2018-9-24, Helsinki, Finland – PHOTOGALLERY HERE
A Monday evening and a US/UK Progressive Rock Instrumental trio gives a concert? Honestly, I was a bit worried about the band as well as the local promoters (Musiikkisato) – but then a queue in front of the club and a full wardrobe – it seems the Finns love their Prog indeed. My theory – it’s because this genre suits Finnish concert manners best: standing motionless, attentive, arms crossed or not, and just listening …
Guthrie Govan (gtr), Bryan Beller (bass) and Marco Minnemann (drums) made “just listening” a very entertaining pleasure in their very original way. No vocalist, stage lighting or other show effects.. The atmosphere in The Circus Club rather resembled a relaxed jam session in a rehearsal room, well, a pretty big rehearsal room with hundreds of guests hanging out… And to me it seemed a bit of a time travelling experience as well, because I could imagine what a legendary half-to-fully improvised 1970s-Rock show by Hawkwind, Frank Zappa & Co might have looked like.
Indeed it would have been difficult for me to say which part of the show was the material of the band’s first and second record 1:1 and what was improvised on the spot. Whether Rock/Metal, Funk/Fusion or totally weird – rubber chicken & pig “singing” a part – the gig was exiting and inspiring. The stories that were told in between had their own appeal, either giving information about a song – or just wasting a bit of time so that the colleague on stage can finish his beer. What struck me was the fact that a lot of their songs deal with the topic “weather situation”.
Naturally such a Prog show needs a drum solo as well, Marco made some plus points with the audience by speaking a few words and phrases in Finnish too. Top musicians, highly entertaining and likeable, what can possibly go wrong?
Right, absolutely nothing. I can understand why the Finns like them so much, and I assume this was not the last visit of The Aristocrats to the Northern realm…
1. Blues Fuckers
2. Furtive Jack
3. Culture Clash
4. Through the Flower
5. Ohhhh Noooo
6. See You Next Tuesday
7. Get It Like That (including drum solo)
8. Bad Asteroid
9. The Kentucky Meat Shower
11. Desert Tornado
Encore: 12. Smuggler’s Corridor
photos: Klaudia Weber