Games Meet Metal: Sadly, there were no worn leather battle suits my size.

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Thursday, April 29, 2010

Sadly, there were no worn leather battle suits my size.

The Finnish Metal Tour Featuring Finntroll, Moonsorrow, and Swallow the Sun
 Wed. April 14 2010 @ Blondie's

Oh boy, a rarity! Not only is this a show with an entire line-up that I've never seen, it's also at a venue I've never been to. All-new music mixed with all-new metal club = WIN!! Hell, the fact that I can type "new metal club" and mean it is incredible, since it takes balls opening any bar in this economy, whether it sides with evil metal or not. Plus, it doesn't hurt that the place is pretty nice looking. Blondie's is a revamped floor on the second level of a decommissioned factory just west of downtown Detroit. And I'm not joking that it's the only thing around in that area. That area of Detroit is well known for all it's shuttered factories, as well as it's huge rave scene. Rent a huge empty building, get enough strobe lights and glow sticks to choke an elephant, a DJ, and you're making money hand over fist. But this is Blondie's where metal rules, and while the place looks great, it's awfully small. Makes for a great intimate show though.

Okay, on to how the show was! Little note first: I was able to bring a camera to the show, but it was just a regular digital camera, and my technical genius only goes so far. Ask me to rewire your home entertainment system, and we're all set. Get me to use a camera, and we have problems. In other words, these ain't the greatest shots in the world, and for the first bit of snaps, I forgot to eliminate the date stamp. So you've been warned.

"Oh boy", I was thinking. "A bunch of music I've never heard that I'm sure is gonna knock my socks off, and help me put them back on! Joy upon joys! Oh, and here's The first band and.... um.... did the lead singer do a tranquilizer or something?"

Take a look at that photo to the left. That was the singer's position for just about the whole set. Mikko Kotamaki is his name, and judging by his appearance, he'd be more at home at a Phish concert. And his apparent boredom. Once again, we have a case of kind-of-shitty lead singer not giving a crap mixed with a backing band that's doing all the bloody work. And to make matters worse, their set was prolonged thanks to the original opening band had to bail thanks to visa issues. Ugh, it turned into one of the longest and dullest opening sets I've ever heard. And I've had to sit through Queens of the Stone Age Open for NIN, okay?

Holy fucking Woody Allen, this was NOT a good start. I needed something to brighten up the mood pronto! Because if this shit was gonna keep up, I was gonna bolt and start gorging myself at the Burger King down the road.

Looks like all I needed was some blood on a dude's chest.

Now THIS is more my speed. A metal band that LOOKS like a metal band, including the lead singer, Ville Sorvali. Plus, Ville did a mini Gene Simmons Tribute and spit out a little bit of blood onto himself to the delight of all of Moonsorrow's heathen fans.

Moonsorrow got the crowd into a frenzy, compared to Swallow the Sun, who nearly put the crowd into a coma. Their faster pace of folk metal totally beats out the drone/pseudo goth that STS was trying to go for. Plus, the band members themselves were always keeping it interesting. Always, moving, always high energy, and just generally looking like they're having a good. And any band who's having a good time playing their tunes is alright in my book.

Well, that put a much happier expression on my face, compared to the near state of unconsciousness I was almost about to suffer from. But still, there was one m olre band to go, and since it's their show, I was hoping they would pull out all the stops, along with a go here or there.

YES!! Braveheart-style war paint! I was expecting gnome costumes, but intimidating self applied battle decals are a nice substitute. And having a band appear like they're going to rape and pillage the crowd in front of them is always a good thing.

You know? Maybe that's not such a good thing. Be kind of a bad decision to murder off your fan base.
Okay, I kid a bit. Clothing decisions aside, Finntroll brought it hard. Real hard. Moonsorrow may have gotten the pits going, but Finntroll made them vicious!

Finntrolll played a good collection of their older stuff, even going as far back as their first demo and show casing their black metal roots. Black metal.... from Finland? I know it exists, but damn! Finntroll? It's just amazing to see that progression from their early days to their present incarnation as way more folky than any black metaller could hope to accomplish. And they showcased it all in one night!

Final verdict: Show up late to miss Swallow The Sun, but stock up on mead for the rest of the bands. Oh and GO HERETIC!!

Select tweets from the night:

Swallow the Sun: metal for guys who dig baseball caps and tattered scarves.
Awesome Fintroll shirt says "Putting the laughter back in manslaughter!"

Moonsorrow's singer seems to have bit his lip. Poor guy's bleeding all over.

It's official. Blondie's has the most comfiest couches ever. I could live on these things!

Finntroll + bulletbelts = WIN!

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