Poets of the Fall – Finlandia Klubi, Lahti; April 28th, 2018
What a night! What a gig! Seeing Poets of the Fall at Finlandia Klubi was everything I had hoped for – a perfectly relaxed night full of good music and fun among friends. The audience was good, the guys were in top form and after taking a break from my camera the previous week I enjoyed seeing life through a lens once again. Everything went according to plan and I absolutely loved the gig. Lahti never disappoints.
I had arrived on Friday, straight from Iceland and after a good night’s sleep I was ready for another concert. Went to Lahti way too early, because I wanted to have lunch before the gig, but when I was done I still had time to spare. Walked to the venue and sat at a nearby cafe. Just as I thought about taking a walk t started raining so I had another tea instead. Arrived at the venue two hours before the doors opened and was the first one there. Whenever there is something else going on at the Sibelius-Talo, the doors are open and we can wait inside by the club’s doors, but no such luck today. At least there was a roof. Two more fans arrived before S. joined me. They let us in at 6:45, so more waiting inside and very few familiar faces.
Doors to the club opened at 8 and the line was still short then. We arrived upstairs and – surprise the area in front of the stage had been divided into “over 18” and “under 18”. This is not unusual in Finland, just meaning n the “over 18” side alcohol is sold. Yet at this venue, usually only the bar area is not open to younger fans. Either way, it was perfect for us, because the far left of the “ver 18” area was exactly in front of the mic and we both had center stage spots. So far, so good. We reviewed the Helsinki gig while we stood there to pass the time, then S. came up with the idea of getting “ETS he ALL” mugs (thank you Captain ;)) and using them at the beginning of the encores. So I bought mugs and S. bought water to fill them with.
At 9 on the dot the lights went down and we got ready to scream. Since Jari was on vacation we expected Anton on drums, but quickly realized that the drummer was an entirely new one. I take it from the band’s Instagram tags that his name is Tuomas Rauhala. He did a good job too. Different drumming style from both Jari and Anton, but wow, that was powerful. Well done! 🙂
Just before the show started I had been considering going to the bathroom one last time, but didn’t and immediately forgot all about it. Good concerts do that, make you forget how tired you are, how your feet are hurting and that you have to pee. Needless to say this was such a concert. For the next 80 minutes (is it me or are the gigs getting shorter?) I listened and watched and sang and jumped and had tremendous fun, all the while hunting for the best pictures. The light was difficult as there was no spot on Marko when he stepped on the speakers in front of us and a lot of bright backlighting in general. After a while I just rolled with it an took a lot of nice silhouette pictures. Shadow play!
The setlist was pretty much as it has been for the tour, with two songs less than the previous week. It didn’t matter much though, they were all delivered perfectly. Of course I would have wanted a longer set, I always do, but I’m pretty sure that would still be the case if they played twice as long as they do. It just always goes by much too fast. Somehow, they guys seemed much more relaxed than they had been in Helsinki, but that might have just been my imagination or my projection, because I certainly felt more at ease.
Either way the moment the music started, both S. and I were completely carried away with it. About halfway into ‘Overboard’ we looked at each other with bis smiles on our faces, silently agreeing that this was a good one. With my camera in hand I tried to follow all the movement on stage, but it was next to impossible. I also never took the chance to change to the bigger lens I had brought, because I could not take my eyes off of the stage. There was just so much going on, much of it quite funny. S. and I exchanged many amused looks that night, always indicating “yep, that’s how they are and that’s how we love them”. 🙂
Olli and Captain had a lot going on, often seemingly catching something out of the air and throwing it to each other. What exactly they were catching I have no idea though. Musical notes maybe? It certainly looked like they were having fun with it. 😀 All the guys had fun with the raisers on the left and right side of the stage as well, standing on them frequently and in Olli’s case, jumping off of them a lot too. I vividly remember taking a picture of Marko, who was standing on the speakers in front of me, just to capture Olli flying into the picture on the background. 😉
I got a good view of everyone except Tuomas. He was totally blocked by the cymbals most of the time, even during ‘Rogue’ when Marko was not standing in the way. 😉 I could hear him well though, he got a good beat going. The stage might have been closer than it was the previous week, at least it seemed this way. It was not as wide either so it was much easier to see everyone and catch their smiles. I love it when they look so happy. <3
It was one of those nights when I enjoyed all of the songs, the music, the lyrics and when Marko sang the perfect lines to me. Not the I remember what they were, or even which song, but at the moment he did it, it totally made sense and I enjoyed it tremendously. 🙂 He was on the move a lot, visiting Olli, Jani, Jaska and even Captain, standing with them, joking with them and watching them play.
Olli was all smiles when he didn’t look highly concentrated and lost in a solo. I never get tired of watching him play. Jaska too, showed us some awesome guitar work, when he wasn’t showing us how to clap or jumping up and down. For ‘Choice Millionaire’ he and Olli stood on the raisers on each side of the stage, moving their guitars to the beat in unison. 😀
Captain was often hidden in plain sight, because the lights around him were so bright it was hard to see him. Thus, everyone had to visit him to take a closer look and play with him for a while. At one point Jani, Jaska and Olli all stood around him, instruments raised while he leaned back at the keyboards. It was awesome! Later, when Olli was playing a solo Captain got down into a crouching position behind the keyboards and bowed to him. All that while still playing. 😀
Jani was going crazy, sticking his tongue out at everyone, kicking the air and rocking the house. He stood on all of the raisers that night and even on two of them at once for a while. There was so much energy on stage it carried over to the audience and flowed right back to the band. The venue was pretty packed and as far as I could tell everyone was having a great time. No wonder! How can you not, when everything is just right?
Somewhere along the way Captain came to the front to clap with us and check out our sing along and at some point everyone held up the lights on their phones. I turned to take it all in. It was beautiful. I think it was then that Marko formed a heart with his hands and showed it to us. <3
As the encores came along S. and I filled our cupds and toasted to the guys. It took a moment for them to realize what we were doing, but then they showed us big smiles in return. Soon I found myself multi-tasking and holding the cup in one hand, while trying to take pictures with the other. It must have looked quite funny judging by Olli’s grin. 😀
It was over way too soon, how did we arrive at ‘Carnival of Rust’ this quickly? Finally we got a look at Tuomas too, who came to the front to say goodbye and got pulled into a hug by everyone on the way. There was so much hugging going on, it was lovely. They waved to all of us and left. S. and I hugged too and I dashed for the cloakroom to grab my things because I had a train to catch. Exhausted and sweaty I made it to the train station with time to spare and on the way back to Helsinki thought about how great the concert had been. 🙂
Diamonds for Tears
Given and Denied
Children of the Sun
Dreaming Wide Awake
Carnival of Rust