A nice Saturday in Helsinki, spring is coming... time for a party we'd say. So we were more than happy to get to go to the so called "Monster Double" event at Nosturi. Why is this ideal for a party? If you get to enjoy two Finnish bands that are huge in the glam rock/hard rock world (especially in their home country), namely the goth 'n' rollers Helsinki Vampires or The 69 Eyes and party animals Reckless Love, in a double headliner event, you just know that partying is all you'll be able to do. Here's what took place that night:
First up was Reckless Love (***1/2), a highly popular band in Finland itself and through extensive touring in Europe a growing name outside of its home country as well. Their songs overall carry a more light and positive vibe which is a perfect fit if you're in for a great hard rock/glam metal party. And that's what most people present at Nosturi came down for! When the guys jumped onstage the excitement grew hugely and became almost palpable when hunk and frontman Olli Herman appeared to complete the band! They kicked off with singles Animal Attraction from same named second album and So Happy I Could Die from third album Spirit, which definitely revved up the party mode at the venue. Olli is one hell of an entertainer who knows how to claim a stage and steer the crowd towards dancing and feeling thoroughly happy. He rarely stood still, jumping and running around on stage, raising his mic stand in the air, throwing his head back in long vocal outbursts standing wide legged in tight-fitting pants and regularly coming down to his knees at the edge of the stage.
Despite the charismatic frontman pulling a huge chunk of the attention to him, you could clearly see that the whole band was simply having a huge amount of fun which created just the perfect relaxed and positive atmosphere. With the more poppy We Are The Weekend, they pulled out a track from their latest release InVader and put their feet firmly down that the weekend was here and the party officially has started.
InVader's single Monster brought a more serious message in a light sounding package and just kept the rockin' going. Overall their setlist held a great selection of some of their most popular and fun songs from all of their releases. With Beautiful Bomb, Badass and Back to Paradise they didn't even forget about their self-titled debut album. Furthermore some of the highlights were their poppy ode to and love for the fairer sex from the Northern countries Scandinavian Girls, the blazing Night on Fire and highly popular setlist closer Hot (which was probably how quite some of the girls felt once Olli lost his shirt along the way). If you're into hard rock and glam metal these guys bring a show you'll most definitely dig and get you to let loose...
So Happy I Could Die
We Are the Weekend
Edge of Our Dreams
Born to Break Your Heart
On the Radio
Night on Fire
Back to Paradise
After a short break we got what the biggest chunk of the crowd was waiting for: local goth 'n' roll legends and Helsinki vampires The 69 Eyes (****)! Fittingly bathing in bright red light the gothic rock veterans came on stage kicking off their show with Framed in Blood. It being the first time that I managed to catch a show of these guys, I very quickly understood why they've became such a household name. Take Jyrki 69 demanding attention with his gloomy rock 'n' roll attitude wearing his sunglasses throughout the whole performance and carrying on the King's legend with some of his very Elvis-inspired moves. Add to that the crazy popular Jussi 69 on drums who became famous for his highly active and entertaining drumming style, getting quite some more attention than is usual for a drummer and the jump-in-the-field guitarist Timo-Timo, you get a band in front of you that'll never born you for a sec.
A slight letdown of the performance was maybe the vocals sometimes not very clear, but besides that this was a flawless Gothic rock 'n' roll show that showcased a setlist riddled with classics like Never Say Die, Tonight, Dance d'Amour and Brandon Lee. They also made some room for a couple of songs of their latest release Universal Monsters (which was most likely the inspiration for the name of the event) with Miss Pastis and the singles Jet Fighter Plane and Dolce Vita. The cool thing of these songs is that they perfectly fit in between the older work with the return to a more old school inspired sound on that last album. After the regular setlist was finished, the encore still brought after the calmer Wasting the Dawn their biggest hits and absolute classics Feel Berlin and of course Lost Boys to completely blow us away.
But since this was the last stop of their Finnish "Monster Double" tour and they were playing in their hometown Helsinki, they couldn't let us go with just that! All of the guys of Reckless Love jumped on stage to join their hard rock brothers for a little extra treat for everyone present. With Olli Herman on vocals and Pepe as third guitar, they threw a cool version of Motörhead's Ace of Spades at us, getting the heat up and everyone dancing. Following that, Bazie of 69 Eyes seemed to challenge Pepe into the rock 'n' roll classic Johnny B. Goode (from Chuck Berry), ending one hell of a party thanking us for our support and a great time at the "Monster Double": Rock 'n' roll and party all night long! Many drinks and fists got raised...
Framed in Blood
Jet Fighter Plane
Sister of Charity
Never Say Die
Still Waters Run Deep
If You Love Me The Morning After
Wasting the Dawn
Encore 2 with Reckless Love on stage
Ace of Spade (Motörhead cover with Olli Herman on vocals)
Johnny B. Goode (Chuck Berry cover with Olli Herman on vocals)