A metal celebration

For its 20th anniversary celebration, Tuska Open Air Metal Festival attracted 37,000 visitors over three days

This year’s Tuska Open Air Metal was something special as the festival celebrated its 20-year anniversary from June 30 to July 2 at Suvilahti in Helsinki. With headliners like Sabaton and Mastodon, Finnish favourites such as Amorphis, Sonata Arctica and Apocalyptica, as well as international bands that included Soilwork, Mayhem, Suicidal Tendencies and Devin Townsend Project, the lineup was packed with heavy hitters.

Therefore, it was to be expected that the Tuska weekend would again attract a large crowd of metalheads. In addition to these bands, HIM, who had announced their last tour before breaking up later this year, was the headliner for Saturday. In light of this, it was little wonder that Saturday was sold out with 14,500 festivalgoers, and the festival set a new record with a total of 37,0000 visitors over the weekend.

But let’s start with Friday. The Finnish summer didn’t show its best side on this cloudy day, but that didn’t deter anyone from getting into the festival mood. From Anneke Van Giersbergen’s Vuur to Wintersun and Suicidal Tendencies, the afternoon offered up something for everyone, and the bands played in front of enthusiastic audiences. The Inferno Stage was packed for Finnish black metallers Baptism, and the crowd enjoyed the darker side of metal before Finnish voodoo folk tunes took over the hall with Pekko Käppi & K:H:H:L, who even got some goth ladies dressed in PVC dancing.

With the nippy weather, it wasn’t completely unsuitable for Insomnium to bring their latest album ‘Winter’s Gate’ to the Väkevä Tent stage and mesmerize the audience, before things again took a darker turn with legendary Norwegian black metal band Mayhem playing their influential album ‘De Mysteriis Dom Sathanas’ in its entirety. To end the day, Sabaton entered the Radio Rock main stage and took the cheering audience to a metal battle.

Saturday announced itself as even colder than Friday, including a few rain showers, so it was good that Swedish death metal band LIK turned up the heat right at the beginning of the day, before Impaled Nazarene brought their tunes and banter to the main stage.

The rest of Saturday didn’t hold back either. Timo Rautiainen & Trio Niskalaukaus came out of retirement to play a show that evoked many memories, and Lost Society blew everyone away with their energetic performance. Electric Wizard brought the groove and took the audience on a doom-heavy journey, while Tom G. Warrior’s Triptykon turned the Väkevä tent into a cold, icy, blue-lit metal cave.

But of course, everyone eagerly awaited the final act of the day – HIM. With a massive metal heartagram as the backdrop, Ville Valo and co. enchanted an audience that happily sang along to all the hit tunes, many reliving their teenage days – a worthy celebration of Tuska’s anniversary and HIM’s highly successful career that ended with fireworks in the night sky.

Sunday fulfilled the promise of its name and the sun finally peaked through the clouds, meaning the last day of this year’s Tuska festival began under blue skies. First up, Tuska band competition winners Where’s My Bible hit the main stage, before Battle Beast rocked the tent stage, where the passionate crowd couldn’t get enough of them. Dirkschneider turned up the summer festival feeling on the main stage a notch, and Baroness jumped all over Väkevä stage with big smiles and an infectious good mood.

The choice between cello metallers Apocalyptica and Oranssi Pazuzu, who played at the same time, was a difficult one. But it was Oranssi Pazuzu who triumphed and took their audience on an intense ride through a psychedelic black metal universe in the packed Inferno stage hall. Sonata Arctica got the festivalgoers to sing along on the tent stage before Mastodon ended the 20th Tuska festival in the evening sunshine in front of a cheering crowd.

Nina Ratavaara

Photographer: Eija Mäkivuoti

Read other news on the city site of Helsinki.

Ametalcelebration Helsinki Tuska_Open_Air_Metal_Festival
If you notice an error, highlight the text you want and press Ctrl + Enter to report it to the editor
1 view in january
I recommend
No recommendations yet


Post your comment to communicate and discuss this article.

The coach of a sports club in Hyvinkää, southern Finland has been remanded into police custody on suspicion of sexual abuse of minors he was coaching, the Itä-Uusimaa police department said on Thursday. Officials said that they are investigating the case as suspected child abuse but did not disclose the ages of the alleged victims. The suspect in the case, a 50-year-old man, was remanded into custody on Wednesday. The suspected sexual abuse is believed to...
Finns increasingly forego do-it-yourself construction of prefab elements in favour of completely completed homes. Turnkey homes (where homes are fully finished and owners can immediately occupy them) have become more popular than traditional house packages, says the Finnish Association for Manufacturers of Prefabricated Houses. “About 7,500 detached homes are built in Finland every year, and about 70 percent of them are prefabricated houses of some kind,”...
THE FESTIVE ATMOSPHERE in the Helsinki neighbourhood of Arabianranta was visibly subdued on Tuesday, as residents mourned the death of a local child who is believed to have been murdered. While little information has been released to the public, it is known that the victim was murdered near their home on the night of Christmas Eve (December 24). The police apprehended a suspect at the scene of the crime, who has been confirmed as a 36-year old male. Whethe...
One of Finland’s most famous seafaring vessels, the titanic icebreaker Otso, was deployed on its first mission of the winter season last night, keeping sea routes open for the 22nd year in a row. Late in the evening of Christmas Day, Otso, the crowning glory of Arctia Oy’s extensive fleet, departed from Helsinki’s Katajanokka Harbour, heading north to the Bay of Bothnia. The 7000-ton Polar icebreaker has been tasked with keeping waterways open between Oulu...
Eight Finnish political parties have published their a statement on future climate policy goals in Finland. Prime Minister Juha Sipilä (Centre) in November invited all nine parliamentary parties to join a task force established to find an agreement on new, more ambitious climate goals for Finland. The one-month project was led by Kimmo Tiilikainen (Centre), the Minister of the Environment, Energy and Housing. The Finns Party abandoned the task force last w...
A 25-year-old man suspected of the sexual abuse of a girl under the age of 15 in Oulu, northwestern Finland, who was arrested in Germany last Tuesday is now reported to be at large. According to law enforcement officials in Oulu, the suspect was released by German police before he could be transferred to Finnish custody due to "a breakdown in communication between authorities". Oulu District Court ordered the suspect to be reprimanded into custody in absen...
Finland’s high earners saw their real income grow more in 2017 than their peers in middle and low income groups, according to new data released by Statistics Finland on Tuesday. Incomes among the country’s highest income decile rose by 4.4 percent in 2017 compared to 2016, while the year-on-year increase was 1.3 percent for middle income earners. Incomes for the four lowest income deciles meanwhile grew by 1.2 percent over the one-year period. However amon...
A man wanted in connection with a suspected arson attempt on a home in Helsinki’s Käpylä district was remanded into police custody on Sunday. The Helsinki district court has remanded a man suspected of attempted arson and attempted murder into police custody, ending a short-lived manhunt, police said on Sunday. The 25 year-old is suspected of using a Molotov cocktail to cause a fire at a flat in Käpylä, Helsinki last Monday. The apartment was completely de...
Helsinki Central Library Oodi will opened its doors to the public on 5 December at 8am, a day before Finland’s 101st birthday. Designed by ALA Architects, this library of a new era is an ode to Finnish culture, equality and freedom of expression. Oodi offers everyone an open, public urban space at Kansalaistori Square, right opposite Parliament House. Central Library Oodi is an active and functional meeting point with 2.5 million expected annual visitors....