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Maria Ja Marsialaiset - Pysy Hereilla album review

Experimental antics from Finnish garage rock polymaths

cover art for Maria Ja Marsialaiset PYSY HEREILLÄ

The spooky basement jams of Finnish psych-doom troubadours Seremonia have been a consistent thrill, and their frontwoman Noora Federley brings some of that cryptic, timewarped eccentricity to Maria Ja Marsialaiset’s gloriously loose and cool debut. But all four of the women here have varied musical histories across the Finnish alt/experimental/garage rock scenes, as well as a tasteful set of quirky, seldom-heard influences that lend Pysy Hereillä (‘Stay Awake’) a beguilingly exotic quality. The eight pointed, infectious songs on this 27-minute LP weave together wisps of ragged glam stomp, Finnish boogie, stoner doom and punk. There’s a first-take spontaneity to the performances and a nice warm heft to the production, but the vocals are something else altogether. Comprising impassioned blues wails, eerie harmonies, throaty rock snarls and declamatory passages of storytelling, the powerful, unrestrained all-Finnish singing nudges this album towards greatness.