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Five from Finland

Making and distributing music

Finland’s technical expertise can be seen and heard around the world.Adobe

Let’s take a look at how Finnish companies are providing services that help musicians to get together and share their sounds.

Finland may have the most metal bands per capita in the world, but this is far from it for the musical output of this northern land. The tech-minded spirit residing here means that many fresh sounds are being made and shared with the global audience in groundbreaking ways.

The most recent exhibit of such fresh approach to music is G SongLab, an online initiative launched by Finnish loudspeaker brand Genelec that enables young people aged between 13 and 29 years to learn songwriting and music creation from the comfort (and safety) of their homes amid the COVID-19 outbreak.

Here are five more brilliant examples of how Finnish companies are assisting musicians on their way to the stardom.

Having a band is one thing, but with no extra coin at hand to master your tracks how can you possibly hope to prick up ears? Fear not, this crew can polish your tunes to distribution-worthy standards for only a fraction of the cost of traditional mastering services.

Targeted primarily at amateur musicians, bands, DJs and sound designers, CloudBounce’s instant digital audio mastering service is now being used in over 60 countries worldwide.

“Mastering tools can be laborious to learn,” said CEO and co-founder Anssi Uimonen. “We wanted to solve the problem on behalf of the mass we care about, which is amateur musicians.”

Founded in 2012, Musicinfo positions itself as a gateway to mainland China, one of the world’s fastest-growing music markets with over 800 million netizens hungry for new sounds.

Musicinfo has developed a distribution platform that can help independent artists and record labels to distribute their music to over 50 Chinese streaming services, an approach that is quickly building a bridge between Asia and Western countries.

“We have an international team, with many native-language speakers,” pointed out CEO Kari Halttunen. “That’s the reason why we have quickly acquired clients from so many different countries.”

Have you ever thought of audio as the key to human emotion? This makes perfect sense to Audiodraft, a Helsinki-based audio branding agency that is helping brands to differentiate themselves from competitors and get their message across by creating a unique audio identity.

Audiodraft has developed a web-based platform where businesses can analyse, create and manage their audio brand, relying on the talent and expertise of over 20 000 freelance artists and sound engineers from 120 countries.

“Thanks to smartphones, content is increasingly consumed through our ears and companies are pondering how their message and identity gets heard in the new reality of two-way engagement with consumers,” commented CEO and co-founder Teemu Yli-Hollo.

With its spirit of rebellion and pace of roughly 50 releases a year, Turku-based Svart Records has earned a reputation as one of the world’s most eclectic and prolific independent record labels while putting out music in a diverse selection of genres, from doom and death metal to free jazz and Americana.

Founded in 2009, Svart Records has been growing organically and steadily ever since riding the wave of the global vinyl revival, reissuing cult titles from the past, venturing into original releases and even establishing its own booking agency.

“We’re striving for a business model where we create culture and make a living doing it,” underlined co-founder Tomi Pulkki. “Culture first is how we’ve been going about it.”

Mobile gamers have been turning down the volume of their game play soundtracks for some time, preferring instead to tap their toes to their favourite tunes whilst flicking their thumbs. Zemeho’s music streaming plug-in service, Valinta, helps to facilitate their aural environment of choice.

Valinta provides users with integrated access to music streaming in their games. Gamers can simply click on the embedded V icon whilst playing and swiftly choose from a range of genre-specific playlists.

“There is a big future in combining music with gaming and mobile apps,” envisioned co-founder River Boche.

Originally published in November 2017. Updated in June 2020

By: James O’Sullivan