Metallica. A band that helped set the stage for one of the most unique, surreal, and incredible bands one may ever see. The release in 1996 by Apocalyptica, an album titled “Plays Metallica By Four Cellos” set the stage for this 20th anniversary tour.
Apocalpytica’s first set seemed to be a somber affair. The performance was of the album as a whole, as it was originally recorded. The entire arrangement of music and only the four cellists were on stage, draped by the atmosphere of blackness, with small, semi-dim blue lights illuminating each member. None of their trademark hair-flipping and headbanging was anywhere to be seen. Eicca Toppinen and Perttu Kivilaakso both were still, calm, and seemingly comatose while playing.
That being said, when they took the stage for the second set, Mikko Siren (drums/percussion) took the stage with them. This set also consisted of nothing but Metallica covers, but with the energy one would expect of a metal band, particularly one made up of four cellists.
Lauri Kankkunen (touring member, 2019) and his calm, steely approach to playing, when juxtaposed with Eicca, Perttu, and Paavo‘s (Lötjönen) frenetic, borderline chaotic energy creates almost strange imagery. As a band as classically trained as they are, it seems almost surreal when they play with such intensity and power that not only rivals other metal bands, but completely blows them away!