The Finnish composer Jouni Kaipainen has died at the age of 58 following a long illness.
A pupil of Aulis Sallinen and Paavo Heininen, his early works from the 1980s (including the First Symphony and Third String Quartet) embraced a modernist aesthetic, but during the 1990s and 2000s Kaipainen's style broadened out to incorporate influences from Debussy and Ravel.
Kaipainen's music has been well represented on record, and he had a particular champion in the conductor Hannu Lintu. Lintu's recording of the Third Symphony and Bassoon Concerto with the Tampere Philharmonic Orchestra was a Gramophone Editor's Choice in March 2007 (read the review), with critic Guy Rickards writing: 'While there are moments of reflection and calm, once it has you in its grip - as with Pettersson - it does not let go. Vividly scored with many solos and ensembles interspersed between passages of invigorating orchestral power, there is a clear thread from start to end. Devotees of Peter Mennin's or Karl Amadeus Hartmann's music will find much to enjoy here. The Tampere Philharmonic Orchestra's playing is electrifying, superbly marshalled by Hannu Lintu, with Otto Virtanen the exemplary soloist. Ondine's sound is of demonstration quality. Splendid.'
A more recent recording of Kaipainen's Trumpet Concerto was reviewed in February 2015 (read the review). Featuring soloist Pasi Pirinen with Lintu and the Tampere Philharmonic again, Guy Rickards' verdict on the work was unequivocal: 'Kaipainen’s Concerto was written for Pirinen in 2003. Its quiet opening Andante, the first of four movements, has the manner of a jazz nocturne, with nods to Miles Davis along the way. In a way it acts as a giant up beat to the cadenza-led Allegro, which has all the elements otherwise of a first movement. The succeeding Largo quieto returns to something of the manner of the opening before the ‘Neanderthal rock‘n’roll’ of the final Presto lets rip. It is without doubt a major addition to the repertoire.'