Pekka Airaksinen started making music
in the late 1960's group The Sperm who combined performance art
with experimental music of the day. On their records influences
such as John Cage, Karlheinz Stockhausen, free jazz and psychedelic
pop were filtered into rough anti-music that resembled the early
industrial music and noise that would emerge elsewhere in the
world some ten years later. As unbelievable as it sounds now,
The Sperms leader Mattijuhani Koponen was sent to prison
for simulating sexual intercourse on stage at the Old Students
Union in Helsinki, and Peter Widén - who was responsible
for the allegedly pornographic films that accompanied the groups
performances - was also sentenced to two months in a labour colony.
In the early 70's when The Sperm had
withered away, Pekka Airaksinen became a Buddhist and stopped
releasing music for almost a decade. Airaksinen, who was regarded
as a recluse, returned to the public eye in the mid-80's under
his own name and with a brand new but equally futuristic vision.
His album Buddhas of Golden Light is an incredible mixture
of Sun Ras cosmic free jazz and twisted rhythms programmed
on a Roland 808 drum machine. At the end of the decade techno
elevated the 808 to a fetish object and Airaksinen disappeared
for another five years.
In the 90's Airaksinen released a large
number of CD's and CD-R's on his own Dharmakustannus label, on
which the style of each track varied wildly - breaking every rule
of the niche-group marketing concepts of the era. All his recordings,
whether they are his unique interpretations of contemporary music,
new age, ambient house or jazz, are characterized by a sense of
improvisation and casual roughness that is rare in electronic
music. The most avant-garde pieces of his recent output continue
his earlier work with the imaginary "anthropoid music"
of the future.
For more on The Sperm and Pekka Airaksinen,
read Jukka Lindfors' article Arctic
History. Airaksinens Avanto Club performance with Es
marks his first concert in Helsinki in 14 years. AN
Friday 9.11.2001 - Gloria
21:00-3:00 - Avanto-Club: Pekka Airaksinen