The Group (2LP+7" Vinyl)
One of the great fusion albums from the Finnish 70s scene. Surprisingly this wasn't released on Love. Instead it came out on Finnlevy's Dig It fusion sublabel.
The Group consisted of Seppo Tyni on guitars, Pekka Pohjola on bass, Olli Ahvenlahti on keyboards, and Vesa Aaltonen on drums. Basically a Finnish fusion super group.
This new reissue from Svart Records arrives with a lot of unreleased material. The second album is a previously unreleased recording with the Sibelius Academy Symphony Orchestra. You also get a bonus 7" singlue with two outtakes from the album sessions. AWESOMENESS!!
"Heavy triple gatefold jacket with two LPs and a bonus 7 inch. Black vinyl, 300 copies.
Svart presents a heavily extended reissue of The Group’s only album, originally released on Finnlevy’s prog rock imprint Hi-Hat in 1978. The 2nd LP features an extended studio session with the Sibelius academy orchestra, and the extra 7″ has two studio outtakes from the original album.
Highly influenced by Weather Report and the jazz fusion scene of the 70s, The Group was set up after Pekka Pohjola and Vesa Aaltonen came back to Finland from Sweden. They both played in the Swedish prog/jazz rock band Made in Sweden. As The Group’s guitarist Seppo Tyni remembers, Aaltonen came back to Finland in early 1977 and Pohjola later in the summer. From the early 1977 Aaltonen and Tyni both played in Olli Ahvenlahti Quintet that for example performed at the Finnish Eurovision qualification (though they played as a quartet there). The quartet (Olli Ahvenlahti, Seppo Tyni, Vesa Aaltonen, Heikki “Häkä Virtanen) was the backing band for Markku Blomqvist who performed his song Liehuva liekinvarsi. If you listen to the song, it couldn’t be much more further in style from The Group’s material. However just in a matter of few months three of the band members would play in the jazz fusion quartet called The Group.
“This band was very remarkable for me as I had just moved to Helsinki from Pori in 1976. I played in the Swedish Theatre for one season and it led me to meet other musicians of my age like Häkä Virtanen. Then I met Olli Ahvenlahti and Vesa Aaltonen. It was the first time I got to play with real professionals”, Tyni remembers."