KTU 8 Armed Monkey Review

Album. Released 2005.  

BBC Review

Maybe the world is finally ready for Finnish prog-folk!

Chris Jones 2005

Anyone who'switnessed Kimmo Pohjonen - often lazily referred top as Finland's Hendrix of the accordion - will attest to his power to shock. His performances are equal parts art installation, virtuoso showcase and shamanistic ritual: Brooding, muttering hypnotic maelstroms that conjur up Jungian memory and dread in spades. So how does this translate into the two-dimensional world of the CD? Previous recorded work, while undeniably fearsome, has tended to leave you with a feeling that only with the aid of a DVD player would you get the full picture. However KTU's 8 Armed Monkey has no such shortcomings.

Working with sampler Samuli Kosminen and King Crimson rhythm buddies, Pat Mastelotto and Trey Gunn, it appears that a more democratic approach has broadened Kimmo's palette accordi(o)ngly. This album contains noises that no simple squeezebox was ever meant to make! Recorded in Japan, Monkey...bubbles with menace (especially on Pohjonen's solo composition ''Optikus'') while retaining a digital clarity that allows Gunn's soaring Warr guitar lines to add a new level of yearning sadness. Pohjonen's very personal brand of voodoo really benefits from such a setting. Maybe the world is finally ready for Finnish prog-folk!

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