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Karelia Visa
Karelia Visa
Genres: Folk, World Music, Pop
  •  Track Listings (10) - Disc #1

Hedningarna return to their full Finnish-Swedish lineup with Karelia Visa, bringing back the Finnish voices of Sanna Kurki-Suonio and Anita Lehtola. For much of their career they have explored the runesongs of ancient Finl...  more »


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CD Details

All Artists: Hedningarna
Title: Karelia Visa
Members Wishing: 0
Total Copies: 0
Label: Northside Records
Original Release Date: 2/23/1999
Release Date: 2/23/1999
Genres: Folk, World Music, Pop
Styles: Traditional Folk, Europe, Scandinavia
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaCD Credits: 1
UPCs: 021561602526, 8712618402726

Hedningarna return to their full Finnish-Swedish lineup with Karelia Visa, bringing back the Finnish voices of Sanna Kurki-Suonio and Anita Lehtola. For much of their career they have explored the runesongs of ancient Finland, particularly in the area called Karelia that straddles the Russian border. This album goes into the oldest Karelian traditions by collecting tunes and lyrics in the old Russian villages that still speak the old language and sing the old songs. Not that this is a traditional album in any way. In typical "heathen" style, the band reinterprets freely and inventively, pulling instruments from many Nordic and northern European countries, adding technology carefully but conspicuously, crafting an electric folk music that stays carefully out of the rock realm and holds true to the folk process. This album follows closely the powerful path created on Kaksi!, the first Hedningarna album to explore the deeper Finno-Ugric roots of the eastern border regions. It is less violent and aggressive, but also darker and more contemplative. The brief historical notes are sufficient, and all the songs are well translated, an important element for a recording that relies heavily on content that very few people (even modern Finns) could understand on their own. --Louis Gibson

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CD Reviews

"Karelia Visa" Your Ticket To Ecstasy | Hilliard, Ohio | 08/29/1999
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Hedningarna is a superb act of unparalleled talent. In "Karelia Visa" Sanna Kurki-Suonio and Anita Lehtola present hyptnotic vocal performances that bring the richness, depth, and beauty of Karelian runosongs to the hungry ears of American listeners. "Karelia Visa" is a work that belongs in the collection of anyone who truly loves music. The songs "Mita Mina", "Ukkonen", and "Veli" are particularly noteworthy. Hedningarna proves that the wealth of one culture is best conveyed through the enriching process of cultural cooperation (Finnish + Swedish)."
Beautiful Finnish feel, playful and spritely
Ulven | australia | 10/07/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)

"As a child, Finland was an enigma to me.The little impression I did have, suggested it to be quite bland, and the people reserved.As I grew older, the icey lands of our planet's north built in me a sub-conscious awe.Now, its well and truly in my awareness -the cold, the isolation, the constant wind, and the vast intact wilderness.This band introduced me to the people and culture of Finland (And on other albums, Sweden).The playfulness of spirit lives well in rural Finland, and this album shows it up well.
Hedningarna are usually quite aggressive, using 'scratchy' and 'drone-like' instruments.The females of the band usually sing like witches (but with perfect pitch).On this album though, all is sweet and pristine.The (acoustic)instruments are clear, and spaced apart.The female singers are playful and child-like.The melodies are quite subtle, but aluring.Hedningarna's other albums feel very Swedish, even in the presence of the Finnish elements.But this one feels like Finland.Apart from the quality of creation, and some tell-tale Hedningarna traits, this album is totally different to anything they've done before.
"Beautiful culture plays here.""
Karelia Visa Is A Memorable Nordic Trip
Wil | AL | 04/17/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)

"I bought this disc mainly on the strength of Mettsän Tytto, which I heard on the Nordic Roots Music Sampler CD. Also, I felt that their "best of" album (which is a good starting point for new fans) was woefully lacking in tracks from this album. I wondered if Karelia Visa was worth the effort. But thankfully I took the chance -- I have never been more glad to be wrong.
The songs on this album take the listener on a wonderful nordic trip (along with the liner notes and booklet photos) that is most memorable. From the aforementioned Mettsän Tytto and other upbeat numbers like Mitä Minä and Alkusanat, to the haunting, rootsy atmospheres of Ukkonen and Viima, this album weaves a spell that is hard to resist. Every track is worth hearing. It is probably also the most accessible of the band's albums for newbies, as their earlier albums such as Trä and Kaksi! are more angular and experimental.
So if you are hesitating whether or not to get this disc, wait no more. This is a great example of nordic folk music -- with a heathen twist of course!"