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Jonsjooel (Finland) – ‘Goodbye Ah’ (single/possible future EP track)

I’ve never seen or heard a ‘sign’ – a warning by way of sight or hearing, a sense of something ‘in the air’ that has nothing to do with Phil Collins or Thunderclap Newman. Jonsjooel in contrast is a passionate believer in them and the omens aren’t good.

He’s a Berlin-based Finnish artist, composer, multi-instrumentalist and jazz trained drummer, known for his innovative soundscapes and his focus is very much on the natural world.

Now I’m perfectly fine with that. What is perhaps my favourite band still is Finnish and went out of its way on its last album to highlight the plight of endangered species across the world. It certainly caught my attention with respect to something I’d previously given little thought to.

It’s the tree hugging, car driver penalising, ‘warmest June on record’ when you’ve had the heating full on, stuff that does my head in.

For Jonsjooel, his music is “just one part of my quest for connection to nature.” Does that come across on this single, ‘Goodbye Ah’?

Yes it does. The poignant piano melodies (which sound slightly disjointed at times, or that they are being played on a honky tonk piano – I’m either imagining it or there is purpose in it -) do suggest a search for something that is close at hand yet remains unreachable and perhaps ultimately unobtainable.

There is something of Anohni in it as well, especially in the vocal, while the harmonies – I’m assuming it is Jonsjooel multi-tracking his own voice – are quite delightful.

The overall effect is one of a piece of music – ethereal isn’t quite the right word but it will do – which is soothing but at the same time suggestive that it isn’t really meant to be. That there is a warning to be heeded in there.

And that suspicion is aided and abetted by the video, a joint production of Jonsjooel and Jonne Heinonen. I had trouble getting my head around it at first until I imagined the birds to be albatrosses (they aren’t) and then a Rime of the Ancient Mariner vibe quickly arises. Using the same analogy, a warning perhaps not to mess with nature.

‘Goodbye Ah’ is the first single to follow Jonsjooel’s debut solo album, ‘Lullabies for Younger Self’, which was released in October 2023. There are similar themes of self-care, forgiveness, and compassion, urging listeners to be kinder to themselves and those around them.

His ‘Voices of a First Day’ EP is set for release in autumn 2024.

Find him on:

Website: www.jonsjooel.com

Facebook: www.facebook.com/jonsjooel

Instagram: www.instagram.com/jonsjooel

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