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Rockperry 2009

17.-18.7.2009 Vasiluoto, Vaasa, Finland

One doesn´t really know much about Vaasa, except that it is located somewhere in the Western part of Finland and that it´s not very far away from Sweden. Once a year, though, there´s something happening in Vaasa – the Rockperry festival to which the local youth is already looking forward to since last year because the festival provides a good enough reason to go wild again. The soundtrack for this year´s drunken festivities on the island Vaskiluoto came amongst others from Turbonegro, Apocalyptica and Lordi.

Interactive gallery / link to Flickr
Apocalyptica_rockperry2009 (1)


51 Koodia
In front of the slowly arriving crowd Finnish „boyband“ 51 Koodia played the opening gig of Rockperry 2009. With their Finnish sung tunes the guys not only delighted the under 18 delegation in the front row but also “elderly” people who could sing or sum along one or the other song, known from tv or radio. (KG)

After the guys from 51 Koodia Kotiteollisuus entered the stage. You can go wherever you want those guys are at every festival this summer and with them the screaming girls in the crowd which seem to be under a spell by singer Jouni Hynynen. At today´s gig the guys exceptionally play as a four-piece with a second guitarist and a background singer. (SM)

Those who think they mistakenly went to a fashion show or a beauty contest are wrong. Indica play PopRock but the whole thing really comes across more like a beauty pageant. Especially keyboarder Sirkku seems to have confused the stage with a catwalk. Apart from their hit songs “Vuorien Taa” and “Pahinta tänään” the ladies play a lot of songs you can´t really tell apart from each other. (SM)

Sunrise Avenue
The most successful export since there is Finnish PopRock. There is no Sunrise Avenue show without squeaking girls in the first 10 rows and without Samu Haber´s bedroom eyes either. The guys give the crowd a proper popgasm and with “Fairytale Gone Bad” disappear from the stage like they have arrived. (SM)

Disco Ensemble
After their huge success outside of Finland, especially in the last two years, the guys once again played in their home country; the crowd was, however, not so mixed as with Sunrise Avenue before. Despite of Miikka Koivisto´s slightly misleading Wu-Tang Clan fanshirt the band once more played their dynamic, energetic indie rock and when Mr Koivisto was not tickling the ivories of his Casio keyboard he paced from one side of the stage to the other, business as usual. Of course all the hits like “Drop Dead Casanova”, “Black Euro” and also the very first hit single “We Might Fall Apart” were played for the enthusiastic crowd. (KG)

Sturm und Drang
In the background the rocking nun which is known from the video to the single „Rising Son“ already sets the tone. And so the guys of Sturm und Drang still look like convent school pupils – too nice and somewhat harmless. And that even though they try like the big names to play for show but all the posing comes at the expense of one or the other wrong note. Well, the girls don´t care plus the “storm troop” has home field advantage tonight anyway. But they are still “far from heaven”. (KG)

Who would have thought that a mainly instrumental act would do that well at a festival. Pertti, Eicca and Paava fiddled what the strings gave away, mostly Metallica songs that night. Drummer Mikko worked his kit to the extreme. As a special extra singer Tipe Johnson (Leningrad Cowboys) took to the stage and belted out songs like “I´m not Jesus” and “Live burns” which maybe even sounded better than the original version. A great singer who greatly supported the performance of the three cellists. (SM)

Backyard Babies
The Backyard Babies then set the climax of the first festival day – the Swedes could almost feel like home in Vaasa anyway. Because of the cosy, pink-blue light you almost thought you were in a small, narrow club and therefore the atmosphere in front of the roofed stage was brilliant and was only heated up more by the guys and their catchy, snotty rocknroll and stage show – they jumped on the boxes, animated the crowd to jump and so on. With the über-songs “Brand New Hate” and “Minus Celsius” the whole crowd was united in song and spirit. And there´s only one thing left to say “I think it´s all because of YOUUUUU”. (KG)

then completed the first festival day with their Finnish RockPop at 0:45 officially. At this late hour we were, however, already on our way back to the hotel, to collect our strengths for tomorrow – another hot and above all explosive day. (KG)


The morning was dominated by Finnish artists and so first Maija Vilkkumaa from the category „very special“ commences proceedings. Her Finnish songs are not that bad at all and attract young and old but her rather hoarse and screamy voice is more of an acoustic harassment. Compensating insufficient vocal range by volume works hardly ever. Maija Vilkkumaa is no exception. After that Egotrippi try to put the crowd back to sleep with their professionally played but boring “adult orientated rock”. Next!!! And the next ones are Dingo, a band which most of the festival goers remember from their teenie times because Dingo were huge in Finland in the 80s. No surprise then that the crowd supports the band vocally during the whole gig. (KG)

Von Hertzen Brothers
The soft rockers are for some reason still pretty unknown in Central Europe. It can´t be because of their songs which are catchy and will stick with you for a long time. If there wouldn´t be singer Mikko who every now and then paces over the stage this gig would have been rather boring, though. With his charming way he won over most of the crowd easily. (SM)

The monster show which seemed to go wrong from the first second on. The intro came at the wrong time and the breaks between the songs were unfortunately way too long but all this was made up for with great songs and an opulent stage show. Obviously they played their Eurovision song “Hardrock Halleluja”. Also the typical Lordi elements like impaling a virgin, beheading a warrior and lecturing from a demonic , ancient Egyptian book were routinely followed through. (SM)

M.A. Numminen
Another candidate from the category „very, very special“. Mr Numminen already gained some “popularity” with his tango songs also outside of Finland. Here and now he contributes with banjo and accordion accompanied by Pedro Hietanen to the amusement/ comedic entertainment of the crowd. (KG)

Also here there were some technical problems especially with Mike Terrana on drums who could be seen cursing between the songs every now and then. Tarja who, since her departure from Nightwish, had hardly played in Finland was visibly very happy to see so many known faces and with her smile could banish even Mike´s bad mood. The performance was definitely a success and with her friendly, open way she seems to gather a similarly big fanbase as with Nightwish. (SM)

Ismo Alanko Teholla
The waiting time until Turbonegro hit the stage had to be killed with Ismo Alanko Teholla. A certain challenge because even the common Finn thinks that the musical outpourings of this musical group are a bit weird. We agree. (KG)

Many or at least the numerous Turbojugend members from the whole of Finland and the rest of Europe were wistfully waiting for this moment. Awesome, to see Euroboy after his serious illness again back on stage and so the Norwegians continue their promo tour for “Retox” from 2007. In the beginning there are of course the “famous three words” – I Got Errrrection!! And after Hank and his friends took over the stage they of all songs kicked off the show with “All My Friends are Dead” – the frontman once again in a very tasteful outfit. Under the motto “Rock against Russia” the guys played mostly old hits like “Turbonegro must be destroyed”, “Rock against ass”, “Get it on”, “Fuck the world”, “Gimme some”, “Wasted again”. A great finale of the festival even though at this point most of the festival goers were already beyond good and evil concerning alcohol consumption and thus somehow ruined the fun for me a bit. But there will be more Turbonegro in the future. (KG)

text & photos: Sandy Mahrer, Kathleen Gransalke


Kathleen Gransalke

Editor for Reviews - translations, reports, photos - - - Favorite genres? - Punk, Rock, Death Metal, Mathcore - - - Favorite bands? - Coheed & Cambria, Black Dahlia Murder, Dillinger Escape Plan, Mastodon

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