Ink Tank - Make words not war Aleksi Linna

Finnish girls, screenshot from Youtube video by Aleksi Himself

 

In this article, we’re joined by prolific Youtube personality Aleksi Himself, aka Aleksi Linna who explains the inns and outs of the Finnish dating scene. Read on for a look into Finnish love life. Check out Aleksi’s channel for useful knowledge of Finnish life and culture.


 

 

 

How to date a Finn part I – women

Meeting and dating Finnish women doesn’t have to be a series of awkwardly misfortunate moments. The Finnish media is currently reporting that singles outnumber partnerships, so what’s the problem?

 

1. Finns are indecisive with Romance

Is it an overused generalization that Finnish men are too reserved, or are Finnish women just too beautiful, hence unapproachable? Where are some good spots, other than bars, for people to meet the opposite sex and form an attraction… especially for people who are shy by nature?

 

2. You can meet a Finn anywhere. After all, you’re in Finland

But when presented with a good setting for encounters, is there a lack of action? What constitutes the right setting for an appropriate ice-breaker? Are random encounters too infrequent?

I believe many Finns love it when you break their monotonous, everyday routines with an unexpected compliment in public. Only a handful of people are bold enough to shatter norms that give you an immediate upper hand in the dating pool.

 

3. Questions! Questions! Where should Finns start?

Well, what do Finnish women want? How do they like to be approached? I set out on a mission to answer these lingering questions by gathering some basic field research.

The evidence based on direct questioning points to Finnish women’s distaste for the insincere, humorless flirt — but don’t despair! There are other things men can do to capture a potential mate’s attention:

 

 

With these tips of the trade from real Finnish women your dating life is sure to improve!

 


 

How to date a Finn part II – men

In this tireless topic of dating in Finland, I also wanted to examine men.

What are men doing wrong? Is it all about the first move, and if so, why aren’t women helping the overly generalized “shy guys” by approaching them with uncomfortable compliments in public?

 

 

 

4. Even Finnish guys appreciate women who make the first move

When done properly, first-movers display confidence which Finnish men find sexy. Personally I love it when women approach me first, and I will surely give them credit for bravery!

 

5. You just can’t go wrong with humor

Finnish men also seem to favor a more romantic encounter rather than a cheesy bar oneliner, with humor being the winning trait on both sides of the gender scale. So women, don’t wait for someone to approach you! Check out what these guys had to say about meeting girls and what they find attractive.

 

 

6. Don’t be scared, it’s only dating…

 

 

Edited by Michele Lawrence.




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Ink Tank - Make words not war Thomas Nybergh

Flow Festival sign, photo by Samuli Pentti

Helsinki based Flow Festival has established itself as one of Europe’s most praised music festivals. With ringing endorsements from publications like The Guardian and The Consequence of Sound, you’d think Flow would be one of those experiences you should try and have.

None of the above is true,. Flow Festival 2017 (August 11-13) is terrible and we’ll explain why.

 

1. First of all, Finnish festivals are all about people being obnoxious around cheap beer

 

2. Finland has the lowest population density in Europe, so Flow Festival must surely be in the middle of nowhere

 

3. Flow offers nothing for people with families and responsibilities

 

 

 

4. The the music at Flow has no rhytm or melody

 

5. Especially the Finnish lineup are monotonous nobodies

 

6. Flow books bottom of the barrel acts who can’t sing

 

 

 

7. There’s no oomph and groove in any of these people

 

8. These EDM clowns take themselves way too seriously

 

9. And of course it’s never worth looking into music you haven’t heard of before

 

10. Flow takes place in a boring industrial zone with no sense of magic in the air

 

11. If you get hungry you’re out of luck

 

12. There’s no place to chillax

 

 

 

13. Evenings gets darker in August so the feeling of summer is basically gone

Nicely lit summer evening at Flow Festival

Photo by Konstantin Kondrukhov

 

14. There’s no way you could enjoy music in this environment

 
Terrible, right? Avoid Flow at all cost. If you have more warnings to share, please feel free to open up in the comments section below.

 

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Ink Tank - Make words not war Thomas Nybergh

Brexit chlorine chicken: screenshot from Youtube

Thanks to the less than strong and stable negotiation position of International Trade Secretary Liam Fox (Conservative), the UK could face lower food standards post-Brexit.

 

 

As the UK prepares for stumbles towards an existence outside the EU regulation and partnerships, shoppers will have to prepare for GMO crops and hormone fed meat flooding the market. This appears to be fine with Liam Fox, who’s been very dismissive of the prospect of Englishmen eating chlorine-washed chicken.

In celebration of this, one youtuber shows off their video editing skills by making an advert for the lovely concept of chlorinated chicken.

The only upside of the forthcoming piss-poor trade agreements bringing lousy meat into the UK, is of course that more sane people may consider lowering their meat consumption. As a sidenote, that’s easier than ever thanks to meat-like products like Quorn, from a UK based company.

Cropped screenshot of Orwellian chicken farm, UKIP propaganda, 2016

Cropped screenshot of Orwellian chicken farm, UKIP propaganda, 2016

We find this particularly fitting with the current political landscape, which has hanged over Britain like a perpetual rainy autumn since David Cameron tossed himself and his entire nation in the dustbin of post-colonial history.

 

 

Namely, we remember that the nitwits at the UKIP comissioned a comically lousy cartoon featuring an EU regulated, dark and miserable chicken farm from which the birds free themselves by running towards the Utopian greenery outside.

Chicken conspiring to get out in the sunny non-EU, UKIP propaganda video 2016

These cheery chicken can’t wait to renegotiate everything that makes a modern economy run.

That is, despite a scary looking, big-nosed EU politruk behind the curtain trying to keep the chickens inside the farm. He fails despite all manners of musical and water-based special effects.

Got more interesting brexit-themed video material? Let us know in the comments below.

 

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Ink Tank - Make words not war Thomas Nybergh

Brexit chlorine chicken: screenshot from Youtube

Thanks to the less than strong and stable negotiation position of International Trade Secretary Liam Fox (Conservative), the UK could face lower food standards post-Brexit.

 

 

As the UK prepares for stumbles towards an existence outside the EU regulation and partnerships, shoppers will have to prepare for GMO crops and hormone fed meat flooding the market. This appears to be fine with Liam Fox, who’s been very dismissive of the prospect of Englishmen eating chlorine-washed chicken.

In celebration of this, one youtuber shows off their video editing skills by making an advert for the lovely concept of chlorinated chicken.

The only upside of the forthcoming piss-poor trade agreements bringing lousy meat into the UK, is of course that more sane people may consider lowering their meat consumption. As a sidenote, that’s easier than ever thanks to meat-like products like Quorn, from a UK based company.

Cropped screenshot of Orwellian chicken farm, UKIP propaganda, 2016

Cropped screenshot of Orwellian chicken farm, UKIP propaganda, 2016

We find this particularly fitting with the current political landscape, which has hanged over Britain like a perpetual rainy autumn since David Cameron tossed himself and his entire nation in the dustbin of post-colonial history.

 

 

Namely, we remember that the nitwits at the UKIP comissioned a comically lousy cartoon featuring an EU regulated, dark and miserable chicken farm from which the birds free themselves by running towards the Utopian greenery outside.

Chicken conspiring to get out in the sunny non-EU, UKIP propaganda video 2016

These cheery chicken can’t wait to renegotiate everything that makes a modern economy run.

That is, despite a scary looking, big-nosed EU politruk behind the curtain trying to keep the chickens inside the farm. He fails despite all manners of musical and water-based special effects.

Got more interesting brexit-themed video material? Let us know in the comments below.

 

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Ink Tank - Make words not war Thomas Nybergh

Screenshot from Darude's Sandstorm video

Do you know that sinking feeling of realizing that time flies and you’re older than you think? Yeah, we do too, and honeslty, it’s like a fun roller coaster ride. In light of this universal feeling, we’ve collected a bunch of Finnish pop tunes you might remember from the past two decades (!).

If you’ve grown up in Finland as a millennial, you might have associated these tracks with everything slick and international. See, there was a time when convincing Finnish pop in English was a shiny new thing. Chances are you will remember these tunes like yesterday. But once you look closer at their accompanying videos, they will feel as dated as you secretly know you are yourself.

 

 

 
 

1. Bomfunk MC’s – Freestyler (1999)

A while back, we did an entire article ripping apart the original Bomfunk MC’s piece, so go and read that. But suffice to say that this, while it dates itself with the MiniDisc and PlayStation product placements, it holds up surprisingly well thanks to its tight pacing. It kinda makes you forget that the visual effects were supposed to look good on CRT TVs. Also, a video editor on the iPad probably has enough power to pull off the same shtick… in HD.

 
 

2. Darude – Sandstorm (1999)

Sandstorm’s video saves itself with a fast paced, reasonably well edited chase scene that pulls off suspension of disbelief. You hardly notice how over the top the no doubt expensive color correction is, because you probably remember this video somehow making sense when you watched it on a clunky 90’s TV. If you’re Finnish, you were probably also secretly amazed by how pleasant and warm Helsinki looks here.

 
 

3. Kwan – Shine (2003)

This band has a lot going for them. First: They’re not HIM, or anything else you’d expect to come out of Finland at the time.

 
 

4. Giant Robot – Helsinki Rock City (1999)

Giant Robot is another example of refreshingly non-Finnish sounding music from an age when Finns regularly got annoyed at the world at large for assuming that Nokia is the Japanese word for Wireless. But the only giant thing this in this video is a joint. It fits in with the low-key suburban scenery, without looking overproduced, like, ahem, the first two videos above.

 
 

5. Kemopetrol – Child is My Name (1999)

Imagine this scenario: you’re making a TV commercial for a perfume with a sensual scent. Problem: you can’t afford to license Massive Attack’s Angel as the obvious timeless trip hop riff to make your local Don Draper smile. Solution: use Kemopetrol’s ’00 masterpiece and let it become the global hit it always deserved to be.

The lyrics may not be as suitably erotic and the overall vibe is colder than Angel. But Child Is My Name song is catchy as shit, to the degree that I remember first hearing it on the radio as a kid while blowing tiny pixelated soldiers to pieces in a game of Command & Conquer.

 

 

 
 

6. HIM – Join Me (In Death) (1999)

This is one of the few HIM tunes I like. Why? Well it’s a great pop tune for starters. The lyrics were also upsetting to some people, and that’s all good fun.

Video link for our US readers.

 
 

7. The Crash – Lauren Caught My Eye (2001)

The Crash was always so good and slick. One could easily assume the band was Swedish. Anyway, I think I did and the music video might be partially to blame. The rest of the world must have been confused too, al well The Crash received some degree of attention internationally. We can only assume that those hipster neckbeards who write reviews at Pitchfork would approve. This would perhaps not be the case with Studio Killers, The Crash front man Teemu Brunila’s later project.

 
 

8. Emmi – Crashing Down (2001)

Crashing Down is a perfectly reasonable pop tune of the Pro Tools age. It’s not sufficiently stuck in my head to produce any feeling of guilty pleasure. However, the music video is an unintentionally semi-humorous potpourri of aesthetics leaning on The Matrix, The Cardigans and David Lynch’s favorite shot of headlights on a dark road. Bonus for non-ironic inclusion of a Nokia Communicator smartphone.

 
 

9. Don Johnson Big Band – One MC, One Delay (2003)

I’m not an expert, but I think Finnish hip hop that includes a banjo riff represents globalization and at its best.

 
 

10. Stratovarius – Hunting High and Low (2000)

If you want to discuss commercially successful Finnish metal, you can’t leave out Stratovarius’ Hunting High and Low. First, the title makes you expect an A-ha cover. Second, in terms of visuals, the video mirrors the 2000 movie adaptation of American Psycho: A businessman having “an episode”, although in a more benign fashion.

The twist is one of chronology: Hunting High and Low debuted as a single a couple of months before American Psycho appeared in Finnish movie theaters in June 2000. So, when was this video shot and released? My mind is blown. Please let me know how much this analysis sucks in the comments.

 
 

11. Beats and Styles – Invitation To The Dance Floor (2005)

Things are in excellent order when you don’t know if it’s Groove Armada or The Doobie Brothers getting ripped off. I also like how this mixes the colors of the Swedish flag with presumably Finnish folk costumes. It’s bound to make some people angry. Nothing better than that.

 

 

 
 

12. Mighty44 – Push It (2003)

Ok so, take the video for Darude’s Sandstorm, add a Humvee in the same saturated orange color as the Helsinki Metro in the video for Freestyler. Throw in five big spoons each of upskirt shots, a helicopter and car chases. Bake with cheesy video processing. You get this. Bonus points for the impression that this video may have been shot with cheap, consumer-grade level DV-gear despite the fancy cars. Or is it Youtube’s encoding playing tricks here?

 
 

13. London MC – What Is My Name (2005)

Here’s everything Mighty44 doesn’t have in the video above: Honest, unpretentious amateurish kitsch that manages to be funny. Bonus points for getting the intro sequence’s dialogue soundtrack stuck in only the right stereo channel.

 
 

14. Lordi – Would you love a monsterman (2006 US version)

It would be unfair to leave out Lordi from a list of Finnish visual music marketing. Most known for their victory at the Eurovision Song Contest in 2006, the spectacle of a band puts Alice Cooper and Kiss to shame in the makeup department. This video is well produced and the song fits well within the group’s shtick.

Throughout Lordi’s catalog of similarly well produced videos, the critical consumer might notice a repetitive note in the vintage American horror movie aesthetics, with not so subtle hints at sexual bondage and mostly female objectification as main motifs.

 
 
There! Surprisingly old Finnish music in English. If you don’t feel ancient yet, post the thing that would date you in the comments below. Shoutout to JaramirJagermeister on Reddit for inspiring this article.

 

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Ink Tank - Make words not war Thomas Nybergh

Game start screen for the Finnish My Summer Car driving simulator.
 

Right now, one of the oddest computer games ever is hitting the charts straight from the early access program of Steam, the venerable online market place for PC games.

We’re of course referring to My Summer Car, which has sold over 1.5 million euros worth of copies to this date. And the weirdfest part isn’t that the game is sold as a work in progress for fifteen Euros. It’s pretty odd even in the company of other Finnish video games.

 

 

My Summer Car is a take on the genre of open ended sandbox, or simulator, but with a silly twist. The game lovingly builds on clishés connected to young working-class men who take tinkering with old scrappy cars very seriously. The setting is a mid nineties Finnish countryside region with a small town.

Historically speaking, places like these were already suffering from decay and deindustrialization after the 90s recession. So in a way, this writer senses a clever subtext in the game that lets concerned parties deal with their feelings towards a barely populated and frankly, fairly bleak Finnish countryside.

 

Finnish diver's license in My Summer Car

The player naturally needs to start off by entering their name on an authentic Finnish driver’s license. And everyone, let’s remember that the old country code SF stood for Suomi-Finland, not Soviet Finland. Thankfully. Screenshot: Amistech.


 




But the player finds themselves in the middle of magical Finnish summer with few worries, odd jobs and a fair bit of free time o their hands. The entire world is modeled tongue in cheek after the authentic Finnish setting, with Finnish writing, voice acting and props. And you can even press a button to swear. Blissfully, everything’s subtitled in English.

 

In-game screenshot of Finnish Saab 900 lookalike Police vehicle in My Summer Car.

This game features speeding tickets, which as we know, are determined by the fined person’s income in Finland. Also, no recreation of 90s Finland would be complete without Saab 900i police cruisers. Screenshot: Amistech.


 

Believe it or not: My Summer Car has been met in videogame media like Eurogamer with bemused praise, along with reservations about the tediousness of the game’s realism. It’s clear that some the world catches the drift of the statement on the game’s 90’s style website: this game that had to be made.

 

GTA Finland: If you get bored with your terrible old Datsun, you can always steal your neighbors muscle car.

If you get bored of your terrible old Datsun, you can always steam your neighbors muscle car. Screenshot: Amistech.


 

The player starts of by waking up in a house, in the middle of nowhere. The Problem; the game’s protagonist needs to assemble his cool ride, a small Datsun 100A lookalike. The car is waiting in the garage, entirely disassembled. And needs to be rebuilt in just the right way, with just the right tools.

If wrongly assembled, the small Datsun will break, which can be frustrating or even fatal, if it happens at high speed and the player has enabled permadeath mode. Obviously, right?

 

Another gorgeous Finnish summer night behind the wheel of a sewage tanker truck in My Summer Car. Screenshot: Amistech

Another gorgeous Finnish summer night behind the wheel of a sewage tanker truck in My Summer Car. Screenshot: Amistech.


 

The house belonging to the player’s character has all necessary amenities: tools in the garage, a little bit of food (terrible Finnish sausage), beer, a sauna and a TV. But most importantly, there’s a mail-order catalog that can be used to order parts for the summer car.

 

Wreck of the Toyoto Hiace lookalike van in My Summer Car

Don’t wreck your Toyota Hiace lookalike van in My Summer Car. You need it for shopping and stuff. Screenshot: Amistech.


 

Part of summer car culture implies that the car may be disposable, but it’s clear that the player character in My Summer Car really loves the old Datsun, which can be tuned with special parts ordered by mail from across the world.

 

There's nothing like having your hand build junker pass inspection.

There’s nothing like having your hand build junker pass inspection. Screenshot: Amistech


 

There’s also a van to drive, presumably modeled on the iconic Toyota Hiace, with decals indicating that the player character is some kind of handyman contractor. And, since there’s no escaping the rat race, there’s a phone that occasionally rings with jobs, such as emptying septic tanks in to a big tanker. Jobs get you money.




 

NPC vehicle in the gorgeous countryside landscape of My Summer Car

The developer of My Summer Car hints that a future version of the game may include the option to race against other locals with tricked out cars. Screenshot: Amistech.


 

The player also needs to buy food, eat, wash, pee and sleep off fatigue, as indicated by meters. Drink too much beer? It’ll be harder to drive and the player will find themselves waking up in odd places the next morning. My summer car may not be Minecraft (yet), but it goes a long way to show that humor and has a place even in very demanding games.

Does My Summer Car feel escapistic in an oddly appealing way? You you might just be missing out on heavy duty similators, like deadpan serious Euro Truck Simulator or the absolutely bizarre Goat Simulator.

Anyone curious about My Summer Car could do worse than to check out the genuinely amused international reactions to the game by Youtube personalities like GrayStillPlays.

 

 

Once you reach the inevitable conclusion, which is that this very challenging game is pure gold, why not support one deserving indie developer and buy the game on Steam? If you have any fun insights on the inside humor of My Summer Car or other cool experiences with the game, why not share in the comments below?

 

 

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Ink Tank - Make words not war Thomas Nybergh

Christina Macfarlane of CNN trying ice dipping in Finland

If you’re in some weird country with weird traditions, why not try them out? That must have been the idea of a CNN Sport anchor Christina Macfarlane…. or her producers.

Macfarlene was shooting a couple of episodes of the popular show Alpine Edge at World Cup Levi last week, far north at a ski resort in Finnish Lapland. Somehow, she ended up trying the good old dip in a lake from a hole in the ice, assisted by an experienced enthusiast.

This obviously freezing tradition of a sometimes sawed holed in the ice goes under the name avanto in Finnish, vak in Swedish.

Dipping into ice cold water is traditionally said to have health benefits for blood circulation and the like. However, recent research shows that cold swimming is associated with a higher risk of strokes, but we don’t know if that’s true for Finnish style dips.

So, dip, don’t stay in the water, for goodness sakes. Also, protip, don’t submerge your head.




Personally, I haven’t tried just going into the ice cold water, but I enjoy it when combined with sauna… In conjunction with sauna, you can try going in to a hole in the ice couple of times in a row, followed by warming up. If you get a taste for it. It’s a nice contrast and will set you off on quite an endorphine kick.

Either way, you can get quite a good night’s sleep afterwards. Also, just look at the smile on this woman’s face on the photo below. That smugness just screams “legal high”.

Woman enjoying a traditional Finnish dip rhtough a hole in the ice

Traditional Finnish swimming in a hole in the ice, avanto. Image credit.

If you have the opportunity to try something like this, make sure you’ve got company, one of those little piers common at cottages, public beaches and the like. And, we suppose, talk to your doctor if you have a heart condition.

Lakeside hole in the ice in Finland

Finnish lakeside pier with a hole in the ice. Image credit.

 
 

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Ink Tank - Make words not war Thomas Nybergh

Battledragon's Youtube cover of Bomfunk MC's Freestyler 1999 hit. Location: Hakaniemi Metro station.
 

Here it is: Finland lacks an internationally known music scene compared to, say, Sweden which has produced hit phenomena ever since the days of ABBA.

A specific genre is something of an exception: Finland is estimated to have more metal bands per capita than any other country. Some of these bands are wildly successful within their genre.

 

Map: Metal bands per capita

Metal bands per capita. Source.


 

So, it seems only natural that, in the age of Youtube, a Finnish Metal band would pay homage to something as rare as a Finnish international pop hit. This is exactly what Power Metal group Battledragon has done.

 

 
 

In their latest addition to a tongue in cheek metal cover videos, the group has not only covered the Bomfunk MC’s 1999 smash hit Freestyler, but redone it in a fabulous DIY style that rivals the over-saturated production values of the non-HD original.

While we applaud Battledragon for their many fine covers on Youtube, it would seem, remote control technology has regressed badly from the forgotten main character of the Freestyler video. We’re of course talking about the sleek, remote controllers that came with Sony’s better Walkman portable music players.

Maybe we can blame Nokia for this? Anyway, all the more reason to party like it’s 1999.




Video Rewind

Have you forgotten the original video for Bomfunk MC’s drum ‘n’ bass inspired hiphop hit? Let us refresh your memory.

In the video, a dizzy-looking youngster gets dragged into a magical adventure from the Hakaniemi metro station in Helsinki, near the cool Kallio district.

 

 

Our homeboy gets to play god with the remote with his Sony Minidisk Walkman remote control, in a relatively benign if somewhat objectifying manner. Homeboy can make random passers-by shake their booty and breakdance, to use the parlance of our time.

Whatever, the magic Sony wand can’t be bad, if he gets Finnish people dancing in public, am I right?

The magic of Millennial nostalgia and MTV airtime

Needless to say, Freestyler’s video nostalgia gold for Finnish millenials, many of which remember exceptions like Freestyler and Darude’s Sandstorm as exceptions to the basic rule of “no Finnish music on MTV”. This of course seemed as etched in stone as the laws of thermodynamics, back in the heyday of Nokia mobile phones.

Depending on your taste, Freestyler’s unmissaable emphasis on the Helsinki Metro’s cheerful orange coloring either neutralizes or boosts the less than timeless late 90’s fashion in the video.

But let’s move on. Further defying our world’s laws of physics and the continuity of Helsinki’s cityscape, the dude in the Freestyler video exits the metro from a random staircase in Merihaka, a modernist high-rise neighborhood close to Merihaka.




Here at the Merihaka School of Minidisc Magic, the main character he is defeated in supernatural remote control powers, at a shady Bomfunk MC gig in some garage or whatever. It’s also possible that the wire for the remote broke.

Needless to say, this is why we need wireless headphones.

One the entrances to Hakaniemi Metro Station, with the Kallio Cgurch in the background. I'm afraid it won't take you to breakdancing Hogwarts. Photo by Aapo Haapanen.

One the entrances to Hakaniemi Metro Station, with the Kallio Church in the background. I’m afraid it won’t take you to breakdancing Hogwarts. Photo by Aapo Haapanen.


 

At the end of the video, homeboy gets rewinded back to the Hakaniemi Metro station. There he finds himself on the bench he started from, looking hella stoned, to put it mildly. Maybe he’s on the same allergy meds used by the girl in those Mac switcher stoner girl Apple ads from a couple of years later?

 
 

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Ink Tank - Make words not war Thomas Nybergh

Battledragon's Youtube cover of Bomfunk MC's Freestyler 1999 hit. Location: Hakaniemi Metro station.
 

Here it is: Finland lacks an internationally known music scene compared to, say, Sweden which has produced hit phenomena ever since the days of ABBA.

A specific genre is something of an exception: Finland is estimated to have more metal bands per capita than any other country. Some of these bands are wildly successful within their genre.

 

Map: Metal bands per capita

Metal bands per capita. Source.


 

So, it seems only natural that, in the age of Youtube, a Finnish Metal band would pay homage to something as rare as a Finnish international pop hit. This is exactly what Power Metal group Battledragon has done.

 

 
 

In their latest addition to a tongue in cheek metal cover videos, the group has not only covered the Bomfunk MC’s 1999 smash hit Freestyler, but redone it in a fabulous DIY style that rivals the over-saturated production values of the non-HD original.

While we applaud Battledragon for their many fine covers on Youtube, it would seem, remote control technology has regressed badly from the forgotten main character of the Freestyler video. We’re of course talking about the sleek, remote controllers that came with Sony’s better Walkman portable music players.

Maybe we can blame Nokia for this? Anyway, all the more reason to party like it’s 1999.




Video Rewind

Have you forgotten the original video for Bomfunk MC’s drum ‘n’ bass inspired hiphop hit? Let us refresh your memory.

In the video, a dizzy-looking youngster gets dragged into a magical adventure from the Hakaniemi metro station in Helsinki, near the cool Kallio district.

 

 

Our homeboy gets to play god with the remote with his Sony Minidisk Walkman remote control, in a relatively benign if somewhat objectifying manner. Homeboy can make random passers-by shake their booty and breakdance, to use the parlance of our time.

Whatever, the magic Sony wand can’t be bad, if he gets Finnish people dancing in public, am I right?

The magic of Millennial nostalgia and MTV airtime

Needless to say, Freestyler’s video nostalgia gold for Finnish millenials, many of which remember exceptions like Freestyler and Darude’s Sandstorm as exceptions to the basic rule of “no Finnish music on MTV”. This of course seemed as etched in stone as the laws of thermodynamics, back in the heyday of Nokia mobile phones.

Depending on your taste, Freestyler’s unmissaable emphasis on the Helsinki Metro’s cheerful orange coloring either neutralizes or boosts the less than timeless late 90’s fashion in the video.

But let’s move on. Further defying our world’s laws of physics and the continuity of Helsinki’s cityscape, the dude in the Freestyler video exits the metro from a random staircase in Merihaka, a modernist high-rise neighborhood close to Merihaka.




Here at the Merihaka School of Minidisc Magic, the main character he is defeated in supernatural remote control powers, at a shady Bomfunk MC gig in some garage or whatever. It’s also possible that the wire for the remote broke.

Needless to say, this is why we need wireless headphones.

One the entrances to Hakaniemi Metro Station, with the Kallio Cgurch in the background. I'm afraid it won't take you to breakdancing Hogwarts. Photo by Aapo Haapanen.

One the entrances to Hakaniemi Metro Station, with the Kallio Church in the background. I’m afraid it won’t take you to breakdancing Hogwarts. Photo by Aapo Haapanen.


 

At the end of the video, homeboy gets rewinded back to the Hakaniemi Metro station. There he finds himself on the bench he started from, looking hella stoned, to put it mildly. Maybe he’s on the same allergy meds used by the girl in those Mac switcher stoner girl Apple ads from a couple of years later?

 
 

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Ink Tank - Make words not war Thomas Nybergh

Teemu Keisteri as Windows95man DJ on a plane, where he played Darude's Sandstorm

 
Considering by some as an alternate national anthem of sorts, producer Darude’s international smash hit Sandstorm has a special place in the Finnish millennial psyche. The song, released back in 2000, connects us back to a time when it could heard as old-school ringtones on Nokia phones or admired as a music video on MTV featuring a chase through a sunny Helsinki.

Having recently returned as something of a retro phenomenon, one person took it upon himself to play the Sandstorm as part of a private DJ set on on airplane, at the request of logistics tech provider Relex.

This person is no one less than DJ, visual artist and radio persona Teemu Keisteri, alias Windows95man. Keisteri’s Windows95man has rapidly become something bubbling under public persona persona in Finland and a hit in Japan(!).

Following retweets of his gig by Japanese celebrities and long queues for autographs during his first Japan gig last year, Keisteri found himself touring Japan this spring.

Captured below is a clip of Keisteri’s plane performance, because why not.

 

 

This indeed seems to be a an authentic Keisteri: the man himself posted a quirky “rehearsal” video for the plane on Youtube a few days before this video. As a DJ, Keisteri goes for a lot of fun stuff from Italo Disco, funk, eurodance, trance, and new wave.




But let’s have a closer look at this Teemu Keisteri oddball, shall we?

 

 

 

Parody Combo: art school hipsters and IT workers

 

Known for his Windows 95 t-shirt, increasingly tight denim shorts, socks and sandals, Keisteri created Windows95man as a way of parodying IT workers and art school hipsters simultaneously. In fact, we can’t think of a better costume stunt for eclectic urban music extravaganza Flow Festival, back in 2013, for which the outfit was created. Yours truly caught a snapshot of the early incarnation of Windows95man by happenstance.

 

Dat shirt #hellooks #flowfestival

A photo posted by Thomas Nybergh (@apecat) on


 

Keisteri’s endearingly dorky Windows95man persona has appeared in music videos and documentaries about Finland. In addition to embracing all things retro, Windows95man also seems to sport a kind of rebel against traditional masculinity.

That’s at least how we at Ink Tank choose to read his appearance a video for Finnish rock act Pariisin Kevät, shot and edited by Keisteri himself on old-school video gear.

 

 

Similar themes of video art explored on Keisteri’s own Youtube and Vimeo channels: striptease in a kitchen and sinking slowly into a swamp, naked. In short, Teemu Keisteri embodies similarities to Tim and Eric in masterful transcendence of awkwardness into a… special kind of cool.

 

138cmx95cm 450€ #buyorcry #acryl #canvas

A photo posted by UKKELI (@ukkelikeisteri) on


 

 

Keisteri’s colorful, naivist gender-bender Ukkeli art

 

Fans of naivist and bizarer art might also enjoy Keisteri’s Ukkeli character, also a fun spin on masculinity. Ukkeli came to be as a mashup of homoeroticism and greek statues, back in 2008, when Keisteri’s parents pushed the then twentysomething to get a summer job. Of course, the aspiring artist bought unmarked totebags, drew art on them and sold them in Helsinki’s parks.

 


 

The unmistakable Ukkeli and adaptions of similar characters have started appearing in cool restaurants, at music festivals and similar settings around Finland. Keisteri sells both paintings on canvas, t-shirts etc featuring his creation. Ukkeli has also appeared on the bespoke clothing of celebrities such as media personality Maria Veitola and pop star Sanni.

 


 

We totally recommend checking out Teemu Keisteri’s Instagram accounts for Windows95man and Ukkeli for some of his tantalizing work.

 


 




A year ago, Keisteri stated in an interview that he has a hard time seeing himself selling mass produced goods featuring ukkeli. Personally, I hope he changes his mind, because I’d love to buy everyone I know semi-awkward gifts with weird-nippled Ukkeli motifs.

 

Thank you #tampere

A photo posted by UKKELI (@ukkelikeisteri) on


 

Everyone wanting more of Windows95man and Ukkeli should visit Teemu Keisteri’s home page Keisteri or the Ukkeli “web shop”. Which essentially is Keisteri’s cell number and mailbox…

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