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18.4.2018 Maniac Abductor, Ceaseless Torment & Evil Invaders @ Elmun Baari, Helsinki

All the way from Belgium, to the midsts of Helsinki. Just like me. Yes, as a Belgian who has lived in Finland for the last 5 years I lost touch with the metal scene there, or to be honest I never really was part of it coming from a small town. After hearing some Flemish on stage and realizing the poster has a small “(BE)” next to Evil Invaders, I got really stoked. Could it be that Belgium finally has another metal band? I soon realized that Evil Invaders isn’t exactly a small band anymore. I have been wondering if I’ve been living under a rock the last couple of years. I checked out the band, soon realized it’s some oldskool thrash. Couldn’t believe my eyes. my traditional, conservative Belgium (or well, in terms of music at least) produced a thrash metal band? Holy hell.

In addition to Evil Invaders, two Finnish thrash metal bands were added to the lineup, which was actually my main goal of attending the show. I should do more gigs supporting the local scene. But I don’t always have the time. I was pretty much exhausted coming straight from work, but I managed to find the energy to go to Elmun Baari after all.

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First band playing was Maniac Abductor, from Joensuu, played a short, but powerful set of traditional thrash. Their performance was quite energetic and the small stage didn’t stop them from taking over the bar. The fact that the drummer broke his foot was only impressive, as he was just playing as if life goes on. Well he didn’t play with his broken foot of course, but still, drumming is such a physical activity, it must have been straining. The show must go on. Elmun Baari is not that packed, most people stood awkwardly in the back, except for those thrashers who are not any for a mosh pit.

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The second one to play that evening was a band named Ceaseless Torment from Helsinki. The name does ring a bell, but I am unsure where I know it from. The band has a very different style from Maniac Abductor, focused on more old skool thrash. The band had a very different sound, but also approach to performing. Somehow the band feels a bit more reserved, even though they bang their heads to the rhythm and once in a while move, their presence seems to be more mature than the first band. This fits with their style and music. They play an energetic set that makes the audience pretty much excited. The people from the back opened up more and went a bit more to the front of the stage.

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Ultimately it was time for Evil Invaders. Truth be told I wasn’t yet acquainted with their music before I went to their show, so all the impressions I got are based on the first time I saw and heard them. The first song kicked in with an excessive amount of explosive violence. The music of Evil Invaders seems to refer to 80s thrash bands, setting stone and pioneering. Is it new? No. But nostalgia is always a good thing and the band really has their own sound in doing this, their own energy and attitude. Let’s say that even though not new, in the current music scene, it does sound refreshing to hear young bands play this kind of music once again.

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The band has a great energy and seem to be great musicians. The drummer has a smile on his face during the whole show and manages to stay hyped up for the entire duration of the show, he doesn’t seem to be tired at all. Both guitarist show us their masterful skills of the art of shredding and seem to amaze the audience with their guitar tricks.

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Belgians as an audience are in general more crazy than a Finnish audience. I’m pretty sure that in Belgium I would have never gotten out of the venue alive, however a Finnish crowd is a little bit more quiet. Nevertheless, there were a lot of mosh pits, an awful lot of headbanging in a dominantly male environment. To an outsider the gig would have probably been perceived as aggressive, but still the audience was only mildly enthusiastic. I say mildly when comparing to other cultures, for a Finnish crowd, especially in an underground bar, the venue was really acting up crazy. Everyone seemed like they were having a lot of fun and most of the audience seemed to know the band. A cover of Venom later and we really know where the roots of this band lie, as the this cover was smooth as hell.

Evil Invaders was definitely a great surprise to me, some highlights of the show were apart from the high pitched screams, searing guitars and “I don’t give a fuck”-attitude, “As Life Slowly Fades”, “Feed Me Violence” and “Raising Hell”. The band is still in the beginning of their career, but shows a promising future, I’m sure that in some years I’m attending one of their headlining gigs at The Circus.

Setlist
1. As Life Slowly Fades
2. Pulses of Pleasure
3. Shot To Paradise
4. Tortured by The Beast
5. Broken Dreams In Isolation
6. Mental Penitentiary
7. Stairway To Insanity
8. Witching Hour (Venom cover)
9. Feed Me Violence
10. Oblivion
11. Raising Hell
12. Victim Of Sacrifice
13. Violence and Force (Exciter cover)

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