25.07 2008 KOTKA, FINLAND
Kotkan Meripäivät is not such a festival where you can see too many metal or hard rock bands but sometimes the deviation approves all rules and this year the legendary Scorpions were headlining this three day festival. Scorpions are still continuing to tour support for bands latest release HUMANITY VOL 1, which came out over a year ago. In fact it was less than two months since Scorps last time played in Finland when they co -headlining Sauna Open Air -festival in Tampere but almost sold out audience in Kotka proved that there’s a huge demand for Scorpions in Finland.
REVIEW AND PICTURES BY MARKO SYRJÄLÄ
The show was about to start at midnight but because I was a the venue almost two hours before I had good time to catch sight of this festival more than I usually do. First of all, it was funny to notice that age distribution was really wide in this concert. There were people starting from age 18 to 75 years there but that was probably because of the manner of this festival where other artist include such names as Remu and the Hurriganes, Havana Black, Teräsbetoni, Yö, Popeda and Kari Tapio. What also was conspicuous was the fact that there were a lot of Scorpions fans coming from other countries. There were fans from Russia, Sweden, Estonia and Italy just to mention few here, but now it’s time to go into the Scorpions show!
Set kicked off with the title track of bands latest HUMANITY HOUR 1 album followed by classic "Coming Home". "The Zoo" was played next and during the song Klaus Meine was throwing dozens of drum sticks for the audience. It was funny to notice that most of the crowd didn’t seem to know major part of the songs but they still kept a loud noise and at least tried to sing along with band on choruses. Rarely played FACE THE HEAT track "No Pain No Gain" was definitely one the highlights of the show. "Coast To Coast" included great jamming with Klaus on third guitar but it was the next two songs which almost caused pavilions roof to blow up and those two were, of course, ballads: "Send Me An Angel" and "Holiday". Especially during "Holiday" people were singing so loud that band was barely heard and they seemed to be a little confused but in a positive way. Two less often played songs: "Loving You Sunday Morning" and "Make It Real" sounded really good although many people started invasion towards beer tent during that time. The same movement did continue during another HUMANITY track "321" but fortunately classic "Dynamite" quickly changed the direction and atmosphere started to get better again. What was coming next was James Kottak’s drum solo. Usually I skip over all kind of solos because they’re simply boring and waste of time but it must be said that James did a great job here. The essential solo part was quite short and it started to convert into a great "percussion show" when each member of band joined James’s show and they all were beating their own drums around the stage. That was somewhat impressing part and when band next headed into "Blackout" and then "Big City Nights" everybody was screaming their voices off.
The main part of the show was then over. Band did thank audience and left from stage. After five minute hiatus they, of course, returned and started to play their biggest hit to date: "Still Loving You" which briefly altered concert hall to look like a dance pavilion. It seemed that especially many older couples forget that they were in a rock concert and they started to dance and drive younger people away from their way. It has to said that it was quite confusing five minutes but fortunately things turned back to normal when band next headed into "Humanity" and "Rock You Like A Hurricane".
In brief summary it can be said that Scorpions once again proved that they’re true professionals who can still rock with no sign of tiredness or being entrench. Klaus’s vocals were in top shape. Rudolf Schenker was still jumping around like a maniac and the rest of the guys were quite energetic as well. The set list was a good combination of bands biggest hits and material from the latest album but why in earth they didn’t played anything from their previous UNBREAKABLE album which is one of their best albums to date? Also the complete lack of material of SAVAGE AMUSEMENT and only one track from CRAZY WORLD was a little disappointing and not to even mention that there was hardly anything played from their 70’s era? Understandably there is not enough time to please everyone and of course there are several songs which are must to play but still, hopefully band will do more non-obvious choices on the next time?
Humanity Hour 1
No Pain no Gain
Coast to Coast
Send me an Angel
Loving you Sunday Morning
Make it Real
JAMES KOTTAK -drum solo
Big City Nights
Still Loving You
Rock You Like a Hurricane
FOR MORE INFO GO TO : WWW.THE-SCORPIONS.COM
MORE PICTURES FROM SCORPIONS KOTKA SHOW !!!