It was time to us witness last gig one of the most legendary names in Finnish death metal, Demilich. Over 20 years of existence this band holds somewhat “got-to-see-once-in-lifetime” position. I think it was a good move to put band playing inside but have to say that there was something wrong with the sounds again. Band sounded pretty stuffy and it was not working well with Demilich’s technical death metal at all. Have to say that band didn’t let sounds to slow them down and performed the best they could.
Corpse from Deathchain was hired for the bass duties while vocalist Antti Boman could invoke the beast inside of him. I personally haven’t heard anybody else to sound the way he’s doing on stage! He’s sounding like a wild boar more than a man!
This set proved excellently how technical approach Demilich had towards their music. Whole playing looked so easy but if you take a look what fingers are doing on guitar’s scale you’ll probably would come up with an idea (like I did), that perhaps it’s not easy at all. Band played the whole Nespithe -album including some demo material as well as some newer songs to enter into the grave again. R.I.P. Demilich!!!!
The Finnish band Urn started quite early in the morning. I have to say (like usual), these opening spots are not so pleasant duties for the bands especially when it’s raining on the same time when you’re supposed play on the second stage outside. Rain drastically reduced the crowd in the front of the stage. Well this didn’t slow down Urn at all and they played an interesting set with an attitude. The band’s music reminds me a bit of old Bathory and Venom era which is always a good thing, isn’t it?
I personally have never heard the band before and have to say that I was anxiously waiting to experience band playing live. Anyway this was somewhat bitter-sweet to me whereas the band didn’t exactly fulfill my expectations. The sounds were bad throughout the set and Black Crucifixion didn’t really succeed to get the crowd’s spirit running high (or maybe it was because of the “spirits” why crowd was so…sleepy I would say).
Musically, Black Crucifixion was interesting combination of so called old-school pre-black metal and Scandinavian sound alike with old Bathory. So we got to hear quite a long set which contained long shifts between the songs – I really don’t know why, maybe band had some technical problems in Jalometalli. In my opinion Black Crucifixion would be best experienced in small clubs. Bigger venues didn’t seem to fit them very well. Of course it should be keep in mind that if you have bigger PA-set with monitors which are not working properly you can hear it from bands performance straight away. There’s always a chance that we haven’t seen Black Crucifixion in their best streak yet.
Melechesh was undoubtedly one of the most interesting performance in Jalometalli 2010. Later on many people confessed that band had a great set and not so many people even knew anything about the band! So later on we can say that Melechesh surely gained lots of new fans from Finland, including myself.
Melechesh was offering different kind of approach what comes to the melodies. Perhaps we can say that some of the twisted riffs and melodies were straight from the oriental civilization and gave something new to us who are living in the western culture. Recipe was delicious: Band played their melodic death/black metal with unbelievable great sounds. Now that’s hard to beat… Orginally band’s from Jerusalem but got relocated in France and in Netherlands 1998, so we can freely talk about European band today… Roots are of course in Jerusalem that’s for sure.
Band’s entity on stage was great. Their sheer energy and undisputed attitude was something I didn’t expected to see. Have to say that this band was one of the biggest winners in this particular festival. I dare say they’re probably back in Finland after their latest album The Epigenesis is released. Hope I would have a chance to see them playing again some day.
ROSS THE BOSS
Ross the Boss was a founding member of Manowar and he played a crucial role in during their early years. Ross was contributing to metal classics like BATTLE HYMNS and SIGN OF THE HAMMER before leaving that outfit after KINGS OF METAL album in 1988. Although Ross never completely quit with music business it still took like 20 years before he released a full album of original material. NEW METAL LEADER came out in 2008 and it’s a respectable album which strongly carries on the legacy of early Manowar. The band; Ross, vocalist Patrick Fuchs, Carsten Kettering on bass and Matthias Mayer on drums, performed now first time in Finland and got their chance to introduce themselves to demanding Finnish audience.
Their set kicked off with new album opening track “Blood of Knives” and it turned out really well. Another newbie “Death and Glory” followed before it was time of evening’s first Manowar classic. When Ross started to play riff of “Death Tone” people went completely crazy and they sang the whole song with Patrick from right from the beginning to the end. A couple of track later things became even better when another former Manowar member Scott Columbus settled behind the drum kit. “Hail to England”, “Kill with Power”, “Fighting the World” and other old Manowar standards were performed with such a passion and devotion that weaker began scared. Former colleagues Ross and Scott seemed to have great time and they definitely have some certain chemistry on stage. Hopefully they will carry on their cooperation in the future as well. Special mention here goes to Patrick Fuchs. Although he is not Eric Adams, he managed to do a great work here especially with higher parts which are sometimes missing from current Manowar shows.Altogether band did eight Manowar songs and for that reason its own material remain a little neglected here. There’s definitely nothing wrong with NEW METAL LEADER –material but it’s understandably impossible to compete with classics. A heartfelt version of old Rainbow classic “Catch the Rainbow” worked out fine as well and it was a great tribute for Ronnie James Dio (R.I.P). All in all, this was very enjoyable and nostalgic show. Numerous Manowar fans got what they wanted and for sure Ross and his fans won some new followers as well. Welcome back anytime!
Jalometalli 2010 offered us lots of highlights but there certainly was one band above all. Triptykon. I thought I have seen such a heavy bands with an bone-crushing sound on stage before but this set was an ultimate experience! Tom G. Warrior led his group on stage and that was the point where our trip to darkness started. Band offered us ”Procreation of the Wicked” for the starters -have to admit that Triptykon has nothing to do with Celtic Frost like some of you might think. No, it’s not Celtic Frost playing on stage, it’s Triptykon covering Celtic Frost… Band definitely does have sound of its own and it’s not that precisely sounding like Celtic Frost was.
After the start, Tom G. Warrior stated that Celtic Frost played their last gig in Europe at Oulu, excatly 3 years ago. The man himself looked to be excited to get back in town again and the whole band seemed to be extremely focused to perform the best they can. They also played massive ”Goetia” from the debut album which perfectly showed band’s ability to create dark atmosphere. To those who’d like to know what other CF songs they played, we got to hear ”Babylon Fell”, ”Circle of the Tyrants”, ”Dethroned Emperor” and surprisingly ”Necromantical Screams”… From ”Eparistera Daimones” we got to hear ”Abyss Within My Soul”, ”In Shrouds Decayed” and epic ”The Prolonging”.
I thought that ”Monotheist” was something so dark and sinister which couldn’t be exceeded ever. Well, Triptykon possess some similarities what comes to sound of ”Monotheist” but it’s even more deeper and more darker than its predecessor. I really don’t know what Tom G. Warrior did to achive that and I’m not even sure that I’d like to even know.
Triptykon was one of the definitive highlights of the Jalometalli festival. It’s really easy to say afterward and I do believe that we will have a chance to see them playing in Finland again some other day.
The legendary NWOBHM band Angel Witch appeared now the very first time Finland and they had an honor to be the last performer on the whole festival. The band has a long and interesting history behind. Their first album ANGEL WITCH (1980) is widely recognized as a classic and many of today’s prominent artists, names like Lars Ulrich, keep always on praising Angel Witch and tell how important their influence is for the whole metal scene but for some reason band never made it big time. During the years, band has gone through numerous lineup changes and today the only remaining member left from the classic era is the vocalist/guitarist Kevin Heybourne. Well, perhaps it wasn’t best spot for Angel Witch to be the very last band performing because there were only a handful of people witnessing their show. Kevin and company did not give it to interfere with their show which actually turned out to be such a strong one. As expected, band focused mainly on their debut album material. Old classics like:”Angel of Death”, “Sorceress” and “White Witch” worked out extremely well and band got a good response. The band performed the first album in it’s entirely and only a handful of songs from the latter era which was a good decision because about 99% of the crowd seemed to recognize the old stuff only. Kevin turned out to be a good front man and guitarist with a great sense of British humor whereas the rest of the band was such an impersonal and they stayed more in the background. This was definitely one man and one album show and there’s nothing wrong with that. On the other hand, how long this kind of setting does interest audience or band itself? Once seen, don’t know if I want to see it again?
And Finally GORGOROTH and epilogue
This headline’s actually more than fitting to the situation band found themselves in Jalometalli this year. I heard already during the evening that something went badly wrong with Gorgoroth’s flight in Oulu. The band did appear at the Oulu airport but their backline did not. That was the scene where they started to work towards the gig with the organizers. So, while all the equipment was missing organizers of Jalometalli couldn’t do anything else than just start to borrow stuff here and there: From the local bands, from the studios nearby etc. The outcome was pretty interesting though, Gorgoroth started their gig at 02:30 AM.
The band managed to pull it off anyway. Thanks to the organizers who had special permission from the city of Oulu to expand the festival because of what had happened. I bet that this would not happen anywhere else in Finland.
So we finally gathered to see Gorgoroth playing inside instead of the main stage outside. It worked out surprisingly well. There was problems with sounds in the beginning of the set but sound got better ‘till the set continued. I cannot thank enough about the band of the attitude they showed on stage. Gorgoroth proved to be the true professionals in every sense of the word. They played 45 minutes and with an attitude which didn’t leave much room for discussion. We were capable to hear even some of the songs from Incipit Satan and from Destroyer albums which were highlights of the gig. I can only hope that band could come back in Finland again, because their set in Jalometalli left some hunger for more!
…Another wasted year have passed and we headed again towards the White Town of North. This year’s festival was interesting because of old legendary acts such as Macabre, Suffocation, Carcass! It will be interesting to see what will happen in the years to come especially because next year will be anniversary for celebrating the 10 year -old metal festival and I bet there will be some highly interesting names on the roster.