Viima -
V​ä​istyy Mielen Yö

(CD 2024, 44:32, Viima Records)

The tracks:
  1- Tyttö Trapetsilla(4:42)
  2- iti Maan Lapset(18:50)
  3- Pitkät Jäähyväiset(6:38)
  4- Perhonen(6:45)
  5- Vuoren Rauha(7:37)

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Viima (wind in Finnish) is a five piece symphonic folk-prog group from Turku, Finland. They have released in the past two full-length albums. Namely Ajatuksia Maailman Laidalta (2006) and Kahden Kuun Sirpit (2009). And now a bit out of the blue they have released Väistyy Mielen Yö. Fifteen years after their last released album. Of course the question arises if it was worth the wait.

I think I can answer it with a fully YES! Most of all people who enjoy classic seventies progressive rock mixed with folk influences will enjoy this release whole heartedly. Maybe the only problem might be that they sing in their own native language. At the same time it has to be said that the vocal performances are not the strongest parts on the album. But on the other hand, the instrumental parts are more than worth it. The band consisting of Risto Pahlama on lead vocals (1-5), keyboards (2,3) and Mellotron (2). Hannu Hiltula on flute, keyboards (4,5), backing vocals (1,4,5) and voice (5). Aapo Honkanen on bass. Mikko Uusi-Oukari on guitars and Mellotron (3,5) and Mikko Väärälä on drums, vocals (2), keyboards (2), Chimes (5) and did the mixing. Together they recorded a good sounding album that took twelve years to create. During those years the group experienced several breaks and some personnel changes. The most important of these being the departure, in 2011, of keyboardist Kimmo Lähteenmäki, now replaced by Risto Pahlama. However, certain keyboard lines recorded by Lähteenmäki were kept on the new album as you can hear on the opening track.

Väistyy Mielen Yö (The Spirit Of The Night in English) opens with Tyttö Trapetsilla. It is a song about a trapeze girl in full performance above a hypnotized audience. Thanks to the flute and the guitar parts it goes music wise into the direction of Jethro Tull.

It is followed by the longest piece of music on the album. Äiti Maan Lapset is about the children of Mother Earth who deal with the crises and catastrophes caused by humans. This more epic compositions includes nice musical parts on the guitars, keyboards and synthesizer. The more energetic or slightly dramatic passages in the compositions regularly provides the variation between the more relaxed and more heavy parts. Music wise a bit of Camel comes to my mind thanks to the Hammond organ and synthesizer parts. But then again the combination of the Hammond organ with the beautiful Mellotron parts sometimes made me think about early Genesis.

Next up is Pitkät jäähyväiset , which means long goodbyes. A more mellow piece about the desperate evocation of today's world and the inevitable departure that awaits us. Music wise a little bit of Camel comes to the surface again at certain moments. Most of all thanks to the keyboards and flutes.

Again Camel is probably the main influence on the next composition. Mainly thanks to the atmospheric keyboard parts but also thanks to the great guitar parts. Perhonen, which means butterfly, is about a this beautiful insect that got lost in the desert.

The album ends with Vuauren Rauha, meaning the peace of the mountain. It is an openly liberating song about a man who leaves behind the burdens of the past and envelopes himself in deep peace. It is again rather mellow with nice parts performed on the organ and Mellotron. A bit of Camel comes to mind thanks to the melody played on the same organ.
As a whole, Väistyy Mielen Yö is a rather soft and melancholic album. Intended for lovers of calm and serenity, who know how to appreciate the music of the seventies most of all. People who like bands such as Jethro Tull and Camel mixed with elements borrowed from Finnish folklore and Canterbury music is advised to have a listen to this album. If the singing in Finnish language is not a problem for you as well this might be your album!

***+ Henri Strik (edited by Tracy van Os van den Abeelen)

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