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Finnish Rock Comes to Town

Folk-punk group Jaakko & Jay

Several up-and-coming Finnish musicians will be performing in Moscow on Thursday before traveling to St. Petersburg to take part in the Helsinki Days festival.

Among the musicians most eagerly awaited is folk-punk duo Jaakko & Jay, who have been described as “more jolly than Father Christmas and more hearty than reindeer steaks” for putting a “high-latitude spin on classic punk themes like drinking, revolution, drinking, making music, drinking, acute social commentary, drinking and drinking.”

The group has been praised in the international press, with Kerrang magazine describing their style as “punked-up acoustic songs with gusto.”

Jaako & Jay play with Jimi Tenor, a celebrated Finnish rock singer, and bands Dusha Pitera and The Wrecking Queen in a gig titled “News from Helsinki.”

The group then head to St. Petersburg, with concerts at the Helsinki Bar on Friday and the Griboyedov Bar on Saturday as part of the city’s festival.

Helsinki Days is a biennial cultural exchange event that occurs between the two cities. Apart from rock, the program will feature design and art — with the Finland House and the Center of Finnish Culture, Science and Entrepreneurship opening their doors to the public on Friday and Saturday for different master classes and competitions.

At the Peter and Paul Fortress, you can see photos by eminent Finnish photographer Signe Brander (1869-1942) who took many pictures of Helsinki at the beginning of the 20th century as it began to rapidly change from a wooden to a stone city.

A second exhibition, titled “Woodism,” is dedicated to the work of designers and architects from Helsinki, Lahti, Espoo, Vantaa and Kauniainen who design and make furniture and household items from trees that have fallen naturally in yards and parks.

Finnish bands Jimi Tenor, Jaakko & Jay, Dusha Pitera and The Wrecking Queens play Thursday at 8 p.m. Shestnadtsat Tonn. 6 Presnensky Val. Metro Ulitsa 1905 Goda. Tel. 253-5300.,

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