Artist Spotlight: Jari Pitkänen
One of our most reknown Suomi release artists on Enough Records goes by the name of Jari Pitkänen.
He barely has any online presence apart from his myspace profile and a Soundcloud account. Recently taking up the new artist name of Varia in a compilation release through Dominance Records and a self-run online radio stream (in collaboration with Juho ‘Blamstrain’ Hietala) on his freetime from Sound Designing for mobile phone videogames at Mr.Goodliving.
I originally met Jari through an Italian demoscene friend of mine during one of my journeys to Finland. I believe his words were somewhere in the line of: “You should meet Jari, he does strange music, you like strange music, you will probably like him.” And then called Jari up to tell him “You should meet ps, he has a netlabel and also does some strange music, so he’ll probably like your stuff.” So i met him, an extremly shy guy with a huge tattoo covering his entire arm. He didn’t chatter that much but promised to send me a demo by email sometime in a near future.
As it turns out Jari was also a demoscener under the moniker of 1in10, in the highly prolific MFX demogroup. In fact he is one of the founders of the group, along with Jarno ‘216’, highschool classmates, which put out one of the first releases of MFX: a musicdisk called Digital Sonic. With the growth of the group he became less active in the group, but kept producing new music despite his work not being used much in any demos. Only in more recent years with the “controversial” demo The Ballet Dancer did the demoscene audience start reading his handle again in a “scene” production. And like with most musicians involved with experimental works in the demoscene, his work was often socially ridiculed and disregarded as mediocre “artyfaggot” experiments. The most prominent example of this fact being the infamous wwc video which was stopped during it’s premiere at a video competition at the Breakpoint demoparty which i had the missfortune of experiencing live. One of the very reasons i personally stopped regarding the demoscene as a valid channel for open audiovisual expression and experimentation.
Jari’s latest work was recently used in a demo made by Jugi / Komplex. Titled Namesia, of which you can see a youtube video capture below.
But going back to how i met Jari, one day i received an email from an hellokitty domain. Which was by itself bloody awesome. Who the hell has an hellokitty domain email account? Well, Jari ‘1in10’ Pitkänen did and was proud to use it. His messages were usually short and to the point, link dump and an occasional “do you like it?” Which didn’t bother me at all to tell you the truth, quite the contrary. We swapped a few emails about our sounds, some references about idm, some ethereal drone ambient and female opera vocalist recommendations that he had found in local library old musical records. It was all about discovery of new sound languages and exploring them.
I loved his tracks, releases ensued.
Jari’s sound can be described as celestial ambient: lonely, cinematic; slightly ethereal, slightly dark. Sounds that are always extremly introspective and with a character trait of a very soothing nature that resonates in all of his releases.
Perfect sounds for lonely autumn nights coding, sketching, or simply drinking a warm cup of milk under the candle light.