Words by Tyler Rosen

Finnish folk-metal heroes Wintersun spent the last six years following their self-titled debut album perfecting the musically complex and technically demanding Time albums, with Time I finally being released late last year. To celebrate the long awaited release, Wintersun have embarked on their first ever U.S. tour, playing a mix of songs from both of their current albums as well as a track from the upcoming Time II. Their third stop on the trek was at Irving Plaza in New York City, and the band pulled out all the stops while playing to a sold out crowd of excited metal heads.

The evening began with the epic intro to Time I, “When Time Fades Away”, segueing into Wintersun taking the stage for the explosive “Sons of Winter and Stars”. Matching the tone of the event, the crowd was just as intense as the music, circling around a sizable mosh pit and singing along to the point of lead guitarist/vocalist Jari Mäenpää almost being completely drowned out from the sounds of the audience. The material from Time I continued with “Land of Snow and Sorrow”, showcasing many of Wintersun’s folk influences, resulting in a sing-songy chorus accompanied by the crowd. Each band member failed to miss a single beat while performing the music from Time I, which is impressive given how musically dense and complex the songs are. The band then decided to mix things up by playing “Beautiful Death” off their debut record, one of their heaviest songs and closest to straight-up death metal. The audience didn’t seem to mind however, moshing and headbaning along to the crushing riffs and extended blast beats.

The band then went back to Time I, playing the remainder of the album beginning with “Darkness and Frost”, which served as the intro to the monster of a title track, “Time”. After finishing the first Time album, the rest of the setlist comprised mostly of songs off of Wintersun, beginning with the melodic “Death and Healing”, followed by the brutal “Battle Against TIme”. The band wasted no time afterwards and blasted straight into “Beyond the Dark Sun”, a short and sweet crowdpleaser. Jari then announced that they wished to play a new song off the upcoming second half of Time, titled “The Way of the Fire”. Despite having never heard the song before, the audience was extremely embracive of the new music and showed their support by going absolutely wild, before the band closed with the all out assault, “Starchild”. The show ended with Jari thanking the crowd and taking a group photo with the audience in the background, preserving the exciting evening for all time.

Wintersun put on an incredibly impressive and intense performance, having a ton of fun in the process. The crowd also seemed to have just as much fun, chanting “Wintersun” as the show came to a close. After witnessing the band perform live, now fans have to patiently for wait Time II to be blown away all over again.


When Time Fades Away
Sons of Winter and Stars
Land of Snow and Sorrow
Beautiful Death
Darkness and Frost
Death and the Healing
Battle Against Time
Beyond the Dark Sun
The Way of the Fire


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