Again it´s Helloween, night of monsters and ghosts, and where to enjoy it most? Exactly, in Hel(l)sinki, where monsters day for day, year for year walk in open daylight. And what kind of Helloween Festival without Monster? This is why the organizers invited this year Finnhen Monsterrockers Lordi as Headliners to guarantee shorcking horror effects. Besides Mr Lordi & Co. Orhter less angelic bands join in.
For me the evening starts with long impatient waiting in front of the hall entrance. Unfortunately entrance procedures are not well organized and it seems that nobody really knows what happens. I reach the hall when the forst Saralee song is already played. Quick now. Jacket off and into the photo pit. It´s my luck, it´s on the other side of the pretty big hall, and hardly time to get pictures of the band. Pure stress that also keeps me from focusing on their songs, and my hands are still numb because of the cold and the long waiting outside.
After taking fotos and warming up, I take a sip of oil to sooth my dry throat and focus just on the songs of Saralee. In mu opinion the guys from Jyväskylä are on the right track but have not quite found themselves. It becomes more and more obvious that every musician tries to imitate another famous colleague. Singer Joonas reminds a lot of early Ville Valo. And this is not bad because the girls are fascinated, they might be even more because of his own personality and great voice, if he could just trust himself a bit more. The same for the other musicians, a bit more individuality would underline their great sound. A pity the band plays in a practically empty hall, I am sure that a lot of their fans are still waiting outside because of bad organisation.
Ok, no there´s a long time to wait, it takes about 20 to 30 Minutes to restructure the stage in between. Good that more colleagues are there to spend time with.
Next are Kiuas who have three albums out already. Unfortunately the band doesn´t really appeal to me because it´s not my style. The show is great, and guitarist Mikko Salovaara definitely knows his job, singer Ilja Jalkanen uses his voice to heat up the crowd. But band hero and best costumed guy that night is definitely Teemu Tuominen who looks so funny in his pirate gown. Thumbs up, really great!
I have to admit that I have been looking forward to see the next band for years, never had a chance to see To/Die/For live, and finally this opportunity at the Helloween Festival, and they did not disappoint me. Their show just blows me away. This band is great and their music so inspiring that you cannot get it out of your head. The songs are sung so emotionally that I think no one else could do it better than singer Jape. Yet those Pyros didn´t really fit the band but still made some impact.
Slowly the hall is filled and some familiar faces from the scene can be spotted. The King Foo Entertainment crew, Ewo disguised as hangman and Tero Kinunnen as count Dracula must be mentioned here, nice costumes. Later there is also Thunderstone guitarist Nino Laurenne, who applied in Finnland for Eurovision Song Contest and compete for the permission to lead their home country once again to victory.
Back to the important stuff, next band. Lullacry with singer Tanja enter stage, and my expectations are high because I often heard that Tanja sings better than Tarja Turunen or Evanescenses Amy. But there should be a bitter disappointment. This lady never – not once – can even be compared with those vocal artists, rather with Minnie Maus. The show of the band is super, though. Pyros, outfits, choreography, everything quite well done, and Tanja really looks good. Unfortunately there is this voice you cannot bear to hear at the latest after „Damn you!“ I retreat to the back of the hall where her screeching cannot be heard so loud and check out the decoration.
A big merchandise stand with mainly Lordi stuff tempts to spend a lot of money, and a special black light graveyard, glittering in many neon colours, invites many undead for a fotoshooting. At the bar friendly Zombies hand out drinks, but the main eyecatcher is the fountain in the center, on which a sceleton is projected (see Gallery). Unfortunately there is some flooding around it soon, causing some minor mess. But still a great idea!
But back to the band that attrackts most people to the cable factory that weekend. Tarot, metal heroes, a god´s voice and the nation´s alcohol consumption combined in a band. In this band it doesn´t make a difference if singer Marco Hietala or Keyboarder and Singer Tommi Salmela sings. In any case it´s a hymn you cannot ignore, that invites to join in and to have another drink saying „What the hell, the sound is cool!“ Obviously tipsy the guys enter stage but still play with such power and professionality like hardly any other. No wonder that they are like national heroes in Finnland, and I think they deserve it. And if there was a fairy to fulfil wishes that night, I would like to singe with Marco once.
After an even longer stage resetting finally the Kiss Song „God of thunder“, is played, the Intro ofSchock-Rockers Lordi. Fans already gather right in front of stage, and after the first Pyros I wonder if the four front rows still have eyebrows. But never mind, if you want to be near monsters, beauty has to be sacrificed. It is overwhelming, how much enthusiasm and euphory Lordi create in their fans, no matter where they play. But in their home country it´s simply unbelievable. This is my fourth Lordi concert this year, and it´s great as always, a lot of fun to watch and to sing along with their songs. Really a great concert.
All people sang along and cheered to their heroes. But also monsters could have troubles, drummer Kida lost his beat during his Solo and had to start all over again. But nobody minded, and thus Lordi ended a great evening.
Summary: Because it´s a very young festival the organization was not that bad, just a pity that the entrance procedure did not start earlier so that Saralee had had a chance to win more fans. Sound and lights were first class, it could hardly be better.