Jussi Lehtisalo - Bass
Mike Rättö - Keyboards, Vocals, Percussion
Janne Westerlund - Guitar
Tomi Leppänen - Drums, Percussion


Circle from Pori, Finland started in 1991 and at first was mainly influenced by the repetitive guitar riffing of the late 1980's UK indie band Loop. Circle quickly gained cult status as a manic and primitive live act with rumoured connections to shamanism and witnessed connections to exhibitionism. Since the first five year period - including the early 7" releases and the first two albums Meronia and Zopalki - Circle have lived through several metamorphoses in their music. From dark soundtrack landscapes to artsy muzak to kraut-psychedelia to heavy metal to avant-garde, primitive folk, ambient and fusion they have studied many territories far beyond their early indie guitar neighborhood. Now at the band's teen age, Circle have found their identity as an everchanging and everboring rock band with their own "file under" tag: NWOFHM - New Wave Of Finnish Heavy Metal.

Just like its music, Circle's line-up has taken nearly a dozen of forms from the original three man group to its present and the most long lasting one: lead singer and keyboardist Mika Rättö, guitarist Janne Westerlund, drummer Tomi Leppänen, sound engineer Tuomas Laurila and the only original member, bassist Jussi Lehtisalo. Within four years' period (2003-2007) they have released twelve (!) albums and toured steadily in Europe, UK and USA collaborating with many of their own heroes and other musical explorers, such as Hans Joachim Irmler (Faust) and Bruce Duff (Jesters of Destiny) and bands like Acid Mothers Temple, Cul de Sac and Sunn 0))).

Through the years Circle have maintained their status as a Finnish cult band with very few comparisons in the world of rock music. Like in early days, they still rely on the self-invented language Meronia (along with Finnish and English lyrics) and ascetic pulse that gives the listener space to find his or her own way towards the unknown.


Pharaoh Overlord is based on the core of the distinguished Finnish avant-rock group Circle. Though the both have strong confidence in minimalism and repetition, Pharaoh Overlord can make their mothership look and sound considerably hasty and flourishy by their side. Kneedeep in the aesthetics of stoner rock with unfailing admiration towards the history of psychedelic instrumental music Pharaoh Overlord keep gently ramming their way through the desert.

The three studio albums, titled "#1" (2001), "II" (2003) and "#3" (2005) and the two live albums (2004 and 2007) expose the different sides of Pharaoh Overlord's rigid vision: "#1" and the both live albums being the most stonery and ass-shaking while the other two taking more introverted angle, "II" with gloomy atmospheres and low tempos and "#3" with its bubbling kraut-beat and naivism. So far the studio line-up has consisted of the three key members, Jussi Lehtisalo (bass and guitars) Tomi Leppänen (drums) and Janne Westerlund (guitars). For the few live appearances Pharaoh Overlord have hired more guitar firepower from their tribe of fellow musicians. Since 2005 the live composition has settled into a six-man group: the original trio with Julius Jääskeläinen and Pekka Jääskeläinen on guitars plus one everchanging guest playing synthetic effects.

To keep things complicated, along with their fourth studio album "#4" (2006) the band was branched into two: Pharaoh Overlord and Pharaoh Overlörd. On the album we hear hard rock riffing, vocals (!) and peculiar heavy metal guitar solos of Jussi Kangas on top of the familiar, unaffected beat. The separation came about smoothly, hence there are two vigorous PO's throbbing on their own individual routes. In the course of time we will see if Pharaoh Overlörd are manly enough to make their way from dusky studios into the front of audience.