In January 2023, fans of good rock music will be able to enjoy a real mini-festival in Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia, as one of the most well-known Finnish symphonic metal formations "Apocalyptica" and Dutch sympho-Gods "Epica" have joined together in the project called "The Epic Apocalypse Tour". To enhance the event even more, they are joined by the Finnish prog-metal band "Wheel" as guests.
The name of the Finnish cellist band "Apocalyptica" is certainly familiar to any listener of rock music, and not only. Classically educated students of the Sibelius Academy formed a cellist quartet in 1993, which gained initial recognition with the covers of "Metallica" and other popular heavy metal bands.
However, gradually the quartet began to record their original pieces as well, enriching the sound with a drummer (including Dave Lombardo from "Slayer") and various soloists (Till Lindemann of "Rammstein", Ville Valo of HIM", Sandra Nasič of "Guano Apes", Corey Taylor of “Slipknot”, Adam Gontier of “Three Days Grace”, etc.), thus greatly expanding the concept of cello rock music.
So far, a total of 9 "Apocalyptica" studio albums have been released (in April 2022, the leader of the association Eicca Toppinen revealed to the media that the tenth is in gradual process), and the total copies exceeds 4 million. The band have performed both with their youth idols "Metallica" (in December 2011 they were invited to a special 30th anniversary concert of the metal giants) and performed thousands of solo and festival concerts.
The story of "Epica" began in 2002, when guitarist and composer Mark Jansen left the the band "After Forever" in order to found a new formation which would work towards a more classical/symphonic type of music. After the replacement of several members, the tandem of such diverse soloists, Simone Simons and Mark, has become the core of the band. The sharp contrast between charming Simons' mezzo-soprano and the roaring rhythm guitarist Jansen are now a bright and integral trademark of "Epica".
Led by the talented Mark Jensen, the band has gradually expanded its genre boundaries beyond the simplistic classification of symphonic metal. Gothic, thrash, groove, power, death, black, etc. styles of metal have influenced them during the career. Elements of various kind of metal are blended with musical influences of Middle East, Chinese and Celtic. During 20 years “Epica” have released 8 studio albums and performed hundreds of concerts.
The progressive metal band "Wheel" was founded in 2015 in Helsinki. In 2019 they released their debut album "Moving Backwards" and in 2021 the second one "Resident Human".
In their albums, the band focuse on analysing of the human nature: "the constant thread through all of the songs is that they consider a narrow aspect of what it is to be human, in all of our brilliance and all of our ugliness”.