100911
FLESHPRESS
Throat
Hebosagil

This evening of sludge and noise rock left me wondering about my too shallow knowledge on these genres' Finnish front. I knew all the bands before, but for some reason I've never taken the time to really get to know their works.

There wasn't a lot of people in the club when Throat begun, and only a handful of them dared to follow them up-close. The band released their debut tape-EP in '09, which gave them enough attention to get an another EP (or moreso a single) out the following year. This EP, entitled "Adult Situations," got even better feedback, and the band's gotten bigger and bigger since. The latest physical manifestation of the band's skills in crafting quality traditional noise rock is their fresh 12"-EP "Licked Inch Fur," which I've yet to buy.

The band performed passively (regarding trying to contact with the audience), but with a lot of aggression boiling underneath the surface. The songs were heavy and dirty four-minuters, and their strong rhythms, repetition, hostility and flirts with feedback made them very interesting. I had heard only a couple of the songs before, and yet I liked 'em all. The vocalist's deep shouts gave the songs a spot-on finish, and the whole gig seemed like a performance from skilled and dedicated artists.

For some reason Fleshpress was up next. The band got their debut release out in 2000, and have released four full-lengths and a number of smaller releases since. Their music mixes sludge's slow pace, heaviness and strong rhythms together with softer and more "artistic" elements. Their gig opened up with a song that took minutes to build up from mellow, repetitive riffing and minimalistic drum and bass work to its full glorius form of atmospheric and inescapably heavy sludge by clearly skilled artists. The drums had been mixed so that each bass drum hit could be felt in the front row, and the drummer's unpredictable but steady pacing made sure that the songs retain their drive.

The four (if I counted 'em correct) songs varied from really mellow bits to all-out blasting. They built up strength and mass slowly and steadily, but could suddenly take a twist to a wholly different direction than what the listener had expected, for example through employing some spacey and psychedelic guitar-effects. Aside of the vocals' volume being too low in the gig's start, everything went on smoothly, and the band held up the atmosphere without a problem despite performing in a similarly passive manner as Throat. The gig ended abruptly after a faster blasting-part, and it suited the gig's atmosphere well - although I wouldn't have minded hearing one more song, but as we know, all good comes to an end. As P. Solmio wrote here, Fleshpress certainly belongs to the world's sludge elite.

The evening's closer, Hebosagil, begun as a thrash metal band in 2003, but by their first EP "Cosmic" from '07 their style had changed into a hostile mixture of different edges of extreme metal, stoner and sludge. The band has gained a decent fanbase in Finland, but for some reason I've never gotten into their music. I've listened to it, but I haven't found it too special or interesting. I was hoping this gig would change my mind, but frankly, I got so bored by their third song that I decided to leave. Hebosagil gathered the biggest audience of the evening so there's a good chance you'll dig their sludge-metal-mixture even if I don't.