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Finntroll + Crimfall + Cavus - 12/31/2010 - Nosturi - Helsinki

The traditional folk appointment for new year''s eve is back. This year in two days at Nosturi we will see Finntroll and Ensiferum respectively, supported by some interesting local acts. The event is not sold out, as comprehensibly many people prefer to spend this night in private house parties rather than inside a dark music club. But I''''d say there''''s time for parties both before AND after the shows, so why miss those?

As I approach Nosturi in the snow, it''s not much the queue at the entrance, as expected in this cold and windy winter time, since not even Finns like so much to wait outside in this dark and hostile weather. The task to open this evening, in front of a crowd divided between the shy teenagers in front of the stage and the quite crowd sipping beer and other drinks upstairs, is due to Cavus with their rusty black metal. The band hits the few people in the front like an unexpected punch in the eye, left aside some technical issues along the way and the not-so-perfect condition of the singer W.
Opening with “Fist Of A Titan” from their newly released debut album, the Porvoo-based band offers a good warm-up, maybe not so well appreciated by the folk-ish younger fans of Finntroll, who didn''''t expect harsher sounds. There''''s space also for tracks from the self-titled EP, like “Reek” and “Black Filth Burning”, as the audience seem to enjoy the music as well as the faces of the guitarist B.P.
“Worship And Rot” (with a pretty useless change of guitar in the last few seconds) marks the end of the show of this captivating opener, which has gained visibility touring with bands like Mayhem and Gorgoroth, and shows they know what they are doing, unlike many other new acts. Good luck Cavus!
After a brief change-over, it''s then time to move towards a sound which is more suited for the evening, something labeled as “Epic Folk Metal”, when Crimfall gets the spotlight on stage. The band from Helsinki, which can count on the former appearance of Henri Sorvali (Finntroll, Moonsorrow), is not much older than Cavus, but doesn''t mean it doesn''t have its way on stage.
The live performance of the singing duo Mikko Häkkinen/Helena Haaparanta is always interesting to see, giving a kind of “Beauty & the Beast” touch to the show. Among the songs performed this evening, obviously from the so-far-only full-length “As The Path Unfolds...”, we find “The Crown Of Treason”, the fascinating “Wildfire Season” (on which makes an unexpected guest appearance our Mathias “Vreth” from Finntroll), and “Where Waning Winds Lead”.
I don''''t know if it''''s just my opinion, but in many occasions I have the feeling that a live violinist as in Turisas would be a really nice addition to the band. Of course there''''s the risk to be compared then too much to the more famous colleagues, even though I think it could be worth to give it a try. Nonetheless the show seems to work, as proved by the slightly more involved fans gathered in front of the stage.
In the meantime midnight is approaching, but little knows the people inside Nosturi of the traditional flows of champagne and fireworks on the outside, as everyone is waiting for Finntroll to come. Maybe those who are most aware of the celebration are indeed the band members, since they quietly get on stage some good 15 mins after midnight. Backstage celebration?
It doesn''''t really matter anyway to most of the people, who start cheering immediately when the 6-piece enters on the notes of “Solsagan”. Isn''''t there something missing? Exactly. Because it seems like Routa won''''t be among us tonight, and instead in a rather unusual way here''''s Henri “Trollhorn” Sorvali at the rhythm guitar. Worth watching.
Needless to say that the audience goes crazy from the beginning, so much that some small sound problem doesn''''t bother pretty much anyone. Especially when the band goes back to play tracks like the duo “Slaget Vid Blodsälv”/”Skogens Hämnd” dall''''ormai datato “Jaktens Tid”. Vreth is a good puller for the crowd as always, dragging most of the attention on himself as the other band members are definitely more detached from the audience, except for a few occasions. When the new “Nedgång” is followed by classics such as “Nattfödd” and “Midnattens Widunder”, the Swedish-singing act is just half-way through the show and already holds the audience in its palm. Big evidence of this will be later the dances originating from “Trollhammaren”, while the show has almost reached its conclusion.
The encore starts then with another extremely catchy song, the new “Under Bergets Rot”, to end with an unusual “Maktens Spira”. More from the older material wouldn''''t have hurt, but after all Finntroll plays so often that for once that can be forgiven. Not to mention that this is a party, so up your glasses people, and happy new year with Finntroll! Skål!




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