New Musical Express, 15 January 2002
H.I.M. Concert hall "Friendship"
People like to talk that HIM plays lyric metal, which has grown from Ozzy Osborn and Kiss music. Also definitions "love metal" and "Scandinavian metal" are in use. Or "gothic rock" which of course sounds stronger and musicians like it better. At least the real "gothic rock" is quite different music.
People like to talk about HIM especially nowadays. They say that guys are secret Satanists.
That HIM frontman Ville Valo is Russian fellow Voldemar Valov, that he is trying to look like Jim Morrison. But everybody without exceptions say that they are "hot Finnish guys".
The concert of Finnish band HIM has coincided with the concert of Russian band "King and jester". They were passing in neighborhood: HIM in "Druzhba" in the sport complex Lyzniki and "King and jester" also in Lyzniki but in the main concert hall. At the subway station "Sportivnaya" police pursued both shouting fans of "King and jester" and silent intelligent people who has come to listen to HIM with the same zeal. After the escaping from subway station little thin stream had been separated from large crowd and moved to the left. Near "Druzhba" that stream flowed into impressive crowd. The were a lot of people on the concert. There were about one third of the crowd in the pit and almost full stands. But when the light was turned off and the music started to play it was a filling that there was savage number of people. Scream and squeal were deafening.
I am subdued (it is really suitable word) by Ville Valo manner of singing. It is thoughtful drawling and melancholically. Plenty of girls, who have come to the concert all of them beautiful and young, started to breathe deeper with the sound of his voice. And he is His Infernal Majesty not in vain, he is irresistible and fatal. Also people were waiting for the slow melodies.
When musicians started to play slower then usual, lighters lighted up. But they were shining not very long time. HIM music is not convenient for lighters and slow dances in the darkness.
The concert came out terribly beautiful. Beautiful sound, beautiful light, beautiful vocalist sings beautiful and slightly thoughtful songs. Also I think the definition weird is suitable for their music. It is charmed.
People were waiting for the hits. And they've got them! It figures that the greatest thing was "Join me (In Death)" and Ville in lilac mist. Girls screamed sitting in the shoulders of their boyfriends and swinging their hands. Cool howling and loud series of accords finished "Pretending".
Everybody even people who did not know English sang "In Joy And Sorrow". It was complete rapture. They were called for again. People screamed, stamped their feet, called the name of the band and screamed again. They have sung how beautiful she was and gone away. The first who has left the scene was vocalist Ville. He went when music was not finished. Musicians kept on playing, the guitars thundered and howled, drummer bitted his own head by drum sticks. Really I can't say for 100 % but from the hall it has looked in this way. They were leaving the scene by one by one: guitarists, one of them dropped his shirt as a present for listeners. And the last was drummer who has made shot like thunder for farewell.
Translated by Soul In Love