27.02.2020 Ursus Factory @ Tavastia, Helsinki

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Some time ago, an Italian musician friend of mine and I met at a pub, where he told me that URSUS FACTORY would play in Tavastia and I shouldn’t miss it because their show is amazing [“Ao ce stanno URSUS FACTORY al Tavastia, non te lo devi perde’, fanno uno show della madonna”]. I followed his advice, so I decided to go see URSUS FACTORY on 27 February 2020 at Tavastia in Helsinki, so here I am, still confused and excited about what I’ve seen.

URSUS FACTORY is a duo that is really impossible to label. The band was founded when Jussi Pelkonen and Aleksi Ripatin (better known as Jussi and Allu) in 2013 randomly started to jam in front of a library in Espoo one day, realizing instantly that they were meant to perform together. Seven years, one busking trip around the Baltics, two albums, several EPs and singles later, URSUS FACTORY is one of the most appreciated underground bands in Finland. They released their latest single, “Enneunia,” on 31 January 2020 and started their Enneunia Spring Tour on 24 January 2020.

From the beginning of the tour, the support act has been SEPIKKA, but during the show at Tavastia, it was LUUKAS OJA who was supposed to warm up the audience for URSUS FACTORY. I would describe LUUKAS OJA as the garage band every angry kid has dreamt to be part of. With a fresh, active performance full of pathos, their time on stage was absolutely worth it for the entire crowd. If you’ve never had the chance to see them live, you should totally check them out at their next gigs.

The audience started chanting and singing “Ursus Factory Party” to invite the band to the stage. The stage set-up was already proof that we would be seeing something unusual: the amps were covered in lace doilies and those kinds of ornaments that you can find at your aunt’s place. They started about 10 minutes late and people went crazy as soon as the band stepped on the stage. The band had suited up for the occasion in a similar way that the same weird aunt would dress: bare naked underneath sundresses.

URSUS FACTORY‘s setlist was an even mix of both their albums and their EPs, creating the best balance between nice rock songs, ballads, and punk. It was the first time I’ve seen Tavastia not bother to put up a photo pit. The reason for this was soon obvious: Jussi and Allu like to interact directly with their fans and ask them to raise hell. Moshpits and crowd surfing went on throughout the whole night, which was initiated by Jussi and Allu stage-diving.

The audience was filled with loyal followers, some of whom brought cassettes and vinyls with them. It’s no coincidence that these guys are so beloved – they pleased the crowd with a fan request for “Hääyö” in the middle of the set. URSUS FACTORY is easily notable as a band of great musicians, not only by the technique but even from the flair they put into their performance. Jussi proved himself by picking up an empty bottle from the stage and using it as a tool to play his guitar. They ended the first part of the show with “Yhdessä” while adding some variations to it, starting with a slow Twin Peaks-y sound and ending it with a great romantic guitar solo.

The audience erupted in huge applause while chanting, “We want more!” The band thus returned to the stage for the encore with new outfits involving golden pants and a fishnet tank top. URSUS FACTORY‘s show is not entirely kid-friendly, as in the first 30 seconds I got flashed by Allu‘s privates (thanks buddy, ask me out for dinner first next time maybe) and they might totally look like your drunk best friends, but it’s surely entertaining in a way no other gig can be. The audience was certainly left satisfied after a night of loud music, mosh pits, and the great announcement of another Ursus Factory & Friends event for the next 30 April 2020.

Article and photos by Viviella Constantino

Setlist

  1. Rakastuin lesboon
  2. Matt Damon
  3. Don’t Stop Believin’
  4. Virhe
  5. Pakko mennä keskukseen
  6. Mä en tiedä mitä rakkaus on
  7. Darth Vader
  8. ANO (mitä kummaa)
  9. Hääyö (by request)
  10. Oot pomo
  11. Eksistentiaalinen biisi
  12. Aikansa kutaki
  13. Baby mä oon Rock ‘n’ Roll
  14. Jumalautapojat
  15. Enneunia
  16. Yhdessä
  17. Tähdistöön! (Encore)
  18. Sydän on suuri (Encore)
  19. Kaikki on niin vitun ihan jees (Encore)

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