My heart greeds for frozen stars... (Swallow the Sun)
Štuk, Maribor, 4 April 2007
How I have been missing gigs lately. Good metal gigs, where one can be overwhelmed with the music this one prefers. Dancing, jumping, screaming. Now, this year, I would also really like to visit one of the festivals up North to see live all those so very local Finnish bands I like and that will probably never come to play here... alright, this is another post's theme. However, last Wednesday, I was very happy to join my friends and hit the road. Destination: Maribor. One hardly awaited gig was about to happen there. So it did, perkele! Two bands from Finland: Swallow the Sun and Moonsorrow.
After exciting drive around Maribor while trying to find the place, we did reach the venue successfully. Štuk, quite a fancy place. Lofty, with a nice bar and very clean toilets. We also spotted the stall with various merchandise. Kind of perversity grabbed me, and I went to speak in Finnish to the interesting guy selling the goods. I say perversity since I wondered how the particular Fin would react when hearing his language spoken in the middle of Maribor. What the fuck? It seemed completely normal to him. My boasting nose down. In Finnish he asked me only, how do we say kiitos in Slovenian. It also came clear that I had been teaching how to say hvala Mikko, Swallow the Sun frontman. I wonder if he wears those kinky Swallow the Sun boxer-shorts he was selling... Okay, keep wondering. To the gig we go. Enjoy the photos I have taken.
SWALLOW THE SUN
Recently, their latest album Hope has earned a good review in Slovenian metal-webzine Paranoid. Also in Finnish Imperiumi, a good opinion with a score nine from total ten can be found. Whatever, I do not care for scores that much. I just like this album. Here I must mention that Katatonia frontman Jonas Renkse is appearing as a guest on Hope, too. There was no Renkse in Maribor, but I dare to say I was among those few ones that came to the gig mainly because of Swallow the Sun. I assume their name is associated with Nordic (not Finnish, beware) mythology. In Ragnarök, Nordic end of the world, the sun gets swallowed. Their lyrics is completely in English. Since I put lots of stress on good lyrics, I think they could do better here. But I really like their melodics. It feels rich. Carefully woven. Building, developing slowly into dark crescendos, underlined with growling, sometimes screaming vocals. Thus, melodic parts are what Swallow the Sun does the best. Low growls and clear vocals in melancholic melodic death/doom. Such metal is among my favoured genres; in general, doom metal has been closer to me within the last years. Of course a doom metal gig cannot be that energetic and jolly, but still. There are melancholy and deep sorrow, there are rejected love and loss, there is self-pity, there are slow parts; yet there can also be rage with some amount of special energy.
Light has faded
As has the touch of your palms
No more songs of joy
Only dreadful silence
Only dreadful silence
And painful memories
Now, some epic shit! Hei, that said Ville, Moonsorrow frontman. If Swallow the Sun were serious band and their audience was a bit older, then Moonsorrow seems to be more preferd by younger girlies and boys. This is what I have spotted during the gig. Lots of girlies and boys. Now I must kindly ask my friends to forgive me the blasfemic opinion. We have different tastes and that is what makes the world interesting, right? Anyway, I think Moonsorrow play decent folk/viking metal, but... I do not find them so attractive. Despite I have been listening to them every now and then. Despite their lyrics is completely in Finnish. But why are they not called Kuunsuru, then? Perhaps their latest Hävitetty is more interesting for me. Yet... the vocals are too quiet. Too weak, somehow (anteeksi, Ville). I guess I would rather see Ajattara on stage, and some others from Finland. Melodically, they feel a bit repetitive to me. Also, I much prefer to see those pagan-folk-whatever metal bands using real instruments, not only synthesizer. Real accordion, real flute and all; like Korpiklaani do, for instance. Nevertheless the atmosphere Moonsorrow made was so party-like. Very jolly and jumpy; so, I was dancing. There was no doubt they were considered as the gratest stars of the evening, lots of fans awaiting them eagerly. Nevertheless they get a plus from me for a successful promotion of Finnish language abroad. I heard a couple of Slovenian boys screaming some Finnish words; well, they were screaming kaupunki. It was also nice to see the audience trying to sing-a-long. Thus, in general - I await next good gigs now, Hell yeah!
Ja ruumis kaipaa vettä
Se huutaa vapautta