Any of you out there with a love of the kind of fuzzed-up, psychedelic hard rock that sounds like the musicians have never left the late 1960’s are in for a treat with this self-titled release from Seremonia. The only element that may prove a bit of a drawback is that the lyrics are all in the band’s native Finnish, unless you speak the language and then you’ll probably have a whale of a time.
But not understanding the lyrics isn’t a barrier when it comes to enjoying the tripped-out grooves that Seremonia deliver so effortlessly. Indeed, within two seconds of first track proper ‘Uhrijuhla’ it’s quite obvious that Seremonia have worshipped at the altar of Black Sabbath – or Geezer Butler to be more precise – and other similar bands of the era, and after one listen the song’s incessant proto-metal stomp will be so ingrained in your cranium that you’ll be too busy jiggling your bell-bottoms to worry about what’s being said.
The psychedelic vibe is heightened for lead single ‘Rock ‘N’ Rollin’ Maailma’ which brings to mind the Iron Butterfly classic ‘In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida’ with its main riff, but once the band up the pace for the rocking ‘Kosminen Ruumisvaunu’ you can’t help but recall Deep Purple’s ‘Fireball’.
It may seem like comparing the band and the songs to stuff that has gone before is a bit unfair, but when playing this retro style of rock it comes with the territory and it isn’t to the band’s detriment at all. In fact, to emulate the vibe of many of those classic recordings is something that many try but few achieve, but Seremonia seem to have done it on their first go. Maybe having a female vocalist singing in Finnish is enough of a difference to mark the band out but even so, they also have the musical chops to make a damn fine album full of some of the most convincing heavy rock (not metal) around. Great stuff.