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Barren Earth

Barren Earth Photo

Band Photo: Barren Earth (?)

From: Helsinki, Finland
Last Known Status: Active

Latest Barren Earth News

Below is our complete Barren Earth news coverage, including columns and articles pertaining to the band. Some articles listed may be indirectly related, such as side projects of the band members, etc.

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Barren Earth Issues Album Update

Finland’s progressive death metal act Barren Earth has entered Helsinki’s Sonic Pump Studios to record the follow-up to last year’s debut album, "Curse of the Red River" (reviewed here).

The band has written 12 new songs, and is currently laying them down with engineer/co-producer Jukka Varmo. Dan Swanö (Katatonia/Opeth) will once again be at the mixing helm. A video report from the studio is also available here. Barren Earth has now commented on the new album:

"The tracks mainly continue in the vein of the previous record, having perhaps even more 70’s prog influences, but maintaining the basic heaviness and brutality one has come to associate with Barren Earth. The album is due for release in autumn 2011 on Peaceville Records, and the artwork will be made by Paul Romano (Mastodon, etc.). Studio reports will be updated at Barren Earth's Facebook page which you can follow here."

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Barren Earth Posts Studio Video Report

Barren Earth announced yesterday that the band had entered the studio to record its next full-length album, and the first studio report can be read at this location. The band has also now posted the first video clip from the studio, which can be viewed below.

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Barren Earth Recording New Album

Finnish progressive death metal act Barren Earth is currently in the studio recording the follow-up to 2010's "Curse of the Red River" (reviewed here). Keyboardist Kasper Mårtenson has now checked in with the following extensive recording update:

"And so it is that the ’super-group’, darling of the critics, Finnish Metal Expo’s Newcomer of the Year 2010 as well as the winner of Metal Storm’s Best Debut Album 2010, Barren Earth, has once again entered the studio. Our first venture into the realms of audio recording took place back in 2008, when we went in to cut our first (and only) demo. Summer 2009 saw the recording of our debut album, The Curse of the Red River, which was released in April last year. Since then, we’ve played quite a few shows, most notably in North America, where we did 28 dates earlier this year. The material played live has consisted of material from the album (as well as the Our Twilight EP, recorded in conjunction with the album), but new material has steadily been written, and now the time has come for those new tracks to be properly recorded. In other words, Barren Earth’s Studio Escapade Number 3 has commenced!

"All in all there are 12 new tracks. It is as of yet unclear which tracks will make the final album, but the aim is certainly to record all of them. The oldest of these tunes was rehearsed already at the end of 2009. Since then, the stream of new songs has been flowing steadily. New songs have emerged, but they have been subject to constant alterations. There have been all kinds of changes: the order of riffs has changed, specific notes have been altered, there have been structural shifting, verses have been added, omitted, re-added, re-omitted, only to be added once again. But this is only one aspect of the changes which have occurred. Also the titles have been in a perpetual state of metamorphosis. More...

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Barren Earth Live Footage Posted Online

A video clip has been posted online of Barren Earth performing the song "Forlorn Waves" live at the Opera House in Toronto, Canada. You can check out the footage below.

Metalunderground.com also recently conducted an interview with Barren Earth's Kasper Martenson about the band's recent North American tour. You can check out the interview here.

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Barren Earth Comments On Recent Tour Dates

Finnish prog/death metal ensemble Barren Earth has wrapped up the band’s first ever North American tour, the “Finnish Metal Tour 2,” in February and March. The group was also awarded “Newcomer of the Year” at the Finnish Metal Awards and “Debut of the Year” at the Metal Storm Awards.

Barren Earth bassist, Olli-Pekka Laine, stated, "Barren Earth’s first tour happened recently in US and Canada. Besides the good times we had among the group members and the other bands on the bill, it was fantastic to sense the positive vibrations from audiences all over North America. When we entered the stage to play the first gig in Orlando, we really didn't know what to expect. But since then, until the last show in Raleigh, audiences didn't let us down even once. I truly hope that the feeling was mutual. Thanks to all the people who appeared at the gigs!

"During the tour we found out that Barren Earth has been ranked to the #1 newcomer of the year in Finnish Metal Awards. That evening we had a real reason to do some epic celebration... Another day we received an e-mail from our manager, where he told that our first album Curse of the Red River has won the Best Debut Album category in our Metal Storm Awards 2010. Another good reason to throw up an insane party! More...

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Barren Earth Posts Final Road Report

Keyboardist Kasper Martenson of Finnish act Barren Earth has checked in with the following final road report from the band's recent North American shows with Rotten Sound and Finntroll:

"Last week somebody knocked on the door of the bus. It was a drunken man who was looking for his friend. We heard that this missing friend was dressed merely in a Finnish flag, and didn’t speak any English. We were asked if this friend was in the bus. He wasn’t. We were asked if we’d seen him. We hadn’t. We were then asked to tell this lost friend, should we see him, to go to the venue. Since the lost friend didn’t speak any English, I don’t know how we were expected to accomplish this. Anyway, this man came over again and again, drunkenly slurring exactly the same things. The point of irritation was reached, after which we chose to ignore him and locked the door.

"A bit later there was somebody at the door again. Peering out the window into the dark night, I saw a figure of a shirtless man, who had a cloth of sorts around his head. ‘Oh, no! It’s the missing friend of the annoying person. This is trouble!’ I refused to open the door, and went back to the lounge. As the knocking continued louder than before, I returned to the door window to have a second look. And then it dawned upon me. It was not the missing friend, but Mathias from Finntroll returning from their gig, with a towel wrapped around his head, shivering in the cold, wondering why I had refused to open the door for him. I had a bit of explaining to do…

"After Philadelphia, the 3 remaining shows were Springfield in Virginia, and Charlotte and Raleigh in North Carolina. It seems to be very hard for us to make decisions. In Springfield our playing time was scheduled for 19:45-20:15. At 19:38 we were told that we could start right away, if we wanted to play for 7 extra minutes. We decided to start right away, but by the time we had eventually agreed upon which would be the extra song, it was already 19:44…

"In Charlotte, the posters for the gig announced not 4 but 5 bands, the fifth being Moonsorrow. Weird, that, since obviously Moonsorrow would not be appearing. Even weirder, considering that Barren Earth’s only official member of Moonsorrow, Marko, had left for Europe the previous day, handing the drumsticks over to Finntroll’s Beast Dominator. Though very different in style compared with Marko, he played very well, and the gig went smoothly. We even did a record for the amount of CDs sold per gig. Well done, Beasty D! More...

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Barren Earth Gets Tattoos And Lets The Bus Burn

Finland's Barren Earth has checked in with the following 14th part of the band's North American road report, which again includes ever more bus problems:

"On Saturday morning we arrived in Manhattan, New York. We parked in front of the venue, the Gramercy Theater, only to find that the evening’s headliners were billed as Flinntroll. Perhaps Gramercy Theatre was expecting to host the Flinnish Metal Tour?

"Another prestigious city and venue, the New York gig stood out as one of the more memorable shows of the tour. An extremely supportive audience with people singing along to the lyrics, and in some cases even along to the guitar solos, made us feel right at home.

"After New York we drove a bit norther up to Worcester, Massachusetts, where we played at the Palladium. The Palladium has two venues, a small one and a big one. This package of ours was booked to the smaller one. In retrospect this was perhaps a mistake, since the show was sold out, and there were loads of people left without a ticket. The people who did get in proved to be the most energetic crowd so far.

"As has been established in this diary earlier, this trip has left little room for watersports of any kind. Yet in Worcester the gig proved to be a complete diving and surfing feast. Stage-diving and crowd-surfing, that is. Even though we have had the occasional mosh pit during some performances, this is an activity mainly reserved for the other bands on the bill, since our music has lots of mid-paced and lighter moments. But this didn’t seem to hinder the Worcestrians, to whom our gig was the perfect excuse for incessant stage-diving and crowd-surfing. Even in the quieter moments, there seemed to be an ever-flowing stream of enthusiasts surfing towards the stage, from where they then proceeded to stage-dive back to the audience. Bizarre, but a lot of fun, and a particularly high-level energy gig for us. Surfin’ USA, indeed.

"After Worcester, we were to be moving southwards for the remaining 4 dates. After having played a gig per day for two weeks, it was time for a well-deserved day off. On Monday morning, as we had just arrived in Philadelphia, we heard for the umpteenth time that there had been trouble with (surprise, surprise) the bus. Luckily for us, it was the other bus. During the night, the passengers had been awakened to the shouts of ‘The engine is on fire! Get out of the bus!’ Indeed, the motor had caught fire, the fire department and police were there, things had been chaotic, and they had been stranded at some gas station. On Monday morning they were still somewhere in Massachusetts. More...

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Barren Earth Posts New Tour Report

Finland's Barren Earth has checked in from the band's North American tour again with a new road report. You can check out the report below.

"…and then it was time for Canada, again. This time we were in the eastern part of Canada; the Province of Ontario and the city of Toronto. The Toronto gig took place at a venue called the Opera House. During this tour I’ve been constantly referred to as Kasper the Friendly Ghost by the drum technician John. I do not mind this. However, in Toronto I made it clear that the ghost references would have to be upgraded. As we were at the Opera House, I was to be referred to as the Phantom of the Opera. To stress this point, I played a bit of good ol’ Andrew Lloyd Webber with high volume on the keyboards in the echoing auditorium.

"Later on, we learned of the grim history of the Opera House. The building had actually functioned as a real Opera house earlier. But a tragic fire with numerous victims had put an end to the activities. Indeed, one could still smell smoke in the corridors. In addition to this, we heard rumours that the house was haunted. But walking down the corridors, I did not meet my phantom colleague. And maybe that was for the best.

"As the conditions in the tour bus are often quite cramped, there is a danger of getting a bit claustrophobic. The perfect cure for claustrophobia presented itself in Toronto on a visit to the CN Tower. The CN Tower looms 553 metres high in the centre of Toronto, and offers great views of the surrounding area. As it was a sunny day, one could really see far. An additional bonus was the glass floor. Walking on a glass floor on an altitude of 342 metres, whilst looking down, truly removed every symptom of claustrophobia. On the other hand, it did introduce a whole range of symptoms of vertigo…

"Midway through the first song in Quebec City, the audience started to applaud for no apparent reason. Upon watching the performance later on video, the reason became clear. Unbeknownst to us at the time, Mikko’s microphone had been muted, and the vocals became audible only in the middle of the song. That, if any, is a perfect reason for applause, and had we realized at the time what had happened, we would’ve probably applauded too.

"It was a very good thing that the three last Canadian shows (Toronto, Quebec City, and Montreal) took place towards the latter part of the tour, since the venues were the biggest, and the audiences the most enthusiastic so far. It was good to have been playing more or less the same set for weeks before entering concert situations of this magnitude. The concert in Montreal in particular, with its 2000-seat auditorium almost full, was most exhilarating. More...

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Barren Earth Video Interview Available

Skullsnbones.com has posted a video interview online with Kasper Martenson of Finnish progressive death metal act Barren Earth, which was conducted at the Gramercy Theater in New York City on February 26th, 2011. You can check out the clip below.


Find more videos like this on SkullsNBones Heavy Metal Social Network & Blog


Barren Earth also recently checked in with a new road report from the band's North American tour, which can be read here.

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Barren Earth Posts 12th Tour Diary

Finnish progressive death metal act Barren Earth is currently on the road in North America for tour dates alongside Rotten Sound and Finntroll. The band has now checked in with the following 12th entry of the band's tour diary:

"On Saturday morning we were approaching Chicago. The mood in the lounge of the bus was one of impatience, as once more the toilet door had gotten jammed. About 20 minutes earlier the driver had said that we were 20 minutes away from our destination. But as we were only in the outskirts of the city and the traffic was heavy, it was obvious that it would take more than 20 minutes (and had, in fact, already taken). To make matters worse, a bit later both buses happened to drive down a narrow street, only to find that we were facing a bridge too low for us to go under. We had no choice but to reverse back the way we came from, and try to find space for turning around. Just to make it clear: reversing a bus on a narrow street, accompanied by honking horns and abuse from road-raged drivers whilst desperately needing to use the toilet is not the ideal way to enter Chicago for the first time. But on this particular morning, this was the type of entry that fate had bestowed upon us, and who are we to act in defiance of fate?

"On a more positive note, the show at Reggie’s Rock Club, Chicago was sold out. Unfortunately, some people who had come specifically to see us, were left outside. If it was any consolation, we did give them our autographs; with our shaky handwriting.

"As Chicago is a city of blues, as well as the city of The Blues Brothers, we decided to go listening to some blues. We had no idea where to find a good blues club. But somebody pointed out that maybe, just maybe, one could find blues at The House Of Blues. And we did, courtesy of the excellent Jimmy Burns Band.

"Upon returning to our bus, we heard strange news: some people in our entourage were to change buses. Stories relating to buses on this journey would deserve a blog of their own. Both buses have been constantly experiencing technical problems, buses have been exchanged, drivers have been changed, sometimes voluntarily, sometimes involuntarily, and now this. For various reasons, some people from the ‘party bus’ had aspirations to move to the ‘silent bus’ and vice versa. As a result, our bus currently consists of Barren Earth, Rotten Sound, 4/6 of Finntroll and the drum tech, while the other bus consists of Ensiferum, 2/6 of ‘Troll, and the rest of the crew. Can you, o reader, guess which one is the ‘party bus’?

"In Detroit we had the pleasure of doing a bit of sight-seeing with a friend of Mikko’s as our guide, although sight-seeing is perhaps not the best word to describe it, since the heavy snowfall meant very low visibility. But at least we could feel the city. Detroit seemed like a ghost town, as we drove around the abandoned houses of the city on Sunday, amid the ever-present snowfall. We were taken to see the Heidelberg Project, which is an outdoors art installation. Gloomy, sullen and even macabre, but impressive nonetheless. More...

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Barren Earth Checks In From The Road

Barren Earth is currently touring North America in support of the band's latest album "Curse of the Red River." The band has checked in from the tour with the following road report:

"We brought our own backdrop for this tour, but we’ve only used it once. This is because putting it up and taking it down in such difficult and tightly scheduled circumstances has proven to be too much of a hassle. In fact, no band on this tour has a backdrop, but ‘Ferum and ‘Troll use a certain type of screen onto which visual effects are projected. We and Rotten Sound also use this screen, by projecting our own respective logos onto it. It doesn’t look as good as the real thing, but it is better than nothing. The projector is quite easy to operate, but there has been the odd technical blip. For example, in Regina there might have been confusion as to who was performing, as Rotten Sound were blasting away against a Barren Earth-logo projected in the background…

"Snow seems to be ubiquitous on this tour. In Winnipeg the snowstorm was so heavy, that entering the bus, and leaving a few minutes later, the falling snow had already completely covered the footprints. It was in this snowstorm that we entered the Canada-US border. Whereas the previous border crossing had been an easy affair, this time there seemed to suspicion about our traveling party. We had to wait quite a bit at the border station, as the guards checked our bus inside and out. A prevalent fear in the group was obviously: will they find it? This was of course a reference to the vegetables and fruits in our fridge, as it is forbidden to carry such items across the border. Upon returning to the bus, it was apparent that they had checked the bus quite thoroughly. Bunks had been tampered with, personal possessions had been investigated. Yet mysteriously, the bananas and onions were intact in the fridge. Maybe they weren’t searching for fruit and vegetables after all…

"The following morning in Annandale, Minnesota, our bus driver took us to visit his home, where his wife had prepared a ‘Finnish breakfast’. A delicious breakfast of the highest quality was served for whoever happened to be awake at 11.00 a.m. Our hostess had baked a Finnish pancake according to a recipe off the internet. The pancake was Finnish enough, i.e. very good. We did not dare mention that although the pancake was quite close to Finnish in taste and texture, it is not a food to be served in the breakfast table, but more as a dessert. But so tasty and savoury was this pancake that one starts to think maybe it is time that the Finns too learned that the best way to start a day is in fact just that, a pancake. And bring out the maple syrup, too. More...

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Headline News

Metalunderground.com's Best of 2010 Awards

The Grammys have been awarded, February is winding down, and we are officially late with our Best Of Year in Metal acknowledgments. So let's get to it. Like every year, I polled our diverse staff of metalheads to obtain their picks in several categories for 2010.

2010 was an interesting year in metal. Was it good? Yes. But not what one might expect at the outset. There were a lot of releases by big names, but most did not make the splash one would expect. Iron Maiden, Rob Zombie, Fear Factory, Dimmu Borgir, Dark Tranquility, and Living Sacrifice all put out decent albums, but nothing too bold or worth raving over. 2010 was one more year removed from the fading metalcore trend; a year in which we could savor thrash's second life, and melodic death metal is still living strong. When the trendiest things are a return to thrash and technical metal (despite losing much of its death metal influences), that's not too bad from a metal perspective.

It's hard to say 2010 was a year for the underground to shine. The true underground bands rarely get widely noticed. But there were quite a few lesser known bands making names for themselves and grabbing their fair share of attention last year. Why is this? Is it a sign of a changing of the guard in light of the aging greats, and perhaps despite the thrash revival? It's hard to say, but personally, I discovered a lot of new bands that I thoroughly enjoy, so I am all for continuing along this path.

Let's get down to the details and talk about those bands that made 2010 a solid year for heavy metal by announcing the Metalunderground.com staff picks for 2010. The staff picks include the following categories: Best Metal Album of 2010, Best Metal DVD of 2010, Best Metal Newcomer of 2010, Best Live Act of 2010, and Most Anticipated Release for 2011. More...

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Barren Earth Checks In From The Road

Finland's Barren Earth has checked in with the following update from the road on the band's current U.S. tour:

"The replacement bus seemed to be adequate enough. It was clean and smelled quite nice, which could not be said of the old one: 2 weeks on the road had taken its toll, and the sights and smells were not always pleasant anymore. Indeed, although us passengers have often complained about the buses, I am quite sure that the bus vehicles themselves, were they able to complain, would probably file a complaint or two towards us travelers, because there has been the occasional abuse, and negligence of common hygienic matters on our behalf. But since bus vehicles can not complain, what do we care!

"On Monday morning we were yet again at a standstill, this time somewhere in Montana. With luck, we would just have enough time to make it across the border and up to Calgary. Too tired to worry about buses and schedules anymore, it was nice to just observe the beautiful scenery while driving through the Rocky Mountains. Joe Walsh got it right: the Rocky Mountain Way really is ‘better than the way we had…’

"We finally reached the Canadian border. At Border Control the Customs Officer looked at my passport, and asked all kinds of questions, amongst them this one: ‘So do you play country music or hiphop, or are you a real musician?’ I said: ‘No country or hiphop for me, sir!’ He opened a drawer, reached for a delicate little pin with the Canadian flag, handed it over to me, and said: ‘Welcome to Canada!’ More...

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Barren Earth Issues New Road Report

Finnish progressive death metal act Barren Earth is currently embarked on a U.S. tour. The band has now checked in with the following new road report:

"The support bands on this tour don’t have their own mixer guy/girl. This means that we have to rely on the venues’ personnel to take care of our live sound. Even though we obviously can’t hear how we sound onstage, by all reports the sounds seem in general to have been quite good so far. But there was a certain venue where we were warned about the sound guy. It was said he couldn’t be trusted with a food mixer, let alone a sound mixing desk. But there was very little we could do about it, so we had to put up with him. Listening to the way he did the sounds for the next band, one could understand the complaints: the sound was truly rotten. But considering that the band in question was Rotten Sound, this was actually quite befitting.

"In Seattle we had connections of our own. Travel-weary rock musicians were provided refreshment, nourishment and sight-seeing by friends and relatives. We thank thee.

"Schedules on venues have in general been quite reliable, with the exception of Seattle. Two local support bands were running a bit late, and once we got our stuff onstage, there were a number of connection problems, the sources of which were seemingly impossible to locate. We had already passed our starting time, and were contemplating on having to omit songs from our set. This would’ve been a shame, since we are only playing for 30 minutes on most nights anyway. However, as the problems were finally resolved, the tour manager said we could play our whole set, if we ‘played it quick’. As a result, the Seattle gig was a hyperactive set, with tempos a bit faster than usual. It was actually quite fun. Maybe we should start playing speed metal.

"After having travelled from the furthest southeast to the furthest northwest of the US, Canada beckoned. But there were one or two issues hampering with our travel plans.

"The travel distances on this tour are quite long. The bus usually starts for the next destination at around 4 a.m., and arrives at the venue around noon or later. So, as one wakes up in the morning, one can expect the bus to still be in motion. (Obviously some of us do not wake up before the afternoon or even later. Don’t know why. Maybe it’s the jet lag...) But on too many a morning the bus has prematurely stopped. And this is because our bus has been beset with numerous technical problems from the word go. It seems that we have been unlucky in our choice of vehicle, since the problems just keep on appearing. More...

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Barren Earth Posts New Road Report

Finnish progressive death metal act Barren Earth is currently on tour in the U.S. The band has posted the following road report online detailing recent shows:

"After the Ft. Worth gig, it was yet again time for a day off. This time it was deliberate and not because of cancellations due to weather conditions. The free day was spent in El Paso, Texas. On our way into El Paso, Mikko said he’d really want a shower. I agreed. After inhaling the odour emanating from him, I could only concur with his sentiment. I, too, wanted Mikko to have a shower.

"Finnish names are often difficult for foreign people. So far, there have been no serious errors, but one misspelling seems to pop up repeatedly, and that is Janne Perttilä being spelled as Janne Pertilla. He likes this. We all like it. Not least because it has a certain tex-mex vibe to it. Pertilla, after all, is not that far away from tortilla. Considering this, it really is no surprise that on this sojourn it is Janne Pertilla who has excelled in spotting Mexican restaurants. In El Paso, he led us to Julio’s. This place was nothing short of excellent. Well, it had to be, because upon perusing the menu, it was discovered that Julio’s is endorsed by Jack Nicholson. And that is the only endorsement a restaurant really needs.

"As it was Superbowl Sunday, Julio’s had a special offer on giant Margheritas for 3$. No disrespect towards American Football, but we weren’t really bothered with the televised Superbowl, as we were occupied with ‘superbowls’ of our own. More...

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Barren Earth Advised Not To Mess With Texas

Finnish progressive death metal super group Barren Earth has checked in with the following report from the band's current North American tour:

"In Texas, the musical reference of the day was the Jimmie Rodgers song, T For Texas (probably better known as the version by Lynyrd Skynyrd). And as it was freezing cold, I decided to have just that, a T. Preferably Twining’s Earl Grey or English Breakfast. But it was just then that the clock hit noon, and despite the snow, the weather started getting really warm. By the time we reached Ft. Worth, the temperature was reasonably high, and our winter coats could be abandoned, at least for the time being.

"It really is a magnificent PR stunt Mother Nature has supported this tour with. Surely it cannot be a coincidence that the route of the Finnish Metal Tour 2 matches quite closely that of the recent meteorological phenomenon referred to here as the ‘Arctic Blast’. But as with any publicity stunt, there are limits, and what with the cancelled gigs, I think old Mother Earth might have been pushing it a tad too far. But Ft. Worth was great. The gig was the best of the tour so far, as this time certain members of the audience were there specifically to see us, some of them even having driven for hours to get there.

"This showed in the overall vibe of the gig, and ‘twas but a pleasure. Earlier in the day, Oppu decided he needed to hang his bed sheets on a clothesline. As there actually weren’t any clotheslines available, a Dodge pick-up truck parked nearby had to do. Neatly spreading the sheets over the truck’s hood, they were bound to get the airing they demanded. But this was not quite to happen. Upon returning to the site later on, the pick-up truck was still there, but the sheets weren’t. Baffled and bemused, he went inside the tour bus, only to find a lady wearing a coat which looked suspiciously the same as Oppu’s blanket. Allegations were made that this lady had taken Oppu’s sheets to meet her own sartorial tastes. But after a while it came clear, that this was not so. The jacket indeed was her own, and would remain so in the future, too. The mystery of the missing bed sheets was finally resolved, when they were eventually found in a garbage bin close by, having presumably been taken there by the owner of the truck. More...

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Barren Earth Issues New Road Report

Finnish progressive death metal act Barren Earth is currently embarked on a North American tour, and you can check out the band's first tour diary here. The group has now checked in with the following new road report:

"The other day back in Louisville, Kentucky, the culinaristic choice of the day was a Chinese restaurant. We were served by a friendly Chinese woman, and the atmosphere was nice. There were, however, problems with communication, since her Chinese accent, combined with a heavy Southern dialect made her speech virtually incomprehensible to us. As a result of this, although me and Marko ordered exactly the same dish, we got two distinctly different portions. But the food was good. The waiter was also in a humorous mode, and was constantly joking. We didn’t understand the jokes, but she was laughing, so I’m sure they were funny.

"In Kentucky, the musical reference of the day was obviously Bill Monroe’s classic ‘Blue Moon of Kentucky’. But we didn’t see a blue moon, nor a moon of any other colour. With the absence of gloves, the only thing blue towards the end of the day were our fingers..

"With the cancellation of the Tulsa gig, our route was changed so that we would be spending the day off in Jackson, Mississippi. Although the cancellation was unfortunate, this new bit of routing did provide me with the chance of being able to sing, ‘I’m goin’ to Jackson…’, and that really felt quite cool.

"The day in Ridgewood, Jackson was uneventful. What was notable was the lack of pedestrian paths. It seems that the transport method of choice around here is to drive a car. Many of these places are clearly not designed with the walking citizen in mind. And so our pedestrian group of Finnish rockers was regularly accompanied by honking horns, as we staggered on the busy streets, trying desperately to avoid the menacing Ford pick-up trucks hurdling by. More...

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Barren Earth Cancels Tulsa Show

Finnish progressive death metal act Barren Earth has issued the following announcement about the band's Tulsa tour date being canceled due to weather conditions:

"Damned weather! It looks like tomorrow's show in Tulsa, Oklahoma is being canceled because of the harsh conditions the blizzard is bringing. The way from Louisville to Tulsa is just too dangerous and the roads are closed. We'll be back soon!"

Barren Earth also recently posted a tour blog online from the band's North American shows, which can be found here.

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Barren Earth Checks In From The Road

Finland's Barren Earth is currently on tour in North America. The band has now checked in with the following report from the road:

"And so we have arrived in the New World. Our venture started on Sunday morning. Meeting fellow countrymen, Rotten Sound, at Helsinki-Vantaa Airport, we embarked on our flight. In the plane I was sat next to an elderly lady, who as it transpired was suffering from a severe allergy of wheat, known as the celiac disease.

"During the flight I was incessantly provided with information on her allergy to the very minutest detail, including diarrhoeatic symptoms and whatnot. I found out more than would’ve been necessary. On the other hand, I am now rather well educated on the subject of wheat allergy…

"Despite assurances from Mikko that the flight would have no limitations as regarding the serving of free alcohol, this proved not to be the case. Having been served free beer with the on-flight lunch, Mikko was dismayed to have his further requests of free-of-charge booze turned down. Now the steward demanded payment! But Mikko was not taken aback by this. Ever the resourceful chap that he is, he quickly produced a bottle of tax-free Finlandia of his own, which he had stashed away.

"By this time the seemingly endless lecture on the celiac disease was taking its toll on me. What the situation clearly demanded was a drink of vodka and coke. I handed a paper cup over to Mikko and requested for a helping of Finlandia. Mikko generously filled over half of the cup. Though I appreciated the gesture as such, it quickly proved to be hazardous for the paper cup, which obviously was not designed to withhold liquids of this type. As the cup was literally falling apart in front of my very eyes, and as the vodka was visibly trickling down from the bottom of the cup , there was no choice but to down the drink in one gulp. So, what was originally intended to be a relaxing, savory drinking moment, turned out to be a quick and heady shot instead. But it did make the ongoing wheat allergy-lecture a notch or two less unbearable.

"At JFK, another type of vodka-and-coke-dilemma presented itself to the lads of Rotten Sound. Before checking in for our connecting flight to Orlando, they realized they had virtually a whole bottle of Finlandia to dispose of. Unallowed to bring the bottle on board (Bring-Your-Own-Bottle not being a policy recognized by the Airline Regulations Commission), it had to either be consumed on the spot, or thrown away. Time was running. Decisions were having to be made. The choice was clear: n for monthsot a single drop of Finlandia was to be wasted. Mixing the vodka with modest amounts of Coke Zero, Rotten Sound provided our traveling party welcoming/farewell drinks to JFK. Given that the amount of Coke was significantly smaller than that of the booze itself, the drink was almost transparent, with only the tiniest hint of brown. This gave a whole new meaning to ’Coke Zero’, as in proportion to the vodka, the amount of Coke was indeed quite close to zero. More...

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Barren Earth Updates North American Tour

Oppu Laine, bassist and founding member of Barren Earth (ex-Amorphis) has issued the following commented on the band's North American tour:

"I have to say that I am totally stoked about the upcoming tour in North America with Barren Earth. Not only because this is our first tour in the U.S. and Canada, but also because it's our first full tour altogether. We've done some gigs in Finland and it's been really great, but never a full tour. Touring five weeks with Barren Earth and all the other cool bands on the bill must be an absolute test… but I just cannot wait!! So, get yer asses to the shows and witness some of the greatest actual Finnish metal acts alive. See you and let's get cursed!!"

The updated list of tour dates is as follows:

Jan 31, 2011 - Orlando, FL @ The Club at Firestone
Feb 1, 2011 - Atlanta, GA @ The Masquerade
Feb 2, 2011 - Louisville, KY @ Headliner's Music Hall
Feb 3, 2011 - Tulsa, OK @ Marquee
Feb 4, 2011 - Austin, TX @ Emo's
Feb 5, 2011 - Ft. Worth, TX @ Tomcats
Feb 7, 2011 - Tempe, AZ @ Clubhouse
Feb 8, 2011 - Los Angeles, CA @ Key Club
Feb 9, 2011 - Santa Ana, CA @ Galaxy Theatre
Feb 10, 2011 - San Francisco, CA @ DNA Lounge
Feb 11, 2011 - Portland, OR @ Hawthorne Theatre
Feb 12, 2011 - Seattle, WA @ El Corazon
Feb 14, 2011 - Calgary, AB @ The Republik
Feb 15, 2011 - Edmonton, AB @ Starlite Room
Feb 16, 2011 - Regina, SK @ The Exchange
Feb 17, 2011 - Winnipeg, MB @ The Osbourne Village Inn
Feb 18, 2011 - Minneapolis, MN @ Station 4
Feb 19, 2011 - Chicago, IL @ Reggie's Rock Club
Feb 20, 2011 - Detroit, MI @ Blondie's
Feb 21, 2011 - Cleveland, OH @ Peabody's
Feb 22, 2011 - Toronto, ON @ Opera House
Feb 23, 2011 - Quebec City, QC @ Imperial de Quebec
Feb 24, 2011 - Montreal, QC @ Metropolis
Feb 25, 2011 - Rochester, NY @ Montage Music Hall
Feb 26, 2011 - New York, NY @ Gramercy Theatre
Feb 27, 2011 - Worcester, MA @ The Palladium
Mar 1, 2011 - Philadelphia, PA @ The Trocadero
Mar 2, 2011 - Springfield, VA @ Jaxx
Mar 3, 2011 - Charlotte, NC @ The Casbah
Mar 4, 2011 - Raleigh, NC @ Volume 11

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