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Blues Blast Magazine (UK) - 13.3.2017

Cheese Finger Brown – Low-Down People | Album Review

Cheese Finger Brown – Low-Down People
Humu Records
15 songs – 42 minutes

Cheese Finger Brown is the pseudonym of Pim Zwijnenburg, a Dutch blues musician living in Finland. He wrote, performed, and recorded all of the songs on Low-Down People, an album of Mississippi Hill country-style blues given something of a modern makeover. He also created the album’s cover art, purportedly telling the back-story of Cheese Finger Brown, but actually raising (and leaving unanswered) more questions than answers.

Opening with the title track, Brown immediately lays out his stall with intertwined, hypnotic electric guitars providing a one chord backdrop over which heavily distorted vocals (as if sung through a harp mic) rasp inaudible lyrics. There is an ominous, almost threatening overtone to the music that is both thrilling and enticing and the one-chord structure lends an air of enveloping tension to the music.

Each track follows a similar formula, with slow to mid-paced songs, droning guitars, few (if any) chord changes, and discordant, distorted vocals with almost indecipherable lyrics. Brown makes use of a variety of instruments on the album, which helps to lend some light and shade to the songs. Harmonica appears in tracks like “Good Old Fashioned Murder Boogie” and “Days Of The Cruel And Greedy”. Slide guitar features in “Bend Over Mama” and “Lullaby Before I Go”. Rudimentary percussion lends drive to “Good Old Fashioned Murder Boogie”; Jew’s harp echoes in “Country Shake Down” and some instruments are simply unidentifiable (the electronic noises buried in “Dr. Jesus”, for example).

Brown’s guitar playing is particularly good throughout the album, particularly in the way the different guitars “fill in the holes” in the music, like a modern Muddy and Jimmy Rogers or a Jimmy Reed and Eddie Taylor. But, but, but….

While the musicianship on Low-Down People cannot be faulted, there is something about the album that does not quite ring true. Above all, the blues is a declaration of life. It is a rage against the dying of the light and it is truth. The CD cover notes say that Brown does not play live and, if this is correct, it perhaps explains the slight emotional distance detectable in the music. It is difficult to shake the sensation that Low-Down People is an expression of how someone thinks blues should be, rather than an artistic Cri de Coeur. This might be because of the overdubbing that is necessary on any album where one person plays all the instruments. It might also be because of the studio trickery that can over-shadow the songs themselves. The crackling, hard-to-hear vocals are striking initially but quickly start to sound affected. The spoken word “Grey Eagle” has background static across the entire track, as if to emulate early blues recordings but actually distracting from the music, while “The Big Cheese” has audience applause dubbed at the beginning and end of the song, suggesting a live recording.

If you are a fan of Hill Country Blues artists like R.L Burnside, Junior Kimbrough and Robert Belfour, you should check out this album. It is different and has many individual highlights. It may very well be to your liking. For this reviewer, however, Low-Down People is an easy album to respect, but a hard album to love.


Real Deep Blues (US) - 31.12.2016

CHEESE FiNGER BROWN - Low Down People (2016 - HUMU Records)

The music on Low Down People, stands, stylistically, with one hoof in the bad old days, one foot in blues music's pre-Chicago golden era, and leaning hard (in wool socks and muddy pimp shoes) (but never tipping over) into The Future (whenever that is.)

Consummated of semi-equal parts R.L. Burnside's shadow, and the dark funk around the cuban heels of Cap'n Beefheart (I'm talking the dank stuff, not Trout Mask) the Wolves (Howlin' and especially the Little Howlin') oh, and a legion of old-timey musics, your country music, your country blues... pickin' underground gospel station, some trucker radio convo static picked up and broadcast by your guitar amplifier, a skosh of Jim White's literary audio wanderlust, or maybe some Waitsian country blues favorites, sporting varying shades of modernity, and countryness, or folkiness, if you will...these are the things that Cheese Finger Brown is made of.

Cheese Finger Brown builds each song as a vignette, a short audio film, with incidental sounds of wind, rain, lost piano, found vocals, guitars 'round the campfire heard from down on the dock. No drums, but rather handheld things that rattle, and scrape, and klannngg and's there in taut micro-grooves and organic snippets, all backwoods thrift store boogie science rolling 'round the room, but mmmmm...distorted, dirty, overheard insinuations, a momento mori, or ghost of blues. Cheese Finger Brown picks, drones, grinds, trips, disappears, winks, bobs and shake's it...hell, maybe even does a holy dance...just to get to you...and he will...

This album is ghost-laden, and as you listen there will be times you'll look to see if Low-Down People is still playing, or if it's switched to some cool, old, well-preserved Yazoo or Document Record...sounding like a field recording brought from a past sometime in the future. #ForwardintoThePast

Cheese Finger Brown brings a fresh ear to non-American (does it matter?) -blues, to alt-blues (whatever that is) bringing back the weird old, olde seen/ heard/ interpreted through the remove of a Dutch & Finnish eye. But, if imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, then deconstructed replication is a form of flattery, too. Pim Zwijnenburg as Cheese Finger Brown is a sonics and texture-loving wolf who delivers the goods. At once deeply familiar yet foreign, not unlike a good Tom Waits album, or something David Eugene Edwards of Wovenhand/16HP might not have been involved in early on.

Low-Down People tells modern blues stories, using the old form as a canvas to color his songs, with bits of slide guitar, hard picking, maybe the rhythmic sproi-oing of a mouth harp, or somebody playing Hambone, and maybe the insistent insinuation of a banjo...some haunted harmonica...lo-fi vocals recorded in the backyard going deep in one ear and being whispered in the other. Ghostly gestures from who knows where, all very subtle, all very suggestive of other,, but what place? It's not a dreamscape, per se, but it leans. It's music that suggests an other, an elsewhere, an American south imagined from books and music, and certainly movies, providing soundtracking for a neoteric Finlander. He makes creepy old American music sound creepier, without being creepy, thru the modern science of sonic technology. Or whatever.

The music, the stories, the vibe...vintage but not conscientiously's the soundtrack to imagined sense it on a moonless four A.M. train stop in a south Georgia cabbage and potato town, a deep summer noon on a hot-oiled gravel road. Yet it's tasteful, as a glass of rye with three ice cubes, and a corn-cob pipeful, yet trippy as a Finnish dub-version of olde-timey American roots music.

It's mystery that Cheese Finger Brown offers to the blues, and thank Goodness for that. On first sit & listen I imagined this album as a selection of 78s that somebody found at a yard sale in south Alabama, songs recorded by an artist no one had ever heard of, on records that had never been played. It's so then and now, Low-Down People, so blues history moderne, Trad old-timey blues caressed and rubbed down and burnished with The Future. Thoughtful, and engaging. Cheese Finger Brown has created a great album that bears up easily listenings. Low-Down People is American roots music flavoured with subtle dublike effects that, while allowing the music to remain blues, gives the music a subtly mixed stoniness, an almost other-worldliness, that just drags your ears in. CFB's album is organic, populated by ghosts...of people, and the eidolon of found objects, and found sounds. Both take you elsewhere.

Though Low-Down People mines distinctly American blues and folk forms, Cheese Finger Brown adds different leaves, different revenants, a different mystery to his blues that makes for a fascinating and adventurous album, that puts your ears and brain to work. It's a fun, interesting, and satisfying listen. I can't recommend it highly enough.


There is exactly one CFB video. The rest is mozzarella sticks.


Bluen News Finland (In Finnish)

Blues News Germany 5/6

Blues Again (FR) - 1.10.2016

Cheese Finger Brown: Low-Down People

Genre musical: Country-blues, boogie
Distributeur: HUMU RECORDS

(In French)
Un son épais, lourd, qui fait vibrer l’air ambiant, une voix légèrement voilée, une atmosphère hypnotique. On se dit qu’on a déjà entendu ça quelque part, et puis… peut-être pas. Ça vient d’ailleurs. Le trouble s’installe, mais l’auditeur est accroché rapidement. Ceci n’est sûrement pas une imitation mais certainement un passage de relais. Pim Zwijnenburg alias Cheese Finger Brown, artiste néerlandais installé en Finlande, cite volontiers RL Burnside, John Lee Hooker, Captain Beefheart et Guy Clark dans ses références. Influencé par la musique jouée du côté des North Mississippi Hills, il interprète avec une approche personnelle un country-blues au son distordu, un boogie hypnotique revivifié. Sa musique puise ses racines dans les sons d’antan, mais son feeling est hors du temps et ne laisse rien intact après son passage. Les titres son brefs, il en aligne 15 de sa composition en 41 minutes. Ici, la simplicité est de mise. Musicien minimaliste, il n’y a pas de fioriture inutile. Aucun effet de style, une basse entêtante, une mélodie répétitive avec parfois une pointe de réverbération, de temps à autre un harmonica pétillant et la cible est atteinte. Une performance qui brouille les repères, qui donne une sorte de vertige.

(In English)
A thick, heavy sound, which vibrates the air, a slightly husky voice, a hypnotic atmosphere. We say that we have already heard that somewhere and then... maybe not. It comes from elsewhere. The puzzle sets in, but the listener is hooked quickly. This is surely not a copycat but quite a relay outlet. Pim Zwijnenburg alias Cheese Finger Brown, Dutch artist living in Finland, likes to quote RL Burnside, John Lee Hooker, Captain Beefheart and Guy Clark in his references. Influenced by the music played on the side of North Mississippi Hills, he performs with a personal approach a country-blues with a distorted sound, a revived hypnotic boogie. His music is rooted in the sounds of yesteryear, but the feeling is beyond time and leaves nothing intact after its passage. The numbers are brief, he lines up 15 of his own composition in 41 minutes. Here, simplicity is required. Minimalist musician, no frills useless. No style effect, an insistent bass, a repetitive melody with sometimes a reverberation tip, occasionally a sparkling harmonica and the target is reached. A performance that blurs the benchmarks, which gives a kind of vertigo.

Gilles Blampain (FIN) - 17.9.2016

Cheese Finger Brown: Low-Down People

Nyt kyllä kauhotaan Mississippin mutaista vettä jo todella syvältä. Alankomaalaisen bluesmuusikon ja lauluntekijän tuore albumi, kun porautuu ennakkoluulotta sinne, missä blues aikoinaan sai John Lee Hookerin, Muddy Watersin ja kumppanit tarttumaan soittimiinsa sekä etsimään sielunsa ydinsäveliä.

Low-Down People levyä kuunnellessa pari nyrkkisääntöä käyvät pontikankirkkaiksi. Ensinnäkin vähemmän on aina enemmän, ja toisekseen mikään ei ole niin tärkeää kuin juuri oikeanlaisen tunnelman luominen. Näillä ohjenuorilla syntyneet blues-raidat ovat primitiivisellä tavalla voimakkaita, lumoavia ja samalla täysin kahlitsemattomia. En tiedä mitkä taiteilijanimen takaa löytyvän Pim Zwijnenburgin taustat ovat, mutta ainakin herran musiikki vaikuttaa vilpittömän rehelliseltä ja suoralta – olkoon hän ihonväriltään, iältään ja näkemyksiltään sitten minkälainen tahansa. Kiekon ensisinkuksi sijoitettu nimibiisi on mainio startti, Nashville Funk ruhjoo 100 sekuntiin enemmän mojoa, kuin mitä monen blues rock -bändin koko uralta löytyy, eikä Dr. Jesus jätä kärsivää sielua pulaan, vaan antaa jotain ainutlaatuista.

Kaltaiseni maitonaama ei ole varmasti osuvin henkilö arvioimaan näin bluesia levyä, mutta kyllä tämä meikäläisen(kin) sielun saa tuleen. Jos ei nyt ihan jokaisella raidalla, niin ainakin suurimmalla osalla – ja siitähän musiikissa on lopulta kyse.


Mika Roth

Soundi (FIN)- 16.9.2016

Uljas (FIN) - 14.9.2016

Rosoisen rämeinen ja upea esikoinen

Aiemmin täysin tuntematon Cheese Finger Brown tuli elämääni uutuuskiekollaan pystymetsästä ja vei jalat alta. 16. syyskuuta ilmestyvä levy Low-down People on loistava. Hollantilaisen, Suomessa asuvan Pim Zwijnenburgin musiikki sekoittelee blues- ja country-tunnelmia populaarikulttuurista tunnistettaviin, tiukasti ajassa kiinni oleviin soundeihin pitäen äänimaailman silti tietoisen rupuisena. Välillä mies itsekin kuulostaa siltä kuin olisi vetäissyt puoli pulloa pontikkaa liian nopeasti ja köhisi säkeitä koko tuberkuloosin ja liian tupakoinnin kuihduttaman kehonsa voimin.
Oletan, että hän ei oikeasti ole kännissä, tuberkuloosinen enkä edes tiedä hänen tupakoinnistaan, joten tulkitsen sen taidoksi. Oikeasti Zwijnenburg ei tietenkään ole mikään tyhjästä esiin polkaistu ihme. Hän on soittanut esimerkiksi Faarao Pirttikankaan kanssa.

Huonoja kappaleita ei levyllä ole, mutta osa polttomerkitsee itsensä tajuntaan toisia tehokkaammin. Esimerkiksi Who Are You To Judge on leppeällä poljennollaan poikkeuksellisen hieno kappale ja heti perään Old Hashbrown tunnelmoi särisevän kauniisti. Kenties parasta antia levyllä on salaperäisesti ja tarinavetoisesti kehittelevä, lähes resitatiivinen Come on Jack.

Zwijnenburgin kaltaisen vanhasta musiikista vanhalla tyylillä ammentavan musiikin kohdalla herää aina kysymys siitä, onko kyseessä autenttisuutta etsivä kopio vai onko taiteilijan oma, vahva visio vain vaatinut juuri tällaista tulkintaa. Cheese Finger Brown kallistuu lopulta vahvasti jälkimmäiseen. Sitä alleviivaa se, että levy ammentaa vahvasti noin kolmikymppisen sukupolven yhteisestä kulttuurihistoriasta. Yleistunnelmaltaan pitkäsoitto on kuin suohon upotettu ja kolhittu, mutta silti runoilemaan heittäytynyt Knight Riderin ihmeauto KITT. Kuten hitusen verran ällöttävään nimeen Cheese Finger Brown sopii, ei taiteilija mitenkään briljeeraa virtuositeetillaan, mutta levyä kuunnellessa on silti ilmeistä, että kyseessä on kovan luokan muusikko. Kokonaisuus on kypsä ja hiottu.

Viidentoista kappaleen pakettina Low-down People on nykymittapuilla runsas pitkäsoitto, mutta kappaleista pisinkin jää alle neljän minuutin, eikä levy ole raskas kuunnella. Zwijnenburgilla on taito viedä kuulija omaan maailmaansa, jossa ajan kulumisen määrittelee artisti. Humu Records jatkaa ansiokkaasti rujon, rosoisen ja sopivasti vinksahtaneen country- ja juurimeiningin julkaisemista. Aiemmin on jo julkaistu esimerkiksi The Country Darkin levy Hypnic Jerk. Cheese Finger Brownin Low-down People jatkaa linjaa asteen verran vähemmän kalmanhajuisena ja selvästi seesteisempänä.

Low-down People ilmestyy 16. syyskuuta.

Pasi Huttunen

Terrascope (UK) - 2.9.2016

Humu Records, Humu 006

I first met Cheese Finger Brown around the burgeoning underground music scene of Kuopio, Finland in ’02. I remember hiking through deep snow with him to see Pentti Dassum’s band, Deep Turtle who’d done a Peel Session in ’94, at a place where the local rockabillies often hung out to drink and fight. Sat on tractor seat stools incorporating a huge shiny stopper between your legs like a chrome pair of budgie smugglers... and although fists started to fly that night, we enjoyed one of that great bands’ last ever gigs. CFB’s Polished Nob Productions was subsequently born and eventually Who That in The Kitchen in ’09 – a set of home-recordings few got to hear.

Now his record has been ‘officially’ released – with additions and subtractions from the original album – CFB finds himself teamed up with Pentti Dassum whose experience as a producer with many of Finland’s alt/underground artists ranges from punk through sonic jazz to noise and god-knows–what else. If that guy’s one of the producers (along with Sampsa Väätäinen) you’re in good hands... and if all P.D. does to the masters is to fettle around with the levels a bit, you know you’ve got a good record in the first place.

Low-Down People, with excellent graphics by Brown himself, sometime influenced by Viz and Gorillaz; illustrations of the man and his imaginary crack band of busted-out musicians, is Basement Tapes in feel and approach. There’s the noise of now, crackling jack-plugs, chair-leg percussion – his kid Emile singing along and a host of sounds you can’t quite trace – all in there as part of the atmosphere of the record and the place it was recorded. Often sinister and brooding, it remains self-aware and full of a dark to nicotine-brown humour...

"I can't play in a band because I hate performing with shit in my pants, so I play all the instruments myself, entertaining the couch after midnight. I usually hate the solo-instrumentalist records and would have rather recorded with a drummer and bass player... I never have to make compromises, though. No rehearsals. Don't have to play somebody else's idea for a song over and over until it works - or sucks! I just bin it if it doesn't work from the get-go. When I think I can play on it I press record. Most important is I always use first take if possible, even if there are some mistakes on it or it's not good on the tape, the feeling in that first take is always best. Also the fact I play some instruments really badly - like fiddle, percussion and bass for example - it gives it that Brownie feel."

Music-wise you could say it’s Hooker or Burnside on pot. Okay. But CFB’s his own man and what he’s singing about is what’s happening in the Browniverse – in all our lives, more or less. It’s raw, brittle, apprehensive yet strongly alone – and often hilarious. Nashville Funk? You Know It You Bought It is sometimes a fave. Other times it’s Old Hash Brown or Doctor Jesus, but all of it remains with me as a convincing artistic statement in the tradition of the maverick. It’s a tribute to Jaakko Ryynänen at Humu Records for being the first guy to finally get this great stuff out there.

Know it, buy it... it’s Brown.

Read review from Terrascope

Jack Ohms

Sound Guardian (CRO)

Cheese Finger Brown - Low-Down People

Rekli bi, Cheese Finger Brown nam dolazi iz srca Delte Mississippija, no pogriješili biste... i to debelo.

Petnaest pjesama koje se nalaze na albumu "Low – Down People" donose nam vrlo moderan pristup prezentacijskoj formi onog tipicnog 'country bluesa', u potpunosti ispunjenog izrazitim gitaristickim boogiejem, kakvog smo slušali od Johna Leea Hookera i R.L Burnsidea. Kada se tome još doda, primjerice, modernisticki štih North Mississippi Hill Country Bluesa u izvodenju glazbenika u rasponu od Captaina Beefhearta pa sve do, danas vrlo inventivnog, Guya Clarka, dobivamo prezentacijsku glazbenu formu C.F. Browna.

Ovaj glazbenik nam dolazi iz Nizozemske, ali vec dugi niz godina radi i djeluje u Finskoj. Odmah na prvu: oznacavaju ga izuzetna originalnost i doista duboka odredenost k tradicionalnoj glazbenoj baštini americke korijenske glazbe.

Nije nikakvo cudo što je tome tako jer C.F. dolazi kao jedan od glavnih, kljucnih komponenti Pharaoh Pirttikangas benda, gdje je dobro izbrusio tu svoju prezentacijsku formu. Ovdje se zapravo radi o tzv. 'roots' glazbi koju nam C.F. Brown prezentira kao što su to nekada cinili velikani bluesa, poput Mississippi Johna Hurta i kasnije Johna Leea Hookera. Voden ovim okvirima i odrednicama, C. F. Brown se doista izvrsno snašao i u svemu je dao svoj osobiti glazbeni izricaj, pecat i smisao.

PREPORUKA: Petnaest pjesama ponudenih na albumu "Low – Down People", koji ce 16. rujna preko Humu Records imati svoju globalnu dostupnost, vec sada diljem svijeta traži svoje mjesto na blues sceni. Obzirom na sadržaj i ono što nam na ovom albumu nudi Cheese Finger Brown, to mu uopce nece biti neki problem. Jednostavno, provjerite o cemu se radi!

Mladen Loncar - Mike

Soundwaves Review (US) - 26.8.2016

New Blues Album! Low-Down People by Cheese Finger Brown

The Blues as we know it originated with African Americans in America’s Deep South sometime in the late 1800s. The genre has its roots in folk music and African-American work songs, though the core basics can be traced all the way back to the heart of Africa. Cheese Finger Brown seems to know this well, as he embraces the sounds of early bluesmen such as Robert Johnson and Charley Patton in his new album Low-Down People.

These songs encompass the feel of early blues, with the added fuzz of later blues guitar. Lyrically, they mimic the kind of loose narrative of those early songs, but with a modern spin on content. We have tales of woe, such as Old Fashioned Murder Boogie, and the short, rhythmic chant as with Who That. Cheese Finger also takes us to that forbidden place of provocative lyrics with songs such as Country Shake Down. Whereas early blues musicians used words that only alluded to the song’s meaning, Cheese Finger chooses bolder words while still retaining the song’s cryptic nature.

Cheese Finger Brown is a Dutch blues musician living in Finland. He wrote, performed, and recorded all of the songs on Low-Down People. He also created the album’s cover art.

The album is set for release on September 16, on Humu Records.

Soundwaves Review


Keskisuomalainen - Savon Sanomat 4/5 - 22.8.2016

Arvio: Cheese Finger Brown: Low-Down People

Cheese Finger Brownin nimi sanoo harvalle mitään, mutta auttaa, kun paljastaa, että hän oli osa alkuperäistä Pharaoh Pirttikangas -bändiä. Hollannista Kuopioon rantautunut miekkonen rekrytoitiin 2000-luvun alussa mukaan savolaisen juurimusiikin alakulttuuriin, vaikkei bändisoitto ilmeisesti ollutkaan hänen teekupposensa.

Cheese Finger Brownin (Pim Zwijnenburg) ensimmäinen sooloalbumi on musiikillisesti luontevaa jatkumoa Kuopion ajoille. Lauluissa vuorottelevat rehevä kantriblues ja hypnoottinen boogie, eikä mielleyhtymiltä John Lee Hookeriin, R.L. Burnsideen tai Lightnin’ Hopkinsiin voi välttyä. Tällä levyllä soi aito yhden miehen orkesteri.

Vaikka Low-Down People pohjaa vanhaan ja moneen otteeseen kierrätettyyn traditioon, se ei tunnu tylsältä. Tästä käy kiittäminen Cheese Finger Brownin harjaantunutta ilmaisua: se tuntuu kaikessa luonnollisuudessaan uskottavalta.

Mikko Siltanen

Rootstime (BE)

“A very cool blend of old-time Southern blues, fuzzy guitar made popular with 60s psychedelic music… “

Cheese Finger Brown aka Pim Zwijnenburg is een Nederlandse singer-songwriter / muzikant, die in Kuopio in Finland leeft en die als repertoire kiest voor een eigentijdse mix van country en boogie, maar waar blues en roots muziek nooit veraf is. C.F. Brown maakte rond 2000 deel uit van de Bad Ass Brass Band feat. Pharaoh Pirttikangas en Dj's Borzin & Soma (Club Balkan Fever!!!), een band, die hem blijkbaar niet het nodige soelaas kon bieden.

C.F. Brown brengt met “Low-Down People” in september bij Humu Records een album uit met vijftien (korte) songs (42:00), die hij de laatste jaren verzamelde. Of er verder nog andere muzikanten aan het album meewerkte is via de gegevens op de album cover niet direct te achterhalen. C.F. Brown was in de studio waarschijnlijk alleen met zijn stem en zijn vervormde gitaar. De nummers die hij opnam (zonder er direct een rits te noemen) zijn erg hypnotiserend en missen hun doel niet als meditatieve dansmuziek. Hier en daar kom je de geest van Robert Johnson (“Who Are You To Judge”) of Fat Possum (“Grey Eagle”) zeker tegen.

C.F. Brown brengt met “Low-Down People” een album met een “eigen” sound. Hij gaat op een hedendaagse wijze om met country en roots muziek, waaraan hij een vervormde boogie gitaar toevoegt en, die o.a. beïnvloed is door de North Mississippi Hill Country Blues en waar illustere voorgangers als R.L Burnside (1926-2005), John Lee Hooker (1917-2001), Captain Beefheart - aka Don Glen Vliet (1941-2010) en Guy Clark (1972-2012) ook hun inspiratie vonden. Samengevat: of hoe iemand uit kaasmakend Nederland met zijn gitaar in aanslag en een potlood achter de oren, op zijn pootjes terecht kwam en de blues opnieuw actualiseerde… Als je zoals Cheese Finger Brown, oud met oud combineert, krijg je vaak iets nieuws!

“If you like Cheese Finger Brown, combines old with old, you often get something new… ”

Eric Schuurmans

Album track list: 1”Low-Dow People” - 2”Good Old Fashioned Murder Boogie” - 3”Nashville Funk” - 4”Who Are You To Judge” - 5”Old Hashbrown” - 6”Dr. Jesus” - 7”You Know It You Bought It” - 8”Come on Jack” - 9”Country Shake Down” - 10”Who That” - 11”Grey Eagle” - 12”Bend Over Mama” - 13”The Big Cheese” - 14”Days Of The Cruel And The Greedy” - 15”Lullaby Before I Go” – Music / Lyrics by Cheese Finger Brown ? 2016 – Produced by C.F. Brown

Album Line-up: Cheese Finger Brown: vocals, guitar, harmonica, Jew‘s harp & more…

Discography ‘Cheese Finger Brown’: 2016 – Low-Down People

Rajatapauksia 19.8.2016

Alussa oli Elvis. Ennen Elvistä oli vaikka mitä, mutta minulle Elvis oli alkusysäys. Alkusysäys kaiken musiikin diggailulle. Myös bluesin. Elvis oli blueslaulaja.

Elviksen jälkeen päädyin mutkan kautta 70-luvun jytään. Blues siinäkin soi. Kuljin reittiä alaspäin. Creamiin, Yardbirdsiin, Blues Breakersiin, Rolling Stonesiin. Riittävän pitkälle ja kauas kuljettuani löytyi delta blues. Matka juurille kesti pari vuosikymmentä. Olin jo miltei aikamies lopullisen bluesherätyksen kokiessani.

Vajaa vuosi sitten aloittaneen ja juurimusiikin parissa kunnostautuneen Humu Recordsin julkaisemaa suomalaistuneen alankomaalaisen bluesmiehen Cheese Finger Brownin Low-down peoplea kuunnellessani tämä kymmenvuotiaana bluesiin ensikosketuksen saanut 46-vuotias mies on onnellinen. Low-down people ei ole oppikirjamaista bluesin ulkoluentaa. Se on aitoa tavaraa. Juuri sitä, jota bluesiltani haluan. Alkuvoimaista, alkukantaista. Mies, ääni ja kitara. Turhaan ei levyn saatekirjeessä mainita Herrojemme John Lee Hookerin ja R.L. Burnsiden nimiä. Mississippin rinteiden maalaisbluesia. Blues on perinnemusiikkia, esikuvien kuuluminen on pelkästään hyvä asia.

Heti nimibiisin riffiä voisin kuunnella päivätolkulla. Se on hypnoottista, meditatiivisen puhdistavaa tanssimusiikkia, jonka tahtiin voi vaipua rauhalliseen transsiin tai jorata itsensä kipeäksi räkäisessä juke jointissa. Musiikkia, jossa aika ja paikka menettävät merkityksensä. Hypnoottisuus on levyn määräävä tekijä. Kuten olla pitää. Silti myönnän, että 15 biisiä Cheese Fingeriä on melkoinen urakka ja kun leppoisa kantri Lullaby before I go levyn päättää, on olo turta…

Monet tutut nimet pyörivät mielessäni levyä kuunnellessa. Sonny Terry (Nashville funk), Faarao Pirttikangas ja Captain Beefheart (Old hashbrown), 22-Pistepirkko (You know it you bought it). The Country Dark voisi tehdä räväkän coverin Who are you to judgesta, Dr. Jesus voisi olla suoraan The Blind Boys of Alabaman myöhäisvuosien levyltä. Come on Jackin puheblues on kuin Robbie Robertsonin Somewhere down the crazy river pelottavaksi bluesistettuna. Samaa fiilistä on Grey eaglessa. Fat Possumin henki liikkuu levyn yllä. Ääntä ja kitaraa täydentää huuliharppu, välillä myös munniharppu. Välillä levyllä soi kantri.

Cheese Finger Brownin lauluäänessä on sellaista autenttisuutta, että välillä voisin vannoa levyllä ääntelevän 1930-luvulla levytyksensä tehneen bluesmiehen haamun. Cheese Finger Brown on kuitenkin nuori, valkoinen mies. Sitä on pirun vaikea uskoa. Äänessä on samanlaista kokemusta ja vakuuttavuutta kuin nuoren polven bluesmiehen Buddy Guyn myöhempien aikojen Sweet Tea -levyllä. Äänessä on Tom Waitsia, Faarao Pirttikangasta, sellakan rahinaa.

Blues on juurimusiikkia, bluesilla on vahva pohja menneisyydessä. Bluesissa pitää juurien kuulua, juuret ovat oleellinen osa bluesia. Low-down peoplessa yhdistyy monen maanosan jo aiemmin monesti yhdistynyt mustan musiikin osaaminen. Afrikka, Amerikka, Eurooppa. Suomi ja Kuopio. Kun yhdistää vanhaa ja vanhaa, syntyy uutta.

Cheese Finger Brown, eli Pim Zwijnenburg, on sisäistänyt bluesista jotain oleellista. En usko, että hän vetää vanhan bluesmiehen roolia. Hän elää sitä.

Mika Kähkönen

Blog Full of Blues (US)- 11.8.2016

A Blog Full of Blues Review | Cheese Finger Brown - “Low-Down People"

The album art for Cheese Finger Brown’s “Low-Down People” is of a lonely wandering soul that would have fit right into of Harvey Pekar's "American Splendour" comic volumes. The credits draw similarities to a performance by "John Lee Hooker's corpse," but I'm most reminded of early Captain Beafheart. The music is in keeping with that--providing crisp and roiling instrumental tracks coupled with vocals that are (we assume) intentionally buried. Given the rough recording shape of the vocals, you'll want to check out the lyrics sheet. As a humorous example, see this from "Nashville Funk,"

"Nashville Funk, and your mama don't wanna know ya
Nashville Funk, and your daddy just disowned ya
Nashville Funk, When somebody comes knocking on your door and you’re glad to see that Jehova"

"Who Are You to Judge" is the most interesting track on the album--even though it ends quite abruptly. With harmonica, guitar and mandolin--and with the vocal brought more forward in the mix--I wish it could have been fleshed out a lot more.

"Low-Down People” is probably only going to appeal to a niche audience, but you can't help but be impressed by how some Dutch guy from Finland could digest and perpetuate a form so many people would see as roots music. The arrangements are so spare that the listener not familiar with the genre might struggle to gain traction. A witless moron might consider it cultural appropriation, I would call it a great bit of eccentric blues.

Robert “carpaldiem” Harmon


The BluesPowR

First listen: Dipping into Cheese Finger Brown’s Low-Down People

Here’s one to help ease you into the weekend, the gritty, hypnotic title track from Dutch bluesman Cheese Finger (C.F.) Brown‘s<<<< upcoming Low-Down People (Humu Records) album that very much lives up to the description of Brown’s sound promised in his press materials: “a modern approach to country blues fused with distorted guitar boogie, influenced by North Mississippi Hill Country Blues greats such as R.L Burnside, as well as John Lee Hooker, Captain Beefheart and Guy Clark”.

Though his name might be a little on the, well, cheesy side, this track suggests that Brown’s music is something to take seriously. We look forward to hearing a bit more from this bluesman in the coming months.

Mike Rick

Listen With Monger


Right, first things first, Cheese Finger Brown sounds awful as a name. It sounds like the kind of nickname they would give a kid from high school who gets caught sticking cheese up his ass in the toilets. Anyway, Cheese Finger Brown is Dutch so maybe there’s a different meaning over there and at least he’s not called Meatloaf. So, this new single, ‘Low Down People’, is a gloriously and appropriately low down bluesy ramble with every string vibration and intake of breath recorded for posterity. This sounds like the music I used to hear my dad playing when he was in a really good mood, the kind of music that used to be recorded in booths with a month’s wages and cut straight to vinyl only to launch the career of a legend. What we have here is a Dutchman who can make a guitar sing like John Lee Hooker and has the blues so bad it makes his voice distorted. There’s a full album to follow in September but in the meantime I’d pour yourself a bourbon and let this wash over you (sit on a porch if you have one, for added flavour).

Roland Monger

Soundwaves Review

New Blues Single! ‘Low-Down People’ by Cheese Finger Brown

The roots of southern blues are alive and well, coming to us all the way from Finland, via Humu Records and a masterful musician calling himself Cheese Finger Brown. I have long been a bit of a blues fanatic. I have immense respect for those early blues guitarists, and I’m fascinated by the sounds they created. Cheese Finger Brown takes us all the way back to greats such as Mississippi John Hurt and, the slightly later, John Lee Hooker...

Read full review HERE


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