation of a jazzy Frank Zappa adding Leslie-treated organ!) and "Escape From The Storm". Leslie effects are frequently used tastefully on the lead guitars. The vocal tracks are even more effective due to Harri Saksala's weird but magnificent vocal style. His illustrious past included time with the groups Topmost, Soulset and Apollo. After the first Kalevala line-up broke up, he initially joined Punaise Langa before moving on to another short-lived group named Manifest with guitar player Hasse Walli (ex-Blues Section and Piirpauke) and keyboard player Jukka Linkola (before he joined Finnforest). Almost three years later, Kurkinen and Salonen recorded a new Kalevala album with new recruits. Jim Pembroke wrote the lyrics to both “Boogie Jungle” and Abraham's “Blue Refrain”, but he also seemed to influence the new Kalevala's good-natured rural American rock sound. Matti Kurkinen sadly died in a car accident soon after. He had been a good friend of Pekka Pohjola from adolescence. The music on the last album, widely known by continental collectors due to its French release on Crypto, was mainly written by Leppänen...... 

Kalevala - a group of Helsinki, founded in 1969 by bassist Juha "Lido" Salonen, guitarist Albert Järvinen and drummer / vocalist Remu Aaltonen. The original name - Vietnam, but was soon renamed the Kalevala (that Finns have been more logical) ... In 1971 Aaltonen left to create a group Hurriganes, where he played until now. Shortly after it went to the same, and Jarvinen. And in the "Kalevala," came the guitarist / writer Matti Kurkinen, drummer and vocalist Markku Luukkonen Harri Saksala. And in 1972 the label released the album Finnlevy People No Names, which is considered one of the best alb ohm Scandinavian prog 70s. The lyrics - in English. The group then moved to the label, Hi-Hat, significantly changing the composition in this transition. Were Salonen (who changed his bass to guitar) and Kurkina, came new bass player, drummer and vocalist ... Salonen and Kurkino wrote the music for the second group LP - Boogie Jungle (1975), wrote the words (and podpel on several tracks), an Englishman Wigwam vocalist Jim Pembroke. The music of this album is very different from the debut album of music - this sounds American boogie rock, hard rock ... After the release of this album in a car crash killed Mattie Kurkino. The group released an album in 1977 Abraham's Blue Refrain (as Kalevala Orchestra), but in 1978 divided. On this CD presents the first 2 albums.. ...

 Not to be confused with the more modern Russian folk-metal band, this KALEVALA is from Finland and was formerly named Vietnam before changing their name to the 19th century epic compilation of poetry by Elias Lönnrot which is regarded as some of the most significant literary works in all of Finnish national identity. Well, if you're calling yourself the musical Finnish equivalent of Shakespeare then you should expect some pretty epic music delivered, don't ya think? 
KALEVALA was formed in 1969 by bassist Juha "Lido" Salonen and the name actually came about by accident. When touring under the name Vietnam, one of the concert organizers objected to the name and forced them to change it. The band went through many line-up changes but it was the guitarist Matti Kurkinen who would steer the band into the progressive arenas of rock and wrote all of the tracks on PEOPLE NO NAMES, their debut album all by his lonesome. The original release was put out by Finnlevy Records but has since been remastered and is available on the Svart label. 

The album was released in 1972 and many of the progressive rock influences of the day can be heard starting with the 9 minute title track which begins with a nice acoustic intro and turns into a nice hard bluesy rocker that has a Jethro Tull kind of riff with some of the frenetic energetic parts sounding like the intro to "Heart Of The Sunrise" from Yes' "Fragile" album. The highly energetic rockin' parts are pretty heavy for 1972, so this rightfully can be placed in the proto-metal camp as well alongside UFO, Uriah Heep, T2 and Led Zeppelin. On the prog side the compositions are much more varied and sophisticated than any contemporary hard rock bands of the day that still utilized blues scales as the basis for song structure. Harri Saksala does bring a deeper voiced Ian Anderson to mind in his vocal delivery at times but his styles vary as much as the tracks themselves. 

After the frenetic title track, the second track "Where I'm From" is a light airy and breezy piano and acoustic guitar number with emphasis on a strong melodic development before bursting in a very Tullish sound complete with flute. The track despite the strong Tull influence manages to keep a couple steps away from diving too far in that direction especially as the piano part alternates to keep the piece unique. The third track "Waves" reminds more of Can rhythmically but with a nice symphonic keyboard embellishments and a beautiful guitar solo gives it the right amount of oomph. "In The Net" is probably one of the weaker tracks. Reminds a bit of Deep Purple. Maybe "Highway Star" type riffing. Vocals kind of weak but overall saved by an unexpected harmonica solo. "My Friend" is a short little piano ballad that is probably the least impressive track on the album. "Lady With The Veil" is a nice number that begins as a ballad but kicks into progressive heavy rock with excellent super fast drumming from Markku Luukkanen and excellent guitar work. One of my favorite tracks. "Escape From The Storm" is one of the most psychedelic tracks which incorporates acoustic and electric guitar codependencies and wah-wah splendor. Another excellent track. "Tamed Indians" is a strange little folky closer that sounds like a Finnish traditional complete with accordion and foot stompin' delight :) 

This is a fairly obscure album even though it has been re-released and although it has been touted as a long lost masterpiece, i don't feel it quite reaches those lofty heights although i do find this to be a very welcome obscurity into my collection. The variation and Kurkinen's excellent guitar playing keep this album from ever drifting into mediocrity and although the band are master's of the cut, copy and paste approach to create a nice mix of ideas, they clearly hadn't quite sewn all the influences together to create a unique and totally original sound. Still an impressive early collection of heavy rockers mixed with nice mellower tracks. This album is available on CD despite there being no info that it exists (i found one by chance) but it is probably easiest to obtain as a two-fer-one with the second album "Boogie Jungle." progarchives....

Lido Salonen led by the Kalevala was the first album time to play in a couple of years strictly gig. Every Finnish rock mythology expert of course knows that the band played their first also Remu Aaltonen and Albert Järvinen. The latter went to pull tapeltuaan with Aaltonen (Hurriganes as later again) and Remu got just before making the album shoe. The reason for this was the pre-trial detention coupled with poor English language. 

In fact, the ranks of the Kalevala has played in a number of top musicians (not in a negative sense of the word), that can be reached in a few configuration as the mythical occupation. 

The band was originally called Ganes types of rocks and loan songs, which had been taken up by black and percussionist. Ruisrock gig in 1970, there is a recording was. 
People Well Namesin time the music had changed progeksi. Guitar was the second time a virtuoso Matti Kurkinen, who died in an accident just a couple of years later. Song was obtained by Harri Saksala. 

I myself was back in a bad relationship with this debut. The next hit album and a couple of other tracks fell, but this disc and German song. I kiikuttanut People No Namesin library Himaan sure to be at least ten times, listened to and returned from. 

I gave recently for the band and a new opportunity Perhaps the reason for the large dosage of German / French / Italian prog, Saksala tankero did not matter. At the same time tavallahan those eurock bands sang. Ridiculous nirppanokkaisuutta. 
The music sounded interesting now. Bumping between prog, jazz and hard-rock does not hurt. And caused initially allergy Saksala Arthur Brown / Traffic manly style prog-vokalisointikin works......

People No Names - 1972 Finnlevy 
Boogie Jungle - 1975 Hi-Hat 
(re-issued on a double album and CD by Safir, SAFLP/CD 2053) 

Album as Kalevala Orchestra: 
Abraham's Blue Refrain - 1977 Hi-Hat 
(also issued in France on Crypto, ZAL 6449) 

Kalevala 1972 People No Names 
*Harri Saksala - Vocals, Mouth Organ, Accordion 
*Juha Salonen - Bass 
*Markku Luukkanen - Drums 
*Matti Kurkinen - Guitar 
Guest Musicians 
*Olli Ahvenlahti - Piano 
*Raimo Wallen - Flute 
*Ile Kallio (Hurriganes) - Acoustic Guitar 

People No Names (1972): Tracks: 
All music by Matti Kurkinen, all lyrics by Harri Saksala. 
01. People No Names - 8:55 
02. Where I'm From - 4:05 
03. Waves - 6:03 
04. In The Net - 4:43 
05. My Friend - 2:44 
06. Lady With The Veil - 4:12 
07. Escape From The Storm - 5:10 
08. Tamed Indians - 1:45

johnkatsmc5, welcome music..





Cassete Deck

Cassete Deck