Amazing Tails 'Next stop Jonestown' 7inch


Amazing Tails came from Northern Finland. Their hometown, Oulu, wasn’t very nice place in the late 80’s: nothing to do, no gigs, no fun, shitty jobs, bad politics and bad heavy metal ruled the town. Nothing changed?

Pentti Ruotsi and Pentti Kaulanen decided to form a new band in the summer of 1989. Pentti K’s former band Vivisektio had split up and Pentti R had left his band, Irstas. They wanted to play more melodic hardcore punk than their previous bands were and Pentti R already had composed some songs. They found Janne Törmikoski (who replaced Pentti as Irstas bass player) from their local favorite bar, Café Lillemor, and asked him to join the band. The first Amazing Tails line-up was ready with Janne (vocals & guitar), Pentti K (bass) and Pentti R (drums & backing vocals). They took Esa “Iso-A” Rönkkö as their second guitarist couple months later.
Amazing Tails was one of the first “American style”, melodic hardcore bands in Finland. This genre was rather unknown and unpopular in those days. It took about 4 ? 5 years before Green Day and Offspring made it well known in Finland. Amazing Tails were influenced by American punk and hardcore bands like Ramones, Husker Du, Minor Threat, 7 Seconds, Dag Nasty, Descendents, Goo Goo Dolls, Replacements, but not Bad Religion as many people concluded (Pentti K was the only Bad Religion fan in the band).
Pentti R and Janne composed quickly about dozen songs and the band did their first gig with Klamydia and Juggling Jugulars in February of 1990 in Vaasa. British punk-legend, Disorder, should have been there too, but the Finnish customs officers didn’t let them to Finland. This was Iso-A’s last gig in Amazing Tails and guys decided to continue as trio.
They did couple gigs mostly in Northern Finland, but also in A-Panimo punk festival in Turku in the June of 1990. They decided to make a record in the autumn and recorded 18 songs (all of their songs) for their first 7” and LP in November of 1990. They got only three studio days so session wasn’t very enjoyable. RM-Records released the ‘Out’ 7” EP in the march of 1991. The record was well received, for example Flipside and Maximum Rock’n’Roll gave it rather good response. John Peel liked the record too and played it on his radio show.
Sadly Pentti R left the band just after EP come out. He was replaced by Tommi Kangosjarvi who played drums for Irstas too. Their first album, ‘Happy Hour Unhappy Days’, came out in the June of 1991. Album’s songs are very fast (occasionally too fast) melodic hardcore, but it also has a few slower songs, for example ‘Hands to Build’ with piano. Japanese punk band, Minority Blues Band, recorded this Amazing Tails song in 2004. Thrashy cover of Mike Oldfield’s ‘Moonlight Shadow’ got some airplay on Finnish radio. They played some minor festivals gigs and did radio and rock magazine interviews. Flipside magazine praised the record and described Amazing Tails “pop played at thrash speed”.

Jukka Kyrö joined the band as second guitarist in the July of 1991. He had played previously in the speed metal band National Napalm Syndicate. Amazing Tails did a short tour with Alien Boys (Germany) and Starvation Army (USA) in September of 1990 in southern Finland. Pentti R re-joined the band again in April of 1992. Amazing Tails recorded second 7” EP ‘Merry-Go-Round’ for Hätäapu Records in July of 1992. It was the band’s “hit single” and got good response. ‘Merry-Go-Round’ got lot of air play in Finnish radio (it was single of week on Rock Mafia in September 1992) and got good reviews in Finnish rock magazines.

Amazing Tails recorded three songs for Rumba rock magazine’s compilation CD in February of 1993. They did a four gig tour with Juggling Jugulars and Shameless Voice in March of 1993 (and another one in 1994). They planned Scandinavian tour with Juggling Jugulars and Shameless Voice, but it never happened. Amazing Tails did a short tour with the Seattle grunge/punk-band, Coffin Break, in southern Finland in May. Good gigs with bigger venues and larger crowds. The popular Swedish straight edge band, Refused, invited Amazing Tails to play in their home town, Umeå. It was a nice gig with 500 straight edge kids. This was the only time they played outside of Finland.

Amazing Tails recorded 15 songs in January 1994. New songs were more melodic and diverse than the earlier material. Three songs from the session were released by Spanish B-Core as ‘Next Stop Jonestown’ 7” EP in April of 1994. The second album ‘Daydreams for Adults’ never came out (until 2008) because of Hätäapu Records’ financial problems. They recorded 2 songs for Dag Nasty tribute album in September 1994. This was the last studio session of the band. Janne had moved to Turku about a year earlier and Pentti R later to Helsinki. Rehearsals were very difficult to arrange and they were little bit bored with the rising pop punk scene: Offspring and Green Day were super popular and all the MTV-kids started to dig punk rock. It wasn’t the same as before. Their last gig was in Turku 18th of June 1994 (A-Panimo punk festivals). Amazing Tails faded away before the end of the year 1994.
Nowadays Janne lives in Tampere and have played after Amazing Tails in Radar Station, Mahtavat Lampopussit and Monotonics. Jukka played in Burning Point and reformed couple years ago his 80’s speed metal band, National Napalm Syndicate. Pentti Ruotsi has played in Cartoon Tree, The Bye-Bye Brothers, Space Bar, Murnau, Jyrkin siipi, Esa Eloranta Band and many more.




Taken from sp-records