GALLERY: 30.9.2023 Gladenfold, Battlelore, & Skyforger @ Apollo, Turku

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On Saturday, September 30th, 2023, everyone present at Apollo Club in Turku could witness a night of epic metal featuring three performances of quite incredible bands. We knew BATTLELORE’s music since our very early days of listening to metal, but the other two bands, GLADENFOLD and SKYFORGER were a complete mystery, so we entered the club with an open mind and were very pleasantly surprised. 

The first band was Turku’s very own GLADENFOLD. Formed in 2003, they are a well-established figure in the local metal scene. Their style can be described as melodic death metal with a sprinkle of power metal and their lyrics revolve around fantasy tales and are often very poetic. The band had great energy on stage and played a short, but really powerful set, warming the audience up for the evening. 

After that, BATTLELORE took to the stage, dressed like fantasy warriors, holding long and shiny swords. For us, the band is legendary, because they were one of the first metal bands we discovered in our early metalhead days, alongside NIGHTWISH, SIRENIA, and WITHIN TEMPTATION, so the concert was a bit of a sentimental journey. They played an hour-long set consisting of a selection of epic battle hymns, solemn ballads, and energetic pieces, of course including their most popular songs such as “Third Immortal.”

The final band of that night was a Latvian pagan metal group – SKYFORGER.

Two exceptionally talented vocalists with powerful growls, intricate riffs that danced with precision, cleverly crafted lyrics, and a remarkable connection with the audience collectively left everyone in awe, exclaiming, “Oh my God, that was truly epic!” Their music was a powerful blend of traditional folk melodies fused with the modern intensity of death metal. They have this rare gift of cleverly including lyrics about important topics in their music. After getting repeatedly accused of siding with certain political beliefs, they decided to remove the traditional Latvian thunder cross from their logo and went with a different pagan imagery to avoid misunderstandings. 

Overall the evening was a huge success and if you’re not familiar with the bands, definitely give them a listen, they’re all worth it!

Gladenfold

Battlelore

Skyforger

Photos by Magdalena Niemczura