Poets of the Fall – Pakkahuone, Tampere; March 24th 2018
It’s 8:45 am, I have barely slept and I’m waiting for my flight home. While I sit here, I’ve started to reminisce about last night’s Poets of the Fall concert and find myself smiling and crying at the same time. “WOW!” does not even begin to describe it. It cannot pinpoint what it was last night, but from the start the show just took off, with waves of high energy flowing back and forth between the band and the audience, only taking us higher. For me it was a beautiful mixture of emotions throughout, but what remained in the end was an overwhelming happiness and gratitude. Even now I cannot stop smiling.
We were supposed to sleep in in Turku, because our bus did not leave until 13:00. Instead we were having breakfast at 8, not much sleep after and headed Tampere already tired. No time to rest there and the restaurant we wanted to meet at was so packed we’d have to wait for 45 minutes. So I was grumpy until we finally found a nice place near the venue and had good food. Waiting in the cold, first in, then stopped because they would not allow my camera (since when? I’ve been there many times and it was never a problem before *sigh*). Thanks to G. and S. we still got the perfect front row spot, I slowly warmed up and things were looking better.
S. and I both remembered the last gig at this venue had been a good one, but after Turku being as great as it was I feared we might be expecting too much from this one. Could it really get any better? For now I was content with being there, seeing more people arrive closer to gig time and knowing I could jump and dance unhindered by my camera. It was a two hour wait this time, but we enjoyed chatting, wondering if there’d be any surprises.
As soon as the intro started the audience was clapping and greeted the band loudly. When Marko walked out he would not start singing until the audience showed how loudly they could screams and everyone delivered. Let there be noise! ‘Overboard’ already had me jumping and singing along and it did not change for the rest of the night, where my singing only got louder (not prettier I’m afraid) and more emotional as we came to the songs that really hit home at the moment. With ‘Daze’ we had the first sing along and it everyone screamed “till the first light of the day” so loud the guys might have even heard it through their in ear monitors. 😀 I knew then it was going to be a great night!
We were on Olli’s side again this night and it occurred to me how much I had missed watching him play. I does move around a lot and he always ends up in front of me at least once every gig, but it’s still different to be standing there and getting a close up looks on his fingers moving across the guitar as well as catching most of the interactions with the rest of the band. At one point later during the show I turned to S. an mouthed “so fast” making guitar playing motions. It was unbelievable! <3
All of the guys were in rare form that night. Captain seemed totally in a zone, drawing with one hand in the air, following the melody of the songs while the other was busy playing. I love watching him getting lost in the music. 🙂 Jaska was jumping all the time and he could not stop smiling all night. he certainly was having fun. Unfortunately I could not see much of Jari from my point of view, but I heard him loud and clear and it sounded to me like he was playing with an extra kick. Jani was being his usual crazy self, running all over, visiting the others and of course standing on the speakers by the side of the stage to play. 🙂 And Marko? you may ask and I could answer “He was being Marko”. He was also singing exceptionally well. Just wow! ‘False Kings’ was a killer already, but the real test came later during the show. I’ll get there…
We held out our hands during ‘Diamonds for Tears’, but the distance to the stage was too wide for any handshakes. It didn’t matter, the show just would not feel right without these familiar moves. I loved the intro to ‘Shallow’ with a groovy bass line and wasn’t sure if it had been the same the previous day. Loved the singing too which is a bit slower in parts than the album version. Marko looked at me and we sang together or we were supposed to, but for the first time in years I had a lyrics blackout just when he looked at me. All the other lines of the song were right there in my head, but that one was hard to hold on to all of a sudden. 😉 Everything felt extra intense during this gig.
‘Rogue’ as amazing. I didn’t know whom to watch, because everyone played brilliantly. <3 Once again I marveled at their skills and smiled because it’s lovely to see how they give each other room in the spotlight and direct the attention of the audience towards each other. I remember Jani playing on his knees next to Olli and Captain leaning back while he was playing, lost in the moment. They were clearly having fun, pointing their instruments at each other, watching each other play and goofing around. 😀
After Turku I had not been 100% sure if ‘The Beautiful Ones’ was going to stay on the setlist, but it did and was even more beautiful than it had been the previous night. <3 What a treat. The lights were too bright to film so I did what everyone else did, put on the lamp on my phone and waved it around. I’m sure it looked amazing. To my surprise the next song was ‘Given and Denied’, so the setlist had changed. I love that song and I know G. and S. do as well so we were looking at each other during it. *Happy sigh* Marko motioned for us to wave our arms with the melody and everyone followed suit. It was easy to take over this audience, they did not have to work for it at all and could feed off of our energy to create magic.
Marko asked us if we wanted to rock and we sure did, screaming our reply. Everyone launched right into ‘Kamikaze Love’. Everyone but Jari’s drums that is, because they made no sound whatsoever or at least not as much noise as they were supposed to. The guys stopped playing, looked at each other and cracked up laughing. It was brilliant! Glenn came running to fix the drums while the others were out figuring what to do now. Marko grabbed the mic and started talking about what he was going to play instead. He looked towards G. when he said “some might know this one”. Everyone grew quiet the moment he started singing and he delivered a flawless version of ‘The Wind that shakes the Barley’ which sent shivers down my spine. Absolutely stunning!
Meanwhile the drums were fixed and they played ‘Kamikaze Love’ for us after all. The song is just so much fun, we all loved it. During the “Hell the way you walked in…” part, Marko looked at S. and me and smiled and we gestured to him that we’d “kiss the earth beneath his feet”. 😀 ‘Locking up the Sun’ followed and for a moment I thought that was the song I could not remember the previous night, but as soon as we got to the “turning back time” gesture I realized that they had not played it the previous night. It was the perfect song for this audience though and rocked the house! It might have been during this song that Jani walked out towards our side of the stage and stood on the speaker there to play bass. As he returned Marko motioned for him to come closer and Jani pointed his bass at him and chased him with it. 😀
‘Late Goodbye’ ended the set and was absolutely beautiful. The guys looked so happy when they walked off and especially Jaska could not stop smiling. The audience cheered loudly at every song, sang along to all the sing along lines, clapped along without even being shown to do so and was generally great. It was all perfect synchronicity between us and the band, taking everyone higher and higher. Loud cheers called the guys back to the stage within moments. We sure did not have enough yet!
I am not sure how that was even possible, but it felt as if during the encores both the band and the audience kicked it up one more notch. The music carried me, my sense of time was gone completely and while I tried to take in every move and every detail it all seems like one happy, crazy, wonderful blur in retrospect. My memories may be a bit fuzzy here, but I certainly know what it felt like and “amazing” is not a strong enough word to do it justice. 😀
‘Children of the Sun’ in it’s new place on the setlist made me smile with its beautiful message. The song always feels like a warm hug, like someone saying “everything is going to be alright”. ‘War’ once again gave me the feeling that whatever it is I struggle with in my life, I am not alone. Seeing and hearing the guys play has helped me through many rough spots in my life and now more than ever I need their music to be there for me. Once again they delivered and made me feel better and happier for a moment. “When I thought that I fought this war alone…”
During ‘Dreaming wide awake’ both Olli and Jaska stood on the keyboard raiser, then both jumped off together, flying for a moment. They were on fire, going crazy, and moving all over the place. Jani was on one of the speakers again, Marko was playing air guitar, Captain seemed to be painting in the air with his hands and Jaska played Jari’s cymbals for a while. 😀 I could not see much of Jari from where I stood, but I sure heard him. 😀 All the guys were singing along to the songs at one point or another. I love seeing them do this. It ended much too soon with a killer version of ‘Carnival of Rust’. They waved, they smiled, took a picture with us in the background and walked off looking content with what they had achieve. The guys had really outdone themselves that night and we did not want to let them go. For what felt like minutes after they had left the audience was still chanting “We want more”. When it finally stopped, S. turned to me and said “We may nor get more, but we sure want more!” Absolutely right! 😀
Shows like this make me wish they would never end. Shows like this also remind me why I love seeing every show on any given tour. Sadly it is not possible this time around, but having been to this one makes me feel lucky and grateful. I would have love to tell Poets personally how I felt so we stuck around for a little while. Glen was packing things and gestured to us how relieved he was about the drums incident being over so soon. We gave him a thumbs up for fixing things. Jaska was out and about so I took the chance to give him a big hug and hank him for the show. To everyone else I sent hugs on Twiiter.
G., S. and I ended the night with drinks and discussing the many great moments of the gig. Perfect concert was perfect and there is no better end to a night like this than drinks among friends. Now, overtired and ready to go home, I feel happy tears running down my face and smile to myself. These great memories will carry me in times of sadness. It is boarding time, so I take a deep breath and say goodbye to Finland until we meet again.
Diamonds for Tears
The Beautiful Ones
Given and Denied
The Wind that shakes the Barley
Locking up the Sun
Children of the Sun
Dreaming Wide Awake
Carnival of Rust