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Kuusumun Profeetta - Hymyilevien Laivojen Satama CD (album) cover

HYMYILEVIEN LAIVOJEN SATAMA

Kuusumun Profeetta

 

Crossover Prog

3.85 | 8 ratings

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Matti
Prog Reviewer
4 stars No reviews for this notable Finnish band yet, only ratings... :-(

MOON FOG PROPHET performed dramatic and dark-toned progressive rock in English - very original too, even though I sense a strong Peter Hammill / Van der Graaf Generator influence, and this band is naturally the Finnish-language continuation of it. Hymyilevien Laivojen Satama (translation would be The Harbour of Smiling Ships) is the fourth album.

My first acquaintance of KsP was the album Kukin Selässään Kaappiaan Kantaa approximately 10 years ago. I remember faintly some mesmerizingly calm and introspective music in it, and when I later listened to a Moon Fog Prophet album, especially the singing style of Mika Rättö felt peculiar in its Hammill-ness. Now I've lately listened to MFP much more with very positive reception. What I'm trying to say with this long intro is that this album sounds more clearly as the continuation of MFP than my faint memories of the other, in fact earlier album. Rättö's vocals are not as frail as on those mentioned calm memories, nor are they so Hammill-like either; instead his singing with a good dose of vibrato has a, hmmm, mock- elegance of an old-fashioned chanson singer growing old? Think of Tauno Palo in his old days. Probably they are not easy to get used to, and together with the language barrier they make Kuusumun Profeetta's music pretty hard to export, as the vocals are often quite central.

The arrangements here are very fine and nuanced, featuring many kinds of reed, brass and string instruments (played by a wide cast of guest musicians). The playing variates a lot between the tracks, for example 'Tunnit muuttuu minuuteiksi' has a long orchestral section. At the same time the album's atmosphere succeeds to be introspective and, yes, elegant! Some songs are edgier than others, but most of the album is relatively calm. The rich arrangements are making it more interesting, especially to a listener who likes also chamber jazz and who doesn't demand rock'n'roll power from a prog album. The title track with plenty of wind instruments has excellent jazz flavour in the ECM mode.

Very recommendable 58-minute album to a listener already familiar with these artists, while non-Finnish audience may have it more difficult to digest.

Matti | 4/5 |

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