Heart of Steel: Concert Reviews

Tuska Open Air Metal Festival 2002
Helsinki, Finland: 12th - 14th of July 2002
Review & Photos By The Finnish Metal Rules Team

Day 1: FRIDAY, July 12th
The doors were already opened at 3.00 pm when the Swedish Mustasch got on the stage, followed by a couple of domestic bands´ sets, Blake and Sub-Urban Tribe. A couple of words could be mentioned about Sub-Urban Tribe. The band has been around for about 6-7 years now, mostly being on hiatus because of other bands resurrected from the dead. For example the Sut's bassist's old speed/metal Stone that used to have a die-hard following in the late 80's in Finland. But when watching Sub-Urban Tribe's current state, the combo has received an entire new kick to their collective asses because the former Kyyria vocalist has joined to the band about a year ago. He has given a new vital fuel to their soft mainstream radio friendly approach. But when seeing the band's to-do and listening to their stuff from an old-school thrasher´s view, one thing can be said: "Do NOT bring Stone back anymore…!!"



Then it was about time to have a rude and merciless lesson of the panzer division attack when Marduk rolled onto the stage like a colony of tanks from World War II, providing the most aggressive performance of the whole festival. The Swedish black war maniacs stormed with a menace by churning out the most destructive set of their most punishing and merciless tunes like "The Funeral Bitch" and the Marduk classic "Of Hell's Fire." The new recruited drummer needs to get an extra mention for the thunderous drumming throughout the set without showing signs of exhaustion. An overdose of too much sun probably kept his blood circulation to the very maximum causing his extraordinary impressive work behind the drum kit - we will just never know that for sure. Oh yeah, Legion's karate jumps and kicks´ were extremely hilarious to watch, too…



Both Moonsorrow and Ensiferum have something in common between two of them because of both the bands explore their musical genius and creativity basically on the same playground of their somewhat strange world full of trolls, Vikings and ´other weirdos´ and also happen to be bilingual what comes to a communicating language. The type of Folk -inspired Viking Black Metal definitely appeals to the ´trollish´ Black Metal fans for sure and having a few of glances over their crowds, you can become certain that it definitely did. Especially Moonsorrow´s set at Tuska was VERY MUCH worth seeing because the whole band not only sounds great live, but also looks somewhat good visually are entertaining to watch. Heh…, the guys even paid some tribute to Manowar by playing one of their earliest songs off BATTLE HYMN album to their fans. So let´s all raise our swords high for the old muscle Kings… Hail Manowar!!!




Machine Head

The last act of the first day was Machine Head who had definitely succeeded in divining the whole wide metal community to two different camps: one half just either hated them and the rest of us seemed to like them pretty much as a matter of speaking. The line-up of the band was undoubtedly more than interesting for many of us several old-school thrashers as the axeman of both Technocracy and the legendary Bay Area thrashers Vio-lence Phil Demmel had been hired to help the Machine Head dudes out for a short European festival tour. As for the gig it gotta be admitted that The Bay Area ´sweat suit metallers´ unleashed one hell of a gig despite the latest two efforts haven't got the Metal-Rules team and some other ol´-school metalheads convinced about their more ´Yo-Yo…Uh!´- direction. But in spite of that the band proved to be in a damn good strike and the audience thanked and arranged a real chaotic slamming pit especially in the very front of the massive stage during the later half of their show. The band fortunately and for its own sake mostly focused on the debut album´s material by kicking off through "Old", "A Thousand Lies", "Davidian" and of course both "Ten Ton Hammer" and "Leave My Scars" from the second album were heard as well. As for many of us got surprised, Machine Head also covered Sepultura's "Territory" and above all Metallica´s "Creeping Death" and it was received very well amongst the crazy crowd.

After Machine Head's energy-filled set, the audience, still in some sort of the tension, starting to throw shitloads of plastic bottles and other objects directly aimed towards two host commentators of the whole festival.


2 Ton Predator

After spending a hot day at the venue, it was about time to crawl to the local metal club to check out a few Swedish bands namely Two Ton Predator and The Project Hate. Unfortunately Two Ton Predator didn't appear to be that tempting band onstage. Pretty much on the contrary the whole combo appeared to be kinda tired and less interested to be on the stage and obviously were more expecting to have a taste of the king beer in their thirsty lips. 

The Project Hate

As for The Project Hate that is kind of an industrial-tinged Death Metal project band featuring Kenth Philipson (formerly Leukemia, House of Usher, etc.) and Jorgen Sandstorm (formerly Grave and currently in Entombed, too!). The stuff was mixed with the rough riffs and the programmed drum machine with both Jorgen's utterly brutal vocal delivery and the female vocalist Mia´s soft and siren-like voice providing a great contrast to the band´s overall heavy and grotesque-like approach. The band's attempt to get the people shocked, or at least a bit amused, got quite hilarious as the guys were covered with sticky blood all over. Nonetheless, the band sounded very good and did a decent set, pulling through songs off their two albums. We were also told that the whole show was recorded to be put out as a live album entitled KILLING HELLSINKI later this year on Swedish Horns Up Records. Look at for details at: http://hornsup.whitetrashdevil.com/news.php 

Read on for Day 2...

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