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#9 Englishman In Estonia - Muusika Eestis!

(Marten Kuningas Pictured)

(Pictured: Marten Kuningas)

I could write forever about music in Estonia. How important it is to people here, how diverse, innovative and original it is and so much more. Given that I have only been visiting Estonia over the past two years (although now living here) I am certainly no expert, but I wanted to briefly discuss some of my favourite artists here.

The first two artists I was introduced to were Marten Kuningas and Vaiko Eplik. These two musicians are quite similar in terms of sound and genre. Until I had visited Estonia I had never heard music like this before. I love listening to music like this though, these musicians remind me a little of two of my favourite artists from the United States, ‘A Great Big Pile Of Leaves’ (seriously a real band, and they’re excellent!) and Mac Demarco.

I have mentioned Marten Kuningas and his new band Miljardid in a previous post but since i’ve had time to listen to his new album in full since then, I would recommend checking out ‘Pseudoprobleem’ , ‘Vilkuvad Kollased’, and ‘Olendid’ from ‘Kunagi Läänes’ and ‘Targurpidi Vaal’ , ‘Öine sõit’, ‘Valjult ja valesti’ and‘Aitäh’ (an especially beautiful one) from Marten Kuningas’ older material.

The first music I heard from Vaiko Eplik was from the ‘Varielu’ album. I particularly like ‘Homne päev’. I also saw him live along with Marten Kuningas a year or two ago in Tallinn in a hipster-style venue quite close to patarei prison (which you should definitely check out if you’re in this area). I also recommend listening to ‘Sinu jälg’, ‘Soorebased’, ‘Varielu’ and my personal favourite ‘Kosk’.

Marten Kuningas’ & Vaiko Eplik’s music in my opinion is perfect for sitting back and thinking about life, reflecting, reminiscing and for feeling good!

Jüri Pootsmann is a relatively new artist in Estonia, having competed in the Eurovision song contest back in 2016. With a magnificent voice and style, he has a sort of swagger about him. His voice is unmistakable when you hear it. I sincerely recommend listening to ‘Nii Või Naa’, ‘Play’ and ‘I Remember You’.

Another memorable concert I attended in Estonia occurred a year or two ago in Saaremaa. I am not certain which part of the island, but I remember distinctly that the location was a huge grass mound of sorts that contained a massive stage for the bands. The concert was for a prominent Estonian heavy metal band, namely - "Metsatöll". Having grown up listening to heavy metal and having played in metal bands myself, this genre is particularly close to my heart. Attending this gig was incredible because the music was intelligent and penetrating, together with, the location, made this a particularly special night. I am not so familiar with any specific songs or albums where this band is concerned, but anything by this band is incredible to listen to, so go check them out!

There are literally tons of good artists to listen to here both old and new, but the best ones I have heard so far include: Curly Strings (check out Kättemaks!), Vennaskond (an awesome punk band), Ruja (classic Estonian rock band), Zetod (folk band), Trad Attack!, Kerli Kõiv and Taavi Peterson (saw this guy perform an insanely good cover set of The Doors material unreal!) to name a few.

One rather important thing I forgot to mention in my blog post about sauna was how good the music is. Everytime I go there is exceptionally good dance music or retro music being played, usually from the 90s. Good radio stations to check out in Estonia are Retro FM, Star FM, Skyplus, Vikerraadio (some really cool stuff on there).

So here are my initial impressions of music in Estonia, though I’m sure I will revisit this in the future. I sincerely recommend that if you’re reading this, to check some of them out - you won’t regret it!

- Christian Reeve

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