Review: Tenhi - Maaäet (2006)


artist: Tenhi
release: Maaäet
format: CD
year of release: 2006
label: Proph­ecy
dur­a­tion: 60:18

detailed info: dis​cogs​.com

Maaäet is Tenhi’s third full length album, and I think it is safe to say that this is their best yet. This won­der­fully innov­at­ive band just keeps improv­ing a step at a time, devel­op­ing their unique blend of mod­ern folk.

As on their earlier works, Tenhi uses drums, gui­tar, bass, piano, violin, flute, and vocals as the base of their songs. Some instru­ments fea­ture more prom­in­ently on one song, and some on the other, but on the whole, this album is slightly more piano-driven than the pre­vi­ous releases.

I am temp­ted to try and list all of the high­lights on this album, but I fear that without some restraint, I’d write a little review about each of these twelve tracks, as there isn’t one weak song on this great album. So with restraint, here is an impres­sion of some moments that touched me in par­tic­u­lar. The album starts off with the serene “Varpus­päivä”, a won­der­ful song in the vein of “Kielo” from the airut:ciwi EP. The gui­tar melody on “Kuulut Kesiin” is also very appeal­ing, and some­thing that sounds dif­fer­ent from what we’ve heard before from the band. Fur­ther on there’s the mel­an­cholic “Viimeiseen”, and the great piano solo work on “Vähäinen Viol­e­tissa”. “Maa Syttyy” is dark, ambient-like piano track with an impress­ive wall of rever­bed vocals. “Aatos” is a fra­gile little piece of acous­tic gui­tar and vocals, which die hard fans of the band may have picked up from the web­site in an early demo ver­sion. I’ll quit with the last track of the album, the uplift­ing “Ran­nalta Haettu”, in which the lead melody and rhythm sec­tion impresses me the most.

I think it’s become clear by now that I am very enthu­si­astic about this album. Tenhi always man­age to touch me with their wide array of feel­ings and atmo­spheres, com­pressed in a very tight and superbly executed musical whole. And to think I almost for­got to say some­thing about the superb art­work and espe­cially the beau­ti­ful book­let, which con­tains all the lyr­ics and their trans­la­tions, and many illus­tra­tions by the band itself. I am look­ing for­ward to the re-release of the Airut:aamujen album, ori­gin­ally released under the name Harmaa. I’m also cau­tiously hop­ing for a European tour. Until then, get this album, you won’t regret it.

Reviewed by O.S.

Track­list:

1. Varpus­päivä (6:31)
2. Kuoppa (4:32)
3. Kuulut Kesiin (3:34)
4. Salain (4:40)
5. Viimeiseen (7:00)
6. Vähäinen Viol­e­tissa (6:16)
7. Sarastuskävijä (5:59)
8. Maa Syttyy (2:15)
9. Tuulenkaato (5:00)
10. Aatos (2:14)
11. Uuva Oravan Luu (4:59)
12. Ran­nalta Haettu (7:18)