It’s a delight to stumble upon music that resolutely resists categorization. That’s the case with Multiversum, the latest album form Finnish musician Jimi Tenor. His chosen instrumental palette suggests jazz, but the music draws from trip-hop, electronica, baroque pop and other disparate inspirations. One moment the music seems to bear the influence of Burt Bacharach; the next, DEVO.
Sonic textures that shouldn’t work together find a kind of dissonant coexistence on this album. Strange to be sure, it’s also irresistibly alluring, with clattering drum machines, chirpy flutes and skewed synth patches all swirling around in the mix. Cuts like “Jazznoveau” wouldn’t be out of place in a playlist of post-bop jazz, while “Uncharted Waters” is an impressionistic and hypnotic downtempo cut straight out of the late ‘90s. But while there are musical touchstones to be found within this music, in the end it sounds like nothing else you’re likely to encounter.
Equal parts challenging and accessible, a trip to the Multiversum is likely to be a unique – and uniquely rewarding – experience.