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  • David Bentley

Ocelot (Finland) – Unelmoi (EP)

Two tracks from this, Ocelot’s second full length EP, were featured as singles in NMR in 2020, namely ‘Perhosia’ and ‘Simpukka.’ The former refers to butterflies and to the act of counting them and was described as “psyche-y”, accompanied by a high-pitched, almost childlike female voice, and quite tuneful.

Simpukka is a maritime themed sea groove about longing for the sea, wanting to be with the sea and listening closely to the sea.

In both tracks there is something almost old fashioned about them, but not in a derogatory manner. They are like a small chamber orchestra dragged kicking into the 21st Century with vaudeville overtones.

Unelmoi, translates in English to “dreaming/to dream/dream” and opening track ‘Unelmia’, a song about things coming to an end, diving into a tunnel and re-emerging on the other side” also means dreams. For the most part the music is one that could be playing in the background while Wile. E Coyote chases pointlessly after Road Runner.

Fourth track ‘Kukkapelto’ (Flower Field) has probably the closest structure to that of a conventional pop-rock song, with a particularly evident bass line but it’s still from well out of left field with a recurring central and intensifying theme that becomes almost trance-like.

Final track ‘Haalistut’ (Fade) changes direction into a pleasant piano-led ballad, turning into a power ballad as it progresses. Probably the most amenable track simply because it isn’t so far off the wall.

The EP was put together at varying times in 2020, the material having mostly emerged in the early part of the year but then worked through at leisure from inside the walls of our self-determined prison.

The intention was “to break away from the arrogant perspective of the human and give way to the subconscious and the non-human.” Accordingly, “nature and dreams are therefore very present on the EP, each song being its own butterfly, its own moment.” I suppose we could be verging on the realms of the butterfly effect in Chaos Theory here but that’s too heavy for a Friday night so I won’t flap my wings over the issue.

To put it bluntly, Ocelot are different. For some people the gap between normality and what they write is too big to bridge. For others it presents a challenge to be relished. I’m quite happy to count myself in the latter category.

Nordic Music Review 7/10

Unelmoi was released today 12th February on the Soliti label. Find them on Facebook Twitter or Instagram.


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