FI Tampere – Jazz
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Texicalli Records
Edit-artist-releases-release-placeholder LightBoxer Album 2012
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Press Text
LightBoxer is an instrumental band that rides the wave of afro on a surfboard of improvisation.

Tight grooves, irresistible melodies and a hint of cinematic ambience help fill the sails and set the course for the sunset. Behind this group of a distinctive sound and strong, almost visual moods we find two veritable labourers of the Finnish jazz scene; the Emma-awarded Markus Holkko and the guitarist Aki Haarala. The eponymous debut album was released in June 2012 by Texicalli Records.The album was composed and produced by the pair Haarala-Holkko, and it was nominated for the Teosto music award, got raving reviews in numerous media and was chosen as one of the jazz records of the year. Markus Holkko is one of the top sax players and band leaders in Scandinavia and won the Finnish Grammy award in the jazz category for his solo record in 2007. Aki Haarala also won the Finnish Grammy in the r'n'b/urban category in the same year with Markus for his co--writing and playing as part of Finnish soul sensation Tuomo’s debut record. Aki has toured the world extensively, and Markus has played throughout Europe with his own quartet and as a co--leader in U--Street All Stars, a Finnish jazz super-group. As to the other members, they have been involved with several leading jazz, soul and pop groups, such as the rapper Paleface’s band Räjähtävä Nyrkki, Emma Salokoski, Astro Can Caravan, Jukka Perko and Chisu.

LightBoxer performed at Tampere Jazz Happening, a festival famous for its uncompromising programme, in November 2013. At the festival, Holkko described the band’s approach to composing as follows: When Aki (Haarala) and I were making music for the debut album, each of us brought his own influences into play. Our goal was to avoid excessive intellectuality and instead find a way of approach where what matters the most is the sound and not how it is brought about or which factors contribute to it. Markus Holkko (b. 1972) is a Finnish saxophonist who came known as a member of the famous U-Street All Stars -band in the beginning of the 21st century. Holkko has also influenced in more funkier bands, i.a. in Groove Convention and Eternal Erection. Recently he has performed actively with his own Markus Holkko Quartet and LightBoxer-group. Haarala made his debut in the Finnish music scene's limelight with the nu-soul sensation Quintessence and he has since been an essential member in the soul music community. He works as a musician, composer and producer for domestic and international acts and artists. Aside from Quintessence, he's known for Tuomo's, Janna's and Nicole Willis' bands, Sirius Sextet and Q-Continuum. Currently he plays with Paleface & Räjähtävä nyrkki, Ismaila Sane Octet and LightBoxer.

Ville Herrala (b. 1979) is a bass player originally from Turku. Herrala has played in several different groups both in Finland and abroad and gained appreciation as a versatile and talented jazzmusician. Today Ville Herrala is one the most employed and versatile jazzmusicians in Finland. He has been playing with i.a. Jukka Perko, Severi Pyysalo, Jukkis Uotila, Eero Koivistoinen, Otto Donner, Jarmo Savolainen, UMO and Karita Mattila. He has also worked with
many international stars of jazz, for example with Jerry Bergonzi, Phil Markovitz, John Tchicai and Cuong Vu.

Emil Luukkonen and Mikko Pöyhönen came to the spotlight with Paleface & Räjähtävä Nyrkki, where they have been playing with guitarist Aki Haarala. Luukkonen is known for his distinctive and atmospheric approach to the instrument. Mikko Pöyhönen forms a very strong rythm section with Ville Herrala, producing the platform where LightBoxer's atmospheric soundscapes can flourish.

The 2nd album of the band will be released on Spring 2015 by Texicalli Records