Neural review for Pan Sonic “Oksastus”

Oksastus is a precious reprint of a historical release by Pan Sonic. It was originally published by Kvitnu in 2014, four years after the group officially disbanded. Their last official album, Gravitoni was released in 2010, while Oksastus is actually a live performance, which took place in Kiev on June 6th 2009. However, no elements in this release suggest it might be not be their studio production, given the total absence of human elements or background noise. Oksastus is a Finnish word meaning a process of graft or cultivation of plants. Similarly, Mika Vainio and Ilpo Väisänen’s sound grows from a hybridization of several elements. The duo became cult figures in the most experimental electronics scene, known for their industrial, ambient, techno and brutal noise crossings. The packaging is the same as the original version and designed by Kateryna Zavoloka. As is the case with the first release, the vinyl edition includes two white 12”, but now in addition there is also a CD version, packed in a specially produced cardboard cover printed with metallic paint with an additional hot foil pressing and UV-lacquering. It’s hard to give a short explanation for why they became so iconic, although listening to their discography and the impact they had on electronic music gives us a hint. At the time of this release in 2014, Mika Vainio was playing solo at Init Club in Rome in front of an audience of only 150 people, despite having more solo publications and features than his artistic partner, Ilpo Väisänen. After the group disbanded, Väisänen almost completely disappeared from the scene. Unfortunately, Mika Vainio passed away on April 2017 when he was only 54. Creativity and innovation are the key elements this group is lauded for.