Circle (band)

Circle (band)
Background information
Origin Pori, Finland
Genres Krautrock, experimental rock, avant-rock
Years active 1991-present
Labels Ektro Records
No Quarter
Bad Vugum
Website Band website
Jussi Lehtisalo
Mika Rättö
Janne Westerlund
Tomi Leppänen
Julius Jääskeläinen
Pekka Jääskeläinen
Tuomas Laurila
Past members
Olli Joukio
Teemu Korpipää
Jyrki Laiho
Jani Viitanen
Teemu Elo
Janne Peltomäki
Janne Tuomi
Bruce Duff

Circle is an experimental rock band, founded in Pori, Finland in 1991.[1] Their eclectic style is "ever changing, ever Circular", classified into genres such as progressive, Krautrock, ambient, heavy metal, speed-kraut, and avant-rock, among others. On some albums they have defined themselves as New Wave of Finnish Heavy Metal (NWOFHM).[2]



Formed in 1991, Circle is the most visible and prolific name in the Finnish avant-rock underground. Having survived innumerable lineup changes, the band and its founder, bassist/vocalist/guitarist Jussi Lehtisalo, have constantly reinvented themselves, weaving hypnotic mantras out of exacting Krautrock beats, heavy riffs, arty noise, dark psychedelia, and soundtrack-like beauty. Hard, chilly repetition has served as the lone unifying theme throughout 15 years of experiments.

Circle's line-up has constantly changed over the years as the founder, Jussi Lehtisalo, is the only member who has been in the band the entire time. However, since recording 2003's Guillotine the core line-up has consisted of Lehtisalo with Mika Rättö, Tomi Leppänen and Janne Westerlund. Since 2009, brothers Julius and Pekka Jääskeläinen have appeared on all recordings by the band. Sound engineer and experimental musician/composer Tuomas Laurila is also credited as a member of the band on a number of releases.

Circle are known for their extremely prolific release schedule. In 2007, for instance, they released three studio albums, three live albums (including one double CD), a 7" single and three album re-issues, one of which (Arkades) included an entire disc of unreleased material. However, in more recent years Circle releases have slowed, as the members of the group spend more time on side projects. Lehtisalo, Leppänen and Westerlund also comprise the regular members of stoner rock spin-off group, Pharaoh Overlord. Rättö and Lehtisalo also perform and record together as a duo, and as a trio with Kauko Röyhkä. Other projects featuring members of Circle include Steel Mammoth, Ektroverde, Plain Ride, Lusiferiinin Armosta and Doktor Kettu, amongst many others.

Whilst recording the album Miljard in 2006 the band was filmed by Esko Lönnberg, and the resulting movie, Saturnus Reality released as a DVD, by No Quarter Records (2007). Bizarrely, Lönnberg's attempt to make the film itself became the subject of another movie, The Man With The Video Camera, filmed by Petri Hagner, which has also been released as a DVD by Fonal Records (2010).

In 2011 Circle/Pharaoh Overlord were artists-in-residence at Dutch rock festival Roadburn Festival.[3]



  • 1994 Meronia, CD/2LP (Bad Vugum), 2007 CD re-issue (Ektro Records)
  • 1996 Zopalki, CD/2LP (Bad Vugum)
  • 1996 Hissi, CD (Metamorphos / Captain Trip(Japan))
  • 1997 Fraten, CD (Metamorphos)
  • 1998 Pori, CD (Metamorphos), 2000 CD (Feldspar (USA))
  • 1998 Kollekt, compilation CD (Bad Vugum)
  • 1999 Andexelt, CD (Metamorphos), 2000 CD (tUMULt)
  • 2000 Prospekt CD (Ektro Records), 2002 2LP (Static Resonance)
  • 2001 Taantumus, CD (Bad Vugum)
  • 2002 Sunrise, CD (Ektro Records), 2006 2LP (Headspin)
  • 2002 Alotus, CD (Klangbad)
  • 2003 Guillotine, CD (Ektro Records), 2005 CD (Scratch)
  • 2004 Forest, CD (Ektro Records), 2005 CD (No Quarter)
  • 2005 Tulikoira, CD (Ektro Records), 2007 2LP + 7" (Headspin)
  • 2006 Miljard, 2CD (Ektro Records)
  • 2006 Tyrant, CD (Latitudes)
  • 2007 Tower feat. Verde, CD (Last Visible Dog)
  • 2007 Panic, CD (Ektro Records)
  • 2007 Katapult, CD/LP (No Quarter)
  • 2008 Hollywood, CD/2LP (Ektro Records)
  • 2010 Rautatie, CD (Ektro Records)
  • 2011 Infektio, CD/LP (Conspiracy Records)
  • 2011 Noiduttu, MC (Ruton Music)
  • 2011 Rakkaus tulessa feat. Erkki Kurenniemi, LP (Full Contact)
  • 2011 Giardino feat. Verde, MC (Ruton Music)

Live albums:[5]

  • 1998 Surface, split w. Marble Sheep, CD (Metamorphos / Captain Trip (Japan))
  • 2001 Raunio, CD (Ektro Records), 2002 CD (Squealer Music)
  • 2004 Golem / Vesiliirto, 2LP (Kevyt Nostalgia / Super Metsä)
  • 2004 Empire, LP (Riot Season)
  • 2004 Mountain, LP (Kevyt Nostalgia / Super Metsä)
  • 2005 General, LP (Kevyt Nostalgia / Super Metsä)
  • 2006 Arkades, LP (Fourth Dimension Records), 2007 2CD (Fourth Dimension Records)
  • 2007 The Blaze Game, as "Sunburned Circle" with Sunburned Hand of the Man, CD/LP (Conspiracy)
  • 2007 Telescope, 2CD (Sunhair) Recorded in 2003
  • 2007 Rakennus, CD (Ektro Records)
  • 2008 Triumph, 2LP (Fourth Dimension Records) Recorded in 2007
  • 2009 Soundcheck, LP (Full Contact)
  • 2011 Maxim, LP (Full Contact)

EPs - 7":[6]

Compilation appearances:

  • 2002 Klangbad First Steps, CD, (Klangbad) (Features the Circle tracks Scotch and Northern Sky)
  • 2006 Innature, CD, (Barge Recordings) (Features the Circle track No Battle, No Fire)
  • 2008 Like Black Holes In The Sky: A Tribute to Syd Barrett, CD, (Dwell Records) (Features the Circle track Rats)
  • 2009 Every Noise Has A Note, CD, (Trensmat Records) (Features the Circle track Vaahto)


External links

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