Unfortunately, the next day starts with some rain again, and the best way to warm up yourself is some death metal like Hatesphere. They come all the way from Denmark, and play on the shores of hell aka Inferno stage. Even though the vocalist Esben "Esse" Hansen complains about the cold weather, it doesn't affect their playing. The setlist is a great summary of the latest records, and especially classics like ‘The Sickness Within’ encourage the crowd to shake their hairs. The next band to get on Kaaos stage was Vorna. They played a booming show, and I can’t help but love their dark sound filled with unique melancholy, a characteristic many Finnish bands possess. Even though I hadn´t heard of the guys before, their show led me to have a good hunch about them. I was into their sound so much that I put them on my Spotify playlist when I got home. There is no time to rest, because Carach Angren is entering the main stage right after Vorna’s last song. They play symphonic black metal, and holy hell they blow me away! Every single detail of their show is planned, for example the gestures of the singer, the stage clothing, or the face paintings - everything looks well arranged. For me it´s probably the best show of the year. Time to switch the stage again, because Nicole - a local alternative metal band - started playing. They served a solid, yet powerful show. Especially Meshuggah or Lamb of God fans will enjoy their music. The headliner of the day is Ensiferum. They might not fit with the rest of the lineup, but it´s one of the live bands you can always enjoy; some easy music to get into the party mood. Battlebeast are rounding off the evening, and the singer knows how to turn the crowd crazy. The setlist mostly contains songs from the latest record - called “Bringer of Pain” - but they also play some oldies like ‘Black Ninja’ or ‘Enter the Metal World’.
The morning remains cold and greyish, and my first band is Jinjer, a progressive groove metal band from Ukraine. Their trademark is the female singer, who convinces everyone with her growling skills. Their show can be described as aggressive and dynamic, so it´s not surprising that the first Wall of Death happens during their show. Swallow the Sun enters the Radio Rock stage in the late afternoon. The past year has been very rough for their guitar player Juha Raivio, and everybody is understanding of his ongoing absence. His part has been taken over by the former Before the Dawn guitar player Juho Räihä, who is all in all doing a great job. It´s also the first Finnish show after the separation with Aleksi Munter (keyboards). It’s kind of a strange feeling to hear his parts from the backing track now. Their performance is divided into a “normal”, and an acoustic set, which is mostly set up by the “Songs from The North” record. Nevertheless, they luckily play one old song (’Fallen World’) to satisfy old school fans. The lineup remains local, and now it´s S-Tool´s turn. Ville Laihiala (mostly known as the former singer of Sentenced and Poisonblack) formed this band last year with Sami Leppikangas and Kimmo Hiltunen from Lullacry, and Aksu Hanttu from Entwine. There is a rumor that they advertise themselves as the worst band out there, and ironically their PA system breaks down after five songs, which also marks the instant end to their show. The band, and especially Ville himself, isn´t very amused by this situation, but the flood of Perkele-swearing can´t fix the problem. It´s getting late, and the next band on my list is Gloomy Grim; another Finnish metal band, which plays symphonic black metal. Their live show is, let´s say... interesting. Not only is their music unique, but also their singer, who is hitting the stage with a chainsaw in his hand. Maybe I´m the only one thinking that he might be drunk, but I´m glad that he doesn´t kill himself during the show. It seems he takes his stage role very seriously and is celebrating a black mass in the meantime. There is also some form of summoning happening at the altar, but my suggestion is that he is probably asking some gods for more rain tomorrow. Another personal highlight for me is Gaahls Wyrd, the latest project of Gaahl (former singer of Gorgoroth). I enjoy their live performance a lot, and, in my opinion, all the band members are doing a great job. Particularly Gaahl has this slow, but oppressive performance on the stage, which is mesmerizing. A show to remember, indeed!
This day’s focus is definitely on black metal, and the last band for this evening is Ajattara. They currently released a new record (“Lupaus”), which means the band is mainly focusing on the new material. This night also embodies the midsummer spirit, as the sun is not setting down. A magical moment when the horizon remains crimson, and it´s not getting dark. The last and final day is breaking, and guess what: it´s still raining! Although Mors Principium Est has a very early slot to play there is nevertheless a large crowd attending the show, and no wonder there: it happens to be one of the best bands I know. The Finnish act plays melodic death metal; they are a rather new band for me, but when I heard it for the first time, I was, well – happy. Not the word you might expect, but around that time I was wondering if I’d ever again find a band that would hit me that hard. Once you hear a band that really hits you, you cannot but help wonder what the fuck just happened Korpiklaani is also a good festival band to cheer up the mood. They play genuine Finnish folk metal and know how to change even the grumpiest guy into a party animal – including a huge letkajenkka (polonaise) throughout the entire festival area. Epica is known for two things: their music and their beautiful, but skilled front(wo)man. The Dutch female fronted band was living a shadowy existence under great names like Nightwish or Within Temptation for many years, but nowadays they are filling big venues and even organize their own metal festival. The latest record is called “The Holographic Principle”, which once again deals with religious and philosophical questions packed in bombastic sounds. Definitely a band worthy to check out if you didn´t come across them yet.
Last year a miracle happened; something fans couldn’t possibly expect after all these years: Luca Turilli and Fabio Lione decided to perform together on stage again. They even use their original band name (Rhapsody), and will return this year for their 20th anniversary world tour. So, this is a unique moment for everybody who have never been able to see the show of such talented musicians. The setlist obviously contains the best of the first records, and people sing along to evergreens like ‘Emerald Sword’ or ‘Dawn of Victory’. The rain reached its zenith at 10PM when Wolfheart began. They are a Finnish melodic death metal band which was formed in 2013. Even in the pouring rain there were many brave people gathered around to see them. Tuomas Saukkonen and the rest tried their best and mostly played songs from “Tyhjyys”, which is in my opinion their best record. This was the last night at Nummirock, and it was time for some Insomnium. It was raining, windy, and it was freaking cold. I've liked Insomnium for quite a while and despite the soaking weather and the cold there were still lots of people watching their set. In the first part they play the entire “Winter Gates” record without reducing anything, and the second part is jumping through their entire discography, so both new and old fans get satisfied.
Four days is a long time for me, and some people had been there from Monday on already. And now it was Sunday. Another Nummirock behind and still kicking. Thank you and see you again next year!