Real Music for Unreal Times (2015)

Kumea Sound’s album, Real Music for Unreal Times, offers a meditative journey through solo handpan music by Finnish artist Lauri Wuolio. Wuolio’s authentic performances are enhanced by innovative recording techniques, breathing life into each track.

Working alongside Martin Kantola of Nordic Audio Labs, Wuolio utilized hand-built microphones to capture the handpan’s intricate harmonic overtones. This dedication to detail creates an immersive listening experience that translates the energy and spontaneity of Wuolio’s live performances.

The album’s direction shifted to a more introspective tone after — while in the recording studio — Wuolio received news of the passing of a friend and fellow musician, Dante Bucci. This tragedy infused the album with themes of sorrow and emptiness. The detailed reverb, achieved through experimental virtual acoustics, replicates the acoustic environment of the sixteenth-century Russian monastery, Solovetsky, echoing this sense of loss.

Drawing from Finnish mythology and ancient Greek music, Wuolio explores the potential of fusing old and new ideas, simplicity, and complexity, resulting in a transcendent sonic experience.

Real Music for Unreal Times stands as a testament to the power of music to bridge divides and create unity across time and even death. This captivating album transports listeners to a serene, otherworldly space, offering a temporary escape from the noise of modern life.

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