November 11, 2014 Eluveitie, Týr & Metsatöll NYC Folk Metal Party 10-22-14
Despite the rain and the cold, loyal fans of Metsatöll, Týr, and Eluveitie conjured a line an hour before doors for the long awaited Folk Metal tour package about to rampage Irving Plaza in NYC on Wednesday October 22nd. Marking the final date of the month long North American trek, this tour includes spices from all corners of Europe with Estonians Metsatöll, Týr hailing from the Faroe Islands off of Norway, and the Swiss headliners, Eluveitie. Returning after their successful run with Wintersun a year earlier, Eluveitie has their new record Origins as part of their armor ready to play a mix of old and newer material that satisfied their fans cravings.
Together since 1999, Metsatöll has finally broken through into the North American market, having toured the USA twice in two years. With a fan-base hungry for Estonian metal with well-embellished cultural elements, the wait was long overdue. The band has much to celebrate with their new album Karjajuht. While the lyrics to their music are sung in their native language, there was no barrier for the fans that enjoyed the catchy music and lyrics full of a taste of Estonian folklore. Playing the single “Külmking,” along with a mix of their older material such as “Lööme Mesti,” “Must Hunt,” and “Kivine Maa,” had fans chanting and dancing along. With an amalgam of the powerful drums, chant vocals, and ravaging guitars filled with a lovely touch of folk flouts, Metsatöll indeed were the perfect table setter for the night.
Up next, from the beautiful Faroe Islands, was the mighty Týr. After touring North America last Spring with Children of Bodom, fans definitely had been craving for more of this four-piece band. Not only did they get a longer set this time around, but had a chance to play material never performed in front of a North American crowd, as well as classic material only their diehard fans know. Though now a days they sing in English, they played tracks in their native language that, again despite the language barrier, had fans singing and rocking to with excitement. With chant vocals by Henri Joensen and Gunnar Thomson, epic guitar solos by Terji Skibenæs and a great drum structure by Amon Djuhuurs, they sent electricity throughout the venue, allowing fans to let loose and begin the first mosh pits of the night. With songs such as “Mare of My Night,” “Hold the Heathen Hammer High,” “Tróndur Í Gøtu,” “Grindavísan,” and “Shadow of the Swastika,” they owned Irving Plaza their entire set.
Wrapping up the celebration was the return of 8-piece Swiss folk Metalers, Eluveitie. Having established a solid and growing fan base since their formation in 2002, the band has been turned on by a broad range of followers, especially New Yorkers. It was no wonder the energy building up for this performance, despite it being a Wednesday night, was through the roof and not a soul was ready to cut out early before Eluveitie took the stage. Bringing new material in the form of Origins, they refreshed the crowd while mixing in some of their older and best material. With powerful male vocals, frontman Chrigel Glanzmann led the band through an almost two hour set that was nothing short of amazing. Performing track such as “Carry the Torch,” “King,” as well classics “A Rose for Epona,” “Helvetios,” “Inis Mona,” “Havoc,” and “Omnos,” had everyone dancing and singing.
Keeping the audience at the height of exhaustion, Eluveitie made sure to create a perfect balance between the old and new material. Not only were spectators singing and dancing, they also moshed to the band’s unique concoction of traditional Swiss instruments such as flutes, a hurdy gurdy, gaita, and bodhran just to name a few. Anna Murphy provided a mix of beautiful female vocals, and some growls that never gave a monotone sound to the music, making it more alive and enchanting for the fans. Despite how demanding a New York crowd can be, it was safe to say that everyone went home satisfied, not only because the bands gave it their all, but because this was the final eve of the tour before Eluveitie returned to Europe for more dates. That being said, it was certainly a brilliantly laid out performance beloved New York fans will soon not forget.