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Barren Earth Posts Final North American Road Report

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Band Photo: Barren Earth (?)

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!

"While learning our songs, Mr. Dominator wrote charts for every track. So now we have thorough drum charts for our songs. These could come in handy in the future, if ever we should happen to need a replacement drummer again. On the other hand, any drummer might have difficulty in understanding Beast’s mysterious code language: ‘vilauttaja-iskä’ for Floodred’s middle section, or ‘siltaputouskekkuli’ for the main riff of The Flame Of Serenity, to name a few. The former could be translated as ‘flasher daddy’; the latter is probably untranslatable to any language.

"For the sound check in Raleigh we noticed that Oppu was missing. Not to worry, as Ensiferum’s Pete stepped in on bass. For a brief moment the supergroup got even more super. The final show was a fitting finale for the tour, as there seemed to be a notably huge number of people who were well acquainted with things Barren. Quite a lot of singing along, as well as many BE T-shirts. Nice!

"There was a lot of onstage inter-band mingling, as both Oppu and Janne made a guest appearance during Finntroll’s encore. Exit the long-sleeved black collar shirts, enter the shades, bodypaints and party hats. A surprise treat for Americans and Finns alike.

"After the show, we drove to a hotel where we spent a few hours before leaving for the airport. Post-show activities included a radical, yet consensual reshaping of Mikko’s facial hair. As Sami aptly put it, the former gutter hobo-look made way for a trailer park hobo-look, with a hint of Lemmy Kilmister.

"Saying goodbye to all the other bands and crew, we then watched as the green bus drove away to the horizon. We were glad of never having to see it again. But we sure would hope to see America again.

"When we came here 5 weeks ago, we didn’t know what to expect. But although this tour was pretty much Ensiferum’s and Finntroll’s tour, it seems that we went down pretty well, too. (As did our friends Rotten Sound.)

"We had some great gigs, saw many a great sight, and met a lot of really cool people. Thanks to all who came to see the shows, and let us hope that in the not-too-distant-future Barren Earth shall return! Over and out."

The band's previously posted road report is also still available for viewing at this location.

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