Ø [Mika Vainio] – Konstellaatio (Sähkö Recordings SÄHKÖ-28 – 2014)

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The artwork of “Konstellaatio” gives a clue to the foundations of Mika Vainio’s new album as Ø. It’s about summers in the Nordic countryside, grandma’s mythological tales from the memorable days between self-indulgence, when kids went picking wild strawberries under the burning sun, and suspense, when they were spying at a haunted house in the woods.Considering Vainio’s recent work, “Konstellaatio” is unsurprisingly of very different breed than Ø’s debut album “Metri” from 1994 or early EPs, which were in line with Sähkö’s rhythmic sci-fi fare of that time. Twenty years later Vainio comes with a constellation of life experiences, offering an inward-looking mix […]

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Teersom – Tia/No (Keys Of Life 025 – 2013)

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At first glance, “Tia” makes deliberately an odd impression with shaky percussion and electromagnetic disturbance, as of low-end equipment would have been used. But this is just a transient disguise before Teersom’s 12-inch on Sähkö’s sublabel Keys Of Life reveals its very essence and brings deep and fresh sounds to today’s techno. In “Tia” bruised drum set works relentlessly like perpetuum mobile across twelve minutes. Controlled by eroded beats and refracted loops, “Tia” would be a perfect match to “Space Pong” or “Aquatic” by Berlin’s T++. The flipside does not release us from the airtight cylinder either when “No” addresses the floor with […]

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Part I: Tommi Grönlund (Sähkö) interviewed by Alien Underground (1994)

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Click to enlarge A copy of London techno and hardcore zine Alien Underground, predecessor of Datacide magazine, was an appreciated souvenir from a trip to London in 1994. In addition to a number of reviews and articles it features also an interview with Tommi Grönlund, the founder of Sähkö Recordings. The second part is here. It was the time when Pan Sonic was Panasonic and therefore finding an appropriate track to this post is not difficult.

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DUST OFF: Tekonivel – Sirkus (Puu PUU4 – 1996)

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Sähkö’s offshoot Puu has been mostly a platform for jazz, dub, world and other non-techno productions, but in 1996 it saw a guest appearance by Mika Vainio under the name of Tekonivel (‘artificial joint’ in Finnish.   The circus-themed three-tracker is not exactly family entertainment – although not as annihilating as “Osasto EP”, “Sirkus” is still designed like Pan Sonic’s die-cast artefacts. The opener “Klovnit” (“Clowns”) animates the crowd with cold hydraulic bass and distorted hum. “Voimamies” (“Strongman”) competes in the heavyweight category but suffers of arrhythmia while the mind of “Taikuri” (“Magician”) is focused on repetition. In fact Tekonivel debuted […]

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01/2012: Svreca, Vedomir, Atom TM

“Obscur. Final”, a follow-up to the first “Obscur” edition by Semantica label head Svreca, heads the Terminal 313 best-of list with a strong techno package, including the remixes by Regis, Orphx, Silent Servant and Skirt. Vakula dropped two fine cuts under the Vedomir guise, releasing “Orthodox Ambient” on Dekmantel and Sähkö has blown off dust from Atom Heart’s 1994 tapes, releasing with “Cold Memories” two ultra long tracks by the project Atom TM. Sandwell District says goodbye to the world with Rrose‘s “Artificial Light 1969-1909”. Acid faction is represented by a mini comp “We Want You To Understand The Future” […]

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DUST OFF: Vainio / Väisänen / Vega – Endless (Blast First 147CD – 1998) – 9/10

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VVV – vicious, vibrating, volcanic. A joint ritual by Alan Vega, former vocalist of the protopunk combo Suicide, and Finnish masters of low frequencies Mika Vainio and Ilpo Väisänen, better known as Pan Sonic. Caution: Listening to this could harm your artificial pacemaker or other electronic appliances. A nasty start with “Medal”, that despite signalling pacifism sounds like an armada of armoured vehicles attacking. The pressure goes on with witch dance in “Incredible Criminals”, where roughly yelling vocal and darkly hammering machine music try to extinct each other. “Motor Maniac” roars like a large American vehicle – no, not a […]

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Die Blutleuchte – RUS ( Sähkö 018) – 7/10

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Anatoli Alexandrovich, whoever he is, made this album in 2002. A musical insight into the more or less glorious days of the Russia’s history, painted with minimal and noise-influenced experimental compositions and spiced with sound fragments like worshipping of Stalin in Finnish-language, Karelian folk song and clinking of swords. “Спутник” is a track for the floor that reminds of Sähkö’s rhythmic and acidic output of the early days. Late Leonid Iliych Brezhnev is the MC in ambientish “Скрытая Война I” while “Скрытая Война II” is a mind-blowing noise avalanche. “Гласность” stands out nicely with guitar riffs. “Курск. Крещеный Ледяной Водой” […]

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