When I was young my parents managed to find the only holiday location that was somehow quieter and more rural than the place we already lived, substituting 50 weeks in a village with more sheep than people, for 2 weeks in a hamlet with more scarecrows than sheep. Bizarrely there was one feature of the hamlet, it had a museum, the world’s only* Wurlitzer Organ Museum, run by an eccentric British gentleman who ran daily tours for the 2 or 3 perplexed walkers who accidentally came across the place after stumbling off the moors in the wrong direction. I promise you that they never made the same mistake again.
So I was quite excited to receive a mail from Finnish band Collie Magnum stating they’d used a Wurlitzer in the recording of new song Euphoria, before I realised obviously it was of the Piano variety. Still it has a distinctness in sound that differs from a normal piano, and combined with a Farfisa organ and use of ‘Boss Metal Zone’ pedal, Collie Magnum clearly don’t want to quite sound like anyone else.
It’s a peculiar name for a band I must admit, half dog breed and half gun type, and the band ‘can’t quite remember’ how it happened, which makes me assume there was a bar and beer involved. Of course it could have been worse, given that Pitbull Kalashnikov could only be a punk or metal band, and anything involving a Boston Terrrier Pekingese Mix just isn't rock n' roll enough and wouldn’t fit on the live posters anyway.
So Collie Magnum it is, and they’re a 4 piece ‘childhood friends’ alternative rock band from Oulu, home to a few bands we’ve featured, including the excellent Hellhounds, and both bands have recorded their releases at Wolfbeat Studios, under the watchful eyes and ears of Pentti Amore.
It’s not entirely surprising they can’t remember the origins of the band name, in fact I'm surprised they can remember each others names given they haven’t released anything for 6 years, an EP entitled ‘Out of the Hive’. But they’ve clearly matured as songwriters in the meantime, and ‘Euphoria’ is a really uplifting song, with a huge musical theme at the heart of it. It reminds me of something fellow Finnish band The Stillwalkers but would come up with - I’ve even tried to listen to their recent track Concrete Heart for comparisons, but intriguingly it’s disappeared off Spotify.
Anyway it has a big riff, big melodies, the Wurlitzer adds something different in the verse, and the chorus does exactly what the song title suggests, lifting the listener up with an intense blaze of instrumental noise. Stick with it, the song will really grow on you I promise.
I really like this and have had it on repeat all weekend. We’ll find out soon if they can match the heights of ‘Euphoria’ as they have new releases on their way. And maybe they'll somehow use an actual fairground Wurlitzer next time.
*I haven’t ‘fact-checked’ that it really was the only Wurlitzer Museum in the world, I'm just taking a wild guess...