Eva & Manu look like they might finish each other's sentences. In an endearing way, they often look to each other before answering a question. Eva Louhivuori and Manu Laudic are a couple, of course. They met at the Berklee College of Music in Boston, and two years into their degrees decided to run away together.
"We missed Europe", Manu explains and grins.
Manu comes from France, where his father has a farm, in Lagraulet-du-gers, close to Bay of Biscay in Western France. That's where Eva & Manu first ventured when they left Boston.
Eva comes from Jyvaeskylae, a university town in Central Finland. She has four siblings who are all gifted musicians, a violinist mother and a music professor dad. I suspect love made Eva & Manu restless for something more exciting than the confines of their esteemed college. In France, they bought a camper van and went on an adventure. They drove around Southern Europe, working on farms, sleeping in barns for seven months. Not so much to earn a living as to gain
material for their songs. "We had the camper, Skipper - We could have just slept in it and travelled, but then we wouldn't have met
all these different people. The way some of them lived was very different from us, but to live like that for a couple of weeks was a true experience. You learn from people.", Manu explains.
"In Italy we ended upon this house with no doors or windows which looked like it could fall down anymoment. I joked to Manu that this is probably where we'll be staying", Eva says.
Turns out that it was exactly where their lodgings on the farm would be. "It was quite a funny place, had no doors, you could feel the cold breeze pass through the house" she says
with a shudder. "Skipper, our camper felt like the warmest place in the world" adds Manu.
Their eponymous debut album is the fruit of their travels. It's a collection of songs that start off like soft acoustic singer-songwriter folk melodies, and grow into epic songs reminiscent of classic alternative rock, or even progressive end of Seventies rock music. Sometimes you can hear the ghosts they encountered driving through the ancient Tuscan vineyards: Eva & Manu's album was released in Finland through Warner Music in August 2012. The album charted at No. 8 on the national TOP-50 album chart. Their gigs have been sold out almost everywhere they go and people fall in love with their music and story, one by one.