Tasavallan Presidentti were, alongside Wigwam, Kalevala and Kaamos, one of Finland's best bands. Their roots appear to go back to the mid to late sixties when they were formed by guitarist extraordinaire Jukka Tolonen, drummer Vessa Aaltonen, sax player Juhann Aaltonen and keyboard player Mans Groundstroem, later to move to Wigwam. Their first, self-titled album, released in 1969, was an amazing mix of blues, rock and freeform jazz, with English vocals courtesy of Frank Robson. Their second album, released three years later, was called "Lambertland", and it featured Finnish vocalist Eero Raittinen and sax player Pekka Poyry, also from Wigwam. As the band were obviously aiming at the UK market, vocals and lyrics were still in English. Neither of the band's first two albums received an American or English release, although "Lambertland" was released in Germany on the famous Brain label. This third and final album, however, was undoubtedly their best, and it was once again released in Germany as well as in the US on Janus Records. The line-up was much the same as that of "Lambertland", except with the addition of bassist Heikki Virtanen, who'd featured on a number of Tolonen's solo albums. They still kept to their tried and tested formula for this album, and it worked well. They were a really professional and polished band, led by one of Europe's most accomplished guitarists. To date, Tolonen has released many solo albums, all of which are a fine testimony to a truly great guitarist.

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Tasavallan Presidentti - 1969 - Tasavallan Presidentti - 3.5/5

Tasavallan Presidentti - 1971 - Tasavallan Presidentti (II) - 4/5

Tasavallan Presidentti - 1973 - Lambertland - 3.5/5

Tasavallan Presidentti - 1974 - Milky Way Moses - 3.5/5

Tasavallan Presidentti - 2001 - Still Struggling - 3.5/5

Tasavallan Presidentti - 2006 - Six Complete - 4/5



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