The cult is back – TIMO RAUTIAINEN & TRIO NISKALAUKAUS! Three years after the ultra cult of “In Frostigen Tälern“ the Finnish quintet (yes, so much for trio) is back with its second German album, titled “Hartes Land”. There is not much that has changed in the band that had been founded back in 1997, they still have three guitars in the line-up and the cult factor of the German lyrics is very prominent as well.
In their home country the boys have been awarded with gold and platinum already and have led Metal with Finnish lyrics into the charts, I have my doubts that they’ll manage the same in Germany, but that should not be a problem, as the true fans will worship this band without any chart entries already. Musically they still play the Heavy/Gothic Metal with doomy/melancholic influences, some sort of best of of the third and fourth album of the Finns, just Germanized.
Despite the mostly measured tempo the power of three guitars always comes through, bearing wonderful melodies, giving the right surroundings to the at times a bit odd, yet still very deep lyrics about melancholy, solitude and death. And the place of the band also can be seen in the fact that they managed to enlist quite established names as guest musicians, first of all Tuomas Holopainen (keyboards, NIGHTWISH), plus Eicca Toppinen (cello, APOCALYPTICA) and Tapio Wilska (Death vocals, FINNTROLL, NATTVINDENS GRAT).
The opener “Trauerkleid“ sets the mood for the following 50 minutes, slow-paced, with the so typical melodies and a super catchy chorus, add to that Timo’s very melodic voice, this is fun! Right after ”Nyt On Mies!“ (what ever this is supposed to mean), more doomy and lugubrious, with the Death vocals of Wilska in the chorus, and then the brilliant title track with its folky influence, a hymn to the Finnish home, the “hard country”, a little masterpiece written by A.P. Sarjanto, research on the internet revealed that he is a Finnish solo artist, great song!
„Zeit Der Steigenden Säfte“ (odd title, I know) starts and ends with Eicca Toppinen’s cello, which gives the song a very warm sound, before the riffs get heavier as contrast to Timo’s empathetic vocals, very intense song. Overall TIMO RAUTIAINEN & TRIO NISKALAUKAUS are a very intense and altogether, I would say, pretty unique experience that you can only insufficiently put into words.
Who could I compare the band with? Only itself and nobody else. That alone should be enough to check this band out and I have no problems repeating myself: These Finns are cult! (Online June 14, 2005)