Petri Hakala and Markku Lepistö are both veterans in the Finnish folk music field. During the years they have played in all kinds of ensembles from Accordion samurai to Värttinä and Tango orchestra Unto. As a duo they have been playing together since 1997, but this is just their second duo album.
Good news: it is one of the best folk music albums in a more traditional style that I've heard for a long time. Things aren't very complicated here and they don't need to be – just a combination of two amazing musicians and a couple of good tunes can make your day. Both musicians are the kind of persons who always highlights the music rather than themselves – their strength lies in strong musicianship providing both uplifting energy and dreamy, lyrical moments, as well as being very present as chamber musicians, playing as a duo almost like they'd be one person.
Their own compositions are a set of catchy tunes in different styles. This time the inspiration comes from different parts of the world: waltzes, schottisches and a hambo are joined by reels, jigs and tangos. These guys truly know how to write smashing tunes such as Hakala's tango Hetken epäröinti or Lepistö's schottish Kilsanmäki. I'm very surprised if these tunes will not be embraced and covered by other musicians as well.
PETRI HAKALA & MARKKU LEPISTÖ: Nordic Route
Petri Hakala: mandolin, guitars
Markku Lepistö: diatonic accordion
Rapusaari Records RAPU004, 2020