Usually, when I hear of a band coming out of Finland, my first thought is one of the ten thousand metal subgenres. How interesting it was, then, to learn of heavy punk outfit FM2000 and their seventh full-length album Hubba Bubba Rehab which was released October 13 via Inverse Records. The album is 11 tracks of pure punk rock surrounding the theme of femininity. Granted, if I’d never read the press release, I never would’ve known that because I don’t speak Finnish and that’s the language vocalist Rota sings in, but that doesn’t make this album any less enjoyable.
As soon as the opening track “Kraka” starts you can sense the rush of energy these guys are putting into their music. Heavier guitar riffs in the chorus are fitted with some more melodic moments and an especially engaging vocal element and a rather lengthy spoken-word bridge which ends in a scream. “Trabant” is pretty upbeat, with another heavy chorus to keep the energy flowing through. “Musta-Pepe” begins with somewhat of a ska beat to it, and the way Rota vocalizes over this beat, I can really only describe it as Sublime meets Rammstein. The riffs get heavy as the track goes on, switching the sound from ska to alternative rock. The alternative rock vibe carries over into the next track “Tissit”, and it is on this track hammering beats and a rumbling bass reign supreme, accompanied by driving riffs and growling vocals. A small handful of melodic moments are all there is to give respite to this otherwise hard-hitting track.
“Saona” has sort of a Dropkick Murphys feel to it, and really drives home the punk aspect of the band. “Härän Veri” begins with a short spoken-word intro and moves straight into a heavy metal style song which brings the energy up to its top level. “Äiti” has an almost haunting intro unlike anything else on this album before jumping the track back toward a heavy yet even-tempered punk vibe, which is later met by a mixture of groove, signature punk rock aggression, and some smooth guitar playing before fading out. “Piri-Hanna” opens with some sweet bass and melodic metal riffs, which are met by funky sounding verses and a heavier chorus. A somber melodic opening to the bridge is quickly crushed by more heavy riffage and aggressive vocals before coming full circle and ending exactly as the song began. “Jarru” fades in with a smooth punk riff which is quickly overtaken by one that’s more substantial, but still smooth. There’s a bit of a ska note to this track as well, fought with more aggressive overtones and driving guitar.
If I had to sum up the next track “Sairaanhoitajat” in one word, that word would be groovy. Just don’t ask me to pronounce the title. The album closes off with “Peura” which is actually pretty different from and the least punk sounding track on the whole album, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing. It’s more somber and melodic than anything before it, and the added female vocals give it a nice touch. It’s the longest track on the album, coming in at six minutes and twelve seconds.
This album is good. Very good. If I absolutely had to come up with one criticism, it’s that the album isn’t in English, but that’s not even a valid complaint. Even if I had no idea what they were trying to say, the sound of the music here is still outstanding. Besides, it works for Rammstein and (divisively) Babymetal, right? If you’re a fan of punk, ska, or alternative rock, you absolutely should go pick this album up.
6. Härän Veri
Rota – Vocals
Bili – Bass / Vocals
Jotor – Guitar
Vepa – Guitar / Vocals
Ipi – Drums
Check out FM2000 here:
Written by Mitch Ellerbrock for Bloodrock Media on October 24, 2017