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NORTHERN LIGHTS

Jartse Tuominen

Jazz Rock/Fusion


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Jartse Tuominen Northern Lights album cover
4.00 | 4 ratings | 2 reviews | 50% 5 stars

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Studio Album, released in 2001

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Introducing - Instrumental
2. Ghost of Love - Annica Wiklund
3. Over - Timo Rainio
4. Inca Princess - Hannu Leiden
5. The Loner - Instrumental
6. Hearts on Parole - Annica Wiklund & Hannu Leiden
7. Never Enough - Ila Loueranta
8. On the Other Side - Timo Rainio
9. Miracle Man - Hannu Leiden
10. Love Me, Hate Me - Annica Wiklund
11. Northern Lights - Instrumental

Lyrics

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Music tabs (tablatures)

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Line-up / Musicians

- Annica Wiklund / Vocals 2, 6, 10
- Hannu Leiden / Vocals 4, 6, 9
- Timo Rainio / Vocals 3, 8
- Ila Loueranta / Vocals 7
- Jartse Tuominen / Guitars
- Anssi Nykänen / Drums
- Juuso Nordlund / Bass
- Mikko Rintanen / Keyboards
- T.T. Oksala / Keyboards on Inca Princess
- Tomi Pietilä / Drums on Ghost of Love
- Otto Hallamaa / B-3 on Miracle Man
- Atte Sarpila / Drums on Inca Princess
- Pekka Torikka / Bass on Ghost of Love
- Petri Nieminen / Sax on Never Enough
- J-P Järvinen: Programming
- Background vocals: Kikka Laitinen, Sami Ruusukallio and Harri Rantanen

Releases information

All songs composed and arranged by
Jartse Tuominen © North & South
except The Loner by Gary Moore © 10 Records

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JARTSE TUOMINEN Northern Lights ratings distribution


4.00
(4 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(50%)
50%
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(0%)
0%
Good, but non-essential (50%)
50%
Collectors/fans only (0%)
0%
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)
0%

JARTSE TUOMINEN Northern Lights reviews


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Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by lucas
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
5 stars When top-notch musicanship meets catchy and memorable melodies

Jartse Tuominen is an accomplished guitarist who started his solo career at the end of the 1990's. 'Northern lights' is his second record, and the material proposed here (AOR [read "melodic rock"] declined in several styles ' see detailed review further on) contrasts with another record, aptly entitled 'progressive' (a progressive and complex musical tour de force) released by Jartse around the same time. On to 'Northern Lights': we have here a collection of songs that overall give a flair of AOR to the album, but that are covered with different musical sauces : - Instrumental rock/jazz-rock with the 3 instrumental tracks (the opening track, "Introducing", in the vein of Simon Phillips' projects with Steve Lukather or Derek Sherinian, "the loner", which is a little tribute to Gary Moore ' without looking at the credits you recognize instantly Phil Lynott's long-time friend's phrasing, and finally the light and jazzy closing track "northern lights", with its first and last quarters lead by bass (Patrick O'Hearn comes to mind with his ambient stuff) and guitar touches reminiscent of Joe Satriani's "I believe", a song which had, what a coincidence!, Simon Phillips on drums. - Pop, first on "ghost of love" with its superb and delicate female vocals and memorable chorus. Then on "on the other side", with intonation of vocals reminding Joey Tempest of Europe. - Hard rock/southern rock on "Over", an upbeat midtempo song with male vocals reminiscent at times Glenn Hughes, at others Danny Joe Brown of Molly Hatchett fame. - Folk-rock on "Inca Princess" with theatrical male vocals. - Arena rock/AOR, first on "Hearts on parole" where strong male vocals alternate with raspy Bonnie Tyler'esque female vocals. The guitar line in the chorus is reminiscent of TOTO's "hold the line", a liquid Hammond B3 comes in the bridge. Then on "Love me, hate me" with female vocals that could be placed somewhere between Janis Joplin and Doro's aggressive singing styles. - Soul in "Never enough" with funky guitar picks, brass section, saxophone, Hammond B3 all along, congas, and vocals praising like in a gospel song. - Prog-rock on "Miracle Man", with processed vocals not far from the Beatles ("blue jay way"), and Genesis ("grand parade of lifeless packaging") in the introduction and Pink Floyd ("waiting for the worms") in the conclusion, and the right balance between straightforward rhythm and more tortuous ones, like on Spock's Beard albums.

What strikes in the album is the diversity of material but also the diversity of vocals (4 lead vocalists in all). Jartse's guitar can be heard all along the album, but is never overwhelming, rather always giving directions to the song and in harmony with the band.

This album is full of catchy melodies, and lifts the spirits. This would be a shame not to listen to it.

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Send comments to lucas (BETA) | Report this review (#1128083) | Review Permalink
Posted Thursday, February 06, 2014

Review by Matti
COLLABORATOR Neo-Prog Team
3 stars I was told about this Finnish musician some weeks ago and borrowed two albums. Nice to see him added here, even though I'm quite surprised by the excellent reception. Tuominen lives in the USA which probably explains to some degree that he's not very well known here in his home country (as far as I know). Even the albums were placed in the library's storage. My first thought of the music was that this hasn't much to do with prog. Also the jazz/fusion approach is rather lame, especially speaking of the compositions. Lucas's words of AOR / melodic rock hit the nail. This album is roughly half instrumentals, half songs with vocalists. At the same library trip I borrowed a CD of respected guitarist Seppo Tyni (Juhlat Suulissa, 1995) and I feel Tuominen's jazz-rock is more or less in the same musical map, only with more vocals and much more predictable structures. The AOR feeling would lead my guesses towards late 80's or 90's if I heard this in a blindfold test.

The opening instrumental is a biting sharp track concentrating on Jartse's electric guitar. Then comes a calm song 'Ghost of Love' with Annika Wiklund's nice, slightly raspy voice. Timo Rainio, singing on two tracks, sounds like he's from a melodic hard rock band (he might be, I don't know). 'On the Other Side' reminds me of some hard rock ballads of bands like Scorpions or Whitesnake. Hannu Leiden sings on three tracks, one of them being a duet with Wiklund. His voice is also attempting to sound "rock". 'Inca Princess' is another semi-ballad with an acoustic-oriented sound. 'The Loner' is an instrumental blues ballad written by Gary Moore. The duet 'Hearts on Parole' is melodic AOR with some Toto-like edginess in the guitar. The brief keyboard solo sounds a bit muddy, but I sort of enjoy the catchiness of that song.

It's obvious that the technical excellence of Jartse's guitar is in a central role on the album. That said, maybe there are too many vocal songs, all of them not very good. Ila Loueranta (better known as a multi- instrumentalist in the band of the late Juice Leskinen) sings on 'Never Enough', one of the tracks I rather skip. The final track 'Northern Lights' is a moody, melancholic instrumental. Concerning the producton and playing this is a good album, easily entertaining at least, but as for the music itself, I find it hard to believe it would be a great find to very many prog listeners.

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Send comments to Matti (BETA) | Report this review (#1128113) | Review Permalink
Posted Friday, February 07, 2014

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