Virtuoso Accordion Mikko Luoma, accordion
Bridge Records BRIDGE 9221
There are countires east [and west perhaps] of here, no doubt, where the accordion is always taken seriously as a musical instrument in a variety of genres. I am thinking of polka, Cafe de Paris, maybe even Cajun and Zydeco. But sadly, I think I'm right in saying, in Britain it is often seen as a bit of a joke, if not scorned entirely.
I admit to even having had trouble spelling it!
I have in the past reviewed records of accordion music - see this link for an example
but each time I receive another accordion CD - classical, rock or folk - I still view it as some sort of challenge to my claim to be able to review records.
This is no exception. The difference this time however is that one might be hard pushed without holding the sleevenotes to state that one was actually listening to an accordion. Sometimes here the instrument sounds like a harmonium, sometimes a mouth organ and at others a variety of wind instruments in between. I can't say on one hearing that this is my favourite album of all time - and doubt that I ever will! But I must say that it is fascinating what a range of interesting sounds can be made by this instrument under the direction of this particular musician.
All the music is pretty modern - nothing before 1967, and nothing by any composer I've ever heard of, so this all contributes to the exoticism of the experience but I cannot emphasise strongly enough the necessity of hearing this album for yourself. Whatever I say will have no meaning to you as I can find no obvious starting points for comparison within my existing musical knowledge.
Even if it ends up not being to your liking, at least you will have had a good hour's thought provoking entertainment unobtainable elsewhere!