Thursday, December 19, 2013

My not so normal Wednesday

It's one of those shitty winters here in Finland, the snow came in really early, then melted away due to the "warm" weathers, and now theres none of it, and we're almost at the end of December... At least i got my trip to northern Finland from 25.12 to 02.01 to look forwards to :)

Perfect weather for a bit of black metal...
Here we go again, yup, more live shows :D This time around it was the Taiwanese melodeath band "Chthonic" which i'm a huge fan of, and the Norwegian black metal giant "Satyricon" 

Chthonic is a band that has few like it, the kind that heavily infuses Asian themes and instruments into it's music, and some black metal themes, all through i wouldn't go as far as to call them a black metal band. 

Chthonic's two newest albums "Bú-Tik" and "Takasago Army" are in my opinnion, just damn great albums.

This is how you look when driving to see Satyricon.

It was amazing to finally see this band live, and the last time they were in Finland was six years ago, so that's basically the scope of how often a band like Chthonic comes to Finland. They received a fantastic support from the crowd, clearly i was not the only one excited to see the band live. I'm a huge fan of Freddy Lim's vocal work, as his vocal range is just amazing, and he still sounds surprisingly clear live. He's just a beast, if only i could sing as well :I

They did say that they would try to come to Finland more often, and seeing them play in a bigger stage would be really cool, or even Tuska... Godsofmetalhearmyprays...

With Chthonic using so much instruments from Asia, you can't just go playback with all of the live, and so, the singer played this violin like instrument, which name i do not know, but owning one would be so damn cool :>


Nice red eye thing there.....

As Satyricon stepped on the stage and started to play the into of the new album "Voice of shadows" i noticed that Satyr apparently plays the guitar while doing vocals live, but he doesn't do that with all the songs, actually he played the guitar during three songs if i remember correctly, and they did it all Maiden style, with three guitarists. And why shouldn't he, since he definitely is not just a vocalist, having played the guitar, bass and keyboards for Satyricon since the band came to be in the forests of Norway.  

As with Chthonic, Satyr seemed like a really nice guy, saying how he appreciates the everlasting support of fans worldwide and so forth, he also cracked jokes like "Now, my Finnish is flawless, i just don't speak it on a Wednesday"

Even the security guy in the middle seems to be happy to see Satyricon :P

One just can't pass up the opportunity to see Satyricon live. And, as with Ensiferum, Satyricon was today confirmed (What are the chances?) to be playing at Tuska festival, so i'll be seeing those guys again really soon....

I even got to meet Doris Yeh (Bass) and Freddy Lim (singer) of Chthonic after they're show, just before Satyricon destroyed the stage, let me tell you, they are some nice people. As it usually is with metal, people who play what is possibly the most brutal genre in existence, and dress the way that would make most grandmom's go through a hear attack, are in most cases, really damn humble and nice people.  

Doris Yeh.

Freddy Lim.

Freddy even told me that the show was one of the best ones of they're tour, made me feel proud of my fellow Finnish metalhead /../

Had to abuse the light to get the signatures showing properly.

Got my copy of "Bú-Tik" signed by Freddy and Doris. That's just awesome :)
Phew, what an amazing night, too bad i won't be attending any live shows in about two months, since there really aren't any bands playing that interest me in the slightest :( But i think i'll manage :D

Edit: 1000 pageviews overall /../

Monday, December 16, 2013

The past weekend.

I had quite the weekend, with little time to do nothing but have fun.. The friday i headed out with one of my best friends to see The hobbit: Desolation of Smaug, which was really damn good, only thing that bothers me is that it has little to none to do with the actual book, which i have read, but then again, pushing three movies from the original The hobbit book would have been impossible to pull off.

I also really like the song at the credits, which was Ed Sheeran's "I see fire".

The saturday was awesome, we had tickets into an Ensiferum show, for some reasons that are beyond me, both of us hadn't seen Ensiferum before, all trough we both think that it's an amazing band.

Here's a few words about Ensiferum for those not familiar with it: 

Ensiferum (meaning "Sword bearer" in Latin) is a Folk metal band from Finland, formed in 1995 by Markus Toivonen (whos remains the only original member of the band), Sauli Savolainen and Kimmo Miettinen, Ensiferum was a cover band before they persuaded a guy called Jari Mäenpää to play the guitar for them and to do vocals.

With jari Mäenpää and a bunch of other new members, they created records "Ensiferum" and "Iron", which are in my opinion the two best Ensiferum records ever and one of the best albums of the whole Folk metal scene.

In 2004, Jari Mäenpää left Ensiferum to focus on his side project "Wintersun", and created Wintersun's first album and later went on to create Time pt.1, Jari is currently working full time with "Wintersun" as his main band. Jari was replaced by Petri Lindroos, a Finnish guitarist and a vocalist from the band "Norther", much later down the road, Norther split up due to all the members of it being too focused on other projects.

Many feared that Ensiferum would not carry on with all these member changes, and after all, Jari Mäenpää was the main songwriter and a huge part of the band, but they managed to pull it off, and have, since Jari's departure, made three albums and are now possibly doing better than ever, with a huge fan base all around the world.

Ensiferum was just amazing to see, and they sure did know how to handle a crowd, fun times were certainly had, which is obvious with the near 20 years of experience they have. 

Heres the set list of the evening:
  1.  Into Battle  
  2. In My Sword I Trust 
  3. Windrider 
  4. Unsung Heroes
  5. Burning Leaves
  6. From Afar
  7. Treacherous Gods
  8. Twilight Tavern
  9. Ahti
  10. Tumman virran taa
  11. The Longest Journey (Heathen Throne, Part II)
  12. The Longest Journey Outro
  13. Encore:
  14. Wanderer
  15. Bamboleo
Including obvious classics like "Windrider" and "Into battle", i still kind of hoped to hear songs like "Iron", "Battle song", "Token of time" or "Hero in a dream", but you can't play every song in one evening;) And besides, i have the chance to see Ensiferum again, in the June of 2014, since they will be playing at, what is probably the biggest metal festival in Finland: "Tuska", which i will be attending!

To prove how un-serious this whole genre is, Ensiferum played they're cover of Gibsy King's song "Bamboleo", which was just hilarious live, everyone was jumping around during the chorus and the whole song was just so fun.

Those damn hats were the final touch to the awesome cover song!

"One more magic potion"
I also bough a nice cup to drink my magic potions from....

Here's to the amazing weekend:

Sunday, December 15, 2013

The past few months.

Hello! Here's the post i promised about things i did on my free time from the army, obviously i don't have every thing from the past 9 months in a fresh memory, so i'll be telling you about the highlights of the past 3-4 months or so:)

I have a bunch of subjects here, so i'm going to keep each one of them a bit short...

Iron Maiden and my 20th birthday

The first, and one of the best moments of 2013, was me turning 20, and the Iron maiden gig i attendet with one of my good friend in the honor of my birthday. Maiden played in Helsinki, which is the capital of Finland, and about three hours away from us, by car, so the trip wasn't one of the cheapest ones, but Maiden was, for the both of us, a band that we just HAD TO see at least once, and there was a perfect opportunity for it :)

If you did read my first post, it told how important Iron maiden is for me, but i say it again, Iron maiden for me is like the basis of all my musical taste, and a band that got me into metal as a kid.

We got almost front row places too:)

Here's the setlist:
  1. Moonchild
  2. Can I Play with Madness
  3. The Prisoner
  4. 2 Minutes to Midnight
  5. Afraid to Shoot Strangers
  6. The Trooper
  7. The Number of the Beast
  8. Phantom of the Opera
  9. Run to the Hills
  10. Wasted Years
  11. Seventh Son of a Seventh Son
  12. The Clairvoyant
  13. Fear of the Dark
  14. Iron Maiden
  15. Encore:
  16. Churchill's Speech
  17. Aces High
  18. The Evil That Men Do

Obviously including the classic live song Fear of the Dark, which was just amazing to sing live with the crowd. Maiden had a "couple" of warm up's aswell, and let me tell you, it was tough as hell keeping those from row seats for the duration of the other bands before Maiden :p and after the show, my legs were dead from exhaustion.

I have to confess, i had no idea what kind of a band Ghost (or Ghost B.C) was, before i saw it live, i didn't have much time to search for more music in the army, so i never stumbled upon it, for those who are not familiar with Ghost: Ghost is a traditional hevy metal band from Sweden, consisting of five "ghouls" and the singer called Papa Emeritus, Ghost is highly praised for their ghoulish imago, which they maintain during a live performance.

The actual names of the members is according to Wikipedia "The nature of their identities is highly secretive and their names have not been publicly disclosed" which adds more excitement to the whole thing, who knows whos behind those masks ;)

I had the chance to see Ghost again at this club in Tampere, the city close to me, but i didn't go since i had something else on that day :I

Ghost did an amazing performance, and i got hooked up instantly, it's nice to discover new music live for once :)

 The second band opening was Sabaton, oh Sabaton, those funny guys from Sweden, i'v seen Sabaton three or four times now, i can't even recall anymore, they are the perfect band to open up for Maiden, as they put out one of the most energetic live shows i have seen as of yet, and they certainly did not disappoint now. My friend also found them a good band, as he had never heard of them before :) And i can't even imagine how awesome of an experience warming up for a stadium full of Maiden fan's was for Sabaton ;)

The last band before Maiden was Amorphis, a Finnish prog metal band, i don't care much for Amorphis, i like a couple of tracks, mainly from the first two albums, but i didn't mind seeing them live, and gave them my support. Amorphis joined the line up later on, the last warm up band was supposed to be Bullet for my valentine, but they canceled and Amorphis took they're place. 

Of course since i just turned 20, we did "some" partying after we got home from Helsinki ;)

The ingredients for "some" partying..... 


Another highlight of 2013 was my trip to Dublin, Ireland, with my father. We were in Dublin for Arthur's day, and if you're from Dublin, i want to congratulate you for having one of the best holidays ever. I'm pretty sure you know what a trip to Ireland includes...

Well if you didn't guess, let me clarify:

It includes some of this...

A lot of this...

All topped off by this:)

We spend five days in Ireland, and saw a lot of awesome things, and i met a lot of nice people :) I love the drinking culture there, i wish we had more of those folk-is live bands to listen to at bars, i just loved that, well at lest we got clubs full of death metal, but this style is a nice change. I should check out some of the Irish theme bars in my city!

Of course i did a lot more than drink in Ireland, i bought a lot of things, i visited some museums with my father and other places like restaurants. 

your basic "look at me, I'm a tourist" pic :p

i have no idea....

One of the first signs i saw when i returned to Finland, good to be back :D

Other gigs:

I did spend some brother - sister time with my little sister, since i had a little time to spend with her because of the military, we went to see what else than good-old Children of bodom, on they're Halo of blood Finland tour, since it's a band we both liked.

Warming up for the boys of Bodom were Lost society and For the imperium, Lost society is thrash outfit from Finland, and i could say one of the rising starts of thrash scene, i also met the guys from Lost society while i was watching bodom and traded a few words with the guys, really nice fellows, right there!

Lost society!

Lost society has an awesome music video of they're song "Kill (those who oppose me)" it's just fun as hell:

For the Imperium is a prog metal-is outfit from Finland, and a fairly new band for me, they were good live, but i'm not sure if i'd listen to them much on my free time, but any band is at least okay live ;)

For The imperium
I have a chance to see For the imperium again live with Medeia, since they are coming to Tampere in a couple of months. but i'm not sure if i will attend, since i don't really care for For the Imperium that much, but if the tickets are cheap enough, i'll go and see them again with Medeia...

Children of Bodom was what it has always been live, amazing. The crowd is just so damn excited and full of energy every single time i attend a bodom show, the people are doing mosh pits, singing together, doing Alexi's solo impressions and all that, everyones just so excited and happy, and i always have this feeling of brotherhood and belonging when i'm partying with total strangers united by metal, of course this is not a thing associated with Bodom only, but bodom is certainly a band i have experienced a lot of it, since i'v seen them five times now /../

I really love this pic!

A crappy photo of me and my awesome sister :>

Other things:

one of the things the military got me into again was reading, i'v always been an avid reader, but i have NEVER red so many books in about 5 months, since i had free time in the army every day fron 18:00 - 22:00, which i had to spend at the barracks, i basically spend them doing four things: The gym, jogging, spending time with my team and reading. I red all the books below in seven months: 

The song of ice and fire (Game of thrones) 1-5, Assassins Creed 3, The night angel trilogy and Penpal.
I just fell in love with The song of ice and fire, making it one of my favorite book series ever :)
just wow...

I also got a new guitar from a friend with 30€, the guitar is basically a shitty cheap-line Stratocaster, and i just got it as a guitar to fool around with, i changed the strings and slammed it full of stickers :D

I also bought an used keyboard from this store that sells used up items:

It's not too fancy, but i can certainly learn some songs with it ;)

And this just HAD TO BE the first thing that i learned. I love the song, and it's an awesome thing to listen to in your car at night while driving through a snow fall :)

There we go, that covered some of the most important things of the past 9 months, of course i left a lot of things unwritten, like new albums and metal news and so forth, but i will keep on posting about the things i do in my future normally, not skipping things like that :)

Thank you for your patience!

Saturday, December 14, 2013

been a while...

Hello there, it's been forever since i had the time to write down things again, and i'm sorry for that, i do not intend to keep breaks like that every now and then :P

The main reason why i didn't write anything, was simply because i didn' have many things to write about, and when i did, i just didn't have the time. Army does that to you when you have to spend every working day at the barracs...

But now i'm free, done with the military, i completed my nine months of mandatory military service here in Finland, i guess i should talk about that for a bit, i can't, due to some law things, post pictures that show anyones face in particular or high end details of our training, but i got a bunch of pictures and things to tell you. Here we go.

Upon arriving at the bricade for the very first time, i really didn't know what i wanted to do with the time i had to spend there, i served at an artillery bricade, and artillery  wasn't my thing to be fair, so i didn't know what to do there, i first joined the basic training with the first artillery regiment, and during that 8 weeks of basic training, you get to apply to different line of trainings, and you will only get into one.

 So i did a bit of research, and went to different demonstrations in the barracs, and stumbled upon a military police training program info thingy, aaaand i applied, since it seemed to be something that interested me, and against the odds, i was chose for the training, i switched my "dorm" the same day and allready on the day after that, the MP applicants, me included were thrown into the forrest for three days of survival training, and so my service got hard and challenging in a blink of an eye.

Finding and detaining a dangerous person cases were more than fun...

It also ment that instead of the default 6 months of service, i would be doing 9 months. MP training itself was split into twocategories: War time tasks and peace time tasks.

All military police personnel are trained with basic police techniques and usually receive training for fighting in urban areas, which, more or less, was the thing that i sort of found so interesting when i applied. In wartime, the tasks are more extensive and include protection of key personnel and targets, especially against enemy special forces, and surveillance, control, pursuit, arrest and destruction missions. peace time tasks featured basic guard duty, detaining of a dangerous person, protecting a person, and basic police things.

Gateway duty at some training camp we had...

I sort of got chosen for a special job too, besides my basic MP training, i acted as the driver for the commander of our bricade, 4 of us were chosen, and i was one of them. That job included just driving different army members from point A to point B, i was completely surprised when i was asked for the job, and took it happily.

The best and the most intensive parts of the training were the training camps we had, once in two months or so, some of them included clearing an abandoned school for example, setting a base of operation in there, and defending it against anything the people that trained us could throw at us for 4 days, and that 4 days usually included a lot of weird scenarios and a lot of sleep depravation :)

One thing i will not miss is the gas mask (unless im hit by teargas or something ever nastier) I still have nighmares about gas masks:D, we wore those a lot, while clearing a building, while werestling with someone, while doing push ups, while running up and down some set of stairs, at the shooting range, at that abandoned catering center, at that forrest during the night, at everywhere. Since battle gasses are a real threath while clearing a building, we were tought to live with those masks on, and we used them all the time...

Even the army is not 100% serious business ;)


 Don't get me wrong, i'm not complaining, i got into the training i wanted, i made a lot of new friends, i did things not many can say have done, i lost waight, and my fitness just increased during the training, i got addicted to self defence sports, mainly Krav maga, as that was the one we were trained in, and i got a lot of life experiences.

Right, after 9 months of handcuffing people, breathing throug a gas mask, living in the barracs and getting used to the lifestyle, spending time in the forrest, acting as a driver for high end army personell, clearing who knows how many buildings, shooting with different weapons, getting my face sprayed with mustard gas, tear gas, and crowd control substances (part of the training), wrestling people down, guarding things, tracking people with dogs, and doing different stuff with my team, or should i say, my firends :), it was finally time to say goodbye, to each other, and to the lifestyle. It felt really weird walking through those barracs gates for the last time, realizing "Damnit, i dont have to get back here next Sunday"

My MP insignia, right before i return it and head home.

 Except that i probably wont be saying goodbye to the lifestyle, at least permanently, as i sort of realised what i want to do with my life job vise. I decided that i will apply to police academy here in Finland, that was someting that i wasn't so sure of doing, but seeing how i enjoyed my MP training, i sort of felt like i could definatelly do this as a job, with out the war time things, of course :)

Damnit, it looks like i'll be a police officer someday, if things go the way i want them to go...

Right, enough about the army, ask away if you want to know more, let's move on and talk about the things that this blog is actually about. Metal. I'll start writing a new post sometimes tomorrow, which will be a small summary of those 9 months, since i did manage to see some live shows and do a bunch of other stuff on the weekends, when i wasnt at the barracs. See you 0/