Thursday, October 29, 2009

Quite a Long Way from Cairo

More stuff I like.

I recommend Andy Beta's dispatches from his trip to Finland (1, 2, 3, 4), all of which are accompanied by some splendid Tove Jansson artwork. Speaking of Jansson, I'm only familiar with the (wonderful) Moomin comic strip collections that Drawn and Quarterly have been publishing over the past couple years. But I've recently been lent her novel/memoir The Summer Book and I'm looking forward to it even more after reading this little tidbit from her Wikipedia page: "Jansson said that she had designed the Moomins in her youth: after she lost a philosophical quarrel about Immanuel Kant with one of her brothers, she drew 'the ugliest creature imaginable' on the wall of their WC and wrote under it 'Kant'." Check out this nicely illustrated and presumably comprehensive bibliography of her work.

The ES album Beta raves about is on Lala and it lives up to his Harmonia and Popul Vuh comparisons. I also listened to Paavoharju's Yhä hämärää, which was lovely. As Beta mentions, there was quite a bit of buzz about the Finnish psych-folk scene and the Fonal label in particular a few years ago. Now that I know that Fonal's main inspirations are Terry Riley and Alice Coltrane, I'm going to be doing some more investigating.

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