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Vessel Umpio, one of Finland's best-kept secrets, was born circa 1978 when classmates Harri Tuominen and Vesa Vehviläinen, inspired by British and American new wave bands, got more focused with their own musical ambitions. During Vessel Umpio's fairly short lifespan a number of other people were involved with the band, but no lineup was long-lived, and only the founding duo remained as the core of the band. One of the reasons for this, and the fact that they didn't end up playing that many gigs, was their unconventional attitude towards how they, as a band, should function. Instead of actively seeking opportunities to get gigs or otherwise make their presence known to a wider public, they chose to mainly concentrate on making recordings, and, without any hype, let people decide whether they liked the results or not.

To get things rolling, they decided to make a single. For that the band (Tuominen and Vehviläinen, plus a helping hand from friends Juha Markkanen and Antti Snellman) entered Erno Lindahl's studio, and recorded two songs. Later in 1979 the single Marjorie/Sykedeliaa peräkylässä was released on their own Härveli Tuotanto label. One of their ways of marketing the single was also somewhat unconventional: copies were sold to passers-by in the streets of Helsinki.

After releasing the single the band made another quick visit to the studio, this time just the two of them aided by studio owner Lindahl. There was no grand plan thought for the recorded three songs, but the next step was more ambitious: to have a proper studio session and record a full album's worth of songs (essentially the band's complete repertoire), and then release the material by themselves. For this Juha Markkanen and Antti Snellman were again called for help, and so the quartet went to studio and recorded over a dozen songs, including 'Saumaton nykytekstiili', 'Soopelinolla', 'Kevätlaulu', and a new version of 'Sykedeliaa peräkylässä'. According to the plan, the songs were then released as a very limited edition cassette album, each copy with a unique cover drawing. One copy was sold to Atte Blom, the boss of record label Johanna. The band had previously been in contact with the label, but it wasn't until now that Atte Blom was ready to release their material. With some additional mixing, four songs from the cassette album were released as Seppo on viilee EP.

With the EP out, people at Johanna asked the band when would they like to make the next record, a full-length album. Since the band felt they had already done that by recording and releasing their cassette album, the plans for a new release were put off for the time being. Unfortunately the time for the next release never came: the cassette album had already had a feel of closure on it, and due to Vehviläinen's compulsory military service and Tuominen's move to another city, Vessel Umpio faded away sometime in late 1980/early 1981, and never reactivated again.

After Vessel Umpio Harri Tuominen has worked with like-minded people in the circles of the tiny cassette label Valtavat Records, as well as having released a handful of cassette albums (as H.S. Tuominen) during the first half of the 1980's. He has also been member of the group Veneitä in 1985-1986 and from 1990 onwards. Vehviläinen's (not to be confused with Vesa Vehviläinen of Pink Twins) later activities are unknown.

text by Jarkko Kuivanen