Amoral is a metal band from Helsinki, Finland. They play technical, progressive, melodic, hardrock oriented metal. The band's 4th album was an about-turn, replacing the dominance of quirky death metal with an exemplary display of riff-driven, heavy, yet melodic power groove and the occasional sing-along chorus. Amoral has performed extensively in bars, clubs, festivals and other venues in Finland, Europe, Japan, China, Philippines and USA.
Amoral was formed in 1997 by 2 teenagers, Ben Varon and Juhana Karlsson. Silver Ots joined soon after. The first vocalist was Matti Pitkänen, who was quickly replaced by Niko Kalliojärvi. Former band members also include Ville Sorvali from Moonsorrow on bass. For some time before Sorvali joined Amoral, the band was without bass player, and Ots played bass on some of their demos. Amoral released two demos, Desolation and Other Flesh, with varying line-ups, and played some minor gigs before releasing their first full-length album.
Amoral signed with Rage of Achilles Records and released their first album, Wound Creations, in 2004. After the bankruptcy of Rage of Achilles Amoral was picked up by Spikefarm, a division of Spinefarm Records, a major Finnish rock and heavy metal record label with whom they re-released Wound Creations and added a bonus track ("Metamorphosis" from an early demo) to mark the new release version. The album has received predominantly positive reviews from metal magazines and webzines around Finland and Europe, and Amoral played numerous gigs following the release and thenceforth Their rise from the underground metal scene was further marked by a month-long European tour with renowned metal bands Finntroll and Naglfar, and their inclusion in Tuska Open Air Metal Festival 2005, Finland's most important heavy metal festival.
Soon after the 2005 European tour, Amoral returned to the studio to record their second album, Decrowning. The album was released in Finland and several other countries in October 2005 and in Japan and the United States in March 2006. A music video has been shot for the song "Lacrimal Gland." The band embarked on a second European tour in the spring of 2006. The 37-date tour was headlined by Dark Funeral and Naglfar, and supported by Amoral, Endstille, and Asmodeus. Amoral has since played a showcase gig in Japan and a mini-tour in Italy.
Amoral's third album was recorded in Studio Sound Supreme in Hämeenlinna in early 2007, and it was released in August 2007. A video was shot for the opening track and first and only single of the album, "Leave Your Dead Behind".
Show Your Colors:
Amoral's fourth studio album was announced in November 2008 when the band announced Ari Koivunen as their new vocalist. The album was also the debut of bassist Pekka Johansson. On January 21, their first single Year of the Suckerpunch was put up the band's MySpace account. At the first single and also at the total album Amoral replaced the previous growling vocals with clean vocals and big choruses. "Year of the Suckerpunch" was on the Finnish national radio Ylex´s playlist with the highest hopes of receiving song of the year for 2009. The album, Show Your Colors, was released May 6, 2009. Show Your Colors has also been released in Great Britain, Germany, USA, Canada and Japan. The album was ranked by public voting as the fifth best domestic metal album at the Finnish Metal Awards 2009.
12 January 2010 the band announced that Amoral and Silver Ots had parted ways. Valtteri Hirvonen, who already played at the European tour 2009 replacing Silver, was announced to be the "permanent stand-in guitarist" for the time being.
2010 Amoral worked with its 5th album Beneath. At the end of 2010 Amoral announced its new guitarist Masi Hukari, who shared the lead guitar with Ben Varon as well as co-wrote two of the songs.
2011 the band recorded Beneath at Sound Supreme studios in Hämeenlinna and the CD was released 26 October. The Japan edition was out 19 October. The album was produced by Janne Saksa and guitarist Ben Varon. Beneath continued on the path Amoral started with "Show Your Colors". The emphasis is still on solid songwriting, big hooks, new arrangements and guitar riffs, but the scale is wider than before: From 9-minute epics "Beneath" to straightforward rock songs "Silhouette" and "Same Difference", to nods to the band's death metal past "(Won't Go) Home" and "Staying Human" and talks between acoustic guitars and industrial landscapes in "Wastelands". The first single "Same Difference" was released in the beginning of summer 2011. The second single "Silhouette" was played first time on Radio Rock (FI) in October 2011 and was followed by a video. Silhouette has both electric and acoustic versions, from which the acoustic one is the original. The second video was made from the punk rock oriented track Wrapped in Barbwire, which pays obeisance to Guns N' Roses video "Garden of Eden". 14 February 2012 Beneath was released in the US via The End Records and in Mexico it was published 15 February. In Russia it was out 27 March 2012 via Fono Records. The album was ranked by public voting as the fourth best domestic metal album at the Finnish Metal Awards 2011.
2012 in March 15 Amoral made its US live debut at the South By Southwest SXSW event in Austin, Texas. The band debuted in China, at Shanghai in May and during the same tour they performed with other Finnish bands Insomnium, Profane Omen and Swallow The Sun at The Finland Fest 2012 Metal Attack in Liquid Room, Tokyo. After Amoral still played on Owari Metal Fest in Nagaya. Amoral toured in Europe in autumn 2012 supporting the Finnish Viking metal band Ensiferum with the Finnish metal band Profane Omen.
Fallen Leaves & Dead Sparrows:
The band toured in Asia in April-May and played at Pulp Summer Slam festival in The Philippines and at Peking and Shanghai Midi Festivals in China. The festival in Peking was the biggest one in the band´s history with an audience of 10 000 people.
2013 Amoral recorded their 6th album "Fallen Leaves & Dead Sparrows". It was released in Finland on February 14, 2014 and as digital all over the world by Imperial Cassette. In Europe the album was released on March 28, 2014 and in UK via Graphite Records March 31, 2014. The album was produced by Ben Varon. Marco Hietala produced the vocals of Ari Koivunen. The music is changed more progressive than ever and it has more metallic touch as the 2 previous albums. The album has received predominantly very positive reviews from metal magazines and webzines around Finland, Europe and USA. The band has been praised for their instrumental and vocal skills and liberated versatile music. The first video Blueprints was made by Valtteri Hirvonen.
March 28, 2014 Amoral celebrated their ten-year-old first album in Nosturi, Helsinki, together with Profane Omen and MyGrain who were also celebrating their 15- and 10-year anniversaries. Amoral published a full concert video on YouTube with material from their 3 first albums and the 6th album. Amoral played at Tuska Open Air in Helsinki, June 2014. In autumn 2014 the band had a club tour in Finland. They toured in Europe November 2014 as the main support act for the Swedish metal band Dark Tranquillity.
The 7th Album:
In April 2014 Amoral started the pre-production of their 7th album and the studio work started 13th February 2015. The album is told to be published in the beginning of 2016. Amoral´s next performance is announced to be at the end of June at Tuska after party, where they might publish the 1st song of the upcoming album.
March 26, 2015 the band announced that Niko Kalliojärvi returns to the band, both as the 3rd guitarist and for singing growling vocals.
Ben Varon - guitar, song writing, lyrics,
Ari Koivunen - lead vocals,
Niko Kalliojärvi - guitar, growls,
Masi Hukari - guitar, keyboards, song writing,
Juhana Karlsson - drums,
Pekka Johansson - bass,
Silver Ots - guitar, bass,
Erkki Silvennoinen - bass,
Matti Pitkänen - vocals,
Ville Sorvali - bass
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