|RECORD REVIEW: BURNING HEARTS - EXTINCTIONS|
|Saturday, 04 February 2012 08:26|
It's been seven years since multi-instrumentalist Henry Ojala (Cats On Fire) and vocalist Jessika Rapo (Le Futur Pompiste) met on a joint tour and decided over time to collaborate on a new project that would become Burning Hearts. Their debut album, the upbeat Aboa Sleeping would appear five often difficult years later in 2009, full of sweet pop melodies and juicy hooks; a pretty straightforward record that did however, contain electronic elements that suggested the potential was there for growth in less predictable directions. After the single 'Night Animal' in 2010, the trajectory was clear. Upon the release the impressive EP Into The Wilderness last year, it was apparent that the talented Finnish duo were taking a turn in a more expansive direction, utilising loops and more unconventional song structures. Indeed, the brilliant title track, with its cleverly crafted looping underbelly and metaphorical sound is ample evidence of this. Thankfully because it fits, it also appears on the subject of this review, their second album, Extinctions.
Ojala's beautifully lead guitar melodies stand out on the patiently crafted 'Modern Times'. Nothing is hurried here as the song ambles along sweetly. Chorus wise, Rapo's ooh aah's are completed by Ojala's clever chord structure. The reverb drenched slow burner, 'Love And Dissonance' lessens the pace and sports an example of what was mentioned earlier, that Burning Hearts are more than willing to be unconventional. The beauty of the track is broken up twice by an attack of unsettling noise, that dissonance mentioned in the track title.
'Trade Winds' as the title suggests has a nautical theme, an optimistically, overtly pop sounding tune with beautiful harmonies. 'The Beast' ebbs away with a hopeful disposition but Rapo reminds us of our fragility 'You think that you are a King, but within a blink of an eye, you could go extinct'. Ojala's guitar work here is a triumph of beauty in simplicity. The final track 'Deep Waters' begins with Rapo's spirit like vocals alone with a single synth note before going aquatic in a musical sense with every instrument running together like a stream cascading from a mountain.
James Stocker - February 4, 2012.
Burning Hearts (FIN)
From the album, Extinctions', Solina/Shelflife
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