Gig Review

Bristol, Fleece
27th April 2016

Photo Of Moonsorrow © Copyright Robert KnightA interesting gig was sent to me to photograph and review, that was Korpiklaani and Moonsorrow at The Fleece in Bristol. 

Typically this genre of Metal (Folk) that both these bands play, is not something I will seek out, but I had this urge to try out something different and to hear something I'm not familiar with.

After getting through the doors of the Fleece it was apparent that the two bands tonight had a big following, The Fleece was pretty much filled, this was the case for the rest of the night. 
Straight from the get go, I'll say that I have given each band a extra mark on my review of their performance, this was based down to the crowds reaction to each band.

With only 2 bands playing tonight, there was a slight waiting period at the beginning for the arrival of the first band, which gave me enough time to look at the bands merchandise (which I enjoyed as their band fonts reminded me of old school Photo Of Moonsorrow © Copyright Robert KnightThrash and Death Metal fonts, but this was folk metal bands gear). 

As the lights dimmed the first band of the co-headling show was up, Moonsorrow.

Moonsorrow are from Helsinki, Finland. Formed in 1995, are a Pagan Metal sounding band with hints of Black and Folk Metal in their songs. 

Moonsorrow is Henri Sorvali on Rhythm / Lead Guitars, Backing / Lead Vocals, Ville Sorvali on Bass and Lead Vocals, Mitja Harvilahti on Lead / Rhythm Guitars, Backing Vocals, Markus Eurén on Keyboards, Backing Vocals, Marko Tarvonen on Drums, Backing Vocals.

As I stated before, the genre of Metal that was being played for the nights show, isn't something I would take a interest in, but I'm open to new things. 

Moonsorrow offered a good set for the fans in attendance, with a lot of fan interactions in a lot of their songs with chanting and melody sing-a-longs. 

Photo Of Moonsorrow © Copyright Robert KnightMoonsorrow sang all their songs in Finnish which was cool and new to me as I haven't seen a foreign band playing in their native language before and have such response from a foreign crowd. 

A lot, if not all the songs of Moonsorrow's set was slow, heavy, dark but at times slightly fast, this paired with the dark lighting of red and dark blue made for a interesting take on the music. 

Each band member had different fake blood markings, which to me came across very Norwegian Death Metal, just without the black and white full make-up.

With Moonsorrow singing in Finnish, all of the titles of the songs they played for their set was in Finnish; songs such as Jumalten aika, Jotunheim and Ukkosenjumalan poika. I'm not fluent in Finnish so after doing some research on the lyrics of their songs, the lyrical content of the songs is very story telling, which I must advise if you got the time, check a English Translation of one of their songs. 

Photo Of Moonsorrow © Copyright Robert KnightThe band, along with crowd soaked up the moment and atmosphere, gave a very good set, I clocked one of the songs off their set at 10-12mins long, at no point did the crowd buckle or give up.

As Moonsorrow set came to a close, I enjoyed it but I didn't get left feeling that I would see them again, the musicianship was spot on, crowd's interaction was also spot on, but this just wasn't my type of Metal. 

Photo Of Korpiklaani © Copyright Robert KnightKorpiklaani are from Lahti, Finland. Formed in 2003, are a Folk / Thrash Metal band. 

Korpiklaani is made up of; Jonne Järvelä on Vocals, Matti "Matson" Johansson on Drums, Kalle "Cane" Savijärvi on Guitar, Jarkko Aaltonen on Bass, Tuomas Rounakari on Violin and Sami Perttula on the Accordion.  

As with Moonsorrow, Korpiklaani set for tonight was also in Finnish, with a few songs having English titles; funny enough these songs was about good ol'drinking, titles such as Wooden Pints, Vodka and Beer Beer

Soon as Korpiklaani hit the stage the presence from them compared to Moonsorrow was night and day. The energy and passion the band had was fantastic, this wasn't a typical metal concert and moshpits wasn't on the agenda tonight, just good fun jumping up and down at the same time!

Photo Of Korpiklaani © Copyright Robert KnightOne of the things that drawed me to this show was that the fact that a Violin and Accordion was apart of the instruments blasting out metal. Not something I haven't seen before and I must admit it really worked. While Kalle "Cane" Savijärvi on Guitar, provided some little solos the use of the Violin and Accordion made up for the lack of solo's, which was a delight to see and hear. 

Korpiklanni music was a lot more faster and at times heavy thanks to the guitar playing by Kalle Savijärvi, which took me by interest. 

Frontman Jonne Järvelä soaked up all the energy from the crowd and made sure he gave it all back to them, which the crowd, to the amaze of myself joined in at times with the singing, even with it being in Finnish. 

The bands setlist was made up of songs from their latest record Noita and their back catalog of albums; songs such as Kantaiso, Vaarinpolkka, Pilli on pajusta tehty and Karhunkaatolaulu.

Photo Of Korpiklaani © Copyright Robert KnightKorpiklaani nailed it right, when it came to having all the instruments playing their part for each of their songs, seeing all the instruments come together and play Metal is something that is worth watching alone. 

I was unable to catch the last few songs of Korpiklaani's set, but at the stage I had left at, I was impressive with the guys from Finland. 

As with Moonsorrow, I enjoyed the set, with all the energy and the coming together of all the instruments, I thought this made up for the singing being in Finnish; as I like to get a better understanding of a song by its lyrics, which was a slight challenge. 

Korpiklaani delivered the goods for their fans in attendance for the show, while I had never really heard of this genre of metal, it was experience. 

Will it be one I will follow, no, but this will not stop me from keeping up with all things Photo Of Korpiklaani © Copyright Robert KnightKorpilaani and Moonsorrow.

So check them out, give them a listen and see what you think....

Moonsorrow 4/5
Korpiklaani 4.5/5

Review By Robert Knight



Latest Album - 'Noita''


Ville Sorvali
Henri Sorvali
Marko Tarvonen
Mitja Harvilahti
Markus Eurén
Janne Perttilä

Latest Album - 'Jumalten Aika'

 Band Related Links
Korpiklaani Facebook
Moonsorrow Facebook
 Review Score Code
- Top Cheese
- Brilliant
- Pretty damn good
- Ok I guess
- What Was That?