Arguably Tampere’s best festival these days, Saarihelvetti returned once again in 2022 with 2 days of heavy metal out on Viikinsaari, from August 5-6th, 2022. The boats were running around noon, so we strapped on our shields and helmets to head out to the island of hell to see what this year had to offer.
The festival opened with WHERE’S MY BIBLE, who have been making big waves lately in the Come to Latin America contest. We were really impressed with the way they blended groovy melodies into their extreme metal, and we weren’t the only ones to show up to see them, as the crowd was ever-growing. MEDEIA is currently having a 20th anniversary tour and were really on fire – what a blast to watch! TRYER continued in the same vein, with really powerful energy and some of the more upbeat, speedy metal from the weekend. BRYMIR and BLOODRED HOURGLASS are always really solid acts in clubs or at festivals and this was no different (especially when some of the guys from BRYMIR came on stage for a bit of BRHG‘s set), while BATTLELORE‘s comeback show was nostalgic and fun, even if plagued by bad sound.
MOONSORROW and KUOLEMANLAAKSO both brought out heavy moods that fit well with the on-and-off rain and heavy wind, and SMACKBOUND completely changed the vibe by playing both heavy and beautiful tracks on the secondary stage. The night ended with a brilliant – if wet and poorly lit – set from COMBICHRIST, and a truly fantastic performance from VOLA to close out the other stage. It was just a shame that many bands this day had to shorten their sets due to delays. Nevertheless, thus concluded another satisfying festival on the isle of hell!