Ensiferum, Romein Leeuwarden
Two weeks ago Tom phoned me if I was interested to see Ensiferum. We already went to Paganfest last year, featuring Ensiferum and Korpiklaani, so I kinda knew what to expect. I said yes. Kim arranged tickets, thank you for that. I have some sweet memories about Leeuwarden, as I had my final exam and my graduation there. But that was in broad daylight and quite some time ago. I had never been to the former theatre called Romein before, we had no idea how big it was, where to park, the sound and so on. So.. we went early. Leeuwarden is only an hour fifteen drive, but with Tom behind the wheel… 50 minutes. No speed ticket haha.
Romein is really in the center of the city, parking nearby was easier than we thought. Coming to the venue we realized it could be crowded, but it was SOLD OUT! Wow, never thought Ensiferum would be so popular. Later on I found out this was the only Dutch Ensiferum show, maybe that explained it was sold out. At the entrance it was a mess, too many people wanting to do too many things together: delivering jackets to the locker room, getting consumption coins, staring at the Ensiferum merch, ordering beer. Logistic speaking it was a nightmare. At the time we had our first Jupilers the first band already begun: Tracedawn from Finland. Neither of us knew this band, but this is pretty good: a mixture of prog, folk, black and death metal and some symphonic influences. Their drummer has a very good and varied double bass use, the band is tight. One other thing to mention: folk (metal) fans don’t pretend to be Bruce Lee, it was a pit the way it should be: hands close to the body and bump! The sound was OK, the mix was very well balanced. A band to remember, well embraced by the crowd. Best song: Without Walls.
Next up was Estonian band Metsätöll, up to now I never heard of them. I liked it. This band played a lot faster and heavier than Tracedawn did, but also with ancient instruments like a lute, a flute and bagpipes. It sounded great and the music nearly hypnotized us. Very good!!
Headliner Ensiferum (how the hell do you pronounce that? Ensìferum, Ensiférum, Ènsi… whatever) had an easy night, from intro to encore there was a raging, but friendly pit. It sounded amazing and the band stood on stage with big grins. I just don’t understand why they made the audience choose between Iron and Battle Song? Why not play both? At least the audience was eager to get more, even though they got their tickets well worth. In the end they played Iron, fine with me.
With new CDs, signed tour pictures and a patch we went back to the car, only to fall asleep before really leaving Leeuwarden. With this amount of Jupiler everybody sleeps soon, no need for a Hertog Jan night cap at my place…