Review of Ääniesineitä [12k1034]

American Wired (US)

Ääniesineitä is the first full-fledged collection of Antti Rannisto’s musical ideas. With this album Rannisto honourably continues the Finnish tradition of electronica laid down by the likes of other groups such as Pan Sonic. The material on Ääniesineitä (which translates as Sound Objects) is more about a sound or sounds than music, but not just any sound. Rannisto’s selection is ultra-sparse: pure tones, cracks, snaps, and other electronic noises. These sounds are repeated over and over again, and carried through with very little phase, modulation, etc. In comparison, classical minimalists such as Steve Reich, John Adams, or Philip Glass would sound like Impressionists skipping along a spring-like flower field. Even among his own gang of ultra-minimalists (Taylor Deupree, Kenneth Kirschner, etc.), Rannisto is a kind of strange fish. It’s obvious that the purism of his music is aimed at evoking a certain emotion in the listener, and in that it succeeds. The experience can be anything between stupefaction and hypnotic. Listening to this CD is like viewing the best of abstract paintings, although it does not quite reach their impact. This is marginal stuff, but important as part of the more general trend of stripping music of all its metaphors, apart from the sound. — Kari Nevalainen

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