Wintersun @ The Garage, London

With support from Bloodshot dawn and Savage Messiah
16th July 2013

Review by Ashlinn Nash
Photography by Graham Hilling

The garage has become a new cornerstone as well as a go to venue for intimate gigs, that are easy to get to and reasonably priced, which has made it one of the most appealing venues used by the metal scene.
The venue here tonight boasts a full on assault of a line-up that is set to tear the foundations of the venue apart, that ranges from London’s own Savage messiah, Portsmouth’s Bloodshot Dawn and Finland’s wintersun.

Not long after the intimate venue had filled up the crowd were pumped and ready for Savage messiah [4/5].

The thundering four piece from London, rev up the crowd as the victory sounds of past battles won, filled the room to welcome on stage the adrenaline assault.
Bringing the slick sounds and power yells of gigs gone by, with them an arsenal of bombastic triplet drumming, seamlessly symphonic power slides and the ability to sound huge in the tiny venue.

Playing well oiled songs “The accuser”, “Plague of consciousness” and “the fateful dark” that commanded insane amounts of headbangs and windmilling opportunities with every riff.

Tonight given just a thirty minute set, who the appreciative crowd pumped from the pure energy of the band, was packed with the dynamism, thrash-tastic tones and quick paced fun.

The band tonight have proved themselves to be game, set and ready to be ones to look out for in the future.

Anticipation for wintersun tonight grew between bands, as the crowd chants began to fill the air, but soon replaced by the excitement for Bloodshot Dawn [3.5/5] who open with unfortunate technical difficulties that are recovered with good humour and pure professionalism.

As the problems are replaced by the rapid galloping militia that came from the four piece from Portsmouth.

Come clad in the armour of influence from Testament to Jack Daniels, commanded the first pits of the evening with pure foot on the monitor power playing of instruments.

Ending their set with “godless” to which the fantasia of a wall of death opened with, delivered with good humour and intense brutality.
Bloodshot dawn’s set has been one of a gutsy display of the genre’s great capabilities as the band who recovered from the previous technical difficulties managed to still pull of a scorching set that contained a full blown assault to the ears with no compromise.

As the final notes of Bloodshot Dawn’s well recovered set receded back to silence, something strange broached the stage, a hangman’s noose with a disco ball and a DJ set not too de-similar from the ancient school disc formats.

Dressed as a tropical Ibiza DJ, DJ Trev arrived with deliverance of celebratory tracks that were out of genre, such as “Gangnam style” and “hey baby”.

Making the gig feel more like a Butlin’s Holiday than a metal concert, quickly moved along by the crowds dismay and quickly replaced by screams and cheers for the headliners.

Tonight’s headliners Wintersun [4/5] whose line up comprises of Finland’s equivalent of Devin Townsend; Jari Mäenpää (Vocals, Guitar), the speeding sound bullet creator Teemu Mäntysaari (Guitar), the thundering force of Jukka Koskinen (Bass) and supreme powerhouse Kai Hahto (Drums).

Open the evening with “When Times fades away” from the new album a mammoth of track that commanded the crowd to delve straight in with headbangs and burst into dramatic sing-along.

With the mighty riffs soaked in great expanses of melodic and have a space-y, otherworldly vibes that rhythmically, chopping and changing tempos as quick and as seamlessly as, audience members could devour such sonic delight that their ears, could handle.

The band’s on stage presence mainly static but great enjoyers and appreciators of being able to perform to such an enthusiastic crowd. Who were in full swing of enjoyment as classics “Battle against time” and “sleeping stars” filled the air, with high speed air guitaring, fist pumps and the claw of power metal screams.

Delivering regimented octane momentums with the influences expanding those written on the patch jackets in the crowd, all within a venue that could have done with the cold chill of the arctic environments that the band are famous for writing about.

Such as “Beautiful Death” and “Darkness and frost” As the audience was taken on a real lesson in the ways of finish metal  brutality, throughout the fantastic blend of the two wintersun albums, delivered in no less than grandeur.

The evening of celebration continued with not only the success of the evening but with the birthday of Jukka, who received a cute toy holding a heart. Tonight has been one of the history of the venue.

As the high octane melodic power/death metal masters unique approach to the genre, lives and breathes a new life of what the genre’s pure essence is capable of.

When the ten track set drew to a close, the memories of the night are those that will sing out in the mind for a long time.


1.When Time Fades Away
2.Sons of Winter and Stars
3.Land of Snow and Sorrow
4.Battle Against Time
5.Sleeping Stars
6.Beautiful Death
7.Darkness and Frost
9.Beyond the Dark Sun