Live at Peabody's Concert Club, Cleveland, OH, August 14, 2013
Tap Master, on november 03, 2013 1 of 1 people found this review helpful
Sound: I had heard mixed reviews about Wintersun's performance abilities, and because of said reviews, I did not know what to expect. Needless to say, their live prowess left remains of my blown mind on the walls of the venue. Let's start with my main man, Jari Mäenpää.
Those of you who know Wintersun know Jari Mäenpää, the genius behind nearly everything that isWintersun. Live, he is the lead vocalist and also the lead guitarist. He stormed onto the stage carrying a beautiful Ibanez and they began their performance. The guitars sounded great, his vocals (both harsh and clean) were astounding and spot-on, and, surprisingly, the sound guy knew what he was doing, balancing each musician's sound level infallibly for a 100% enjoyable aural extravaganza. Every song live sounded just like the album. I couldn't have been more awed by their playing guys, honestly. But let's get to the more important portion: the performance. // 9
Perfomance: We had a good audience that night. There were people getting passed around in the crowd, there were mosh pits, there was sweat and beer all over the floor, and I was surrounded by friendly metal brothers. And all the brothers and I went absolutely insane when Wintersun came out, and I swear to you that EVERYONE was singing along with each song that was played:
1. "When Time Fades Away" - obviously, we couldn't sing along to this one, nor could the band play along. It was played with a backing track, and was a fine way to get us hyped up for the show.
2. "Sons of Winter and Stars" - yup, they played through the entire song. And everyone was like "We are the sons of winter and stars! We've come from a far beyond time! Forever the fire burns in our hearts!"... You get the idea. I was really impressed to see them remember and play each of the Time I songs all the way through, but I was honestly waiting ever so impatiently for their debut album...
3. "Land of Snow and Sorrow" - awesome down tempo tune that helped vary the speed of the concert overall. Jari's vocals are still killing it on every note.
4. "Beautiful Death" - what's this? They interrupt the flow of "Time" (lul) to bring us a debut album song. Man, it was sweet to hear them play this song versus the Time I songs, because the style is just slightly different.
5. "Darkness and Frost" - the instrumental piece that precedes...
6. "Time" - Another sing along song, and boy did it get intense. No mosh pits yet, we were all just kind of dazed that what we were viewing was actually happening... In real life.
7. "Death and the Healing" - one of my top three favorites from the debut. I was so incredibly pumped to hear this song. Do you remember that solo? That ridiculously fast, f--king wonderful solo in this song? Yeah. Jari played it. He played it live. Like, perfectly. I had to pick my face up off the floor afterward.
8. "Winter Madness" - people love this song, let's be honest. This might even be their biggest song among their following, and maybe it's the thrashy aspect. It doesn't make my top 3, but it's still a damn killer song. And, my God, you should have seen Kai Hahto. Let me put it into perspective: Fleshgod Apocalypse just got off the stage. Imagine competing with their drummer. But hey... Kai did it. And man, was he a monster, hitting those kicks with such utter precision.
9. "Beyond the Dark Sun" - ohhh yeah. A mosh pit definitely started on this song (and the last one, of course). One could just - FEEL the energy emanating from the band and the pumped up audience. You had to move around... And so people did. And I shit you not, it was just like the album. They have an incredible knack for performance.
10. "The Way of the Fire" - oh... have you not heard of this song? Well, it isn't a joke. The played a preview from their "Time II" supplement, which was really cool and all. The problem was it was live, and it was loud... And we had nothing to compare it too. And it was f--king long. I'm sure it was really good, I just wasn't able to make out everything I was hearing because I didn't know how the actual song went. But finally:
11. "Starchild" - I had never been in a mosh pit. I didn't know you needed to balance well. I didn't know it was really fucking violent and aggressive. But I hopped in. This song absolutely kills, and to be honest, I didn't catch terribly much of the performance because I was too busy pushing people around in a massive pit of death. All I could do was hear it... And it was perfect as well. It was above and beyond.
I would also like to share some of the special moments during the show:
*I brought a buddy of mine to the show. He listens to mostly more mellow stuff, like Blue October, and goes maybe as far as Staind or Breaking Benjamin. But he agreed to come, and he had a swell time. My favorite moment by far was when one metal brother grabbed him and a another guy in each arm and started swaying with them back and forth during the folk-flavored Death and the Healing chorus. I could not stop laughing, and neither could he.
*I witnessed another friend of mine (who arrived separate) fight to the death with another guy over one of Kai Hahto's drum sticks. Several watched as they rolled back and forth on the ground, set on nothing in the world other than ownership of that damned piece of wood. It was certainly enjoyable, but unfortunately cost me $20.00 to see :(
*Finally, the best moment. Jari was so engaged with the audience. He would look up a lot and make awesome faces at people, and at one point I got his attention and got my own personal awesome face signed by Jari Mäenpää. Greatest metal moment of my life, guys. // 10
Overall Impression: The show was played in the USA (Cleveland), on August 14, 2013 at a bar called Peabody's. The opening acts were Starkill, Arsis and Fleshgod Apocalypse.
I loved the show because each act was superb and I love metal music. And honestly, the only complaint I can make is that the sound mixing for some of the openers wasn't as good as Wintersun. The ticket cost me $15, and there was a shipping and service fee that bumped it up to around $20. It was absolutely worth the money, in fact, I would have paid double. And you can certainly bet that when they come back around for "Time II," I will be out there seeing them again. The great thing about a band of their size (not too popular, not too underground), guys, is that you can get front row, and literally be able to reach out and touch the members of the band.
To be frank, Wintersun is a group that is just absolutely good at what they do. They write, they record, they produce, they perform, and they kick ass at every aspect. If you want to see a gig of high energy and high quality, then you'd better not miss Wintersun. // 10