• Music

    Johanna Juhola – A Brighter Future

    What a joyous release this is!  Accordion-based music out of Finland is just what the doctor ordered for our chilly Beijing day.  Johanna Juhola is one of many incredible artists on the Nordic Notes imprint who have blown my mind this year.  Imagine a collection ranging from traditional music melded with progressive, jazz, and perhaps a pinch of tango thrown into the mix.  One of 2023’s most charming releases.

  • Music

    Phil Tomsett & Aaron Martin – At Sea

    We have had the pleasure of reviewing the work on cellist Aaron Martin in the past, but it’s nice to see a new release with him collaborating on a project with accordeonist Phil Tomsett which, ironically, began in London.  From the release’s Bandcamp site: “At Sea grew out of my walks along a particular part of the coastline. I took this walk at least once a day and over time built up a relationship with the sea, as if it were a sentient being observing me as much as I was observing it. Here I was trapped on dry land…

  • Deezer - Music - Qobuz

    Uusikuu – Karuselli

    Welcome to the world of Finnish tango as brought to you by Uusikuu, who celebrate their 16th year with this charmer of a disc.  As this wonderful release from the ever wonderful CPL-Music isn’t on Bandcamp, I would like to point you to their Qobuz website, as I’m not much of a fan of Spotify.  If this doesn’t work in your country, consider going to Deezer here. There is something special about Finnish tango.  One would think that Finland and the Rio Plata area of Argentina and Uruguay wouldn’t have much in common, but, in fact, they share a melancholy…

  • Music

    Sak Sok Ensemble of Fershampenuaz Village – Nagaybak Songs From Chelyabinsk Region, Russia

    A fascinating release from our friends at Antonovka Records.  From their Bandcamp website: “Nagaybaks are an ethnic group that descends from the Christian Tatars and shares the same self-name with them — “Kreshenner”, which means “Baptized Ones”. There are about 10 thousand Nagaybaks in total, they live primarily in the Nagaybaksky district of the Chelyabinsk region, in the South Ural area. In the Russian empire the Nagaybaks belonged to the Cossack estate. Many of their villages were named after European settlements, at which the Nagaybaks distinguished themselves in the battles. Fershampenuaz is the capital of the Nagaybak district, it got…