Talmud Beach are a blues trio from the heartlands of Finland, wandering the trails left behind by artists like Robert and Blind Willie Johnson, Mississippi Fred McDowell, Canned Heat, ZZ Top, J.J. Cale, and 22-Pistepirkko. During their five years of existence, apart from their eponymous first album, Talmud Beach have released a live album with Daniel Johnston, a split single with Panssarijuna and are about to finish a record in collaboration with Faarao Pirttikangas.
"Hobo Don’t Mind a Little Rain" was the biggest hit from the debut album, and could be heard not only on Finnish radio, surfing the waves for some time, but also as the theme for a hit comedy series Napamiehet on Finnish national television. The second album, Chief, carries with it the same spirit evoked on the debut: it puts a blues on your face, without pushing, pulling, or shouting. The boogie is there too, floating with the weight of a snowflake in a blizzard, and yet the colors and shades are more varied than on the vivid green debut. “Chinaman Blues” is searching in the deep; “Forest” is redolent and dark; while “Mountain Man” will lead you up through clouds to the sunshine of the peak above, where a chief’s head-dress awaits you in all the colors of the rainbow.
The Finnish proverb of “calm is the diver’s scope” is what has guided the creation of Chief - from the beginning, right up to the finishing touches of the cover. Contemporary music is often played at loud volume, so it’s intensively produced with massive sounds. For Talmud Beach the quest for intensity goes beyond the volume knob - a quiet, sensitive approach is more effective. With an open listener, the limpid surface will start to reveal the hidden depths: passing youth, a sweaty, shirtless Kekkonen (the former Finnish president), or endless snow all lie below… and more. For the opening title “Ain’t So Young”, Tuomo Tuovinen directed a music video that won the grand prize at the Oulu Music Video Festival in 2015.