For about five years, singer-songwriter Mikko Joensuu has been a real hidden treasure in Finnish independent music. His highly anticipated debut solo album “Amen 1” finally materializing this May, the secret is out and needs to be shouted from the rooftops.
Joensuu 1685, the band he formed with his two brothers, broke up among rumours after just one solid album mixing shoegaze with kraut-influenced psychedelia and a reputation as one of the fiercest Finnish indie rock groups ever.
Since then, frontman Mikko Joensuu has been on a journey that seems almost biblical in its course, starting from scratch and retreating into a cabin to work on his own material, playing modest solo shows here and there and turning audiences into his disciples one by one.
The new material, including “Warning Sign”, has been compared to master songsmiths Townes Van Zandt and Leonard Cohen, but in fact this triumph of a record is only the first part of a triple album, with each consecutive release reaching into further realms.
The grand theme here is of a man gradually losing his religion and coming to terms with it, and, fittingly, the album was launched with an epic concert in a church. Mikko Joensuu may have given up on his God, but we do believe in him and are witnessing here only the beginning of his ascent.