A Night Of Folk Metal - Godnr.Universe! + Eluveitie & Korpiklaani @ Hristo Botev Hall, Sofia, Bulgaria 13/10/2010

Event: Eluveitie + Korpiklaani
Written by: Elodie Artour
Published: 15.11.2010

Whenever you think of folk metal, the following certain words come to your mind: nature; booze; Vikings. Well, I do not claim that both Eluveitie and Korpiklaani's music styles match perfectly with this description, but anyway. These two acts are currently on a united tour throughout Europe. One of the places they have recently visited is Sofia - the capital city of Bulgaria where only Eluveitie had already played before. The venue was changed from a club to a hall but that did not matter that much to the fans. Finally, the night of folk metal had come - October 13th 2010. Everyone was about to rock!

As a supporting act, we got Godnr.Universe! - Eluveitie's ladies' side project. Surprisingly, the band entered the stage even earlier than announced, performing a set of just a few songs. I must admit I did not have high expectations for them. However, I was pretty sure the project was worth to listen and, trust me - I was not far from the truth. Right after talented Anna Murphy and her colleagues appeared, people already seemed to be quite enthusiastic about the whole event. Firstly, the sound was quite bad but it improved gradually. Godnr.Universe!'s music could be described as a rather interesting mixture between metal, electronic and avant-garde music. At times, their songs sounded a bit melancholic and definitely darker than Eluveitie's music. At some point, Anna praised the Bulgarian audience for being the nicest and most sympathetic one during the tour so far. Such warm and kind words always affect fans in a good way.

The second band to follow was Eluveitie. Stage was quickly prepared and soon after that, the band's intro was being played. As usual, it caught attention with that mystic sound typical for Eluveitie's music. At last, all band members entered the stage and so a full, long set of 15 songs began. It seemed as if tracks were carefully thought out because everything was perfectly balanced. There were as many older songs and classics, as well as songs off the band's latest record. The setlist varied from speedy songs to lighter ones. The band even played an acoustic song which turned out pretty good live. Naturally, the crowd was way more thrilled during Eluveitie's performance than while Godnr.Universe! were playing. One could see people moshing and headbanging all around, singing along with the vocals.

The musicians themselves did a great job by using a wide variety of distinct instruments and giving 100% of their talent on stage. The sound had bettered and I could easily hear how well Anna was interpreting the songs. This girl is definitely not your typical female metal vocal and her voice is more of a unique, folk-orientated one rather than poppy or operatic. In addition, Anna was smiling all the time. She also often played an interesting instrument which accompanied the music by adding a certain rhythm to it. I could personally hear much better her vocals than the ones of Chrigel Glanzmann. However, that does not necessarily mean he did not do well live. Actually, he was just a bit quiet in comparison with Anna.

Speaking of Eluveitie though, it is not all about the vocals; it felt as if no instrument was missing in their stage performance. The band members seemed to articulate perfectly with each other, creating an intense and unique atmosphere. Of course, flute and all kinds of other Celtic instruments were also put into use. Unfortunately, the quality of sound was not as high as needed in order to hear all instruments well.

Celtic metallers interchanged classics such as "Omnos" with songs off their latest effort. When the band performed "Thousandfold," it came as a surprise to most fans who clearly had not expected to hear that piece live. After an exalting set of 15 songs and lots of applause, the Swiss act left the stage for forthcoming booze lovers Korpiklaani.

It took longer than expected to rearrange the stage for the Finnish metalheads. I personally spent that time outside the hall, chilling with some folks and some of the guys of Eluveitie. Finally, everything was ready and Korpiklaani were just about to rock the stage. The band started their set with their typical open-up song - "Vodka." All fans, who had patiently waited for them, burst into applauses and screams and so it all beganů

This "hit" was followed by a long list of old folk metal anthems, as well as some new songs. To my greatest disappointment, the setlist was not that good as the one of Eluveitie. However, fun was more than guaranteed!

Unfortunately, the sound appeared to be terribly bad. At times, I could not realize which song was being played. Otherwise, the most enjoyable tracks were the old ones. Logically, the more well-perceived songs were classics such as "Korpiklaani" and "Wooden Pints."

Just like Anna Murphy, Korpiklaani's vocalist Jonne Järvelä also did some a capella singing. His well-trained voice, which accompanied the band's music in just the right way, sounded to me shamanic. Apart from being totally wasted, the guy actually managed to play, sing, smoke AND even drink at nearly the same time. Nice job, dude - you are "the real man!"

Korpiklaani was the only band last night to return for an encore that included a few more songs, one of which was "Let's Drink." All in all, the long-awaited Finnish metal act succeeded in totally cheering the passionate crowd and turning the night into a great deal of fun. Something I especially like about folk metal is the ability of its fans to accept dances and acting in weird ways without this being considered either foolish or untrue. In comparison with their Swiss colleagues, Korpiklaani have reached a certain musical level and they are seemingly unable to push their limits any further. The Finns did, however, a remarkable show and I give them additional points for doing their best in the name of entertaining the crowd. Although both Eluveitie and Korpiklaani are defined as folk metal, these acts have nothing to do with each other. This fact is one of the advantages of their cooperate tour - you get to see two entirely different bands who happen to play so-called "folk metal."

In conclusion, I would like to say that my opinion on Eluveitie has dramatically changed ever since October 13th. Previously, I still used to like their music but I was not as fond of it as I currently am. Now that I have already seen this awesome band live, I am able to state that its band members do an incredible job live and manage to grasp fully the attention of the audience. Eventually, I ended up being more satisfied with Eluveitie's show than with the one by Korpiklaani which followed afterwards. Not even for a second did I doubt the money I had paid for the gig nor the time I had spent in front of the hall, waiting. It was my very first folk metal concert - a night of folk metal that simply cannot be forgotten!


Guest article disclaimer:
This is a guest article, which means it does not necessarily represent the point of view of the MS Staff.


Comments: 7   Visited by: 50 users
15.11.2010 - 18:30
Well written report EA. You manage to describe your enthusiasm quite well. Sounds like a really fun and entertaining evening.

Dreams are made so we don't get bored when we sleep
15.11.2010 - 21:16
Elodie Artour
Thank you so much, Gorm! I hope I've done well.
Speak up dear 'cause I cannot hear you...
17.11.2010 - 23:07
Bad English
Good job, I like style of rewiew something new to MS, good job
Life is to short for LOVE, there is many great things to do online !!!

Stormtroopers of Death - ''Speak English or Die''

I better die, because I never will learn speek english, so I choose dieing
19.11.2010 - 00:04
Elodie Artour
Hehe, I always like trying out something new in my own way. Thanks anyway!
Speak up dear 'cause I cannot hear you...
19.11.2010 - 07:02
Liver Failure
Congrats for the article girl! o/

Looks like a boozing folky night.. just like it was supposed to be. =D

member of the true crusade against old school heavy metal, early 80s thrash, NWOBHM, traditional doom, first and second wave black metal, old school death metal, US power metal, 70s prog rock and atmospheric doomsludgestoner. o/
28.11.2010 - 23:46
Ok, after it drink a very fuckin' strong coffe XD
In this life you can choose what kind of ave to be: a chicken or a phoexix. I choosen be a phoenix, cuz' I'm rebirthing from ashes

Ps: my website it's: http://gcasweb.orgfree.com
15.07.2011 - 22:34
Cynic Metalhead
Atrocious Virgin
Very well and pristinely written.

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