The Rattus story PDF Print E-mail
RATTUS was formed in the spring of 1978 by Jake and Vellu who started to play mostly English punk bands´ songs just for fun (Sex Pistols, Damned, Clash,etc.). A few weeks later they asked Jake´s brother Tomppa to join the bandandso he did. The name RATTUS was taken from the first Lp of THE STRANGLERS, "RattusNorvegicus". RATTUS is latin meaning a rat,a very big rat. In the early days RATTUS did shows only in their hometown andnear of it.

In 1980 RATTUS released their 1st record, a 2-song 7" on their own ´Hilipili records´ label. Only 200 copies were made and sold mostly to friends.

The 2nd record was recorded the same year and released in the beginning of 1981, again on Hilipili records. 200 were made in the 1st pressing and 100 more were made, including 50 of those, which were sent to England as a recordstore/mailorder called Bullet records really liked the band (also other early Finninsh punk bands!!!) and wanted to help out selling in England. After that Poko Records label (also a record store called Epe´s) signed the band and the next four records were released on Poko, they were all combined on one Cd (recorded works 1981 - 1984) which was released in 1993.

In november 1981 RATTUS supported The Exploited on their three date tour in Finland. RATTUS was also supposed to support the Dead Kennedys in december but somehow didn´t make it. (Jello Biafra heard about it years later and wasn´t very happy that RATTUS wasn´t the support band). At the beginning of 1983, the search for singer began, since Jake wanted to concentrate on playing guitar. At first rehearsals were done with band´s old friend Astro. At last, the band chose Annikki, who was the second choice after Astro. Annikki had been with band as roadie since the beginning so the choice was quite natural.

The 1st time RATTUS played outside of Finland was in Arhus, Denmark (1983). In the spring of 1984 RATTUS did a four week European tour playing shows in Sweden, Germany, Holland, Italy, Yugoslavia, Denmark and England.

In january of 1984 rattus recorded songs for "Ihmiset on sairaita" Ep and Poko records was supposed to release it but then the boss of Poko thought that punk wasn´t selling enough anymore and said that RATTUS should try to find another label to release it. That label wasn´t found until spring of 1985 when a new label called Ann & Archies records released it as their 1st release. Those tracks were included on Brazilian version of "Uskonto on vaara", which now has 15 tracks (well, I´d like count ´Medley´ as three tracks here...) and is a full killer Lp!!! One of these songs is on Maximum Rock´n´Roll ´Welcome to 1984´ compilation Lp. At the time members of RATTUS started to listen more and more metal (Metallica, Slayer and Venom) and songs also started to sound more metal. Annikki wasn´t good enough anymore in the new style and Jake took on the vocals in march of 1986. Anyway, two new, more metallic tracks, with Annikki doing the vocals, were released on "Have a rotten chrismas Vol II" compilation.

So, Jake started to sing again and band was also again a three-piece. In july RATTUS recorded a new Lp but the label Dekadenz, who also paid the studios, wasn´t too happy with new, more metallic material. Album "Stolen Life" was left to be released later in France and Brazil. A new member Kari joined band as a 2nd guitarist in december of 1986.

First shows with new lineup took place in Sweden and Denmark in february 1987. Most of the crowd were expecting for old HC-punk sound and were disappointed to
what they heard. In november 1987, RATTUS recorded a
2-song 7" which became their last official recording.

Rattus broke up in february 1988. Last show was in Jyväskylä 15th january 1988. Some bands were formed after the broke of RATTUS. Jake pushed forward with ZWANGIZER and Vellu & Kari continued with CHOREA. Those two bands were more into metal. Annikki had TIK-BLOODY TAK & BRATATTACK with Astro HILJAINEN KEVÄT and Jake.

New millennium, still going strong. Rattus played live on 14.4.2001 at Vernissa (Vantaa) with the original lineup! Tomppa, Vellu, Jake and Annikki made it after 13 years!!! RATTUS was still tight and furious as hell. And band´s old friend, Astro was there too, doing his part for ´Rumia ruumiita´ & ´Horror Business´.

Second gig of new Millennium took place at Hämeenlinna Ämyrock on 29.06.2002. If they kept a lesson how to play HardCore at the Vernissa 2001, now they really made some heads bang.

RATTUS played live at YO-Talo Tampere (Finland) on 04.04.2003. The set consisted of good old HC-blasts, maybe Jake and Vellu had put some tricky touch to them, anyway, good as hell. Both three and four piece line ups did their parts and the crowd was doing their best on moshing and singing along.

Story taken from Rattus-Fanzine and liner-notes of "RATTUS-Täältä tullaan kuolema" Cd.