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Crossover Prog • Finland

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Hypnomen biography
The band was formed in year 1994 as a duo project, which expanded to trio and did their first official release of their instrumental rock in 1997. During the early years of new millennia the band got more players, and they developed their sound towards more artistic heights. Their music has hints of psychedelia mixed to pleasant and accessible mixture of groovy detailed rock and funk. Their large discography and constant concert stage presence in Finland provides a steady flow of positive vibes to any willing listeners. From the progressive rock context their style could be compared to a funkier incarnation of HANSSON & KARLSSON with more players on stage. The keyboard player and the drummer of this group actually have also a similar kind of duo group NIEMINEN & LITMANEN, as the group referred.

Eetu Pellonpää

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HYPNOMEN discography

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HYPNOMEN top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.67 | 3 ratings
4.00 | 3 ratings
Watusi 99
3.80 | 5 ratings
Andromeda Airport
3.08 | 5 ratings
Crystal Skies
3.08 | 6 ratings
Dreaming of the New Dawn

HYPNOMEN Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

HYPNOMEN Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

HYPNOMEN Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

HYPNOMEN Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Crystal Skies by HYPNOMEN album cover Studio Album, 2004
3.08 | 5 ratings

Crystal Skies
Hypnomen Crossover Prog

Review by Matti
Prog Reviewer

3 stars -- The first review for this album --

3½ stars! It comes as no surprise that this Finnish instrumental rock band is among the less noticed artists in the PA database. Their retro-sounding music isn't actually progressive rock per se, and it's always difficult for an instrumentally oriented rock band to get wider recognition, even domestically. The band's discography didn't exactly end with Dreaming of the New Dawn (2007) which I reviewed here long ago; they have released a collaborative, Finnish-language album titled Huominen On Uni (2016) with vocalist Anna Inginmaa and singer- songwriter Kauko Röyhkä. Recently Hypnomen's central figure, guitarist and main composer Pekka Laine -- who also works as a music journalist especially on radio -- released his solo album The Enchanted Guitar of Pekka Laine (2021). It's an instrumental, retro-spirited work as well.

Onto Crystal Skies that precedes the mentioned Dreaming etc. 'Reveleation' is the other of the two compositions credited to the band. The rest of the quintet are Sami Nieminen on keys (mainly organ and electric piano), Jan Gröhn on bass, Juha Litmanen on drums and Jan Pethman on percussion. The opener's groove reminds me of the classic SANTANA. 'Asleep' is a nice song featuring female pop singer Jonna Tervomaa whose fresh voice fits the music extremely well. 'Bursting Out' is even more Santana-like piece with lively percussion and tight electric guitar and organ work. Nieminen's composition 'Sergio' has a URIAH HEEP reminding, vintage heavy rock sound with an emphasis on organ.

The title track (the longest at 8:19) is enjoyably hazy and atmospheric, and a perfect example of Hypnomen's retro approach leaning towards the mellower end of psychedelic space rock. The other group composition 'Poseidon' is among the most electrified and heaviest pieces. If it had been recorded by DEEP PURPLE around 1969, it would be a classic. There are more vocal guest appearances in the end of the album. Elegantly blues-flavoured 'Love Gone Bad' features the smooth male voice of Janne Lehtinen, and 'The Morning After' is an almost HAWKWIND-like space rocker with vocals of Knipi (known from the pop-rock band Egotrippi) and Marcus Nordenstreng. There's also a slight Beatlesque element to this song.

From prog's point of view this music isn't anyhow remarkable, but it's very well crafted, instrumentally oriented retro-rock easy to enjoy if you like the artists mentioned above. A nice balance between laid-back mellowness and a heavier (but always vintage) sound. The whole album is available on YouTube.

 Dreaming of the New Dawn by HYPNOMEN album cover Studio Album, 2007
3.08 | 6 ratings

Dreaming of the New Dawn
Hypnomen Crossover Prog

Review by Matti
Prog Reviewer

3 stars This is the fifth and probably the last album by the Finnish, instrumentally oriented psych rock group Hypnomen - and the only album from them I've listened to this far. Sadly my review is also the first one they have ever received here...

'The Darkest Hour' opens the album in a slow, dark ambient mood. Mumbling, background-like vocals are added, and a powerful, brief instrumental burst functions like a chorus. Then some whispers, and we get seamlessly into the next track 'The Oath' which is more rhythmic and melodic, sounding indeed a bit like BO HANSSON, only with a wider instrumentation. Organ gets the leading role, and vibes are a very nice addition. It's so (deliciously) retro-sounding that it could really come from the early seventies.

'Rising Up' is funkier, even horns included. Nice beat but the near absence of psychedelic flavour makes it less interesting to me. 'The Seeker' is a laid-back vocal song with a flavour of American, folky singer-songwriter tradition. The vocals are tender, perhaps slightly colourless but good enough. 'Sadness' is more up-beat track featuring some wordless ("ba-dab-baia") singing. It approaches the atmosphere of Brasilian bossa nova, pretty nice! The whole album seems to be very retro sounding, which is a positive thing to me.

The percussion-oriented 'Earth to Birth' doesn't quite succeed to me, especiallyI don't like the steel pan addition, but on the other hand it widens the spectre the album. 'Starchild' is a light, psychedelic instrumental featuring flute. The slower 'The Dawn Breaking' continues in the dreamy mood, and so does 'Sacred Mountain Revisited', which has almost a spiritual atmosphere in the style of mid- seventies JADE WARRIOR. And finally, bluesy and laid-back 'The New Day' closes the album in a happy mood.

Especially from the prog's point of view this is not a groundbreaking album in any sense, but it's very pleasant for the retro sound, and nearly all of the ten tracks have something to enjoy, if not any of them is really mindblowing. Many various musical styles are melted harmoniously together. I'd like to hear some more by this group.

Thanks to Eetu Pellonpää for the artist addition.

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