Unzyme “Override” – REVIEW

Over 4 years of waiting. They released their debut album back in 2010. 3 people in one promising band – Unzyme.
Over 4 years of waiting for the second album. Waiting – with hopes and fears.
I was hoping for progression. I feared that “Override” will be just as the first album. It’s nothing bad about it, but still I feared that they will remain in the point from which they started.
I wished for evolution of the music, the enlargement of the lyrics and advancement of the band itself. Now I can say my fears were unneeded. Unzyme met all my expectations.

I decided to take a listen with mixed feelings. I also decided to take notes while listening to the songs one by one, to describe my thoughts in the present time.
1. Relay (3:27).
I was lucky to hear few songs in their demo versions and this one was one of the first ones. I was positively surprised how the music grew from a simple plan to the final version. The lyrics came its long way smoothly from a clean idea to a story that fits the band’s style.

2. Step outside (3:46).
This song is simply hypnotizing. If anyone is desperately looking for this magical place where music meets the lyrics – you don’t have to search any longer. This is the point of perfection. I was a tiny bit disappointed that it’s only the second song of the album, but my heart is smiling now. I used to focus on music background or on the lyrics, forgetting the other part. Here I hear everything as one. It’s very rare to create such gem.

3. Mother of all bombs (3:02).
Have you ever thought about mixing electronic music, meaningful lyrics and rocking sound? Impossible? Nope. It’s like mixing tastes and scents. You have to be a master chef in the kitchen to to things like that. Mixing styles that at once don’t fit in music, you have to be genius-minded. Here’s where you find this beautiful mind.

4. Sinking in the past (3:40).
This song is one of the best surprises on the album. While listening I thought like I’ve heard this before. And I don’t mean the demo. The final album version of the song reminds me of something. It’s not the feeling you get nowadays where everyone is coping everybody. It’s like a melody you had in your head for so long and finally you hear it for real. Unzyme definitely know how to perfectly connect electronical music with soft pianos and vibrating vocals.

5. Don’t accept your fate (3:06).
What else can I say? Do I hear cello? Or is it double bass? Violin maybe? My first thought was “Really guys? How could you molest my head like that? Is it even legal?”.
I used to be a major rock fan. Other styles were tolerated. And then Unzyme happen.
If you don’t believe musical miracles – you better do now.

6. I can’t stand this silence (2:51).
And here comes my fears. First tones of the song sounded like it’s going to be plain pop-ish song. But this fear lasted no longer than a neutron impulse. Joona made it sound like a proper and serious successor of Neil Tennant. The song brings me straight into the future of the style. Pet Shop Boys would be proud! The song is smashing!

7. Faces I knew (3:45).
Now that’s the music I like. Gentle vocals of Joona’s deep voice complement the music and create ensemble that is a real pleasure for the listener. That’s what I expected from this album. Wise words in song-lyrics, great not-disturbing music and the vibe. It’s hard to say anything more when you find something that speaks for itself.

8. Bad old times (4:26).
Have you ever felt hypnotized by an old music box from your childhood? I felt like I found that sort of music box in an old abandoned house. When it starts playing I can feel the air filled with dust flowing through my hair. Air brings old photos right in my hands. Dust sparkles in the dim light from the windows…
I might not mean the lyrics the way its author did but it feels magical. And i love to be tackled in my creativity spot!

9. Which way (3:32).
This is the first time I hear this song, so it’s like discovering new places.
I wanna applause to Unzyme again. I can strongly feel the inspiration of PSB, but totally in Unzyme style. I need to be on a gig where this song is played – I’ll be the first one dancing!!!
The biggest mystery of the album – the biggest shock! Can I clap my hands now?

10. Thought of decay (4:59).
So far my only lullaby was sung by The Cure. The list must be extended to this song as well. Lyrics are my kind of sad and moody. Music sooth me after a long day and after a great album that made me wanna move. Having this song as the closing chapter of “Override” is ideal.

To make long story short. Listening to the “Override” album was a pure pleasure not only for me – waiting few years on it, but especially for my ears. All my fears go away now, when I know how amazing it is. I started with a worried mind with a vision of a band that is not evolving. Now I wanna punish myself for how I could even think like that? It’s been a long way in time with a lot of bad and good stuff on the way. It’s shown in this 36-minutes-long album.

It was worth it. It was definitely worth it.

And now the squirrel goes dancing…

Jaani Peuhu “Tear Catcher” – REVIEW

"Tear Catcher" album cover

“Tear Catcher” album cover

The album starts with a song entitled “Lifelines” that at first makes me think about an A-ha song with the same title. But Jaani’s version is – I have to admit it even as a big A-ha fan – more enchanting with it’s drums and dark melody. In addition lyrics sound like an underwater sirens completely catching the attention of the audience.

The second track is sharing the title with the album (“Tear Catcher”) is more powerful. Drums are getting stronger, and Jaani’s voice is getting louder. You can close your eyes and you will hardly notice the break between this song and the one that comes right after it, which is “My Sky”. Both makes your heart skips a few beats to synchronize to the drums. To the weak hearted – it may cause a little heartache, although those who are great dark wave and synth pop fans are going to loose themselves in this hypnotizing sounds.

The fourth song on the album is slower one called “I Believed”. Compared to anything else it’s like a listener decided to take a slow walk after few minutes of intense running. After three Iconcrash albums, Jaani Peuhu shows that he definitely knows how to make a synth pop ballad with an deep dark wave background.

“Unspoken Loss” starts with a heartbeat-alike sound that goes straight into your head – mind wearing in-ear headphones here! The song with Jaani’s vocals will take you from where you are into a place with a perfect acoustics.

“Mercy Kiss” might sound a little disturbing at first but not even after half a minute the song makes you wanna move. Personally it almost made me dance even though I don’t know any dance moves.

The second half of the album starts with the song “Maybe God Is Asleep”. It begins as an acoustic song while after a minute you can finally hear the melodic background to the guitar. In opposition to the first songs on the album, this one is the relaxing vibe to the previous notes.

Once you are calmed and relaxed, there comes “Follow me”. You can hear slightly exotic note within this song. In my head it created few visions of Asia once I decided to close my eyes.

After “Follow Me” there comes “No Regrets”. It surrounds with dark mixture of sounds and vocals like a voile of wondering what was the inspiration to the author. Even though to me it almost caused a headache, I have to admit that it’s mystery attracts like a magnet, even if I try to get away from it. Calm ending makes my heart slow down to a normal tempo and makes me feel like a rabbit running away from a hunter. Weird feeling but it fits the album’s atmosphere more than greatly.

The tenth song is “Did You Ever?” that prolongs the exotic Asian feeling inside me. Personally I think it’s the most magical song on the album. It calms me down and scares me. In makes me feel good and bad at the same moment.

“Desire” is the closing song on the “Tear Catcher” album. It feels like the author is going back to the beginning of it. The tension is building up as the drums are resounding. As Janni’s vocals reverberate – the desire is growing bigger and bigger while the melody gets darker and darker. It’s the longest song on the 11-songs Jaani Peuhu album and it’s definitely the darkest of all.

In summary, the album consists of eleven tracks of dark wave and synth pop atmosphere. Recorded for nearly three years in many places in Europe and around the world. The album was honed by both International producers as well as by the author himself in smallest details.

Lyrics are – as in the nature of Janni Peuhu – deep, and each track has its own individual story in the background. The songs can be listened to by fans individually, but also together as a unified work form a complete picture. On one hand, the songs are like the components of a larger whole, but on the other hand, it does not take away their own individuality.


Jaani Peuhu – “Tear Catcher”
1. Lifelines 5:12
2. Tear Catcher 4:15
3. My Sky – Single Version 3:43
4. I Believed 4:42
5. Unspoken Loss 6:06
6. Mercy Kiss 3:30
7. Maybe God Is Asleep 3:48
8. Follow Me 3:46
9. No Regrets 5:13
10. Did You Ever? 5:47
11. Desire 7:23
Whole album length: 52:55