If fellow Finn, Kimmo Pohjonen is said to be the Hendrix of the instrument, then Maria...
Sid Smith 2006
Though lauded in her native Finland as one of the leading accordionists pushing traditional pelimanni music into new directions, Kalaniemi's assuredly dazzling technique is not what this album is about.
'The melody is the message' she comments in the liner notes, and what a graceful series of messages she gives us.The success of the record is due in part to its intimacy. Produced in her home studio, a track like ''Rain'' brings together a skeletal waif of a tune with her natural surroundings.Thus birdsong, wind, and rain combine to form a sensitive orchestration with composer.
Elsewhere, Maria contributes poignant vocals and is twice joined by electric guitarist Olli Varis, lending a twang-bar frisson of modernity to these otherwise timeless, haunting tunes.
If fellow Finn, Kimmo Pohjonen is said to be the Hendrix of the instrument, then Maria can be credibly claimed to be its Erik Satie.