URBAN TALE live 14/9/01
Arabia-Hall, Pop/Jazz Conservatory, Helsinki Finland

This was one of the gigs I had been waiting for, as I saw Urban Tale play an acoustic cover gig before and there they convinced me how professional they are and I left waiting to see them play a real gig with their own songs. I had never been in this conservatory before, though have lived in the neighbourhood a few years back, so it was in a bit difficult place to find and me and Kari arrived a bit late because of it. Funny to say late, as the gig was supposed to start at 8 pm already!

The band had not yet begun to play when we entered the room at about 8.05, but the place was full of people. And what kind of people? Almost everyone wearing suites and fine clothes..I felt myself like I don't belong in here wearing my usual black clothes. But hey, they're practical when you run around in the smudgy metal clubs I'm used to going to!

I knew this wasn't the ordinary gig I'm used to going to of course. And the other unusual thing was everyone was sitting! I remember the gigs in the middle '80'ies when people sat in them and it's still like that with the more sophisticated music circles, where headbangers don't break every chair on their way!

Finally the guys came on "stage" (on the floor actually, as the crowd was sitting above them looking down) and the sounds just hit me. It's been a while since I've been in a concert like this with these awesome soundsystems. But this was expected knowing what this place is. The songs they played were probably the whole self-titled album, which I bought after the show! I had only heard one song before, which is "King Of Hearts" from the Union 4-sampler.

The songs on the album are: "The Devil In Me", "Passion Takes Over", "Circus", "King Of Hearts" (it has been my favourite since I heard it the first time), "One Day (I'll Make You Mine)" ( a beautiful ballad), "Runaway Train", "Engine", "Broken Chains", "On The Edge" (another slow but interesting one), "Doris Day", "Water" (though I can't remember them playing it), a hidden track and then they played their first ever written song, name of which escapes from me now.

Most of the Urban Tale songs are really soft and commercial, so it was kind of hard for me to adjust to the situation as I'm used to listening to power metal. [Ahh, we'll try to make a wimp out of ya! - The rest of the staff] But I also listen to pop and some death metal, so I can honestly say when I'm listening to this band with my softer side that this band really works ! And they should too as they've even studied music.

The show, and it was a real show, was really entertaining as the singer Kimmo Blom must be the biggest clown including my cousins and Kari that I've ever known. But I mean it in a good way. He was lifting the microphone stand as he would be lifting weights and acted like it would be too heavy for him, tried to do some stretching with his tight leather pants, danced around the stage foolishly, told the crowd to buy 3 cd's instead of one in case one gets lost in the vacuum cleaner (!!) and so on. I couldn't help but wonder where does this guy get all this humour from! I've never had such a blast, I was still smiling a few hours after the show! Then Kimmo surprised us with singing a line of "La Donna E' Mobile". The singer of Stratovarius told me this guy can sing anything. I did notice that during the gig.

There were a few slight mistakes from all of the guys, but no one is perfect. The show lasted for an hour and a half, so I was really pleased not getting a "quickie" [Hey...AOR guys don't disappoint! :) -The male AOR-E staff]. And besides, how often do you get to see as great a band as UT for free ! Not that I'm that poor but you know...

Among the crowd we spotted our ex-President Martti Ahtisaari, which was kind of weird to be lost in a place where these kind of people go to. His son is a bassist, so maybe the interests come through him. The whole show was taped, so maybe we'll get to hear something later on from this show on the UT website. The addie is:


If you're going to UK check out: GODS, Wigan, Lancs, November 3rd. Who knows when we'll see this band in Finland or elsewhere next.

By Satu Reunanen, .