Deep, resonant rhythms from Helsinki

Kumea Sound

Kumea Sound is a solo project by sound artist and composer Lauri Wuolio. It began around year 2012, when Wuolio had found the cupola (aka handpan, pantam, ”hang drum”) and was inspired by the new 21st century instrument that had no existing music tradition behind it. He envisioned the unique acoustic sound of cupolas merging seamlessly with experimental electronic sounds and in 2013 the debut self-titled album was released to the public. Drawing from minimalism, ambient and a plethora of old and new musical traditions, Kumea Sound’s debut made a strong impact on the handpan scene.

The completely acoustic and in large parts improvised second album, Real Music for Unreal Times, was released two years later. The third Kumea Sound album was recorded — unlike its hifi-predecessor — in Wuolio’s own kitchen. Originally not meant for public release, Oceans of Sadness, Mountains of Hope was released digitally in 2017. Currently Wuolio is working on new albums, composing soundtracks for films and playing regular concerts in various venues and festivals around the world.

For commercial audio & music productions check out Kumea Audio.

Releases

Oceans of Sadness, Mountains of Hope (2017)

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"Oceans of Sadness, Mountains of Hope is a melancholic meditation on loss and grief, with influences that range from classical minimalism to nordic jazz. Lauri’s thoughful compositions are distinguished by his sensitive inclusion of delicate electrionics and sparce melodies and textures. His music has enhanced handpan music by bringing focus to timbre and polyphony." —Dom Aversano, composer

Real Music for Unreal Times (2015)

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"This attention to detail, combined with the freedom of expression afforded by this most sensuous of instruments and Lauri’s own creativity and dexterity makes Real Music for Unreal Times one of the most radically different yet accessible albums I’ve heard in a long time. [...] This is a beautifully played and recorded album, a positive and meditative exploration of the potential of mixing ancient and modern ideas and sounds, simplicity and complexity, to create a tranquil and immersive listening experience which transcends boundaries." —Helen Gregory, Folk Radio UK

Kumea Sound (2013)

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"The ambience reminds of the dreamy visions and ambient soundscapes of Dead Can Dance and Cocteau Twins. [...] It's a bit like a modern day version of Mike Oldfield's Tubular Bells or the civilized and well-behaving cousin of The Knife's Silent Shout." –Tomi Tuominen, Sue