The “Arctic Circle Alliance” unites the Finnish Melodic Death Metallers OMNIUM GATHERUM, STAM1NA and the Vikings from Iceland, SKALMÖLD. We attended the last gig of their tour in Cologne.
The show should start at 19:30. I arrive a few minutes earlier and STAM1NA are already playing at the Jungle Club in Cologne. Originally, the concert had been planned to be at the Underground, but a few weeks earlier it changed to the Jungle – since the Underground closed. The venue was not as full as I expected in the beginning. The chance to see three gorgeous Melodic Death bands at the same time didn’t attract as many people as I thought.
‘Quotes out of my brain’ present: … Are co-headliner tours with a support band becoming a trend? Do three bands in one night with the same old entrance prices and venues bring in more people? Is the significance of live gigs changing in times of live streams and HD-videos…?
Back to the concert: special guest STAM1NA call themselves a Thrash Metal band and are quite successful in their home, Finnland. Each of their six albums has sold Gold, the band has played hundreds of mostly sold out shows all over the country and won the Finnish Grammy. Maybe because of their Finnish lyrics, they are not as popular internationally as in their home country. As the opening act of the evening, they are very energized and careless. Sweaty as hell they give their best on stage, always with a smile on their faces and positive energy. The slowly growing audience gets warmer and warmer and the first heads started banging.
SKALMÖLD might be the secret headliner of the evening. Three guitars and a keyboard create a complex sound and with the Icelandic language combined with heroic melodies, the listener feels like in a scene of “Vikings”. The club is almost full while they play. Hair flies everywhere you look. The Icelanders are as charismatic as STAM1NA: They know how to motivate people to celebrate and have fun.
Especially the last song on the setlist is celebrated by the audience: The melodious and epic ‘Kvaðning’. A suitable ending of this band’s gig!