Skálmöld – Ýdalir over Europe

Through times and countries

The weekend of 13 to 15 October is a busy one for me. First I take part in the re-enactment of the Battle of the Nations, Leipzig 1813, then I drive home to unload the car, have a shower and something to eat and then rush to Trier for a concert on the 15th. Funny enough, during the re-enactment I meet two guys from Norway and Sweden who wanted to see the same band on the 13th in Copenhagen or the 14th in Hamburg, but couldn’t make it because of the re-enactment. I’m talking about SkálmöldÝdalir over Europe tour of course.

Even though I’m a bit tired, getting there is easy, no traffic jam and finding the venue is no problem, there’s a big black bus parked next to the Mergener Hof Jugendclub.

Nightliner in front of the venue’s backside

Canadians conquer Europe

Tonight’s openers are Atavistia from Canada. Their set is rather short, 30 minutes and the setlist is only five songs long. Nevertheless, they are proud to be here and the tour is a dream come true for the four of them. They will remain the only band with English lyrics tonight. Their sound is best described as Melodic Death Metal. Here are some impressions from their show.


Baltic Metal Power

After a short break it is time for the second four-piece band. During this break some strange instruments were placed on the right side of the stage, most of which not even Eluveitie use! Who and what can we expect?


Another World

Well, we get Metsatöll from Estonia and a really fine kind of folk metal and of course Estonian lyrics. To say “folk metal” doesn’t do justice to their unique sound. It is epic and powerful. It is wild and influenced by traditional and very old Estonian music. For me it is a dive into another world, almost like time travel, remember I was 210 years away just one day before… Enough said, I will let the photos speak for themselves.


Making space

More musicians on stage means more changes to the arrangement on stage, a keyboard and more microphones are added. The use of the headliner’s drum kit by the support bands helped to reduce the waiting time for Skálmöld. Six musicians finally take the stage and invite the audience on a journey through all their albums.


Nordic Sagas rule

Even more, Skálmöld invite you to a journey to the land of unicorns, elves, Nordic sagas and gods. They had just released their latest album “Ýdalir” on the day of their performance at Summer Breeze Open Air, and of course a good part of the songs comes from this album. When I saw their show at the aforementioned festival, their already short set was cut short by one song due to technical problems on stage during their then extended sound-check, so tonight I am very happy to experience the full show.


Intellectual Metal

And what a blast it is! Ladies and gentlemen, this is heavy metal from a very intellectual corner of the genre. Three guitars dominate the sound and more are needed to create the atmosphere. They are supported by double bass drums, keyboards and bass.


Snow Shower

Most of the musicians sing at least one song, apart from backing vocals. Some songs are duets. All songs have the islandic lyrics in common. As with the previous band, no one seems to lack English, but understands the mood and vibe of each song. The audience is thrilled by the perfect performance and the time for the last songs comes much too early, although 90 minutes is not really short. Funnily enough, the show ends the same way as the slot at SBOA began, with a shower from the snow machine. This time the outside temperatures are more appropriate…


Three bands – three countries

I saw three excellent bands. Even though their slots were not really short with 30, 45 and 90 minutes, I had the feeling that the concert was too short. I could have enjoyed each of them for a few more minutes. But that’s the way it is and it’s better than getting bored halfway through a set. The merch stall was well visited, which is important to support your favourite bands. One T-shirt sold will earn them more money than all the clicks on social media. Think about that the next time you click through songs. Instead, go and buy the album directly from the artist’s official source if you want them to make another album. You don’t want to go unpaid or underpaid in your business!

 By the way…

Read our review of the album Ýdalir here.

Read our interview with guitarist Þráinn Árni Baldvinsson here.






Mergener Hof

Please buy merch and physical music or downloads  from the bands official sources and don’t stream music for free because it steals your artists’ income


Live pics taken during the concert on 15. 10.2023 by Friend.X aka Mr. Deep

proof reading by DerminBoad and DeepL

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