The mighty Jalometalli Open Air Metal festival strikes once again with a killer killer line-up to maintain the loyal to the metal. The festival is known for relying on offering everything from traditional metal to extreme metal. Above all, it is also the classic names who have never ever visited Finland before that make this special. The legendary Teatria club is now history as it was torn down. The last year’s event was arranged in the parking lot of a big sport hall. Fortunately the organization of the Jalometalli festival decided to return the festival to its original place named Kuusisaari.
Once again the Metal Rules team hit the ground of Oulu to witness several absolutely killer bands. The whole Jalometalli festival is so unique and one of a kind that anyone reading this article should take a glance at the offering of the festival. Here is a brief article on the fest. So the time had come all of us to leave bitter sweet farewells to the old venue where we have enjoyed great music and great company throughout the years.
The domestic dance metal wonder Battle Beast kicked the set off. It was quite a clever trick from the organization to place Battle Beast to be an opening act of the fest. The band pulled a nice crowd to the open field. Battle Beast’s frontlady knows how to entertain and encourage the audience go beserk and above all have some fun. Battle Beast offered a solid set of the best of their songs.
Local Encrypted was advertised to play some kind of technical death metal so I was pretty disappointed to hear something resembling more modern thrash than, let’s say, old Atheist. Fortunately they did play some deathier stuff as well with some bass wankery but in the end this was not anywhere near my cup of tea, too young boys influenced by some new dull stuff. I don’t even remember when there was actually an interesting tech death hailing from Finland. But did I catch that this was their last gig ever? It’s good to quit when you are on top, right?
Sotajumala has been gigging several domestic metal bands during this summer. Why now as the new album titled Rauniossa (In The Ruins) by Sotajumala offers a brutal slab of the barbaric and raw death metal at its best. Sotajumala has proved to be one hell of strike on every gig, therefore Jalometalli was no exception. The five piece’s raw and uncompromising delivery left no wondering, instead the audience turned to be utter beserks. The vocalist Mynni usually expresses the standpoint of his own on what he things about issues, this time the crap religion, the islam, got mugshot from the vocalist and the audience cheered….
Hell led by Andy Sneap has been a constant visitor in Finland during the past few years. The band has rehearsed all the manners and performance with the tight. Hell’s old school metal with the modern sound grip is a perfect example of when the old school British heavy metal meets the modern day approach. The frontman’s theatrical manners and acting gave the more showman feeling and skills of his roles as the essential part of the whole HELL concept. Unfortunately Hell is not able to drag the whole theatrical visualistic arsenal to blow the stage up. Anyway the mandatory whipping session was there. All in all witnessing Hell in a more club with the gear would be the welcomed choice after.
I’ve been seeing Obscure Burial too many times already in recent couple years but I must say that these guys usually deliver the goods and so did they now. They didn’t attract that much audience in Jalometalli but we the luck few we’re treated with the black mass of robust death/black/whatever in the oldest of veins. Guys have some good hooks and riffs in their stuff and it’s rejuvenating to hear something so ancient but still fresh that it’s hard to put any tag on it. This is just metal as it’s best.
The legendary British metal squad Satan got re-activated a few years back and released the highly acclaimed album Life Sentence and will be putting out the fourth album Atom By Atom. Well the old school metal with all these extreme bands sounded the welcomed choice for sure. The classic sounds with the catchy riffs is all about what the true metal is supposed to sound. The five piece may turn out to be a bit too old for the younger generation, but it got hammered more than well to the kids. Oh by the way the frontman Brian Ross made a visit to the mighty Jalometalli a few years ago with another highly respected British heavy metal band Blitzkrieg.
Wengele (or Mengele/Insomnia as they were know back in the day) has not been doing much since their demo in 2004 but they really should. They kick ass live and even their ‘new’ material (from that 2004 demo) is pretty solid and doesn’t stick out in a bad way. But classics are classics and boy they sound good. I might be biased as a Jääli native myself but Mengele in it’s prime was one of the greatest thrash band from Finland and they still are.
CRADLE OF FILTH
If Cradle Of Filth didn’t get that highly and desperately wanted action in the audience at Wacken, but instead the Finnish audience appeared to be more appreciate toward COF. Obviouslty the frontman Dani Filth got some technical problems with the wireless system, as keeping communicating with a technician several times. However COF is either liked or disliked, but judging by the reaction of the audience, COF got the full good enjoyment back from the audience. The setlist was a basic dissection of the long career of Cradle Of Filth, should it be said Dani Filth’s. However songs had been picked up from eight album. All in all solid and routine gig from Dani and his backup forces.
The newest output by Stargazery called Star Aligned came out of blue for sure – featuring the astonishing and outstanding traditional melodic heavy metal songs. Therefore witnessing Stargazery on the stage was on the “must see” list. The band’s strong sounding melodic heavy metal sounded splendid with an awesome vocalist (having toured with Michael Schenker btw). Those ones looking for the real heavy metal without any mandatory power metal nuances, Stargazery is an obvious choice for sure.
Simpy put, Obituary ruled. Heavy and thick as hell, Jalometalli has seldomly had this perfect sound. After petty clowns of Cradle of Filth and other weak so-called metal acts of the earlier day, Obituary’s relentless slab of pure unadulterated Florida death metal was a blessing, like an oasis in the desert. The new stuff is pretty decent actually, probably best material they put out since the days of World Demise. But of course Obituary is made of from really simple ingredients, but it’s ok for a while the gig usually last. It’s good to degenerate to this primal level once in a while.
Describing the stuff played by Alfahanne aint’t that easy. it could be a a hybrid mix of black metal meets the rocking elements. being on the stage the band is definitely unpredictable and capricious. BUT Were these guys of Alfahanne in mess or something cos the whole gig looked more like out of control. The gig was pretty chaotic and hassling. Not even sure if they filled the full playing time cos the band stormed off the stage without any warning …
Saxon is an institution that is always pleasure to witness on stage but Jalometalli’s gig showcased that for a casual listener, their material is a bit uneven. The classics in the end of the setlist were awesome but the new stuff sounded bit uninspired. So it seems to be with almost every veteran band so it’s not only Saxon that should stick with the old ones. (The Inner Sanctum from 2007 had some pretty wicked stuff though) Biff Byford has this unfakeable charisma of legendary heavy metal front men so whatever Saxon actually plays, the band is still a treat to watch and hear. And when they play their “best of” stuff, there’s not many heavy metal bands that can even touch that level of quality. Andy Sneap of Hell (and others) joined the band to play on one song, a cool extra feature.
JESS AND THE ANCIENT ONES
For me, Jess and the Ancient Ones lacks soul. For me they sound like an attempt to milk the Zeitgeist from bunch of experienced metal musicians. They are too nice and safe when compared with the vivid and raw imagination of bands they draw from. That said, their gig reminded me from the glory days of Qstock, a festival happening in the same place, and especially the gig of Swedish Witchcraft there. Kuusisaari’s paviljonki is a splendid place to end a festival day with some retro sounds and packed, sweaty atmosphere. Looking the audience, I was pretty much alone with my skeptical attitude as singer Jess ruled the house with her presence.
The Finnish speed/thrash youngesters Lost Society have proved to be one hell of storm on the stage with the insane driving force. The gig at Jalometalli wasn’t any exception as to being totally out of control. The guys with the relentless passion and attitude thrashed the whole set throughout with the incredible rage. Even the playing was the second thing compared to their ultimate hassling. Even though a bit in the controlling may be needed for guys to gasp for some air.
The Domestic old school reindeer thrash metal patrol A.R.G got activated a few years back and unleashed the brutal thrashing. The old thrashers unleashed the blistering extra vaganza thrash metal set by offering a great deal of the classic ones of their own. There was no extra bullshit talking chitchat between songs, instead the four piece thrash tornado pushed with the full force ahead.
Annihilator has been crisscrossing Europe at several festivals. The Canucks managed to make it to Finland on the hectic schedule. When following Jeff Waters’ performace with the back-up forces, it couldn’t help thinking if Waters had been a vocalist since the beginning of the reincarnation of Annihilator and been a singer on every album. Annihilator might be in a different position such as Megadeth, whose frontman is recognized as the leader of the outfit. Plagued by several line-up changes and hassles Waters has taken the vocalist role over again. The four piece sounded tight and well trained, but nailed the songs with the tight playing. Even though Padden is no longer involved in Annihilator, Waters’ role as a real frontman is obvious. Despite that Waters aint that great singer. As a matter of fact Waters should have been singing since the first album to avoid all these line-up hassles.
The two men Inquisition have gained the deserved reputation during the past few years. The band has been gigging damn effectively all around. That has paid a lot as Inquisition got extremely great respond from the audience. The Frontman Dagon easily conquered the stage with the strong charisma and above all performance. Inquisition hammered the audience down by doing the intensive set of the grim sounding vicious black metal.
Candlemass without the primusmotor of the band Leif Edling sounds odd for sure. However the former Grave bassist had been recruited to take over Edling’s spot on the stage. However Edling is supposed to return back to the rank after solving the health problems. As for the set, well it has to be admitted Mats Leven is a fantastic singer, not the voice of Candlemass at all and the characteric one like the previous most wellknown singer. The set consisted of several Candlemass classic tunes. Despite the line-up has gone radical changes, something was missing from the playing though the gig sounded solid
The Swedish Tribulation is kind of odd band as the band dress up as some kind of eerie black metal, but instead the stuff is more melancholic dark metal with the obvious black metal references. That kind of stuff of Tribulation would need more darkened atmosphere in a grim club rather than an open door festival. Tribulation delivered the dismal set of the dark/blackish metal with a certain touch.
Dark Tranquillity offered a solid and quaranteed melodeathwhatevermetalgothenburg sounding metal – pretty sterile- nothing surprise. However the frontman Mikael Stanne is a great vital frontman taking the audience more than well. As for the material, well the set was a nice balance of songs from several albums. Basically it was kind of best of set from Dark Tranquillity to offer and pleased both the old and new fans.
The Finnish death/Doom metal squad Hooded Menace concluded the two day Jalometalli festival. The Deadly doomesters in an indoor club offered the lethal doom stuff with the slow heavy grip throughout the whole show. The band’s doomy riffs sounded bombastic and brutal.