Vladislav Delay – “Tummaa” (Leaf) 2LP
Finland’s Sasu Ripatti – aka Vladislav Delay – is the real deal: an electronic music artist with an instantly recognizable signature sound, who is also unafraid to do his thing in a wide range of forms and contexts. Aside from his solo abstract electronica work, Ripatti flirts with vocal house music and pop under the guide of Luomo, explores the limits of language in collaboration with his missus AGF and plays scrap-metal percussion in The Moritz Von Oswald Trio.
On Tummaa, that instantly recognizable signature sound is… erm… instantly recognizable – a fidgety but immersive pile-up of clattering noises and mellow synth chords. Here though, the sound is set into one of those wide-ranging contexts Ripatti loves to explore. Tummaa features conventional “live” instruments more prominently than any previous Vladislav Delay release – including electric and acoustic piano from Massive Attack string arranger Craig Armstrong.
At first, you might find yourself wondering why that new age jazz combo won’t shut up and let you listen to the new Vladislav Delay album. But it starts to make sense once you get used to Ripatti’s sparser-than-usual electronics making room for the smooth sounds (which wouldn’t be too out of place on the ECM label – some parts sound like Jan Garbarek has been replaced by a malfunctioning android). There’s an aesthetic contrast here that is inherently intriguing. More than that, Tummaa reminds us that Ripatti started out as a jazz/improv drummer and makes sense of the structure underlying previous Vladislav Delay releases.
Leave it to an artist from Finland to come up with the perfect soundtrack for these long late-autumn nights. The songs below should be enough to convince you to buy Tummaa from Insound.