The titular band. note
Perkeros is a avant-garde metal band from Tampere, Finland. Consisting of obsessive songwriter-guitarist Akseli
, art student keyboardist Lilja
, old hippie bassist Kervinen
and the drummer Karhu
is having both internal and external problems. Akseli sacrifices his relationship to the altar of music, the demo covers need to be finished, the annual Battle of the Bands is nearing, the rivaling hipster band Diablotus is gaining popularity alarmingly fast and Perkeros is still missing a singer.
Things start to look better when Lilja comes across Aydin
, an immigrant pizzeria worker with a fantastic voice. However, it seems like that even the new addition can't hold up together the band as Akseli gets sucked deeper into the fascinating and dangerous world of soundwaves...
Written and drawn by K.P. Alare and J.P. Ahola
, Perkeros mixes together comedy, slice-of-life band moments, science fiction, fantasy, and occult
to create one louder-than-life experience. The graphic novel received critical acclaim upon its release in Finland in late 2013. The authors signed contracts for English and French releases, which saw the light of day in 2014 (renamed Sing No Evil
in English and Perkeros: Les Notes Fantômes
Perkeros contains examples of:
- All Drummers Are Animals: Karhu is a literal case.
- Big Damn Heroes: Karhu saves Akseli from getting the crap beaten out of him in the opening backstage scene. He does it again in the climax.
- Control Freak: Akseli has hard time actually enjoying playing music being so caught up on all the small imperfections.
- Cool Old Guy: Kervinen. He claims to have toured with pretty much every band in existence, including likes of Uriah Heep and Simon & Garfunkel. Akseli shrugs the stories off as a rambling of an ex-junkie.
- Disney Death: Karhu. See Pocket Protector below.
- A Dog Named Dog: Karhu (Finnish for "Bear") is exactly that.
- Drives Like Crazy: Aydin on his scooter.
- Dude, Not Funny!: Lilja calls out Akseli on his racist remarks towards Aydin before his audition. Later on Kervinen is not amused by Aydin and Akseli's faux-witchcraft.
- Five-Man Band: Perkeros fits the bill quite nicely.
- Foreshadowing: There are several things that give foreshadowing towards the true nature of the rival band.
- Akseli's offhand remark that hipsters are the work of the devil.
- When Akseli lets his mind drift during a boring dinner conversation, he imagines the flute-toting faun on the Wine bottle etiquette turning into the Devil.
- When Kervinen is lecturing about the mystical power of sound, he mentions the famous Piper of Hameln as an example.
- Guess what Samuli's instrument of choice is...?
- Funny Foreigner: Akseli has this view on Aydin. Aydin himself uses it later to warm up the gig audience.
- Funetik Aksent: Aydin's Finnish is a bit rough around the edges. However, it is done very realistically when compared to how foreigners usually speak Finnish.
- Mikael Åkerfield of Opeth displays his Swedish accent by having all the o's written as å's.
- Gone Horribly Wrong: A failed attempt to play carvings of an ancient chalice on a vinyl record player causes Samuli and his bandmates to turn into some kind of demons.
- Humanoid Abomination: Diablotus after the events described above. Even they are not sure what they are now.
- Inherited Illiteracy Title: "Perkeros" is an in-universe example: the band was originally called "Kerberos" (Finnish version of "Cerberus"), but apparently Akseli misspelled it on the demo cover.
- Innocent Innuendo: Due to his skill level in Finnish, Aydin often says things that come out as dirty malapropers of the things he was actually supposed to say. For example, instead of asking "Voinko yhdistää tähän Marshalliin? (Can I connect [my bass] to this Marshall [Amp]?)", he says "Voinko yhtyä tähän marsuun? (Can I have intercourse with this guinea pig?)"
- Interrupted Intimacy: When Lilja arrives at the Diablotus band hangout she walks in on one of the band members on top of a groupie. Then the band member turns around to reveal that he was eating her in a bit more literal sense...
- Last Name Basis: We never learn the first name of Kervinen.
- Logical Weakness: All the weird things sound waves can do can be easily blocked away with a pair of earplugs.
- Married to the Job: Akseli technically qualifies when it comes to his relationship with his band. The problem is that nobody's paying for him to do it.
- Meaningful Name: The rivaling band Diablotus. Not to mention their song "Amore Cannibale"...
- Metaphorgotten: The exchange about the preferred form of audio between Kervinen and Akseli.
Akseli: "But don't vinyls wear out?"
Kervinen: "Yes, but all the recording share the same problem. Whether it's a oral, written or a digital document, some things are always lost. Life, the hard knocks and scratches make you what you are."
- Mood Whiplash: All around. Dramatic and downright terrifying scenes can be followed by comedic and light-hearted practice space banter and vice versa.
- Partially Civilized Animal: Karhu is an interesting example. He plays in a band, owns an apartment and has no problems using an iPod. He still can't talk.
- Mistaken for Cheating: Jaana reads a rather unfortunately-worded message Lilja send to Akseli. We never see her reaction or how the following discussion plays out, as we instantly cut to Akseli informing the band that he has to bunk out in the practice space for a while.
- Pocket Protector: Karhu gets stabbed in the climax, but is saved by the iPod in his breast pocket. The weird part is that he's not wearing any clothes...
- The Power of Rock: Discussed. The comic gives several possible explanations for the mysterious things music causes in their universe, but not a single straight answer.
- Really 700 Years Old: The common joke the other band members have on Kervinen's expense. It is in fact the truth.
- Shout-Out: Apart from the numerous mentions of Real Life bands and songs featured and mentioned in comic, we have:
- Aydin's pizza scooter has the same licence plate as the car of Donald Duck.
- Lilja calls Karhu Baloo after his Disney Death.
- All the band members have their own Moomin mugs. Each one with a character that suits their personality.
- Shown Their Work: The amount of detail in the background items such as posters and graffitis is astounding. Also, the real locations such as the Record Store and the bar Perkeros takes part in the Battle of the Bands are replicated from real life down to their staff.
- Speech Impediment: Akseli stutters. It gets worse if he's angry or upset.
- The Speechless: Karhu.
- Stylistic Suck: Rotten Troll, the Black Metal band featured in the opening scene, is made of this.
"I'm not worthy/of thy bestial bulimia/of the diarrhea of plague..."
- The promo pictures of Perkeros seemingly feature an extra member, but he was just a random guy who happened to walk into the picture by accident.
- Take That: The authors take some gentle jabs at certain Finnish bands such as Yö or Mamba.
- Unusually Uninteresting Sight: Zig-Zagged. Most of the people do not pay any extra attention to the drumming bear, but then again Aydin asks about it after joining the band. On the other hand, it could be a regular thing in the 'verse of the comic, as the drummer of the band in the opening scene seems to be a badger.
- Where the Hell Is Springfield?: Averted completely. The story takes place in the Finnish city of Tampere, and this can be easily recognized from the imagery by anyone who knows the cityscape.