Date : 11.05.2013

Bands : Finntroll (FI), Keep of Kalessin (NO), Killfloor Mechanic (DE)

Location : Cologne (DE)

After the release of the latest Finntroll album Blodsvept, it was finally time for the Finnish trolls to entertain their fans throughout Europe. It wasn’t long ago that Finntroll gave a concert though, their ‘big event’ was Heidenfest in 2012 so although it had been only 6-7 months that I last saw Finntroll, I was eagerly excited for this concert. Furthermore, the support acts KILLFLOOR MECHANIC and KEEP OF KALESSIN looked promising.

The concert started with the German death metallers KILLFLOOR MECHANIC. My first impression of the band was that they were completely different from Finntroll. Although the band was formed in 2011, they showed that they look promising. I especially loved the vocalist Felix’ vocals; normally the concerts can go bad for death metal vocalists when it comes to their growls (either because of the sound system or because of the growls) but the vocalist Felix proved that the vocals (both clean and harsh) were good enough for the live performance. Furthermore, the other band members – especially the e-guitarists- definitely made the show colourful.

Generally the band performed quite a decent show although it was  a bit obvious that the crowd was not into it. Moreover, although the band was quite promising I felt that they were a bit anxious and excited at the same time. The vocalist, Felix, was practically everywhere during the performance and it was really hard to follow him throughout the performance! 😀 Surely, Killfloor Mechanic was not the crowd’s favorite that night but I gotta give kudos to them, they were quite good!

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The second act of the night was the Norwegian “epic extreme” metallers KEEP OF KALESSIN. The band has had a tough time lately; they have had some problems with the vocalist Thebon so they had to part ways with him so the band’s performance was carried by 3 members; the bassist Wizziac, the guitarist/vocalist Obsidian C and the touring drummer Sondre Drangsland.

To be honest, I didn’t listen to the band beforehand and I kind of understood that something was wrong in the band; it seemed as though another person was missing. Nevertheless, it didn’t change the fact that they totally rocked! Although the guitarist Obsidian C, who also took over the vocal parts, looked a bit anxious about being the new vocalist, he totally pulled it off and managed to warm up the crowd.  I also found Keep of Kalessin more suitable as a warm-up band for Finntroll; their style might not have been for everyone’s taste but I could see that everybody had a great time and they really appreciated the band.

Generally, the band managed to give an amazing performance and I think that all of the events that have happened recently did not break the bond; it brought the band even closer and this could be seen in this performance. Furthermore, something has to be said about the touring drummer Sondre Drangsland; despite rehearsing with the band for only 2 days before the shows as the temporary drummer, this  19-year-old drummer  was definitely the highlight of the whole performance. He managed to fit into the band very well and someone who had no idea about the band would not even recognize that he was relatively new. Considering how much Keep of Kalessin has been through, I think they were generally the ‘survivors’ of the night; their performance and songs definitely showed that they are still there!

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When it was time for Finntroll, the small venue got more crowded than ever and all eyes were on the stage. Even before the show started, it was really obvious that it was going to be a colourful concert; the lights were a mixture of pink and blue and that was a bit surprising! 😀

As soon as the trolls came on stage, the headbanging started! My first impression of the band was their unique outfit of course; it was a mixture of military and cyberpunk stuff and surely, every bandmember had elf ears which looked awesome! That was also a bit unexpected from Finntroll because their outfits are normally same but this time, they decided to change the style a bit. I think the outfits also fit to the concept of the new album as well as to the performance!

The band started the show with their single “Mordminnen” from the band’s brand new album Blodsvept. The first song surprised me a lot; I was expecting to hear the first single “Blodsvept” from the new album but hey, it’s Finntroll we are talking about here so I couldn’t complain! From the first song, the whole venue was on fire; nearly everybody was headbanging!

Throughout the show, the band managed to play the fans’ favorites. As a matter of fact, the frontman Vreth stated that the fans actually voted for most of the songs in the setlist so I am sure nobody really complained about it. Considering the fans’ taste, the setlist was really perfect! There were a lot of new songs like “Ett Folk Förbannat” (which Vreth dedicated to the mankind) and “När Jättär Marschera” but also some classics like “Trollhammeren”, “Solsagan” and “En Mäktig Har” (according to Vreth, this song got the most votes in every show!). “En Mäktig Har” was one of the highlights of the show in my opinion, it is always so great to hear this song live and it feels as if one hears the song for the first time; it just makes you want to headbang and dance.

Another highlight of the show were definitely the new songs “Skogdotter” and “Häxbrygd”. Since “Häxbrygd” is my favorite song from the new album, hearing it live was a different experience; Finntroll really pushed their limits and managed to make everyone – including themselves- sweat! 😀 It became so warm that it was impossible to move; nevertheless, it didn’t prevent people from moshing around and headbanging and that’s the essence of a Finntroll show!

Speaking of the mosh-pit, the song that made the mosh-pit go crazy was “Solsagan”. I just couldn’t understand how a mosh-pit could be created at such a small venue but the crazy people could manage do it and please the band after all. A crazy mosh-pit also meant that the band was definitely back on track and kicking some major ass!

Finntroll finished their performance with the last two classics “Trollhammeren” and “Jaktens Tid”.  As a person who has seen the band 3 times – including this concert-, I can definitely say that this concert topped it all! With the release of the new album and with this performance, Finntroll proved that they are just getting better and better and there is no way to stop the Finnish trolls. The outfits, the lights, the ambience and the interaction of the band with the crowd made everyone see that it was worth the wait!

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A great night with bands from different styles, a great ambience and a great crowd.. What more can a fan want? Thanks to all of the bands for a magical night!