Heart of Steel: Concert Reviews

Gandalf & The Haunted
Live At Nosturi, 12.5.2001, Helsinki, Finland 

Reviewed By Arto Lehtinen

Hello....my name is Russell Crowe. Did you see my movie The Gladiator? hehehe j/kIt was about time the Swedish thrashers The Haunted finally managed to make it by coming over here to Finland, as the band has been expected to visit for a while. Before The Haunted's thrash metal blitkrieg took over, Gandalf opened the night with a 45 minute set. The set mainly consisted of the stuff of their recent output ROCK HELL which in my opinion doesn't match to the suitable good debut output DEADLY FAIRYTALES (Editors note: Maybe I'm fucked up, but I actually love their new album!! It indeed "rocks hell"!!!). Quite obvious the newer material didn't sound that aggressive and above all furious in the live situation than the older material. I don't know, but maybe Gandalf have taken a little bit big risk of heading to the more rock oriented stuff and lost some vibes. Despite the rockier style the vocalist Jani's voice has remained on the same aggressive thrashy level. But I can't help saying the bass player and the bald guitarist seemed to be more or less out of the whole thing and absent and all in all the band's stage looks seemed like they would have wanted to be somewhere else.

Unfortunately Gandalf's effort to bring the ROCK HELL message didn't seem to appeal to the audience that much who instead walked around anxiously waiting the beginning of The Haunted. When the opening guitar riffs of "Dark Intentions" started rolling over from monitors, the crowd went entirely insane. The Haunted hammered and indeed delivered a blow with the 60 minute lesson of the thrash metal to the 300 Finnish metalheads. The set comprised equitable the material from both the albums, but particularly the rapidly played and short tunes for example "Revelation", "Bury Your head" caused an utter ballistic reaction in the audience and the whole floor was a reminiscent of a riot area when sweaty bodies were slamming all around. "And is this a normal Saturday night in Helsinki?" asked Marko Aro when seeing the crazy slamming pit. The crowd surprisingly had the strength to go on at full blast in the slamming throughout without showing any sort of signs of getting tired or exhausted at all. But instead the security guys were utter bollocks, when some kid went over the security wall, then especially one fat ass security guy started beating and smashing him all around and finally pushed him direct to the brick. What a jerk!! Both the tour in the States and a plenty of gigs done within this year and especially the boat trip from Sweden to Finland for this gig must have burdened the band more or less, but on the stage there was no piece of evidence of tiredness the band felt kinda vital and energetic and gave everything 100%. Gotta wonder if Jensen had serious pains in his neck after the gig as the man used to bang his head like insane.

The Haunted has smoothly started threatening the title of the thrash metal king of all time from Slayer if their thrash metal triumph will carry on advantageously as it has gone by now. And who's the goddamn wiseguy that said thrash metal is dead ?!? Get The Haunted!!!



Gandalf - Live Pic

THE HAUNTED Made Me Link It!

Interview with Per and Anders from Oct. 2000

A 1999 Interview with Jensen

The Official THE HAUNTED website: www.the-haunted.com

GANDALF - Interview
Gandalf's Nalle Österman (October 23, 1999)

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