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#Antifa #Finland: #Moonsorrow touring with National socialist black metal band (NSBM) band #Loits

Finland. National socialist black metal (“NSBM”) band Loits, known for their historical revisionism and Estonian nationalism will be the warm-up act for the famous Finnish pagan metal group Moonsorrow on the Finnish leg of their European tour in 2020.

Submitted to Enough 14. Originally published by Variverkosto. Image above: Loits in 2017. From left to right: drummer Markus Atso, keyboard player Kaire “Karje” Nuirk, singer Ahto-Lembit “Lembetu” Lehtmets, guitarist Markus Karmo and bass player Markku Kivine.

In this article we explore how Loits and especially the political views of the singer and frontman Ahto-Lembit “Lembetu” Lehmets as well as the guitarist Markus Karmo‘s involvement in the white power band Revalers. We will also take a look at Henri Sorvali of Moonsorrow and his social media outbursts regarding the upcoming tour in Finland (21-29.2 2020).

“The call of blood” – Loits and militarist nationalism

The black metal band Loits was formed in 1996 and their music is focused primarily on themes of war and nationalism. Central themes in their lyrics are far-right interpretations on national history and mythology with a pagan mysticist twist. They also sing about Estonian SS volunteers and partisans,describing them as heroes fighting against the Soviet Union in World War 2. As is typical for fascist rhetoric, in some of their songs they pit against each other the imagined “national degeneracy” of modern day Estonia and the sacrifices made by forefathers on battlefields, and sing about the imminent “battle for freedom” to come.

In the booklet for their 2004 “Vere kuitse kohustab” record, the band members dressed up in uniforms modeled on the Estonian 20th grenadier division of the Waffen SS.

Loits has caught public attention before. A concert in Germany together with the NSBM band Thunderbolt and others was cancelled on January 21th 2006 due to the neo-Nazi connections. Bass player Markku Kivine of Loits was also using the stage name M.Engele which did not go unnoticed by German anti-fascists. Loits has also played on more explicit Nazi gigs, such as “Rokas priez komunisma” (Rock Against Communism) on January 12th 2008 in Lithuania with the RAC band Diktatura. The most recent Nazi event that Loits participated in was also in Lithuania on February 1st 2020 when they performed with the NSBM band Infernal War.

Poster for the neo-Nazi gig in Vilnius 12.1 2008. RAC band Diktatura and graphics of a crushed hammer and sickle.
Poster for the NSBM gig in Vilnius 1.2 2020. Loits played alongside NSBM band Infernal War.

On the promotional photos for the 2004 album “Vere Kutse Kohustab” the band posed with reproduced uniforms and insignia of the Waffen SS 20th grenadier division. The album title roughly translates to “the call of our blood commands us” and along with the Nazi imagery it is a clear reference to the eugenics and racial biology of the Third Reich. Loits explained the message of the album in a 2004 interview with Lords of Metal , talking about the “the Estonian nation” (meaning ethnic Estonians) and the previously mentioned “call of the blood”. The band describes Estonians as an “endangered minority” in their own country, and Lembetu claims that half of all Estonians are foreigners and not ethnically Estonian. In reality, Estonians make up 68,5% of the population with Russians being the largest minority (24,8%). The country is also known for their restrictive asylum policies.

Quote: Okay, enough about this. I think it’s still the music that counts. How do you go about writing your songs? Where do you find your topics?

[…] The message of Loits is all around us. The topic we sing about is also actual in the regular media here but the main inspiration comes from the veterans themselves. We read their books and visit them. The lyrics of quite a few songs are written by those courageous men.
But the national-romantic texts and the texts about national identity are in our blood. We are a small nation and in order to survive every Estonian must have a drop of nationalism in his/her blood. Already by today half of our one million populated country are foreigners.

Loits are especially interested in the Waffen SS 20th Grenadier Division (1st Estonian SS division) and the band frequently uses their insignia in their artwork. The band glorifies these Nazi collaborators and “legionnaires” in lyrics and interviews and paints a picture of them as a part of an “eternal struggle for national independence” in a mythologized version of history. The collaboration with Nazi Germany is considered to be a justified part of the independence struggle and the lesser of two evils. Simultaneously, the horrors of the Nazi occupation are downplayed; the mass murder of thousands of Estonian Jews, the Estonian concentration camps for the Roma people, communists and Jews, and the other crimes against humanity. Loits also seems to ignore that the Third Reich did consider the Baltic people subhuman as well and planned their “Germanization” in Estonia and even their destruction in Lithuania. Despite this, Loits continues to focus only on the terror of the Red Army and the resistance to it.

Loits merchandise from their now defunct webshop, featuring the Loits logo and the insignia of the Waffen SS 20th grenadier division. The photo in the background portray the band members in SS uniforms.

The aforementioned apologist and blindly nationalist rhetoric is still common in many countries which fought alongside Nazi Germany or co-operated with the German army. A parallel narrative exists in Finland also, where this kind of apologist positions on SS volunteers and other forms of collaboration with the Nazi regime used to be ver strong. The theories of a war waged separate from the Nazis and history forcing us to associate with them without our own initiative were prevalent. The Finnish civil war of 1918 is regarded with the same simplicity in many right-wing circles: as a communist coup d’état organized from Moscow and stopped by Christian patriots in what they call “the Freedom War”. The Finnish Winter War and Continuation War of World War 2 are by some considered to be the natural continuation to this narrative.

This kind of distorted interpretations on history aim at whitewashing the country’s war crimes and the often quite eager collaboration together with Nazis. They also glorify war and sacrifying yourself in it as a patriotic duty. At the same time the aim is to create a mythological narrative of a small but united patriotic nation, which under the pressure of the great powers waged a justified while reluctant “holy war” (as Loits sometimes calls it) against communism.

Even though Loits is usually classified as a black metal band, they include no Satanic themes and even their pagan themes seem to have been just a phase in the early days of the band, even though singer Lembetu later has showed interest in Ancient Estonian religions and considers the “desert religions” (Christianity, Islam, Judaism) to be unsuitable for Estonians. Like many NSMB bands, Loits prefer to call their music “national romantic black metal”, “militant black metal” or nowadays “militant extreme metal” or their own “militant flak n´ roll”. ”Militant black metal” is a common euphemism for NSBM but the wordplay also hints the genre black n´ roll as well as at militarism.

”Prehistoric national symbols”

The logo of Loits featuring a triskelion and the algiz rune.

Loits includes a triskelion and the algiz rune in their logo. The algiz rune was used as a popular “life rune” by both the original Nazis as well as neo-Nazis. To them, the algiz symbolizes the Aryan race and the traditional family which is considered ideal by racial biologists. Nowadays it is being used (like the Tyr and Odal runes) as a substitute for the swastika by many neo-Nazis and as sort of a dogwhistle, a wink to your own subculture which might go unnoticed by the outsiders. The algiz rune is one of the most used white power symbols and a popular neo-Nazi tattoo. The triskelion is quite similar to the swastika and the many variations of it are popular in the neo-Nazi music subcultures, especially in the NSBM scene. It’s also used in one form (a triskelion formed by three sevens) by the European Blood & Honour movement that focuses on spreading RAC and white power music.

Though many runes have been claimed by the far right and the neo-Nazis, we don’t claim that the usually apolitical pagan metal bands or neo-pagans in general are Nazis because they use this kind of runes. As is the case with many ambiguous symbols, the meaning depends on the context and association. An Odal tattoo on the scalp of a bonehead, the Tyr rune used by the Nordic Resistance Movement, the “tursaansydän” used by Nordic Resistance Movement in Finland or a Thor’s hammer necklace carried by a vigilante from Soldiers of Odin are very much far-right but due to their context their actual meaning or content is not at all the same as when pagan metal group use Norse symbols and sing about the Nordic nature and Vikings. It is also worth remembering that some “ancient” symbols were popularized only by the nazis (like the “wolf hook”) or invented by them (like the “black sun”), and these do not have any use outside of Nazi esotericism. Some ancient symbols (like the swastika and Sowil rune) are so tainted by Nazism that it’s for the best to not use them at all. Considering the context and themes employed by Loits, especially the Algiz rune make it clear that they are flirting with Nazi aesthetics.

In an interview with Vampire Magazine in 2008 Loits denies that the symbols used have any Nazi implications, but they could not explain what the “special stories” and “deeper roots” were. This is an excerpt from the interview, made in connection to the release of their 2007 album “Must Album”.

You’ve banned the nationalistic symbols out of Loits’ logo. That’s done on purpose? I know people are still linking Loits to German National Socialism.

The logo of Loits remains unchanged; we just haven’t used it in the designs of the last two albums, as it just didn’t fit together with either. Also, there aren’t any symbols incorporated in our logo that would even remotely hint at any National Socialism. All of the sigils and markings used have a very certain story attached to them, reaching much deeper into the past than the roots of the aforementioned political ideology. Loits has nothing to do with German National Socialism – please try to get that through your skulls once and for all!

We are not Nazis, we are patriotic: “moderate racism”, “cultural clashes” and historical revisionism.

Next we will go through some Loits interviews from 2003 and 2004. In most of these interviews the singer, frontman and founder Lembetu is the interviewee, but in some the interviewee is mentioned simply as “Loits”. Due to the similarity in the style of answers it’s highly likely that all interviews given in the Loits name are by Lembetu himself. We focus on this time period partly due to availability of sources as well as the decreased activity of the group. Loits recorded their last full-length album 12 years ago, which of course has affected how much they are seen in media.

In the aforementioned interviews Lembetu uses typical far-right and neo-fascist rhetoric. In the interviews Lembetu downplays the holocaust, uses anti-Semitic language, claims that cultures (races) should be kept separate due to “cultural clashes”. Lembetu also claims that traditions (from a right-wing perspective) and nationalism are the core of national culture, that ethnic Estonians should be considered an endangered native people, he speaks of racism and inequality in a positive light, holds Nazi apologist views, mentions being a fan of Nazi bands and of course dismisses any accusations of Nazism aimed at Loits. In the interviews the band and its leader talk about a worldview with many fascist traits: the eternal struggle for existence, ecstatic nationalism, pseudoscientific racism, antisemitism, hate for anything left-wing (which Lembetu equates with Stalinism) and liberal humanism. All of this is very common rhetoric in the NSBM scene and we have written about similar groups before.

In a 2004 interview for Eesti Express, Lembetu expresses “race”-based views on who can be Estonian and speaks about “moderate xenophobia”. These views are not far from the racial theories of national socialism and its newly branded incarnations: pseudoscientific racism and ethnonationalism. Here is an excerpt from the interview:

Eesti Express: You’ve explained repeatedly that you’re not Nazis, fascists…

Lembetu: Yes. It’s very difficult for people who have been brainwashed for 60 years, to distinguish a nationalist from a nazi. For 60 years they enforced upon people black and white history and when you speak of things that contradict that history then you will be labelled, whether you like it or not.

…but patriots. Although this album leaves an impression of you being relatively xenophobic patriots?

There are different sides to it, at what point does xenophobia get unhealthy. Moderate xenophobia is in my opinion refreshing. The easiest way to put this is as follows: the Estonian nation is so small that if Estonians didn’t have a drop of nationalism in their blood, they’d have vanished. There should be at least a drop of nationalism in the veins of every Estonian.

That’s the healthy xenophobia?

It’s hard to express by words. The word ‚xenophobia’ has gained such a bad reputation that I wouldn’t even like to use it.

Where do you draw the line between moderate and unhealthy xenophobia?

As always, it’s hard to draw a line. Everybody understands it his or her own way.

Would Loits call upon sending home over 100 000 non-citizens that were left behind here after the Soviet occupation?

No. It’s up to every person to decide. If he wants to live in this country, respects our customs and ways, then he is welcome. By the way, Radio 4 is playing Loits, it’s a Russian radio station. And I have nothing against that. We have Russian fans as well.

But upon whom wishes the song „Furor Aesticus” the ‚dying of heartbeats’?

This song should be viewed as bitterness of a soldier firing from a trench. Here no one is concretely being aimed at. The enemy is abstract. It’s pointed at the person who steps on our soil with a black conscience. He doesn’t necessarily come from the west or east, he could come from anywhere.

Is a white man better than a man of a different colour?

I will say ‚no’ and ‚yes’. The coin has two sides. When we sing of Estonians we picture an Estonian as a white person. I can’t imagine an Estonian being black or any other colour. But the other side of the coin is that the greatest evil in this world has been done by a white man. In that respect you can’t globally consider the white man better than the rest.

That’s actually not at all the subject of Loits. We only speak of the events in the tiny Estonia and the problems we have here. When I say I’m an Estonian, I have nothing to be ashamed of. Estonians have not mistreated other nations or races. It’s good to be an Estonian patriot – your conscience is clean.

The last quote says a lot. According to Lembetu, white people in general have done a lot of evil but especially his group, the white ethnic Estonians have not. As if that centuries of (neo)colonialism built upon racial hierarchies doesn’t concern Estonians, and neither does he think that Estonians could have any blame for all the murdered Estonian Jews murdered by the German army with the support of Estonian troops. Even though Lembetu claims to be interested in Estonian history he clearly does not understand it, and the complex global economy and the holocaust are quickly ignored with rhetoric of a small, oppressed nation.

The reason why this enthusiast of Estonian history claims that “Estonians never treated other peoples or races badly” becomes clear when reading the interview Lembetu gave to Final War Division in 2004. In the interview Lembetu hints that “the parasites” profit economically on the memory of the holocaust while he downplays the impact of it, comparing the holocaust to other European genocides. These arguments are common among holocaust deniers, and it comes as no surprise that Lembetu in the same interview reveals that he is reading revisionist (holocaust denialist) literature and agrees with it. The phrase about ”parasites profiting on the holocaust” can in this context be seen as thinly veiled reference to Jews, this being a key arguments in the “scene”.

In the same interview Lembetu also mentions that one of Loits’s favorite Estonian groups is the old white power band P.W.A (Preserve White Aryans) and claims that people “are not born equal”. Like many others on the far-right, Lembetu opposes the European Union and considers it to be a political and economic occupation force, restricting “national freedom”. Here are some excerpts:

Final War Division: Where does that fascination for German history and WWII, that is obvious in your clothes etc., come from? Is it an interest for history, military and politics, or do you also share National-Socialistic ideas?

Lembetu: We are neither keen on German history nor destiny, and we do not admire the ideas of National Socialism. This does not mean that we do not care about European history and we do not worry over the current events in Europe. The wounds caused by WWII still rot and parasites that prosper on them do not let the wounds heal for the cause of earning profit. Europe is sicker than ever. […]

Final War Division: Please give a comment to the following:

European Union: [Lembetu:] What was made with weapons a century ago is now made without blood shedding. The means have changed but the result is the same – economic and political occupation.

Holocaust: [Lembetu:] I read the writings of revisionists with great interest and agree with them in most part. There have been genocides before and after WWII and with different nations and ethic groups, hence Holocaust is no different and more important than any other genocide. The triangle that is organized around that word and event makes me sick. Please, stop blaming the world and leave innocent people alone!!!

[…]

Communism: [Lembetu:] The word alone should cause nausea in each Estonian. History has given a pretty decent lesson about this ideology. People are not born equal, hence the theory is wrong from the start.

The same aforementioned views about the inequality of people is repeated in an interview for Black Minds in 2003 . The phrase “iron youth” can in this context be understood as a referene both to Nazi propaganda and the war propaganda of Imperial Germany in the World War One, which encouraged youth to enlist. This is an excerpt:

That’s all from me, thanks for for interview. Anything to add?

Loits: Loits is a wakening for Iron Youth, Loits is call to join the ranks of Legionaires, Loits is everything what judeo-christianian democracy is not. Loits is Estonian National Pride. Join the Force, sign your name!

In an interview by Hell Music about Loits’s 2004 album “Vere kutse kohustab”, the band sees no issue with “nationalist” skinheads attending their gigs. In the early 2000s, there was a serious Nazi skinhead problem in Estonia. Below is an excerpt from the interview.

Hell Music: There are a lot of skinheads among your fans. How do you feel about that? Do they interpret your music and ideas correctly?

Its nationalism that attracts skinheads to Loits. I believe they know very well that we do not propagate the WP movement and spread NS propaganda. At least here in Estonia we have managed to explain our message to the people.

If a skinhead comes to our concert because we are nationalists and he likes those ideas, then what could we have against that?

The Peruvian zine Psicoterror interviewed Loits in 2004 and Lembetu said that different cultures cannot co-exist and how the “clash of cultures” creates conflicts. This is more in line with modern far-right rhetoric where biological racism is obscured and cultural racism and white identity politics have a greater role. Lembetu considers Estonians to be victims of historical injustice and combine this with a social Darwinist view of a “national struggle for survival”. This is an excerpt from the interview:

Psicoterror: I’m actually curious about this: Can be considered Loits simply as an historical band, or as a nationalistic band? Why?

Lembetu: Both. An Estonian can’t keep those two apart. There should be a drop of nationalism in the blood of every Estonian, in order to preserve such a small nation among the great ones. Just as well we have to know the past to be prepared for what future might bring. Loits often tells about things that happened in the past, but our sights are set on the future.

[…]

Psicoterror: In all this, where does religion take part in the concept of Loits? Is the religious issue also present in your thematic or just the social one? From your own viewpoint, how do you think that the concepts of nationalism and paganism converge? Please evaluate through this.

Lembetu: The further we look into the past, the more have culture and religion been bound together. Practically there was no difference between them. With the intruding of new cultures came new religions and cultural conflicts. So remained in Estonia the ancient traditions and religion, to which was added the Christianity. The latter remained distant to our people because the religion of desert people does not match with the nature of Nordic people. Today the picture is even more variegated and it’s not exactly the nicest thing. Nationalism and paganism are just bound in the way that the old religion, customs and traditions are a part of our national culture. Without the aforementioned our people would loose it’s identity. Thus these are the values one should cherish and protect. It’s difficult to clarify the connection between Loits and religion. We don’t really fight for or against any religion but as nationalists we have developed certain affections.

The neo-Nazi Markus Karmo and the white power band Revalers

Markus Karmo as guitar player for Loits at the Kilkim Zaibu festival 2007.
Revalers 24.12.2019. Markus Karmo to the right.

Markus Karmo joined Loits as a guitar player in 2005. He also plays guitar in a Tallinn-based white power band Revalers, founded in 2006. It is uncertain when Karmo joined Revalers, but he is most likely a founding member. Karmo played with Revalers at a secret RAC concert in Helsinki 24.4.2010 alongside Mistreat and Civic Duty (featuring Nordic Resistance Movement member Jesse Eppu Torniainen, infamous for killing of Jimi Karttunen in 2016). This was before the first Revalers album had even been released.

Revalers announce their Estonian independence day concert at Rock Club Tapper on Facebook 20.2.2019. In the middle Markus Karmo.
Revalers touring. Picture originally posted on band’s instagram profile on the 1st of June 2019. Markus Karmo showing thumb there behind.

Karmo is visible in many pictures on the Revalers Instagram account: posing in promotional photos, on tours and at the rehearsal space. Karmo does not hide his membership in the band: he openly makes the connection between himself and the band in his social media. Naturally, all of Karmo’s bandmates in Loits know that their long-time guitarist is a Nazi.

The Facebook page of Revalers. “Rac’n’Roll”, Markus – guitar.
Revalers playing at an underground Nazi skinhead club in Helsinki 24.4.2010. Markus Karmo to the right.

Revalers play “RAC” (“Rock Against Communism”) music and they are one of the main white power bands in Estonia alongside the oldest active RAC group in the country P.W.A. (Preserve White Aryans). The names of their songs are very typical to RAC: “Hunt the Red”, “Honour Your Blood”, “Guard Your Nation” and so on. Revalers released a split record with Finnish RAC band Marder in 2019. Two members of Marder are also active members in the Nordic Resistance Movement – Janne Moilanen and Aleksi Kyrönperä.

A fresh Revalers t-shirt, “14 words”.

Revalers advertise on their social media their band shirt, which has a very telling message: “Guard your nation, 14 words, blood and soil, mothers and fathers, sons and daughters, glory and honour, strength and pride, race and love, respect and loyalty, heritage and unity!”, “Blood and soil” as well as the ”the 14 words” are direct references to Nazi ideology. The 14 words refer to the famous quote by the neo-Nazi terrorist David Lane: “We must secure the existence of our people and a future for white children.” Revalers have between 2010 and 2019 played in Finland at least five times, all in secret Nazi gigs. This gigs are in chronological order:

1) 24.4.2010 in Helsinki with Mistreat and Civic Duty

2) 10.12.2011 in Helsinki with Civic Duty and a Nazi band from abroad.

3) 13.-14.7.2012 at the Blood & Honour Orivesi “Nordic Summer Festival” with several other RAC groups like Pagan Skull, Endless Pride and Kraftslag.

4) 14.-15.12.2018 at the Tampere Blood & Honour club house in Rusko together with Vapaudenristi, White Minority, Genocide Wolves and Liittoneuvosto.

5) 4.-5.1.2019 in the Helsinki area at the “Vapauden soinnut” festival with several RAC groups such as Pagan Skull, Mistreat and Civic Duty.

Poster for the B&H Tampere concert 14.-15.12.2018. Revalers, Vapaudenristi, Genocide Wolves, White Minority and Liittoneuvosto (replacing Sankar’hauta).

Since the RAC scene in Estonia is so small, Revalers perform at almost every Nazi concert in the country. Finnish and international readers might be shocked to find out that Revalers can play openly at “normal” rock venues in Tallinn, usually at Rock Club Tapper with RAC bands such as P.W.A and A.K.G. In an interview with the RAC and “viking rock” blog Midgaard (2014), Revalers reveal that there have been Nazi gigs organized at Tapper every Independence Day since 2011. Tapper has also been the venue for several NSBM gigs. All of this is surprising since the venue also hosts international mainstream pop, rock, and heavy metal artists. In Finland and many other countries this would be impossible for an RAC band, since the only places they can play are secret Nazi club houses and sometimes in suburban dive bars close to bankruptcy. On the other hand, Revalers gigs have also been successfully been canceled, by pressure from antiracists and sometimes by even quite high officials. The city council in Viljandi refused to rent their Sakala Center to a concert for Revalers, A.K.G and P.W.A on 20.1.2017.

Poster for the Independence Day RAC concert at Rock Club Tapper 2020. Featuring Revalers, Diktatura, P.W.A and german Heiliger Krieg (ex-Race War).
Poster for the Independence Day RAC concert at Rock Club Tapper 2018 (the 100th anniversary of Estonian independence). Featuring Revalers, Die Lunikoff Verschwörung and P.W.A.
Pic: RAC concert at Tapper 11.5.2019. P.W.A., Revalers, A.K.G. and Sorus. Operation Werwolf 1945 refers to the Third Reich strategy for guerilla warfare before the final defeat.
Poster for the Independence Day RAC concert at Rock Club Tapper 2014. Featuring RAC bands Revalers, Endless Pride, P.W.A. and A.K.G.
Pic: Nazi concert in Tallinn on the 130th birthday of Adolf Hitler 20.4.2019. Featuring Eastonian bands Revalers and Minu Kamp (”Mein Kampf”) as well as Finnish band Marder.
Poster for a Nazi concert in Tartu 25.5.2013. Featuring Estonian RAC bands Revalers, P.W.A., R.M.V. (Racially Motivated Violence) and Finnish RAC bands Marder and Civic Duty.

Henri Sorvali (Moonsorrow): a warrior for freedom of speech making way for Nazi apologists – “We don’t care”.

Moonsorrow, Henry Sorvali in the front row, right side.

Quote: (rough translation) ”We wanted to bring our soulmates from the other side of the Gulf of Finland so our old friends Loits will warm up these concerts” – Moonsorrow drummer Marko Tarvonen commenting on the tour

After Moonsorrow announced the dates of their Finnish tour in October 2019 it ignited a heated debate on their Facebook page. Many fans asked why Moonsorrow is bringing a clear-cut Nazi band such as Loits to play with them. Already in the very first comments, the founding member and singer/guitarist for Moonsorrow, Henri Sorval, showed up using the band’s own profile to “comment” on the case. He rambled typical pro-far-right nonsense at people, who challenged the band and were demanding them to answer to the accusations of working with a Nazi band. Even when presented with clear evidence about Loits political standings, Sorvali continued to comment with brain-melting drivel about “the thought police”, “herd mentality” and that “music and politics never should be mixed”. Sorvali also claimed that summary “witch hunts” like this will be common in a dystopian future and that any band soon could be charged with anything. Below, a few screenshots from the comments on Moonsorrows Facebook page.

Sorvali commenting on the Nazi accusations against Loits: “We don’t care. Sorry.” and “Why should we stand against our friends?”.
Henri Sorvali: “We would not choose an NSBM band to tour with us”
Henri Sorvali: “We don’t mix politics. (…) Go cry to nazi bands pages.”
In the end of the comments section, Henri Sorvali continue to complain and demand proof of the Nazi accusations even though the details had been explained to him several times.
A commenter getting fed up with Sorvalis rambling and explain the basics to him. Sorvali still does not seem to understand the problem – a typical alt-right tactic to exhaust opponents.

Sorvali is known for defending Nazi bands before. A good example is Sorvalis blog post “Is this metal band awful?” on 4.4.2014, in which he talks about “restrictions on free speech” and their critics being “butthurt”. He claims that people who challenge Moonsorrow and other groups that flirt with neo-Nazi music subculture are hypocrites and selfish people who get offended by anything. All of this is typical rhetoric by Nazi apologists and far-right internet trolls, aiming to confuse the discussion and turn the attention away from the fascists themselves.

The credibility of Sorvali and Moonsorrow is not made any better by their 2005 side project, the “humoristic” grindcore record Lakupaavi (roughly translated to “the liqorice pope”. Liquorice is often used as a racial slur in Finnish.) The songs have ”funny” names such Kuolema taidehomolle (”death to the art fags”), Juutalaiskysymys (“the Jewish question”) and Hakaristi on oikeesti kaunis (“the Swastika is actually beautiful”). The Lakupaavi project has received some backslash especially in Germany. Sorvali has also made musical collaborations with Lauri “Werwolf” Penttilä, one of the most important long-term actors in the Finnish NSBM scene.

Conclusion

As the aforementioned should make clear, Loits is pretty clearly a NSBM group spreading nationalist and fascist beliefs under the veil of “speaking for the war veterans” and “correcting historical inaccuracies”. Furthermore, guitarist Markus Karmo plays in the even more openly white supremacist and national socialist band Revalers. Moonsorrow is an acclaimed pagan metal band which has taken Loits under its wings and is enabling the normalization of Nazi bands and far right political content within the metal music scene.


Poster of the upcoming Moonsorrow tour in Europe 17.-26.4. 2020.

The spreading of Nazi music also means the spreading and normalization of far-right thinking, ideology and values, helping neo-Nazis and neo-fascists to fight their “cultural struggle”. Bands, promoters, venues and sponsors cannot wash their hands and claim to not be responsible but should instead take an active stance against the poison of Nazi music from spreading into other musical subcultures. We must deny them the spaces and platforms that they want to work from and push them back out in the margins. Opposing the fascist music scenes is a form of antifascist action, and this is more important now than ever, when the far right is growing and its messages have a fertile ground to grow in. Freedom of speech and artistic freedoms should not be allowed to be used as tools for the far-right to spread hateful politics.

Moonsorrow poster from the upcoming Månegarm Open Air festival in Sweden 21-22.8.2020.

The Moonsorrow/Loits tour in Finland is produced by Fullsteam Agency and Firebird Industries. The metal magazine Inferno is an official partner of the tour. Moonsorrows international promoter is Dragon Productions GmbH. in Germany. Their record company is Century Media Records. Below you can find the contact information to the artists performing with Moonsorrow and other official partners. Tell them what you think about Moonsorrow appearing alongside a NSBM band such as Loits.

Dragon Productions GmbH (Moonsorrows international promoters)
schroerg[a]dragonproductions.com
dragon-productions.com
tel. +49 40 675 699 36

Fullsteam Agency (Moonsorrows Finnish promoters)
Ari Koskinen
ari[a]fullsteam.fi
fullsteam.fi
+358 (9) 2905 0805

Century Media Records (Moonsorrows record company)
https://www.centurymedia.com/label.aspx#contact

FINLAND
Ginger Vine Management & PR
Heta Hyttinen
Tel: +358 40 581 7575
Email: heta.hyttinen[a]gingervine.com
Website: http://www.gingervine.com

EUROPE
Schaeferstrasse 33a
44147 Dortmund
Tel: +49 231 8297 0
Fax: +49 231 8297 101
Email: mail[a]centurymedia.de

Firebird Industries – Artist Management & Production
David Caracandas
david(a)firebirdindustries.eu

Venues on the Finnish tour:
Rytmikorjaamo, Seinäjoki
Vaasantie 11, 60100 Seinäjoki
Rytmikorjaamon Klubin keikka- ja lipputiedustelut
Arkisin klo 12–16, p. 040 5810 666
Klubi-iltoina klo 18–00, p. 040 5810 666

The Circus, Helsinki
Kampin sirkus Oy
Salomonkatu 1–3, 00100 Helsinki
bar [at] thecircus.fi
puh. 010 4233 231 (ti – pe: 12.00 – 17.00)

Lutakko, Jyväskylä
Tanssisali Lutakko
Lutakonaukio 3
40100 JYVÄSKYLÄ
Puh / Fax 014 617 866
E-mail: info(at)jelmu.net
Promoottori / Ohjelmistovastaava / Tiedottaja:
Raine Pulkkinen, raine (at) jelmu.net
Jelmu ry:n toiminnanjohtaja / Tilavuokraus / Kiinteistö Oy Schaumaninkadun Leipomo:
Jonna Paananen, jonna (at) jelmu.net

Olympia-kortteli, Tampere
Myyntipalvelu
puh. 010 526 8610 (klo 9-17)
myyntipalvelu [at] olympiakortteli.fi
Ohjelma
ohjelma [at] olympiakortteli.fi

Moonsorrows tour schedule 2020:

13/02/2020 DE – Munich – Backstage
14/02/2020 AT – Vienna – Viper Room
15/02/2020 CZ – Brno – Heathen Assault @ Melodka
21/02/2020 FI – Verisäkeet Alive – Seinäjoki @ Rytmikorjaamo
22/02/2020 FI – Verisäkeet Alive – Helsinki @ The Circus
28/02/2020 FI – Verisäkeet Alive – Jyväskylä @ Lutakko
29/02/2020 FI – Verisäkeet Alive – Tampere @ Olympia
07/03/2020 FR – Nantes – Black Speech Fest MMXX
17/04/2020 DE – Lichtenfels – Ragnarök Festival
18/04/2020 BE – Bomal – Durbuy Rock Festival
19/04/2020 FR – Paris – La Machine du Moulin Rouge
20/04/2020 CH – Pratteln – Z7
21/04/2020 DE – Mannheim – MS Connexion Complex
22/04/2020 DE – Berlin – Lido
23/04/2020 DE – Bremen – Modernes
24/04/2020 DK – Copenhagen – Pumpehuset
25/04/2020 SE – Gothenburg – Valand
26/04/2020 SE – Stockholm – Slaktkyrkan
16/05/2020 FI – Hyvinkää – Steelfest
03-04/07/2020 DE – Ballenstedt – Rockharz Open Air
22/08/2020 SE – Norrtälje – Månegarm Open Air

Do you have previously unknown information about the Finnish Nazi music subculture, their secret venues or their key figures? Contact varistoimitus[at]riseup.net.

EDIT: On the Loits gig in Vilnius 1.2.2020, the old guitarists Veljo “Gates” Värava and Kaido Haavandi, instead of long term guitarist Markus Karmo. It is not the first time in Loits’s history that they alternate guitarists. Before Vilnius gig, Lots has previously played in 2017. Karmo was with them that time. Karmo also played in latest Loits release, a single that was published in May 2019. Therefore, he has been active in the band lately.


Not mentioned in the article is that in 2014 Loits gave an Interview for
initiativenational blog, which is a Ukrainian fascist blog active since
2010. It writes typical fascist propaganda about european fascist
tradition, Casa Pound, Azov batallion, antimarxism, anti-lgbt,
“reconquista”, white supremacy etc.
Read more:
https://initiativenational.blogspot.com/2014/06/interview-with-loits.html (Warning FASCIST blog, use VPN)


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