Vader, NightRage, BloodThorn – Helsinki, Finland November 2006

BloodThorn & Nightrage
The 24th of November 2006
NightLife Rock, Helsinki, Finland

The coverage of obscure underground death metal gigs continues in Previous reviews have covered gigs of both Grave and Dismember when these bands played in obscure places in front of small, but enthusiastic audiences on their small tour thru Finland.

Vader had toured in Finland a couple of years ago gaining a solid and strong reputation as being a tight and merciless live act on stage. The band had guaranteed to deliver a lesson in the purest death metal mayhem for several extreme metal maniacs on their last tour. Therefore Vader’s return to the soil of Finland was definitely welcomed.

The Polish death metal squads did a quick blitzkrieg oriented tour thru Finland together with a couple of warm up bands : the Norwegian BloodThorn and the Swedish Nightrage. Before landing at the capital of Finland, Helsinki the whole three some package had teamed up with BioMechanical and Exodus for one and only special show in the north, Oulu. Seeing that package in Helsinki would have been an overwhelming experience for each extreme metal worshipper.

The gig with Vader and two other bands had been carried out in a real small, but atmospheric metal club nearby the centrum of Helsinki. There weren’t any safety barriers between the stage and the audience. The stage was an tiny and especially narrow when the whole backline was placed there. A couple of mandatory security guys were standing next to the stage, trying to keep some kind of control and order.


Even though the club was not even close to full or packed, the Norwegian death metallers got on the stage kicking the night off by giving a brutal death metal lesson. It was a shame that the small crowd for obvious polite reasons rather stayed a little bit on the background by keeping a solid distance from the tiny stage. The singer kept spinning his hair with intensive rage and kept growling his lungs out of his body. Other Bloodthorn members mostly remained in the background in the darkest corners of the stage. Unfortunately BloodThorn wasn’t impressive. The sounds weren’t in the right and tight balance. Secondly the lazy and small crowd definitely caused a lack of interest for the band to rage on the stage. Basically the opening bands are always forced to suffer from the lame and small audience as the people usually enter venues on time before the main act gets on the stage.  


NightRage hit the stage next. The combo had undergone some line-up changes as the former At The Gates frontman Tomas Lindgren had pulled out and was replaced by a new face named Jimmie Strimelli who was heavily tattooed all over his body. Even though the man’s background remained more or less a mystery he definitely sacrificed himself on the stage by being a quite relentless man with the pic. 


The line-up of Nightrage hasn’t been that stable during the band’s existence, but that hasn’t had a big impact on the band’s raging stage performance which could be best described as intensive. The band’s mainman and primusmotor Mario Illiopoulus remained mostly calm handling the guitar duties, whereas the other guys were a little bit on the background. NightRage got a nice warm respose from the audience. Obviously the band is more known in Finland compared to the Norwegian BloodThorn.

Before the Polish death metallers conquered the stage, the club was already getting really packed. When the first song roared out of the monitors the whole front area of the stage was entirely in fullblown chaos and mayhem. Moving sideways, forward or backwards became more than impossible, for example taking any reasonable pics was kind of hopeless. People pushed each other when trying to reach closer to the stage and have a better glance at Vader in action. Of course a nice sweaty pit of several slammers was burning up the floor, causing more utter distortion. The people kept banging their heads and hair spinning all around when Vader’s frontman Piotr aka Peter declared this is war now.

The pressure in the front became extreme. The atmosphere got extremely brutal as the gig was interrupted a couple of times. The loudspeakers fell off from the stage due to the raging and banging maniacs. Because the pressure was tremendous, the people were asked several times to take a metre step backwards. After that monitors were managed to be settled back to the stage and the pressure got a little bit lighter. The Polish death metallers watched the whole thing wondering about the situation. When getting back to the stage Peter praised the Finnish bestial crowd “You maniacs, even Satan would be proud of you”.


Vader was nothing, but merciless and brutal from the beginning to the end, showing no mercy or any kind of slowdown. Instead they sped up the brutality by giving us plenty of ass kicking songs like “Lead Us”, “Blood Of Kings”, “Helleluyah!!! (god Is Dead)”, “Wings” etc…The current drummer Daray has proved to be a real machine behind the drum kit as the man fired his kit with the tight drumming. Both Mauser and Novy kept banging so hard that they must have suffered from ultimate pains in their necks the next morning. The four piece death metal commanders continued the lethal brutal blitzkrieg thru 1½ hour and concluded the set with Slayer’s “Raining Blood”. It is admirable how these Polish death metallers are able to keep the quality of their deadly approach up on every gig as doing hundreds of gigs every bloody year. However although the small metal bar was totally packed by hundreds of extreme metallers that definitely brought about more close and intensive feelings creating a one of a kind atmosphere for both the band and audience. Hopefully this kind of gig will be seen more.

The official Vader site :

The official NightRage site :

The official BloodThorn site :

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