Tomorrow is once again time for my Softrock -club night in Bar Kuka. Been doing that for a little over 3 years now. Can it really be that long..? Anyways, usually a couple of days before these nights I go through the local second hand vinyl shops hunting for new softrock 7″ singles to play. Maybe also have a quick look in the fleamarkets for some Miami Vice -style garments for the night. Just to keep things exciting for myself and also for the public. This time was no exception. Yesterday I went to Kaakko on Yliopistonkatu and brought him 65 euros worth of vinyl from my own shelf to trade for 7″ singles.
As Kaakko’s prices are very reasonable (1-3 euros a piece for the kind of 7 inches I’m looking for usually.) it took a long time for me to find a suitable set of records to fill the 65 euro quota. I spent maybe 2 hours going through singles and listening to them and as I grew more desperate I branched my search to include also the Finnish Rock and Schlager -departments just in case… Well it was definitely worth the effort. Finally I ended up buying about 25-30 singles, mostly AOR, soft soul or disco. Many of those singles will appear in the future in Turku Synth, but I’ll start with this.
Flight 205 by Jokke, (better known as Jokke Seppälä of Sunshine Reggae -fame) is a rare jewel of a song. As soon as I put it on in Kaakko’s listening post I knew I had a winner in my hands. The song starts slowly with a synthetic imitation of a jet plane taking off, filter opening slowly. After the hard-rock-style cool intro, it starts as a slow & quiet verse with some synth flourishes. The real fun begins when Jokke gets to the chorus. Flight 205! And of course a vocoded voice seconding Jokke’s every desperate plea.
Thematically the song reminds me of Motors‘ only big hit Airport (of which there’s a quite good Finnish version “Lentoon” too by a guy called Tinni) where the lyrics wave goodbye to a girlfriend, who’s leaving the protagonist’s life through the aforementioned airport. Jokke’s story is different, but easily as sad. Musically the song reminds me more of Mike Oldfield‘s amazing Five Miles Out from his pop-period. Maybe it’s the fact that both songs mix vocoder -vocals with distorted hard rock styled guitars and both have this stomping beat to them. And again Five Miles Out is also a tale about aeroplanes and flying. It seems that in the early 80’s flying was almost as popular subject matter for songs as the far east. The B-side You Are My Life is nothing to get too excited about. A bland weepie, with no synth whatsoever.
Jokke’s Flight 205 was a double winner. At the same time, I found something new & exciting to post in Turku Synth and it also fits tomorrow’s softrock-bill perfectly. Soft but not too soft. There are more finnish and/or otherwise rare synth goodies on their way, but for now, fasten your seatbelts, put out your cigarettes, lean back and listen to Flight 205. Hopefully we’ll see tomorrow in Bar Kuka.
Tomi / Turku Synth