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For the first time ever, goth-rockers Lacrimas Profundere made it over to the land of a thousand lakes. It seems the band had not paid a huge amount of attention to the country from where their musical style actually originated, until now. On a short tour that brought them to Tampere, Jyväskylä and Helsinki, it would be a test to see how their music went down with the Finns. We were in attendance in Tampere for you.
Their first concert in Finland, and as a headliner even, was certainly no easy task for Lacrimas Profundere, especially when you have a band like To/Die/For as support act. To/Die/For, who are known and loved in their native Finland, made little sense to me as a support band for the Germans, as the main draw for the audience was obviously To/Die/For. This was strongly demonstrated in Tampere, where the room was full for To/Die/For, but subdued and smaller during Lacrimas Profundere.
The location in Tampere is definitely worth mentioning; well-laid out with a large terrace, where you could take a cooling break until late in the evening from the poorly-ventilated club. With a beautiful view of the Tammerkoski and Koskipuisto, the terrace offered rest and relaxation. The venue within was spacious but there wasn´t a huge amount of room for the band on the small stage.
The show kicked off at around 23.00 with To/Die/For. The band played from their newest album Samsara, but also mixed in numerous older songs. Guitarist Antza was deeply lost in his playing and visibly savoured the opportunity to be in action again, while bassist Esa and guitarist Juppe came across calmer. Singer Jape poured his entire passion into the songs and performance, holding the audience in a trance with his mere presence. To/Die/For led a great show from start to finish; despite the small stage, they took every opportunity to move around, and Jape seemed to enjoy clambering on the monitors while trying not to lose his balance. The obligatory songs "Hollow Heart" and Iggy Pop cover "Cry for Love" were of course also played. Unfortunately, the sound was atrocious; in parts you couldn´t make anything out in the din and the microphone crackled constantly. Therefore, in terms of sound quality it was one of the worst gigs I´ve ever heard. Fortunately that wasn´t the case in Helsinki, where everything was mixed perfectly, and ignoring the illness-weakened vocals was one of the best concerts of the band I´ve seen.
After a quick changeover period, Lacrimas Profundere took to the stage. At the beginning, the gentlemen had to be content with very few spectators. I´m not sure, but I think they prefer playing on bigger stages, rather than being so close to their fans: in any case that was the impression. Unfortunately the sound wasn´t any better for Lacrimas Profundere and so we had to just accept the noise. Those who didn´t have any earplugs definitely came away with tinnitus (I must also get used to my hearing damage for the next couple of days). The guys around singer Rob played quite a few new songs from their new album Antiadore, which more or less went down well, although "My Release In Pain" got the biggest response. The end part of the concert dragged a bit as the songs chosen were perhaps not the best. Singer Rob attempted to loosen the reserved Finnish crowd with jokes, but he´s not really an entertainer and as always, swallowed the microphone more than he actually spoke into it.
It was also the case with these guys that the Helsinki concert was a thousand times better than Tampere, until the poor song choice near the end, which resulted in people here to leave early as well. That said, the Munich-based lads put on a great show. As a special guest, the long-term fans were treated to a return of the previous singer Christopher Schmid, who seemed to drunkenly growl into the microphone, but had fun nevertheless.
The little tour of Finland seems to have been successful, at least in the beginning and I think Lacrimas Profundere can be happy with the feedback. Whether they actually are happy remains to be seen in whether or not they return to Finland again in the near future.