Helsinki, Finland

29/6 – 1/7

TUSKA OPEN AIR er Finlands største og mest kjente metalfestival. Ble første gang arrangert i 1998, dengang med 13 band på plakaten. Festivalen blir arrangert midt i hjertet av Helsinki by og på grunn av at lokasjonen er midt i byen, blir hotel den beste løsningen for overnatting. Festivalen ble arrangert i parken Kaisaniemi fram til og med 2010, men ble i fjor flyttet til Suvilahti, en annen park bare noen kilometre fra den gamle lokasjonen.

TUSKA OPEN AIR har vokst meget sakte og hoveddelen av festivalen huser i dag 51 band. I tillegg blir det arrangert en rekke klubbkonserter der noen flere band dukker opp. Nytt av fjoråret er at festivalområdet nå huser fire scener i motsetning til bare 3 tidligere. Det er to store scener, en teltscene og en innendørsscene.

Festivalen hadde sitt toppår publikumsmessig i 2008 med hovedtrekkplastrene MORBID ANGEL, SLAYER og CARCASS. Da besøkte 36000 mennesker festivalen og da var det utsolgt. I fjor var det 28000 der med AMON AMARTH, DEVIN TOWNSEND PROJECT og MORBID ANGEL øverst på plakaten. Selv om headlinerne har vært fra øvrige land, har Tuska i alle år vært tro mot sin profil der de hoveddelen av banda er hentet fra de skandinaviske landene.

I år er det MEGADETH, SABATON og MINISTRY som skal trekke mest folk til Tuska Open Air, men det blir flere godbiter å  se på scenene i Helsinki. Blant annet LAMB OF GOD, APOCALYPTICA, SONATA ARCTICA, EXODUS, BEHEMOTH, OVERKILL, NAPALM DEATH og ANAAL NATHRAKH bør tilfredstille årets Tuskagjengere.

Eneste norske innslag på Tuska Open Air i år er ARCTURUS.


Intervju med Niklas Nuppola
(av Rune Grande)

TUSKA OPEN AIR, could you please provide us with a brief overview of the history of this massive festival?

Tuska started in 1997 as a two day indoor festival at Tavastia Club in Helsinki. So this year will be our 15th anniversary. Since then, we’ve been to 2 different outdoor locations in the center of Helsinki, before ending up at our current venue, Suvilahti, right next to the center of the city. This year we have more than 50 bands, 4 stages, and 14 000 per day capacity.

To make all this come together one would probably need more than one body and more than one mind, tell us a bit about the crew behind the festival, how do you make this all happen?

Tuska is organized by Finnish Metal Events, a company that employs 4 people all year round. Our Managing Director Hanna takes care of administration, Promoter Jouni books the Artists, Production Manager Petteri is in charge of technical things and I work as a Producer, doing a bit of everything from booking smaller bands, booking hotels to marketing and press relations. We are a small company so everyone does a bit of everything.

Tuska is not the only thing we do: we also organize metal shows in Helsinki and do tours with foreign bands in Finland. For the past 8 winters we have been doing the Finnish Metal Expo, an indoor festival / expo event in Helsinki.

Booking bands could be a problem for any organizer, with a festival like Tuska Open Air I suppose this is not a relevant issue, or is it?

With bigger bands, it’s mostly a matter of touring schedules and money, basically. We have gained a reputaton where bands want to come to play Tuska and we’re proud of that. We definitely intend to maintain that by delivering quality and keeping our promises.

What is the top ten moments of the festival thus far?

Hard to pinpoint 10 of the best cause there are so many. One that pops to my mind is having Slayer play Tuska in 2008. Probably every single person on the festival was watching and, well… because they are Slayer.

Have you suffered, like so many other festivals, from the financial crisis that struck Europe like a brick wall a couple of years ago? If so, how?…if not, why not…?

To an extend, yes. But what I feel has affected the business more, is that there are way too many shows today. In Helsinki, there are metal bands playing every week, many nights a week. Too much competition to a point where people don’t have money to see all the shows, even if they wanted to.

Any dream acts past or present that has still to be on stage at Tuska Open Air?

Personally, as I book bands for the smallest, 4th stage with more marginal and extreme acts, I would love to see American hardcore-act NAILS play here one day. Getting really marginal bands from another side of the world can be tricky, though.

Metal and rock has once again grown in popularity during the past few years, any thoughts on the matter?

Actually, in Finland, I feel the popularity is coming down from what is was several years ago when we metal was somewhat "hip" and luring in people from outside of metal community. These days, the interest has shifted towards other types of music. Although we’re not the "it" thing anymore, metal has become somewhat mainstream, which is a good thing financially, of course.

Last year Tuska Open Air changed its location. What is the reason for this?

The main reason was that the previous location, Kaisaniemi Park, was supposed to go under renovation. Which it still hasn’t, of course. Another thing was that the old venue had really poor production facilities, being a park next to a central railway station. Suvilahti, the new venue, has way better facilities for everything. Also, the new venue allows for a bigger capacity.

What do you think is the benefit for any given band to play a venue like Tuska Open Air?

Getting exposure by getting on the festival marketing is an obvious advantage. Hopefully the bands will get a bunch of new fans and also a pleasent festival experience.

For Tuska Open Air 2012, what are YOU looking forward to the most?

Personally the top 3 this year is: Skeletonwitch, Victims and Napalm Death.

Do you have any last words of encouragement as to why people from Norway should journey to Helsinki and the 2012 edition of Tuska Open Air?

If you want to go to a world class metal festival without getting your ass wet and dirty in a field in the middle of nowhere, come to Tuska. We’re in the center of the city so all facilites that city offers are near by, with an awsome line up, of course.

One thing to bear in mind for this year, reserve your hotel in Helsinki now. The European Athletic Championships are in town the same week, so a lot of the hotel capacity is taken. Act now.





FRIDAY 29.06.2012

12.00 Gates Open

13.45-14.45 Exodus
15.45-16.45 Edguy
18.00-19.15 Trivium
20.30-22.00 Megadeth

12.30-13.30 Profane Omen
15.00-15.45 Animals As Leaders
17.00-18.00 Saint Vitus
19.30-20.30 Hatebreed

12.45-13.45 Alcest
14.45-15.30 Suidakra
16.45-17.45 Lock Up
19.15-20.15 Arcturus

13.45-14.15 Inferia
15.00-15.30 Demonic Death Judge
16.15-16.45 Unkind
17.30-18.00 Oddland
18.45-19.15 Demigod
20.00-20.30 A.R.G

SATURDAY 30.06.2012

12.00 Gates Open

12.30-13.15 Metsatöll
14.15-15.15 Mokoma
16.15-17.15 Napalm Death
18.15-19.15 Sonata Arctica
20.30-22.00 Sabaton

13.30-14.15 Amoral
15.30-16.15 Textures
17.30-18.15 Insomnium
19.30-20.30 Behemoth

13.15-14.00 Anaal Nathrakh
15.15-16.00 Horna
17.15-18.15 Battle Beast
19.15-20.15 Swallow The Sun

12.30-13.00 Corpsessed
13.45-14.15 Vorum
15.00-15.30 Winterwolf
16.15-16.45 Evil-Lÿn
17.30-18.00 Afgrund
18.45-19.15 Victims
20.00-20.30 For The Imperium

SUNDAY 01.07.2012

13.00 Gates Open

14.30-15.30 Apocalyptica
16.45-18.15 Lamb Of God
19.30-21.00 Ministry

13.30-14.30 Suicide Silence
15.45-16.45 Baroness
18.30-19.30 Overkill

13.30-14.30 The Man-Eating Tree
15.30-16.30 Skeletonwitch
18.15-19.15 Huoratron

15.00-15.30 Final Assault
16.15-16.45 One Morning Left
17.30-18.00 Bob Malmström
18.45-19.30 Jess & The Ancient Ones