GALLERY: 2.3.2024 Turku Saatanalle XI – DAY 2 @ Utopia, Turku

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After enjoying a fine day in the city of Turku and recovering some energy before the second night of the festival, on March 2nd, 2024, we dove straight into Utopia, where COMMANDER AGARES was about to begin its show. As the alter ego of the mastermind behind Steelfest, COMMANDER AGARES combines majestic melodies and dual vocals to manifest his artistic vision, setting a solemn atmosphere with no-nonsense music. Paying tribute not only to Finnish black metal but also occasionally nodding to INQUISITION, for instance. Special guest Markus “Hellwind” Tuonenjoki later added a ritualistic touch by showing up on stage waving a skull-shaped incense holder and a bone. This was in contrast to the hoods and shiny armor bits worn by the others.

A very familiar presence at this festival, MALUM took the stage next and did a commendable job of preserving the mood, with the growing audience progressively becoming more fired up throughout their performance. Playing on their home turf, they aimed to give their fans a good show and succeeded.

A pleasant surprise was LORD OF PAGATHORN, which stood out in their performance, as could be seen from the crowd’s engagement with the gig. With a few years since the latest lineup changes, they made a much more lasting impression compared to our previous experience seeing the band live. Their convincing show was surely a good note going towards the end of the festival, with DEUS MORTEM coming up next.

For fans of Polish black metal, the guys from Wroclaw did not disappoint either, adding to the night with their energy and attitude. Sharing a drummer with INFERNAL WAR, you get more or less the idea of what to expect. The band performed admirably and will surely be remembered positively when reflecting on this weekend.

Then it was WARLOGHE‘s turn to play, and as usual, there were signs everywhere on-site and online warning of a total ban on taking any photos, videos, or recordings. So it was a good chance to put down our gear, grab a drink, and be somewhat social around the venue.

Ultimately, it was HELHEIM that was tasked with closing this year’s Turku Saatanalle. While somewhat expected, it was still odd to see the hall slowly emptying out. Many people, especially those who came mainly for the previous band, were starting to leave. Although the show received a positive response, fatigue from the two-day event made it challenging to fully appreciate until the end.

After exchanging a few words with some familiar faces, it was straight to bed and an early wake-up the following day. At least for us, since some people still had the energy to go on well into the night (good for them!).

As mentioned at the beginning of the first half of this two-part report, Metallihelvetti over the years has managed to establish themselves with their professionalism and passion to arrange not only this festival but many other events. The knowledge gained through the years shows, and has borne fruit, but it’s the welcoming atmosphere and down-to-earth attitude that always make it a nice experience. As proof of this, there is a strong and loyal base of festival-goers whose faces can be seen every year, not just from Finland, so there must be something good to it after all!

COMMANDER AGARES

MALUM

LORD OF PAGATHORN

DEUS MORTEM

HELHEIM

Photos by Marco Manzi