Listeners have learned to expect Pekko Käppi to turn a new musical page on virtually each new album. This time these (high) expectations were quite explicit, knowing that Matilda is the second part of a trilogy which began with the brilliant Sanguis Meus, Mama! (2015). It is also the second album Käppi has made together with his band K:H:H:L (Nuutti Vapaavuori & Tommi Laine).
The album is both a sophisticated and raw continuation to its predecessor. On the title track, many ingredients introduced on the first K:H:H:L album have been cultivated into a beautiful folk pop song where Käppi’s jouhikko and desert blues riffs intertwine as if they had always belonged together. On other tracks, the listener gets surprised by elements such as electronic sounds or stoner riffs.
The album has been described to be more in the present than in the past, but I hear many layers from the past as well: maybe this time a bit more from the past of popular music and world music than from Finnish traditional music. All the pieces in the puzzle do not yet fit perfectly together, but surely the picture will be completed with the next album.
Pekko Käppi & K:H:H:L: Matilda