Just in time to set the mood for All Hallows’ Eve, Metallihelvetti is bringing death to Helsinki the weekend of October 28-29. Kuolema II will take place at Nosturi and offer two days of Death Metal par excellence. Time to catch up with head promoter Mikko Mäkinen and his “devoted soldier” as he calls himself, Jussi Helenius, and find out what the festival is all about.
As the name says, it is the second time this event is organized, but Kuolema I wasn’t actually called like that. It went under the name of Turun Kuolema (The Death of Turku) with a line-up featuring Finnish Death Metal bands like Demilich and Convulse.
“The original idea was to arrange a similar event as Finnish Death Metal Maniacs in Pori, cos that event was sold out and many people couldn't attend FDMM because of that. So Turun Kuolema was arranged because there was a demand for another old school Death Metal event in Finland,” Jussi explains. “And of course just for the fact, that there isn't a proper Death Metal festival in Finland. Besides FDMM. Especially this year, as we have quite a range of Death Metal bands. Not just old school ones,” Mikko agrees.
The Kuolema II program was built around the offer of arranging the first ever Angelcorpse show in Finland for that weekend. “When this was confirmed, we started to gather good and interesting Death Metal bands to complete the program. We got a good selection of Finnish bands as well as some foreign ones which are also doing their Finland debut like Angelcorpse, Wombbath and Defeated Sanity,” Jussi says.
The support of the Metalhelvetti family was also important to put a diverse line-up together as Mikko explains. “This year also, we had a good word with couple guys who are also part of the Metallihelvetti family. Two proper Death Metal-heads. So they got to say their opinion on many bands as well. For example, I really don’t know that much about technical Death Metal. So better to have someone who knows their stuff. “
Those who have followed the event know that it originally was meant to take place at Gong in Turku but then was moved to Nosturi in Helsinki. So I wanted to know why, even though as a Helsinki-based metal head it was good news for sure. But that might be only the case this year Jussi clarifies. “The situation and future of the original venue Gong (previously Klubi) was so uncertain last spring, so we couldn't risk the festival being cancelled because of a possible close-down of the venue. Fortunately, the Nosturi guys were interested to help us out and offered a nice deal for that weekend so we could move the festival to Helsinki, at least for this time. The future of Gong in Turku looks a bit brighter now, so if everything goes well, Kuolema will return to Turku next year.”
This change brought both challenges like more expenses but also chances of a bigger audience as well as Sotajumala and Pyre being added to the line-up so the festival goers will get their money’s worth. And that they will get, Jussi promises. “Brutal, ass-kicking, relentless, no-holds-barred Death fucking Metal! No mainstream, modern fancy-ass shit.” If that isn’t a clear message, I don’t know what is.
Autumn is usually busy with many concerts, festivals and events, so one might ask oneself, why attend this one. Combination and variety are key, as Jussi points out. “The possibility to witness Angelcorpse live for the first (and possibly the last) time in Finland. The line-up consists of Death Metal in all its variations, from old school mayhem to a more technical yet brutal approach. We have big, legendary and well-known bands but also some smaller, upcoming ones. We hope that the attending Death Metal fans will also find some new band(s) to support along with their already favorite ones.” And Mikko adds that there isn’t really this type of festival in Finland, “concentrating only on Death Metal and all of it aspects. And we know, there is no Melodical Death Metal, as this festival is concerned. And there won´t be.”
Do they have personal favorites? “Angelcorpse. Been digging that band for 20 years, since the first demo (oh, the tape-trading times...) came out. Also Torture Killer, they never fail live and yet I have seen them maybe 40 times in my life, their merciless old school Death Metal is always a good kick in the face.”
So, now you know exactly what you’re in for. The only thing left to do is get your ticket if you don’t have one yet! Tickets are available from ticketmaster.fi.