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Finnish metal show invades El Corazon with Finntroll, Enisferum, Rotten Sound, Barren Earth, Deathmocracy and PhlegethonFebruary 11th, 2011 at Fri, 11th, 2011 at 2:30 pm by Shawn Skager
Tomorrow night the cream of the Finnish metal crop will invade Seattle’s El Corazon, bringing Finntroll, Enisferum, Rotten Sound, Barren Earth, Deathmocracy and Phlegethon to pleasure and pummel the aural senses of the metal faithful.
Barren Earth will be among the opening bands on the bill bringing their potent mix of metal mayhem and melody. Although Barren Earth have only been a band for a couple of years and released their first full length offering “Curse of the Red River” this past March, the band features several former and current members of established bands such as Kreator, Amorphis, Follow The Sun and Moonsorrow.
Electric Phase got a chance to chat with Barren Earth guitarist Sami Yli-Sirniö (who is also in German thrash pioneers Kreator) this past week as the band struggled across the Midwest, battling a vicious winter storm that forced the cancellation of shows in Tulsa and Austin.
EP: You guys are from Finland, so you’re no strangers to this type of weather, right?
Sami Yli-Sirniö: Absolutely not, but our driver seems to be. And the roads are closed, so what can you do. It’s actually raining right now, but it’s below freezing so there is plenty of ice on the road. We hit a bad patch yesterday, and after eight miles the driver had to stop. So I woke up thinking I would be in Austin already, but we were only eight miles further than the last place. What the hell, though, guess we’ll just be having a couple of beers in the bus until we can get to Dallas.
EP: Is this your first tour of the United States?
Sami Yli-Sirniö: In the other bands I’ve been in for the past 10 years or so, we usually tour here after each album. But with Barren Earth, this is the first tour at all that we’re doing. We just did some festival shows in Europe and some club shows in Helsinki. So this is the first tour we ever did.
EP: How has the tour been so far?
Sami Yli-Sirniö: Orlando was great and then Atlanta was pretty good, but now we’ve run into this snow weather. Some of the roads have been closed and the shitty part is that we’ve had to cancel (shows in Tulsa and Austin were cancelled). We aren’t able to get to the shows in time so we’re just going to drive straight through to Dallas. But what can you do? Thinks like that happen. It still sucks though. But I think we’re going to make it to Seattle.
EP:Tell me about the formation of Barren Earth?
Sami Yli-Sirniö: A couple of years ago we had our first jams. I’ve known the bass player (Oppu Laine) who was in Amorphis all the way back to the 90s. Helsinki is a small city so when people have the intersest in the same music as you, you’re bound to meet up at a bar or at a gig or something. Couple of years ago I saw Oppu in a bar and he asked if I wanted to jam. So I did and by the time I left we already had some song ideas. So we decided that we should do a demo, the usual shit that everybody does when you start. And then there was an offer for a recording deal, kind of an accident, but with potential.
Yli-Sirniö added that the jam session expanded into an EP, “Our Twilight” which was released in Nov. 18, 2009 which was followed up by their debut album “Curse of the Red River” in March of 2010
EP:Barren Earth is pretty melodic, yet still heavy band. Maybe more melodic than other bands members have been a part of. Was this intentional, as a way to get your more melodic side out?
Sami Yli-Sirniö: The very first idea was to make aggressive prog-rock. But then when we got all the guys all together it was obvious it was going to be metal. When we first started recording the demo, there was no plan on what it was going to sound like. It was just five different people writing songs. It just came out metal, we didn’t have a master plan behind it.
EP:You hear about Swedish death metal and black metal from Norway. Is there a certain style inherent in Finland?
Sami Yli-Sirniö: There is Helsinki and then there is the rest of Finland. There are plenty of bands there. If you think of Scandanavia you think of black and death metal in Sweden and Norway, but in Finland there is no particular style that comes to your mind and fits the profile when you think of the country. There is a lot of variety of music that is coming from over there.
Presented by KISW 99.9 FM’s Metal Shop and headlined by Finntroll and Ensiferum, the show gets underway at 7:30 p.m. and also features Rotten Sound, Barren Earth, Deathmocracy and Phlegethon. Tickets for the all-ages show are $22 at the door. VIP tickets are also available and cost $55.