What do you do as a reporter when you’re planning to go to a gig with your friends, just for fun, but those shenanigans turn out to be something more memorable and actually something worth writing about? No, I wasn’t supposed to write a review, I was only meant to live in the moment and enjoy the show and even though that is precisely what I did, at the same time, I felt like I can’t leave a perfectly great gig unspoken about. After all, it’s usually these smaller scale gigs, that manage to surprise and captivate and there was no difference in this case. That also means this review is a lot more spontaneous than the rest of my content, no photography, no nothing, only some incomplete video footage. But then again, why not?
When Oceanhoarse performed as a support act for Beast In Black at Nosturi, about two weeks ago, I was pleasantly surprised by Oceanhoarse, a band that used to be a mystery to me, Finland’s best kept secret, with familiar faces from the music scene in Finland.
With only two songs available online “Fading Neons” and “The Oceanhoarse”, we don’t really have a complete picture yet, as to how the album is going to sound like, but after two gigs, the puzzle is getting more and more complete. How do I know that? Because aside from some of the songs they had played at Nosturi, Oceanhoarse treated us on some other songs now as well.
While entering Bar Praha, I had honestly no idea where the band was going to perform, a small space in the corner was reserved for them, a stage hardly existing. But that didn’t matter. The show we witnessed was even better, heavier and more energetic than the one in Nosturi. This instantly reminds me to November when I attended the Dragonforce gig at Semifinal. While Oceanhoarse is perhaps not as big (yet) as Dragonforce, you can tell that all these professional musicians, who have been in the business for a long time, enjoy the energy of a very intimate gig, with the crowd not much further than 2 centimeters away and on eye-level. Maybe that’s one of the reasons that this performance was even better than the last one. Or maybe it was the even more excited crowd. I am not sure how many people actually attended the gig, but the bar was pretty packed and there was not much room left for others to join in. Enough room for headbanging, jumping around and dancing for some people however. The atmosphere around me was extremely great. No stage too small, no stage too big for these guys. They even invited their mascot Oceanhoarse monster again on stage during “The Oceanhoarse”. That’s what I call dedication.
Let’s bear in mind that this is only Oceanhoarse‘s third gig. Their third gig. Ever. The four-piece play very heavy songs, with captivating energetic, sometimes even brutal riffs. Vocalist Tommy Tuovinen‘s energy is really contagious and the crowd seemed to be infected from the first seconds the music was playing on. The audience recognizes the new single “Fading Neons” immediately and also is able to sing along with “The Oceanhoarse”. Even though the rest is a mystery to most of us gathered, the songs seem great and everything is well received.
I said last time Oceanhoarse is playing Heavy metal, with a capital H. I still agree with that statement. However, I have yet to somehow revise the other things I have said before. I did say that their riffs are heavy, songs are brutal and that they have the best stage energy. But that was before I attended this gig. Yes, that’s still true. However, all I am going to say now is that Oceanhoarse did take over the bar – as they promised they would, while announcing their Pantera cover “Cowboys from Hell”.
But in my opinion they are ready to take over a hell of a lot more than just Bar Praha: bars, venues, stages, festivals, entire cities, the world perhaps? You name it, I’m sure that one day it’ll happen, but until then let’s try and wait patiently for the debut album to come out. As I said before, I’m pretty sure it’s going to be one hell of an album.
2. Feed The Sirens
3. Fading Neons
4. Born of Fire
5. Bark at the Moon
8. Cowboys From Hell (Pantera cover)
9. The Oceanhoarse
10. “Fleshdance” (encore)