Getting ready for the summer’s festival season, let’s take a glance back to last august’s Myötätuulirock in Vantaa Finland. Our guest reporter Marko “Skludda” Korhonen repeated his actions from the previous year, and headed on to the festival with the firm intention to have some good time, company and music… and to top it all, provide us all with a report on the event – written in his inimitable style. Here goes:
Okay, here we are again! Time for another Myötätuulirock (MTR) and another report. The night before this year’s event my good friend and photographer Matti showed up and we spent the night going through the schedule and artists of MTR12, pondering which are the most anticipated bands of the weekend, and which ones less so.
Being the metal guys we are, we were watching the summer olympics at the same time and in the process of doing that ended up inviting our own brand of badminton, called flatminton which included a set of badminton gear and a 30 or so square meters of fully furnished bedroom… but that might be another story…
Friday 3rd of August, 2012
So on to the Myötätuulirock. The first act of the event was King Sapiens, who played with a good attitude but to a regrettably small audiende. The guys were on a roll and despite the small attencance gave a good show. That sort of an attitude oughta get them far. Next up was FM2000, finnish equivalent of System of a Down, keeping up their usual good pace that didn’t dissappoint any fans. Good guys!
Then time for Amoral, a opinion dividing group that has changed their style quite a lot. I liked them in the ‘good old days’ but the style changed in 2009 into a ‘poppier’ direction with the inclusion of Finnish Idol winner Ari Koivunen causing the band to adopt some cleaner melodies and drop a dose of growling. It’s still listeneable though, and the songs work well enough live or not.
Listening to Los Bastardos Finlandeses with half an ear was ok, not a personal favourite of mine but worked well enough while sipping beer and soaking in the good vibes from the audience. But like last year, the weather turned against us during the To/Die/For gig that followed. It was pouring, and if you would’ve been made of sugar it would’ve been good bye to you. But the band played on and the most devout of fans stood firm in the rain, a true festival spirit, hats off to that!
Luckily by the next band, Blake, the rain had ceased and the riff-heavy and hot rockin’ band worked like hell. I know these dudes from before and the going is still strong as ever. A really good live band, and do check out the bass line of “Fingers Crossed” simple brilliance!
Last show of friday was delivered by Turmion Kätilöt who brought some strawberry-scented melodies to the night. The guaranteed quality gig by the Kätilöt was what the audience came to see and the show clearly lifted their spirits… as some ladies lifted something else, heh… anyways, nigh time to get back home and prepare for the next day!
Saturday 4th of August, 2012
I seemed to be visited by a slight hangover in the morning, and I guess my wingman Matti suffered from the same symptoms, but the festival waited and the first band of the day was about to set off so with some hair of a dog and steel hard determination, on we marched!
And the day started with a bang! If the audience didn’t know who Tracedawn was, they did after the band’s gig. Their Lizard Dusk album was a killer and the songs worked just as well, if not better, live. The two-vocalist assault of (ex-Amoral) Niko Kalliojärvi and guitarist Tuomas Yli-Jaskari worked like a jackpot. Some of the guys could be more motionary on stage, but that’s about the only complaint one could find. Don’t miss these guys if you get a chance to see them! Really good melodic metal!
At this point me and Matti decided that the following bands were not really to our taste, so off we went socialising with the other festival goers and enjoying a few beers. At this point there was absolutely no signs of rain and the sun was blazing from the sky. So a very nice time to chill.
Until it was time for swedish guys Engel stroming the stage. Nothing negative to say about them, the band was on fire (as seemed to be Matti’s balls judging by his enthusiasm for the group!) and we were admiring how brilliantly the Engel vocalist maintained his pitch even on the toughest parts of the songs. An excellent performance, heja Swerige!
Engel / Photo by Matti Kolehmainen
After Engel the weather seemed to be getting better still and the beer tasted as good as ever. Half past eight in the evening and we decided to check out Insomnium from eastern Finland. I had heard a lot of comments and seen myself that the stage presence of the band was borderline catatonic and the young musicians just basically stood still on stage. I also found their brand of “melodeathmetaldoomroll” rather boring so the expectations for the gig were not very high.
But was I wrong or what!? Come the first song the Insomnium guys were going crazy on stage, spinning their heads like the best of them! Amazing attitude, amazing sounds, a lot of feeling all through the spectrum! The band took me completely by surprise and my previous thoughts about them were good as gone. A brains out – epiphany, Insomnium instantly got a high slot on my playlist. Final score: Insomnium – Korhonen 666-0! Another band not to miss, folks!
Insomnium / Photo by Matti Kolehmainen
And that brings us to the last band of this review, another visitor from Sweden – Amaranthe. This cake made of chocolate (Jake E, vocals) and salty licourice (Andy, screams) and topped with sweet cream (Elize, vocals) tastes good enough… their live show pales not in comparison to bigger acts and the songs with the catchy riffs and melodic choruses stick frighteningly well into one’s brain. Hope no-one’s takes offense when I say that Amaranthe is like a modern metal version of Abba (and hey, I like Abba!). While the last band of the festival, Ensiferum, was playing their heroic metal in the background, we decided to call it a day and headed back home.
Amaranthe/ Photo by Matti Kolehmainen
All in all Myötätuulirock 2012 was a good festival, but the selection of bands paled somewhat in comparison to previous year’s artists. Some interesting names were scheduled for this year, but unfortunately some of them were later cancelled. Luckily the remaining bands did a good job, despite not necessarily belonging to my top list. The weather was better than the year before and the attendance was around the same as 2011. That should do it from my part, cheers, skludda and keep on Rockin’!
With special thanks to: MTR backstage crew & Jouni Partanen.