Tenhi - Kauan


Not blessed, or merciful
Apr 11, 2001
Sarf Lundin, Innit
Tenhi - Kauan
Prophecy Productions - 1999
By Danilo Nikodinovski

I consider myself as the acoustic guitar fanatic, as I've been in love with that instrument ever since I decided to listen/play music at the higher level, with deeper respect. And I am always delighted when I discover another new band who shares my impressions. I think noone has ever heard of some happy band from Finland, and Tenhi is no exception.
So, Tenhi is from Finland, and Kauan is their first full-length (they have released 'Hallavedet/The Glacial Waters' mini CD in 1998).Their music is based on acoustic instruments only, such as acoustic guitars, flute, violin and grand piano.And there lies the magic of this masterpiece.

Ulver's Kveldssanger and the slower, mellow parts of In The Woods' Heart of the Ages spring to my mind first as I sink deeper into the opener 'Nakin Laulu' (The Chant of Nakki in english). There are many elements involved in creating of atmosphere, nocturnal & cold, and I always get a feeling like sitting in the woods at night while gazing at stars near some calm water. I hear all the things I've yearned to hear for years - acoustic guitars, chilling keyboards, dark singing, delayed guitars.

For the 2nd track,'Huomen' (Morrow), the closest comparision (besides Ulver) would be Tiamat ('Phantasma de Luxe') or some Empyrium as well. I can't remember when some song touched my feelings so much as this one did. The singing is incredibly sensitive, keyboards very intense and the acoustic guitar duo is full of sorrow and despair. Incredible, that's the word.

Tenhi's highlights must be 'Hallavedet' (rerecorded, giving much more space to the keyboards and flute in this version, which turned out even better than the original) and 'Lauluni Sinulle' (Mavourneen's song), bringing up those water freezing string strummings, which reminds of Anathema a lot('...Alone' and 'Suicide Veil' acoustic outro) with their quiet, fragile melancholia. In the closing 'Souto' (Drift) violin & grand piano are left alone to shine, leading to an end (closing chords of Katatonia's 'Black Session' spring to mind), when you'll find yourself repeating the listenings of Kauan again and again and again. It will leave you breathless every time you play it, letting you wonder where were this album all those years when you needed it the most, during those long nighttime hours/gloomy morningrises(or even the morning afters when you need something like this to help you overcome your hangover). There are some lighter moments on Kauan either, like the 3rd track 'Northern lights' ('Eevontulet' in finnish) with folkish rhythm, mid tempo guitars and violin leads(mouth harp included also).

All the lyrics are in their native and that altogether with superb cover art (one of the moodiest inlays I've ever seen, consisting of dark misty landscapes) gives Tenhi even more authentic tone. Absolutely recommended pure Dark Art for extremely emotional personnae only. Album of the year 1999.
yes this is a fine album the comparisons to the acoustic ulver album are warranted this is an album to put on and space out to blows so many albums away it is scary check it out mi amigos