As Minnesota got hit with a massive heat wave, I had the pleasure to experience winter one more time over the weekend, as Insomnium brought their Winter’s Gate Tour to St. Paul. Also on the bill were tour mates Oceans of Slumber, as well as local bands AfterTime and Auridius. This show was a blast, with a varied lineup of many different genres and plenty of great performances. Auridius opened up this show with a big lineup, eight people to be exact, and a sound that sounds like it was imported straight from Scandinavia. These guys play a heavier form of folk metal, and while seemingly a bit inexperienced on stage, still brought a good opening performance that set up the crowd nicely for the rest of the show. Up next was AfterTime, a symphonic metal band that brought a ton of energy and while it wasn’t a very heavy set, each member brought a ton of energy and an excellent performance.

After the local openers, the tour package began with Oceans of Slumber. The Texan progressive metal band brought a somber tone to the stage, and an excellent performance. The band’s energy and dedication could be felt throughout the whole room, and outside of some technical difficulties, their set was a great experience. Lastly, the band that everyone, especially myself, had been waiting for. A quick disclaimer, the only reason I began listening to these guys was because of this tour announcement, and since then “Winter’s Gate” has become and album I really enjoy. Their performance was downright amazing with an audience to match. The harmony between the performers and spectators was amazing, and Insomnium performed for almost an hour and a half with no dip in the energy or execution. Their performance consisted of “Winter’s Gate” in its entirety, a seven song encore, and a one song second encore when the crowd wanted more. This was truly an amazing show, and tour that still has plenty of dates to go, don’t miss out on this tour, especially if you’re a fan of melodeath or progressive metal.

Review by Sam Hookom



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