Mikko Joensuu’s “There Used to Be a Darkness”

Now that I’ve vented a bit in the previous post, let’s move onto something a bit more optimistic. This one comes from Finnish artist Mikko Joensuu with an epic sprawl of a track titled “There Used to Be a Darkness.”

Now, Joensuu’s another one of those artists I know nothing about. I stumbled upon him through one of Spotify’s Discover Weekly playlists. I know it’s a cliché. But I do love that it can point me to artists I’ve never heard of … and most likely, probably never would’ve. And I honestly don’t think I ever would’ve run across Joensuu on my own.

“There Used to Be a Darkness” caught me off-guard, though. It’s part electronica, part wall of sound, has a groovy bassline, and seems plucked from ’50s rock, by way of reverberating feedback and soul cleansing dream-pop. I almost thought it was a new track by Danish indie rockers The Raveonettes, who embody all those characteristics. But somewhere past its midpoint, keeping in mind this track goes on for 11 minutes, it morphs into a pensive progressive groove, a little moodier and more determined, yet still on point.

I remember first hearing “There Used to Be a Darkness , and by the end, asking myself if I was still listening to the same song. It’s completely fluid in its transformation, organically building, growing to a guitar-jangled peak, driven by the warmth of a thick low bassline, then easing into a nocturnal prog-synth-laced rhythm – sort of like a gradual come-down from a monumental euphoric high.

Curiously, “There Used to Be a Darkness” originates from a trilogy of albums titled “Amen,” strategically placed on the second entry, as if there’s more revelations to come. That certainly seems in line with the song’s own evolution. And there’s clearly more to the bigger picture that begs further exploration. But since I have yet to experience the trilogy in its entirety, and I’m perfectly satisfied enjoying this one all on its own, I’ll just leave it at that.

Here’s Mikko Joensuu’s illuminating opus “There Used to Be a Darkness” to wash some of the shadows away. I won’t go so far as to call it a feel-good entry, at least not all of it. But it’s optimistic enough, even if its of a transient sort. Ultimately, I’m guessing that’s Joensuu’s intended journey. So take that for what it’s worth and enjoy!

“There Used to Be a Darkness” from the 2016 album “Amen 2”.