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Canadians and heavy metal
Written by Tommi on 27.07.2009 14:45:23
I used to think Manowar was brilliant. Not so much because I liked the music, but more because it was a perfect litmus test for testing how good a given person's grasp on reality is, judging by the amount of seriousness he or she had in her relationship with the band.
I had always trusted that the dudes in the band were in it to conduct a massive social experiment and to lovingly make fun of the hordes of METAL WARRIORS following them. That they were "in on the joke".
However it's becoming painfully apparent that the band and their crew seem to have been starting to take Manowar far too seriously lately, jugding from the way they acted last month at Provinssirock with their over-extended soundchecks, demands of lower volume levels for other acts on the main stage, demands of a whopping amount of extra PA and that their backline should be left in it's place for the whole day - leaving some of the biggest acts in Finland a few ping-pong tables' worth of space to perform on. I don't want to go into too much hearsay detail as this is all 3rd hand knowledge, but from all people who were involved that day seem to have the same story: Manowar and their crew acted like spoiled rock star babies based purely on some lame-ass METAL WARRIOR -bullshit.
But enough about Manowar, I don't really care for them enough to spend 10 minutes writing about them. The only reason I brought them up was to bring some contrast to illustrate two very positive examples.
There's been two uniting factors in two of my most inspiring experiences of this spring / summer: Heavy metal and... Canada.
That's right! Canada. The country who's regional dialect of English is most often used in cartoons as the parlance of the slowest creatures (a glory reserved in Finnish for Turku). It's also home to THOR and ANVIL.
First off: Anvil. I'd claim that Anvil - The Story of Anvil bumped Spinal Tap off the list of must-see films for everyone who's ever played in a band quite simply because although it's as hilarious as Spinal Tap, Anvil The Movie is also one of the most touching movie experiences I've had in years. Now that I'm 30+ I find myself wondering quite often whether or not I should have given up this music nonsense years ago, but seeing these two guys just roughing it out in their fifties just because thrash metal was the only thing they loved with every bone in their body made me realise I've only just begun. I can't even begin to emphasize enough how much I recommend this flick to each and every one of y'all.
After being thoroughly impressed by Anvil on the silver screen, I was blown away by Jon Mikl Thor and his bandmates' zero bullshit attitude when they performed AMAZING sets at Levykauppa Äx and Pitkämies in June. Thor might not be the most commercially successful act out there, but come on, this guy's a legend and has been doing his thing since way before I was born! Most dudes like him couln't care less about spending a day playing shows in two small record stores in Finland, but Thor did it and I'm sure that everyone who showed up to witness it can agree that "half-assed" is not the first word that springs to mind. He put on a real show, bendin' steel and all!
All in all, these two bands pretty much restored my faith in the fact that heavy metal doesn't have to be ridiculous posing and bullshit attitudes. It can be fun and invigorating! I mean come on, there's nothing that's as far from dangerous, evil, powerful or scary as heavy metal in the 21st century. I just hope somebody would tell that to the pussies in Manowar.
Here's a few records we think you'd really enjoy (because we do)!