With a stein filled with German pomp, Finsterforst injects a mischung of styles and influences into their unique and offbeat new album #YOLO. With a name that translates as 'The dark Forest' you may be fooled into thinking that they are a traditional Euro metal band replete with growling vocals and relish pummelling the life blood out of their instruments; of course to some extent FF do this too, but they do it with just a soupçon of traditional Germanic music and then some.
The inclusion of European roots music has led them being dubbed folk metal - now there's two genres you never thought you'd see together. Bags of accordion, give the tracks a Romanic lilt and elsewhere there's banjo, electro, dubstep, Irish traditional and pop influences. It's pretty clear that the band are far from circumspect in their aim to throw the rulebook out of the window.
Bottle Gods is a drinking song with all the debauchery of a beer hall in Oktoberfest! The title song #YØLØinspired by the acronym you only live once, the track wastes no time in packing in Bavarian style sax and accordion, Wagnerian melodies, a crazed hook and Oliver Berlin doing his best Till Lindemann impersonation. This fearsome attitude is continued by breaking away from their usual mythological themes by way of four cover versions. Michael Jackson's Beat It is given a choice revamp not too dissimilar to the reworking Alien Ant Farm gave Smooth Criminal. Wrecking Ball, made famous by Miley Cyrus is possibly the most bizarre cover here, but strangely it works. By balancing the softer verses with a more aggressive metal style chorus, the band keep the track out of the realms of parody and it's in perfect keeping with their refusal to play metal straight. The album finishes with another classic that's synonymous with drinking, Wild Rover. Prost!
In places the album feels as if you are staggering through a crapulous night out; it's unpredictable, disorientating, lively, frenzied and undoubtedly memorable. You probably won't throw up, but you'll most certainly have your head spinning by the end of the album. It's a brave approach to the genre and there is nobody making music quite like this, but you only live once, so you may as well make it count!
Groupie Rating 3/5