Tuesday, 15 November 2011

All Saints' Day - A Secret Location in the countryside

If A song has lyrics like "The unknown revealed" and "Cross over into the twilight zone" what would be a better time and place to start recordings than a mysterious All Saints’ Day and a distant studio in the countryside in the northern hemisphere.

It is late in the evening, the day of the dead and our first day at the Astrofon’s studio in Lempäälä. I’m here with my long-term friends Aava Uusikuu and a sound editor Jone Korhonen. Today we are starting to work with a song, which will be released as a video single in the winter.  It’s silent everywhere, it is slowly getting dark and I’ve been told that there is a ghost living nearby.

I’m excited about this project. When I started making music twenty years ago (oh yes, it really was twenty years ago) I performed as a solo artist and played piano while singing. I started to play piano when I was six years old and studied classical music until the age of 18. My biggest idols were Maurice Ravel and Claude Debussy and I was absolutely mad about their master pieces. Then when I grew older, the rock music took over and I found myself singing more than playing. I recorded some piano tracks in the 1990’s for short films. But after this my piano became more like a candle holder in the corner of the room. I started to play again while doing some keyboarding for Tuvalu. Suddenly I was playing again all my old favorites and now I’m back to my roots doing the thing I did when I was a teen.

So off we go, let’s have some ticking. My lovely neighbors at home, you might need to live with the sound of metronome coming from my apartment until next summer. If you run out of patience, please do come and tell me.

As it gets later, I have played the first instrument lines of the upcoming album. Perhaps we’ll destroy the piano track later with ghostly effects, but so far I’m happy. The rest of the night goes with singing vocals. Aava is kindly acting as my personal critic, making notes and helping me to choose which one of the tracks sounds best. Vocals are done at 2 o´clock in the morning and it’s so dark outside we hardly see a thing. Finally we’re done and it’s time for a chat and  some wine. A dawn breaks. Dear twilight people, it’s time to go to sleep.

The upcoming album will be recorded in many locations with a help of different people. It will be a challenge but also a great journey. Next I’ll continue working with tracks at home in Helsinki. Soon I’ll head to Berlin where I’ll spend three weeks writing. The lovely video team Nina and Anne-Mari will fly to Berlin for the second week of December and we are preparing to shoot some material for a music video. I will be back in Finland in January. I’ll keep you posted.

Oh, about the ghost? We did not meet, but I’m pretty sure it will be there waiting for me.

Until the next time.