Finnish musician Jonna Karanka, who performs solo as Kuupuu, is also a visual artist with a fondness for crafting environments from dumpster-dive recoveries and found treasures. In that sense, her sonic world is not that different from her visual one. On the countless recordings she’s released as Kuupuu, there’s a sense less of song forms than of handmade environments, as if each piece was a field recording captured in a fantasy land of cardboard, yarn, and discarded baby dolls.
Karanka is an active member of Finland’s neo-folk scene, having worked with a number of groups including Hertta Lussu Ässä, Avarus, The Anaksimandros, Kukkiva Poliisi, Hockey Night, Olimpia Splendid, Way Of The Cross, and Trio Jäätelö. Traces of that activity carry over into Kuupuu in the meld of electric and acoustic sounds and the occasional incursion into hazy psychedelia, but Karanka’s solo work is more mysterious and evocative, an accumulation of taped and improvised elements that conjure the squall of a half-intercepted radio transmission here, a warped ‘60s exotica album there. She’ll perform at The Rotunda on Wednesday night on a Fire Museum-presented bill alongside fellow Finnish experimentalist Tsembla (aka Marja Johansson) and the debut of a new duo featuring Fursaxa’s Tara Burke and composer/multi-instrumentalist Rosie Langabeer.
Kuupuu performs at The Rotunda, 4014 Walnut Street, Wednesday June 18th at 8 p.m. Tickets to the all-ages show are $6 to $10 (sliding scale), more information can be found here.