Friday, February 17, 2017

V/A - "Finnish Snow-Walks and Dances" [2005]

Artist: (various)
Title: Finnish Snow-Walks and Dances
Genre: Folk, WTF?
Country: Finland
Release date: 2005

Track List:
  1. Kalli Kaksi - Porotanssii, Traditionaal
  2. Kalli Kaksi - Lumiympyräkävely
  3. Päiva Rumalainen - Saippuakauppias
  4. Onnellinen Hampurilainen - Kantele Rekiretki
  5. Endru Krellainen & Onnellinen Hampurilainen - Hiprakkainen Lumihiutale Valssi
  6. Kalli Kaksi & Hannu Elenius - Vuoren Villit
  7. Neito Kiharatukka - Unelma Valssi Remixi
  8. Aural Chamber Music Orchestra - Tytönhamepilvet
  9. Aili & Annikki Saari - Lumilaulu (Kansanlaulu)
  10. Leikata ja Liimata - Dark Cough
  11. Porokierros - Joen Ylitys
  12. Soolo Ennikki - Talvitango
Found this in the same blog where I found that 7'' by Zeitlich Vergelter. It caught my attention not only by being a recording of Finno-Ugric folk music, but also because it had a cat on its cover :) While I initially expected it to be tradtional folk, some tracks (but by no means all) indeed turned out to be like this. For the most part, however, this compilation sounds really weird, rather close to percussion industrial/noise than folk. Then I decided to read the release notes and found out that it's a collection of field recordings, some of which indeed were supposed to sound like white noise:

"CD Feature/ "Finnish Snow-Walks and Dances" Captures the "poetic universe of snow". I bet you didn’t know that there is a Finish tradition called "Snow Walking", intended to calm the mind. It harks all the way back to the national epos, the Kalevala, which speaks explicitely of "scooping rhe songs out of the frost" and of "unlocking the box of tales". But don’t worry – not many other people have heard of it, either. The very informative text, which accompanies this release, which can either be bought as a regular CD or a luxuriously packaged, truly beautiful LP (have I made amply clear, which one I prefer?), therefore serves to outline the aims of the project: To present the entire spectrum of snow music, from its folk roots to its present forms, to capture the "poetic universe of snow" and to "mark its entry into the 21st Century". Based on the field recordings made by the famous Sisukas Poronainen from the renowned "Kansanmusiikin Instituutti"(which, I am sure, I need not explain any further), Gabi Schaffner (who has already held publich lectures on the subject) has taken on the task of sifting through the material, selecting the most representative cuts and of researching the scene for assorted genres, such as "Lumi Core" (Snow Core) and acts from the experimental scene, who are carrying on the traditions. She has found some wonderful music and a fair amount of equally fascinating stories...

Japanese influences have led to a widespread enthusiasm for metal and noise music in Finland, resulting in specifically Finnish forms of white noise music, known as Lumi Core (Snow Core) and it’s twin-music Lumi Noise (Snow Noise) L-Core tracks must contain more than fifty percent of original snow recordings. This quota is often surmounted, as the musicians dedicate long hours of work to sampling, collecting and editing of white noises. Additional samples should be as authentic and raw as the conditions allow for. L-Core and -Noise artists share a vivid interest in ethno-type field recordings and bio-acoustics which link their music back to the older traditions of snow music. At the same time, a new type of performance art has evolved, which clearly refers to the shamanistic rituals of the old Finnish tribes..."

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