From left to right: Olli Vänskä, Jaakko Jakku, Mathias Nygård, Robert Engstrand, Jussi Wickström, Jesper Anastasiadis
''The heart of Turisas was forged by four winds
In a smithy high up in the skies
On an anvil honour, with a hammer of blood
The Four Winds pounded''
Turisas is a battle/folk/viking metal band from Hämeenlinna, Finland, formed in 1997. Their name comes from Iku-Turso, an ancient god of war in the Finnish mythology. Their debut album Battle Metal
pretty much named and kick-started an entire subgenre of Heavy Metal
- Mathias "Warlord" Nygård : vocals, percussion
- Jussi Wickström : guitar
- Jesper Anastasiadis : bass guitar
- Jaakko Jakku : drums
- Olli Vänskä : violin
- Robert Engstrand : keyboards
- Antti "Pormestari" Laurila: Accordion
- Riku Ylitalo: Keyboard, Accordion
- Mikko Törmikoski: Bass
- Janne "Lisko" Mäkinen: Accordion
- Tino Ahola: Bass
- Antti Ventola: Keyboard
- Wincef Boncamper: Accordion
- Ari Kärkkäinen: Guitar
- Georg Laakso: Guitar (1999 - 2005)
- Sami Aarnio: Bass
- Netta Skog: Back Vocals, Accordéon (2008 - 2011)
- Hannes "Hannu" Horma: Bass, Back Vocals (2004 - 2011)
- Tuomas "Tude" Lehtonen: Drums, Percussions (1997 - 2012)
- Jukka-Pekka Miettinen: Bass (2011 - 2012)
- The Heart of Turisas EP (2001)
- Battle Metal (2004)
- The Varangian Way (2007)
- Stand Up and Fight (2011)
- Turisas2013 (2013)
This band provides examples of:
- Badass Mustache: Jussi used to sport quite an impressive one◊.
- Bilingual Bonus: Several of their songs contain Finnish, Swedish and Russian.
- Blood Knight : Being a Viking/folk/battle Metal band, lots of their songs (and their costumes) give off this vibe. When your lead singer is nicknamed 'Warlord,' it kinda comes with the territory.
- Bread and Circuses : Venetoi - Prasinoi is all over this trope., being about a medieval Roman chariot race.
- "Ladies and gentlemen! The main event of tonight:/On chariots of fire!"
- The Casanova: Rasputin, according to "Rasputin."
- Childhood Friends: Wickström and Nygård. They were probably young teenagers when they first met; Nygård's older brother was dating Wickström's older sister at the time. The band formed in 1997, when they would have been fourteen or fifteen, so it's reasonable to assume they met somewhere between 1995 and 1997.
- Concept Album: The Varangian Way tells the story of a group of Scandinavians traveling the river routes of medieval Russia down to the Byzantine Empire. The story continues on "The March of the Varangian Guard", the opening track of Stand Up and Fight.
- Drunken Song: "One More".
- Early Installment Weirdness: Yes, that is Warlord◊. Yes, he has a crew-cut (presumably from army service) and yes, his entire upper body is covered in black paint and yes he is wearing bell-bottom jeans◊. These were probably around 2001 or 2002, considering the length of Warlord's hair (it was roughly shoulder-length by the time 'Battle Metal' rolled around in 2004).
- Epic Rocking : The song "End of an Empire" is a more literal example of this, being a seven minute long song (longer than their standard fare) about, well, Exactly What It Says on the Tin.
- Face Your Fears: "Fear The Fear" tells us to do this instead of hiding our heads in the sand.
And you think you are bold, and you think you are brave
When push comes to shove, you know it's a feign
You're better off if you choose to abstain
Your fear is your true grave
- Horny Vikings : They feature a few in their lyrics. For example, "The March of the Varangian Guard" is a song dedicated to the Varangian Guard, a group of Norse warriors that swore fealty to the Byzantine Emperor.
- Istanbul: Miklagard Overture is an ode to medieval Constantinople's splendor, from the viewpoint of arriving recruits for the Varangian Guard.
Ten gates to eternity
Seen all for centuries
Your inconquerable walls
Your temples and your halls
See all, hear all, know it all
- Large Ham: Red and black warpaint? Costumes that frequently feature leather, fur and armour? A lead singer who can switch from clean baritone vocals to gravelly roars at the drop of a hat? Yeah, they are known for being pretty theatrical.
"Go now, and don't look back! Give my greeting to the Greek king!"
- New Sound Album: Turisas2013, which toned down tremendously the pompous orchestrations and choirs that were so prominent part of their sound in previous albums, aiming for a more organic rock sound with a touch of punk. The band even described it as the antithesis of Stand Up and Fight.
- Not to say they got rid of it altogether. There was still choirs, horns, timpanis and string sections aplenty, but it wasn't nearly as prominent as the previous album, which was practically straight-up symphonic metal.
- Title Track: "Battle Metal" and "Stand Up and Fight".
- Rasputin The Mad Monk: Russia's greatest love machine!
- Revolving Door Band: Just look at the list of former members. None of their albums have been made with the same line-up.
- So far, the only musicians who have remained through the entire bands career are Mathias Nygård (Lead vocals), Jussi Wickström (Guitar) and Olli Vänskä (Violin).
- Shown Their Work: Lyrics in The Varangian Way and Stand Up and Fight show aplenty of knowledge of the medieval Eastern Europe, viking trade routes and Byzantine Empire.
- War Is Glorious : Almost all of their songs are about battle and fighting. Including, surprisingly enough, 'Battle Metal.'