Review of Mono and Dialogues by Ruokangas Hako-Rita, Eclipse-Music, 2018
Young, born in 1987, the Finnish guitarist Heikki Ruokangas amazes me pleasantly with this record “Mono and Dialogues” recorded together with his friend Henrik Hako-Rita. It amazes me for several reasons: the sound, the fluidity of performance, the excellent musical ideas, expressed, with a sincere, energetic and volitive approach. There is a lot of energy in this record, a spontaneous, almost rough energy, based, at the same time, on saturated, distorted and melodic sounds, a sound that seems to draw on those classes of jazz rock guitarists that dominated in the 80s and 90s, but also a revitalized, current sound, the son of a more free and apparently less diplomatic, more radical and almost introverted vision.
Spectacular, truly spectacular, their version of a classic like Summertime by G. Gershwin is simply amazing, which manages to add new meanings to a song that I consider among the most classic standards.
Oulu, in Finland, seems to be a really interesting place to learn how to play guitar. One of the best works of 2018. Highly recommended .
01. Merry-Go-Round 2:14
02. Summertime 4:56
03. Warma 2:47
04. Event Horizon 1:45
05. Ghost Waltz 5:31
06. The Real Boy 2:31
07. Jos lähdet Laila4:41
08. Mechanical Crow 1:16
09. Flamenco of Rust 6:14
10. The Last Robot 3:22
All compositions Heikki Ruokangas, except 7 G. Sundqvist, 2 G. Gershwin