Syven "Aikaintaite"

 •  Posted in: Kogaionon ReviewsRating: 1.00/1
Syven "Aikaintaite"
  • Album: Aikaintaite
  • Year: 2011
  • Label: VENDLUS
  • Artist: 
  • Finland

I cannot remember to have listened to such an exciting project in the last few years, a music that simply sticks with you from the very first listening, sticking into your memory, your thoughts... Actually, sticking might not be the best word, it persists, even obsesses...  it takes over any form or will to socialize. I find the name SYVEN as a very inspired choice as it means, in Finnish, depth. The music made by the two guys is an ambient form with a lot of stylistic associations or touches, Classical, Doom, Folk or Dark Ambient being some of them. SYVEN is a ''therapy'' that comes from a world and flows towards another world... profound, dark, mystical, shamanic, idealist and intangible! This passage is immortalized through the name of the debut, a release that is difficult to define or categorise. But I will try to break away from the spell of these sounds and get back onto earth so that I can clue you in... Aslak Tolonen is known to you through his ambient project NEST (he has another less known band as well, TEVANA 3, but also he collaborated with WHERE RIVERS ENS, SHAPE OF DESPAIR, THE MIST AND THE MORNING DEW, DOOMSQUIRREL, TODESBONDEN) and Andy Koski-Semmens is the one that has worked with a multitude of different bands (ESOTERIC, PANTHEIST, EREIPIA or CRIPPLED BLACK PHOENIX). The music gravitates around the traditional instrument called kantele, an instrument that Aslak manages to highlight beautifully; actually, we are talking here about more than one type of kantele, classical, normal ones, electrical with different effects, also mentionable being the bass or even computer generated drum effects. Perhaps only this last detail could be a weak point in the music of SYVEN, by that meaning a trace of artificial music, synthetically processed drum passages. But other than that we are talking about a musical universe unheard of until now, the only similarities that could be mentioned being the beginnings of NEST. But only from the point of view of the instruments and nothing else really... SYVEN has two very well defined dimensions; we mentioned the instruments, now the vocals are to follow!!! I really mean when I say that I haven't heard a voice so strong and uplifting like Andy's voice! With a stunning, head numbing baritone structure, the inflexions of the voice swing from the lower limits of the bass and till those of tenors; but we also have choirs, screams, invocations, clean parts and growl.

Superb! The length of the tracks is another attribute characteristic to the SYVEN dimension, 3 of the 5 tracks summing up over 50 minutes. The lengthier one is called "Jaljet", perhaps the most complex track and at the same time, a song of mesmerising beauty... the melancholic-nostalgic aroma emitted by the kantele vibrating in a rather inspired way with the inflexions of the baritone voice, I think over 20... The vocal peak is represented by "Tuulenvire", the last sequence of the album, where I would presume that Andy rehearsed a lot in order to be able to sing like that. The ritual sacredness of SYVEN needs to be discovered, heard and assimilated with maximum attention, maybe using headphones or perhaps in a room with perfect acoustics, as the sound is crystal clear and the mixing is impeccable! I'm avoiding the thought of what a shamanic dimension could a sound like this develop live, but I am pretty sure that ''revelation'' is a term that is less than appropriate for the music of this duo! It is however clear to me that we would be able to open other internal pathways, closed, locked by no one else but us (for either a long or short period of time) due to this superficial mundane that suffocates any intention of rediscovering or reinventing oneself... Even if it's only newly put together, the band has managed to get the attention of Prophecy, the label including a track of theirs into last year's compilation, a track that does not appear on this debut but just as transcendental when it comes to its perceptive dynamics, "How Fare the Gods?". A wealth of inspiration, undeniable originality, irreproachable virtuosity = SYVEN universe! Recommended to the fans of TENHI, WARDRUNA, EMPYRIUM, VALI and NEST...