Archive for the Finland Category

Epica @ Tavastia, Helsinki, Finland 28/2 – 17

Posted in Concerts, Finland, Music, Travels, Uncategorized with tags , , on February 28, 2017 by Sara Hammerzmith

Well! It isn’t very long since I returned home from the last “tour” in the United States, but no rest for the wicked, right? Off I was on an early bus to catch a not-so-early-flight to Helsinki. It was weird, but also somewhat relaxing to for once this time be on a short haul flight after all these long hauls.

Once in Helsinki, I met up with a dear old friend that I hadn’t met in the longest of times – Argo. You remember him? The guy I used to travel everywhere with because of Lordi? Yeah that’s right. Turns out he was coming. As I took a somewhat late flight, the first thing we did was getting to the hotel and then getting out on the town for a quick look around before getting back and getting ready for the evening.

We headed over to Vapiano for dinner and then off we were to Tavastia. We were running a little late because of reasons, so we missed out on most of the supportband – however, the supportband for this evening was Crimson Sun, assumingly a finnish band and the little we heard sounded great!

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So, exactly on time as scheduled – 22.00, “Eidola” started echoing through the speakers as the lights went down, and the band slowly entered the stage and later opened with “Edge of the Blade”. Much to my delighted eye, Simone was wearing the “Holographic” dress as I’d call it – the silver black one. I rarely comment on clothing on the musicians, but this time I just have to since I’ve been in love with this dress ever since it was presented.

“A Phantasmic Parade” was the next song on the set, followed by “Sensorium” and “Universal Death Squad” and I must admit… I was a little disappointed in the crowd. They were somewhat responsive, but not at all what I’d be used to when it comes to Epica. Gladly, it did pick up a little. The band delivered really well – last time I saw them Simone seemed to be a bit off, but today everything was going just fine.

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“The Essence of Silence” followed suit, and I think this is around the moment where Simone would drop her microphone. I’m pointing this out, not because it’s bad, but because this is probably the first time I see this band being anything but “perfect” as far as behavior goes. It was funny. And then, what seemed to be a big audience favorite in “Marty of the Free Word”. “The Obsessive Devotion” was the next song, and finally we start get some action in the crowd! I’m glad to see that something started to happen, so the band would have something to go on.

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“Ascension” was next on the list, followed by “Dancing in a Hurricane”, and I seriously love the vibe this song sets, especially live. My own personal favorite – “Unchain Utopia” was next on the list and I cannot describe my love for this song. I don’t know if it is that very special bond you have to the first song you discover a band with, or if it simply is that amazingly good, but every time Simone starts singing the first lines, it’s like something just awakens.

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“Once Upon a Nightmare” wrapped up the set for the night, and the band left the stage. They later returned, starting off with “Sancta Terra” which would become very interesting. Coen fooled around with Simone, leading her to have so much of a laughing attack that she had to leave the stage numerous of times throughout the set, missing out big parts of the song.

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“Beyond the Matrix”, my personal favorite off “The Holographic Principle” was next, and I was very happy to see all of Tavastia jumping with with the band. Again, this song live was just… Indescribable.

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The wrapped up the entire set with a Wall of Death and “Consign to Oblivion” before saying their good byes and leaving the stage.

This even was really good. Despite being sleepdeprived, as Mark claimed, they really delivered. I’m just thinking back to the London show and this was so many times better, I guess it helps it’s in the beginning of a tour. Thank you Epica, for this amazing night! I can’t wait to do it all again tomorrow.

// Sara

 

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The Monsterican Dream

Posted in Christmas Metal Meeting 2011, Concerts, Finland, Italy 2013, Music, Paris 2010, Thiz Izz Djermani, Travels, Uncategorized with tags , , on September 19, 2016 by Sara Hammerzmith

On this day, September 19th ten years ago, 2006, I witnessed my very very first Lordi show. It was in Gothenburg, the arena was Lisebergshallen and my company was Lina, who actually to this date was also my very very first “internetfriend” ever, a girl I had met through Wig Wam the year prior.

We were at the venue early. Like, ten in the morning or something like that. I can’t even remember properly. And it was a show worth waiting for. Seeing my heroes for the very first time live (and also a mysteriously military clad band singing about going through the gates of hell on their way to heaven…) was beyond words to describe. This was the The Arockalypse tour, so unlike the more recent tours it was a big show – a lot of theatrics, pyrotechnics and a massive show. The setlist was perfect, the night was perfect, and it got even better by the facts that I’d managed to score backstagepasses for me and my friends.

Meeting Lordi for the first time wasn’t exactly the easiest thing for a shy little person like me, and Kita had to convince me to come forward to even dare to walk up to them. I owe him for that.

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But that was ten years ago. And this is what this marks. Ten years of monsterloving. It’s been ten years as a Lordifan, and I honestly thought this day would never come. That I’d lose interest in them one day, but no. My love for this band grows bigger and bigger for every day. It hasn’t been easy, there’s been times where it’s hard to defend the band, but that is the point. You stand with the band through thick and thin, and never give up on them. And I have never.

Thanks to Lordi, I have met some of my absolute best friends.It goes all the way back to the groupconversations and family constellations and weddings we used to make in 2006 – Where I married Ghostrider, also known as Sergio, and he’s still one of my best friends today. I remember Lozzy16, Lauren, was the “chapel master” and Monster-girl, Suncica, KittyCat, Anna and Pride_of_Finland, Ville was our best men / bridesmaids. FallenOne, William was my father who walked to the alter, and BeautyOfTheBeast, whose name fails me, was the priest. This was all of course happening on MSN, but still.

Fast forward a few years to Kita’s departure where we met Thomas – in the midst of planning a new monster and the “penis monster” came to be, and I became “B. A. Nana” because of all the bananas I used to give to the funny people. And of course, how can we forget that one night – Me – Ida, Martine (GoodToBeBadGirl) Thomas (Thomas), Martin (martinmaniac), King, Jonathan (Monsta), Michal (NightmareWingsHell) and Jordan (Mooneyman) had a basic riot in the Misc babbling section that ended with “King, you just said you wanted to have some gaysex with me and Martin“. Most iconic line from that times of riots.

But it doesn’t end there. We have PoliceLineDoNotCross who was always a pleasent person to have to deal with, AmericanMonsterMan (I’m sorry if I misspell your usernames people!) miss_brutality, Sooooophie, Maddy, CB Studios, Miss-Elodia – I specifically remember when she randomly joined in me and Martine throwing fake Lordi lyrics in the Misc babbling, MarkusHasADeadache, Stude, Nillan, Kitawa, Judge-death, Erina, I could go on forever with this list! It’s a whole load of amazing people that you’ve met on this one little forum called Monsterboard. And we all united there for one reason: The love for Lordi.

Thanks to Lordi, I’ve been able to see a big part of Europe I probably never would have seen, and I’d want to say the world because really, we did wind up seeing Epica in Australia and New Zealand, but it was because of Lordi we even went there to begin with.

It hasn’t always been easy. On the contrary, it’s been a rollercoaster and different occasions. It’s been everything:

My first trip to Finland was because of them, which included Pippi Långstrump and Moomin madness – and a hairbrush that broke.

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It has been shouting “Mr Porn” out towards the streets through a window in Paris, where we had a large get-together of Monsterboard people (Soooophie, FairyOfDarkness, Isa, Angel_Of_Death, LIVINGDEADDOLLIE, mummy-, Thomas, GoodToBeBadGirl is a few of the people who were there), and dancing around in the wild snow that appeared.

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It has been yelling inapropriate things on trains in Germany (Lichtenfels), living like royals in the large rooms and finding questionable pig-porn art in the middle of the townsquare.

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It has been walking along an Italian highway (Rome & Milano) for so long your feet are bleeding in a 30 degree heat, only to hours later crack your knee on the stone stairs forcing you to jump on one leg for the rest of the stay. This Italy trip was a basic nightmare from start to finish, with the questionable drivers on the first night, the hotelroom who all of a sudden lost all lights, and not to mention the hell in getting home – took us 36 hours because of a train accident. The trip from Hell.

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It has been witnessing the coolest of releasegigs, spending the late night in the hotelroom with Soooophie, eeesti999_ and Anthalerero talking about everything and nothing ’til 4am in the morning, meeting up with Monstermaniacs from all over the place.

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It has been a spontaneous trip to Germany (Frankfurt) where we couldn’t even feel our legs because of the cold, and a four day stay in Spain(Madrid) where we had the most questionable of hotel rooms – It was a large square with Jesus on the cross on the wall, two beds, high roof and a sink. It felt like we were in a horror movie.

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It has been going through a damp and cold English harbor village (Southampton) where we randomly offered this guy chocolate cake, because why not? And it was probably the best decision made ever, seeing that is how we met Nathan. It has been traveling to beautiful Brighton living in a hotelroom that was made for Royals.

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And not to mention: That one day we threw Mr L completely off his game at Sabaton Open Air! All hail us, the Swedish Lordi Crew: Paula, Hanna, Michelle, Me, Ludvig and Jonathan.

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Thanks to Lordi, I’ve gotten to experience some of the most treasured moments with my best friends. Like the New Year Celebration in 2012, where a group of Lordi fans (PEML94, GoodToBeBadGirl, Thomas, FlameCurry and me) gathered at GTBBG and celebrated the new year together.

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It was been those “GroupieBFF’s” weeks where we have just randomly gone somewhere. It has been all those nights spent with The Awesome Threesome, where we went to bed at eight in the morning and spent all the night recording stupid videos about seigemenn and superdupermegamojängen. One of my favorite memory is the Tuska weekend. Ten years after The Arockalypse tour, I was allowed to witness almost the same identical set with Sophie and Nathan under the burning Helsinki sun. That day, and the whole weekend was amazingly perfect in a way that I can do nothing but smile when I think about it. Even with the pepperspray.

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As you can see, you who read this… Being a Lordi fan has been so much more than just simply liking their music and going to a show here and there. I practically owe my life to this band. It’s because of them that I’ve gotten to experience all the amazing stuff that I have, and I couldn’t even thank them enough for all of it. And all of you who were mentioned in this, I thank all of you for in one way or another, making these years the best.

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And here’s to the next ten years: May they be as amazing as these first have been!

// Sara

PART EIGHT: Tuska Open Air, Helsinki, Finland 1-3/7 2016

Posted in Finland, Travels, Uncategorized on July 30, 2016 by Sara Hammerzmith

So… the last day. And this was REALLY the last day… It was with very, very heavy hearts that Nathan and I firstly almost overslept, and secondly, left the hotel for the last time. I requested very shyly of Nathan if we couldn’t go to Espresso House, which is like, my favorite coffee house, their Caramel Latte is to die for, really, so, after a few ifs and buts we finally found a place and we sat down to enjoy one last drink and meal together before heading to the airport.

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After this, off to the airport we go. Nathan was getting rather stressed, and I was just there like “Calm down, it will be okay”. And once at the airport.. the line for checking in luggage was fucking massive. But, as the positive thinker I am, I told Nate that – “It’ll be fine, I promise”.

As we wait in line, we see some people with a lot of luggage approaching us, and I whisper to Nathan “Ey, it’s a band!” and when they got closer we saw that it was no other band that Gojira, that actually played Tuska the day before! It was intense!

The lane for bags picked up the pace, and we made it in good time for Nate’s flight. It was, again, one of the most heartfelt good byes outside the passport control for UK travels and after that I wandered off to my own gate only to see that the flight had been delayed. Awesome. Not.

But despite that – flight home when good, so did bus.

I want to take this moment to thank every single one of you people – Nathan, Sophie, Marianne, Nicolas, Nicolas, Lea, Niki, Vickie, Saana, Laura, Juuso, Markus, Elodia, the staff at Weird Antiques, Lordi, Avantasia, Toxic Rose, Swallow the Sun, Myrkur, Delain and Children of Bodom for this amazing weekend. We didn’t see a lot of bands, but we did have a lot of fun the entire weekend. And it’s all because of all of you people mentioned in this post. I love you all.

Thank you!

// Sara

PART SEVEN: Tuska Open Air, Helsinki, Finland, 1-3/7 2016

Posted in Finland, Uncategorized on July 29, 2016 by Sara Hammerzmith

So. The devastating, heartbreaking last day had come. I was originally supposed to get on a boat at 18, but the love and passion for my friends had me book a Monday flight home instead. I was excited to get on the boat, and I feel guilty about the cabin that was left unused, but I just couldn’t. I just couldn’t leave already.

I can’t recall us having any breakfast in all honesty, we planned to, but everything was closed. So, we got some stuff from the vending machine and then hurried over to Suvilathi to catch the first gig of the day, Myrkur.

As we approached the venue, it started to rain a little, well, I guess the weather couldn’t be perfect all of the festival, aye? So, we got inside the tent to watch the final half of the Myrkur set (our quest for breakfast took us longer than expected).

It was a very atmospheric show. Both me and Nathan stood there in awe, inhaling everything Myrkur, watching her every step, getting mesmerized by her entire being. It was an amazing set, and I’m so happy we made it out to see and experience this.

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However, we were not as delighted when exiting the tent and noticing its pouring. Not like, raining, it’s a basic fucking rainstorm. And for this day only, we had both left our raincoats back at the hotel. We ran over to the merchandise so I could pick on the very important festival t-shirt and a running schedule before hurrying back home to our hotel. Gladly, our hotel was like what, ten steps from the metro station so we didn’t basically die.

When the rain lighted up a bit, we found ourselves some food and then headed back to the exhibition one more time. We figured since we were already in town, and we never know when or even IF this could happen again, we might as well seize the moment.

Once there, again, we were completely alone at the exhibition, and wandered around, taking silly and stupid photos before we heard voices. And this is the most hilarious story ever. Let me tell you all about it.

On our way there, Nathan joked a bit about “what if Mr L shows up” and I said, yeah, if that happens, and we made some bet I can’t remember, and when we were standing inside it, and heard the speaking in the other room, I swear to God I thought it was Mr L. The voice, the tone, it sounded just like him! We both looked at each other and were like “no way, it can’t be”.

And, well, gladly, I guess, it wasn’t! It was my friend Saana and a couple of her friends. At first we didn’t really talk to them, and Nathan brought me out to the other room and said “I think those two girls are the girls from the Lordi Army UK” because well, we had noticed their UK accents. I told him I’d talk to them if it was really them, which it was, because he was too shy.

So, eventually, I caught them when they took some silly pics and figured “Do you need help?” was a good ice breaker. Which it was. Because the next couple of hours became known as the time when I got to know Juuso, Niki and Vicky from Finland and the UK, respectively. As well as catching up a bit more with Saana – the little time we had at Tuska was waaaay too short. It turned out we had a lot more in common than initially thought, so yeah, you could say we had a good time.

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Eventually, we all had to part ways and Nathan and I headed back to Tuska to catch the very very last act of the entire festival – Children of Bodom.

Once back at the festival, we joined up with Sophie and Marianne and I suggested to them all that we’d go somewhere fancier, like a pizza ristorante after the show to have one final amazing dinner together, to which all agreed.

The show with Children of Bodom was intense! It was a great set, and a perfect ending for a very good festival.

Right after this, we headed to a pizza place in the center of Helsinki, half of our crew going home because of exhaustion. Left were me, Nico, Sophie and Nathan and we had literally the most delicious pizza ever, and we had the best and most heartbreaking dinner. Knowing that this is the last time we see each other until God knows when, it’s really one of the worst part about having friends like this.

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After the place closed we stayed outside for a couple of hours talking about everything and nothing before we had to make it home, in the middle of the night. It was a heartfelt and tearfilled good bye outside the Forum shopping center, until next time.

Once home at the hotel, we packed our stuff and went to bed fairly early.

TO BE CONTINUED

// Sara

 

 

PART SIX: Tuska Open Air, Helsinki, Finland 1-3/7 2016

Posted in Finland, Travels, Uncategorized on July 28, 2016 by Sara Hammerzmith

So yes.. after that incident, we decided to walk our way back into central Helsinki, or to be more specific, towards the Helsinki Cathedral. I’ve been in Helsinki many times, but never once have I visited the cathedral. We stopped halfway to get something to drink as our throats were still burning from the pepperspray. As I read my entry, I notice I failed to mention that it was pepperspray that had been sprayed inside the exhibition, so now you know. After walking for a bit longer, we reached the majestic building that is the Helsinki Cathedral. It is, honestly, quite the view.

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We hung around for a while before we decided to go home to change our hotels. Nathan and I, booking you know, just a few days prior had two different hotels so we sort of needed to fix that. BUT. Not before Nathan could partake in the Vegemite challenge! He was objecting it a lot at first, but then he took a spoonful (why?) and then he kept chasing Sophie around the trainstation. Haha.

So, said and done, we changed the hotels, got changed, freshened up and then decided to meet up with Sophie and Marianne at the trainstation for some real late dinner. By Mariannes request, we headed over to Burger King and enjoyed a good meal. We had a lot of fun together before realizing what time it was… It was fifteen minutes until Ghost’s set would be over.

Well you know. That’s how it goes when you enjoy yourselves, I guess! Around midnight we parted ways and Nathan and I headed towards Bar Bäkkäri to catch at least ONE live show today – Toxic Rose.

There were various clubs that held various afterparties, mostly with gigs with smaller bands, which was very nice to see. I’ve been wanting to see Toxic Rose since I last saw them, so it was very convenient.

We came somewhere in the middle of the band playing before, got ourselves drinks and found a nice spot fairly close to the stage, but not up their businesses you know. They got on stage right on time and delivered a great and energetic set, despite the crammed venue. It was a decent amount of people, I must admit that were there so it was a good night.

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After Nathan’s said a few compliments to the bandmembers we headed home and crashed on the bed, preparing for next day, which was heartbreakingly enough the last.

// Sara

PART FIVE: Tuska Open Air, Helsinki, Finland 1-3/7 2016

Posted in Finland, Travels, Uncategorized with tags , , on July 26, 2016 by Sara Hammerzmith

So, I think in all honesty we woke up a little later than we should have. We had made some epic plans for today – Lordi exhibition! So, we were supposed to meet Sophie and Marianne at the Kamppi square around, well, some time, but we decided to postpone it a little bit because you know, we are lazy as hell. But, eventually did we make it out there, and it was a nice day you know. Sun was shining, really warm, me and Sophie wearing the exact same Lordi shirt… you know, normal things.

We were supposed to go to McDonalds, but Marianne asked to go to this Finnish burgerplace called Hesburger instead, and you know, sure, why not? So, we went there, enjoyed a nice brunch with a lot of talking and laughing and planning and what not. After that, the “epic” journey to Weird Antiques started.

The place was a little bit off, or well, actually, the thing is, we decided to walk there. It is probably easier and more convenient to go to subway, but we figured “why not?”. So after a long walk, we finally made it to the place, and we were… very reluctant and hesitant at first. For some reason we were a group of super shy people. We forced Nathan to go first seeing he was the only guy, and after some waiting and more awkwardness we found the owner who let us in to the exhibition.

And let me tell you something about Lordi exhibitions. When you walk into it, at first you get taken aback. A little petrified, because of all the mannequins. And then, the next stage is joy. You feel the adrenaline and joy fill up in your heart, feeling it pound a little faster when all the things and people-less costumes you love so much and dearly are there. And then the excitement and mischiviousness comes. When you start giggling at everything and nothing. You are literally entering a world were it is a hundred percent Lordi and no one can take it away from you, and no one can touch you in this state of bliss.

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Unlike the exhibition in Savonlinna, you could actually walk straight up to the costumes, touch them if you wanted to. We were very, VERY reluctant at first like.. oh my god, we don’t wanna break them, you know? But I guess that at some point we’d accidently hit one thombstone one too many times so as the hours passed by, we simply didn’t care anymore and that’s when face-swaps and goofyness enters. If Lordi only knew.

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The exhibition consisted of three “rooms” – first room was more of a big room with two sections – first section consisting of a stage with a lot of random costumes, Mana seated (!) and some extra goodies. Paintings and thombstones. Second part of the room had all of Mr Lordis costumes – The Arockalypse and – Get Heavy in one line, as well as a few other costumes, the most noteable one being Otus’ costume being on display. A lot of random small things – Amen’s guitar case, Amen’s guitar, the Rock Police gear, some more paintings.

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In the last room was, again, a lot of the costumes, Hella’s scarbie box, the entire set up from “Deadache” tour, Dark Floors props and some old goodies. The chainsaws, the old Monsterican Dream set up, Blood Red Sandman bed, Hella’s baby stroller… A lot of things! We had the exhibition all to ourselves, which made it even better!

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We had a fantastic time at the exhibition, and after about three hours it was time for us to leave. We heard some shoutings out from the store, but didn’t think so much about it. Then I saw this guy spraying something and it was about the time when we saw the store owner grab a baseball bat and chase after the guy that we realized that this was actually a robbery.

Very, very quickly did we turn around and hurried back into the backroom, all the way back behind the “Dr Sin” autopsy table to hide. And you know… Things are really getting out of control when you hear yourself asking “Ok, so what Lordi props within reach are good weapons in case he comes in here?”.

It’s a surreal… surreal feeling, I tell you. We stayed in there for a while before we thought it was safe to go out. Sophie is starting to cough a little bit, but I didn’t think much about it. Then I started coughing and I didn’t think too much about it either – I’ve been crawling around on the floors, who knows how much dust and latex pieces I have in my throat! I figured I’d take a deep breath to clear the throat a bit, which would turn out to be the biggest mistake.

As I inhaled I felt my throat complete clogging up and getting difficulties to breathe. About this time, I notice Sophies coughing has gotten worse, and both Marianne and Nathan are coughing. Nathan rushed for us to get out of there, as he noted that every person who was in the store was, just like we, coughing really badly.

Once outside, we learn that it had indeed been a robbery, but gladly, the robber hadn’t gotten away with anything. The police arrived shortly thereafter, and we left our testimonies and then, when we checked so the storeowner was okay and everything, we left the scene. Nathan said afterwards; “First time in Helsinki and I’m already known by the police!”

Well, Welcome to Helsinki Nathan!

TO BE CONTINUED

// Sara

PART FOUR: Tuska Open Air, Helsinki, Finland 1-3/7 2016

Posted in Concerts, Finland, Travels, Uncategorized with tags , , on July 25, 2016 by Sara Hammerzmith

So, right after the show the French people decided to leave for the hotel as Marianne wasn’t feeling very well, and Nathan and I took the opportunity to look at the merchstand, only to realize that Lordi did in fact not have any merch with them to this show. Oh well then. After this we headed back to the city to meet up with Sophie and Marianne at McDonalds.

It was a nice rejoice – Marianne was feeling better and we sat down and had a proper meal and chat about the amazingness we had really just witnessed back at the festival. We left fairly quickly after finishing like half the meal as I wanted to head back to festival ground to catch Avantasia live, but not before we had gotten changed.

And you know.. I always have a hard time deciding what to chose, and I’m very positive that this ultimately became the reason we got a little bit late for Avantasia. I was seriously beating myself up all the way back to Suvilahti, because the song “Avantasia” was the song I really, really wanted to see and seeing it was pretty early in the set, I felt pretty screwed. I remember how I even sat and checked to see how long the songs before it was, just to try to calculate, sitting and saying to Nathan “And then again Tobias talks so much so perhaps…” and Nathan seriously did the most amazing job calming me down.

The thing is, we made it to Suvilathi/Sörnäinen exactly when they started playing, but then we had to get to the festival and inside the gates as well. I kept saying to Nathan “I swear to God, they are going to the last ‘Avantasiaaaa’ when we get in”. I was so stressed, Nathan telling me it will be fine, me stressing a little bit more… and finally we made it in and we heard Tobias say “This is ‘Ghostlights'”.

“Ghostlights” was the song ahead of “Avantasia” in the set, and I don’t think I’ve ever felt as relieved as I did in that very moment. And then.. it was time for the big moment… “Avantasia”.

And like.. I fell in love with this song the moment I heard it. You know how you sometimes have these songs, that as soon as you hear them everything simply makes sense, when you get chills all over your body and you enter this euphoric state where it’s just you and the music? Yes. That’s it. That’s what is going on with this song.

And it was just as perfect as I imagine it would be. Yes, I did see Avantasia at Sweden Rock, but I wasn’t a fan then you know.

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The show continued on, and I enjoyed every moment of it. I’m not going to go in depth, but seriously, I sure as hell enjoyed myself! Which is sort of fun – At Sweden Rock I got bored very quickly, but I guess we can all agree on that being because of the cold rather than the show. They put on one hell of a show, Thank you Avantasia!

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After the show we headed back to the hotel. We contemplated for a moment to go to Bäkkäri for some shows as a part of an afterparty, but decided against it when we both were really tired. So instead, we went to a store, bought goodies and went home, put on some music on the speakers and laid in bed talking about everything and nothing and planning for tomorrow.

Quite a pleasant night, don’t you think?

// Sara