Regina – Puutarhatrilogia

Regina – Puutarhatrilogia

Labels are often so misaligned from what they’re attempting to describe that it all feels entirely futile. Deservedly so, when the time comes to classify music and to fully describe it, it again, feels like a lost cause. However, some music just happens to click and when that happens, it’s an entirely different experience. Considered a ‘good problem,’ too many superlatives are always a double-edged sword but whatever the effect is, the cause is always due to an incredibly impeccable album. And such problems are some of the best kind of problems to solve.

I’ve thought of myself as someone who can decently string together a few words to establish some sort of credibility. But lately, I’ve come across so much amazing music that it humbly allows me to get out of focus. See, Regina’s first album to hit stateside, Puutarhatrilogia (Finnish for “Garden Trilogy”), is a diversely rich experience and one that can truly reign in as surprisingly dissimilar and still, gripping. Its scope stuns with an immense amount of pop hooks, meshed in between layers of jazzy undertones, blended with classical sensibilities and a keen amount of electronics. It’s not so much that their music completely takes you for new a ride but rather, it’s so gloriously rendered that it’s hard not to fall in love with.

For a trio that is based out of Helsinki, the best way to lead someone into Regina’s music is to simply play it for them. Through every new song that appears, with a different pattern, a different style, a different sound, the album takes shape through the ability of three talented musicians. Iisa Pykäri’s voice is a dazzling instrument all on its own: she sounds sexy, sultry and serenely gorgeous on every single note and her skillful delivery always keeps the listener begging for more. And it doesn’t hurt that her counterparts contribute spellbindingly awesome music for her to perch on top off – everything seems to hit at just the right time, and perfectly so, for Regina.

“Saanko jäädä yöksi?” is obviously the album’s centerpiece, nestled in the heart of the album. And it’s deserving, too, the music radiates with Iisa’s soaring vocals, on top of a teetering piano line. Jazzy and then, out of nowhere, channeling 90s pop, its beguiling question (“Can I Stay the Night?”) is hopefully answered with the brilliant sax bridge. But that kind of statement can only be said because of how well-presented everything around it is. The beginning four songs gel with dancefloor synths and playfully open bedroom pop. Between them, they genuinely deliver Regina’s sound through a carefully varied and dynamic view: new sounds, new deliveries, new passions.

And for what’s waiting around the bend, Puutarhatrilogia is an open-ended wonder in terms of interpretation. Just trying to piece a story around the translations, star-crossed lovers are somewhere deep within the story but maybe, not necessarily the main attractions. Especially with the softness of “Olen häviöllä, Pauli” and how it certainly reflects the longing feeling we feel when someone is slowly moving away, figuratively or literally. But even with retrospective thoughts, the music sounds wonderfully alive, with swirling synths and a marvelous chorus of chanting vocals, towering chords, a shouting glance and a meditative beat. Perhaps that’s what music is all about, forgetting and entirely escaping to a different world. Puutarhatrilogia is just that, a memorable collection of new sounds that never disappoints and instead, astoundingly delights.

“Saanko jäädä yöksi?” by Regina

Friendly Fire Recordings