A few weeks ago (November 3rd-4th), my girlfriend and I had the pleasure of attending the third installment of North America’s Premier Folk Metal Festival, the Pocono Folk Metal Festival. .

The mastermind behind this event is none other than the legendary Jeff Addison of folk-metal.nl (who as I understand it pretty much single-handedly coordinates the whole shindig).

jeff addison

Situated in the Scenic Pocono Mountains, this two day event brings together some of the best Pagan/Viking/Folk Metal acts from around the country (and from overseas).

I’ll admit it, at first I was a little bit skeptical. I know Folk Metal is tearing up Europe right now (to the point where there are more new Folk Metal bands than even Black Metal or Melodic Death Metal) – but here in the States I hadn’t realized there was that big of a following. Plus, metal festivals in the US are kind of lackluster, right? Wrong.

I was way off. Holy shit.

I should have known when my friends went all “oldschool metal propaganda campaign” that this was the real deal.

I’m not sure what I expected, but here’s what I got:

  • Sixteen bands over two days (the headliners, Aether Realm, recently returned from a European tour with Alestorm if my memory serves me).
  • Seamless transitions between bands,
  • Excellent lighting and sound (courtesy of Prodigy Studios),
  • Discounted hotel rooms for attendees,
  • Pagan-friendly vendors (including some excellent tattoo artists).
  • Heathen music distributors selling vinyl I didn’t think I could get in the United States.
  • And a bar serving honey AND strawberry mead.mead

For the money, you’re not going to find anything close around here. The Poconos are a 2 hour drive away for millions of people in the Northeast. Long story short, it’s rural enough to be 100% appropriate for a Folk Metal festival (there are trees, enough to constitute a “forest”) and urban enough for indoor plumbing. 50 bucks for 16 bands is chump change, and after attending I feel like I got the better end of that deal.

Great atmosphere, great people, a plethora of kilts, multiple fiddles in a heavy metal context (very important), grog aplenty

(Event photos courtesy of Tigran Kapinos Photography)

 

 

The Bands:

WINDFAERER
BLACK FOLK METAL
NEW JERSEY
https://www.facebook.com/windfaerer/

LÖR
PROGRESSIVE POWER/FOLK METAL
PHILADELPHIA, PENNSYLVANIA
https://www.facebook.com/lorofficial/

BLOODEAGLE
VIKING THRASH
KINGSTON, PENNSYLVANIA
https://www.facebook.com/bloodeaglepa/

THE CONQUERING
BLACK FOLK METAL
COLUMBUS, OHIO
https://www.facebook.com/TheConquering/

ISENMOR
GEWYRDELIC FOLC METAL
BALTIMORE, MARYLAND
https://www.facebook.com/isenmor/

FERUS DIN
BLACK FOLK METAL
BUFFALO, NEW YORK
https://www.facebook.com/FerusDinBuffalo/

SATURDAY NOVEMBER 4TH DOORS OPEN AT 12PM

ÆTHER REALM
FOLK METAL/MELODEATH
NORTH CAROLINA
https://www.facebook.com/AetherRealm/

WILDERUN
PROGRESSIVE FOLK METAL
BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS
https://www.facebook.com/OfficialWilderun/?ref=br_rs

GOBLIN HOVEL
METALLIC FOLK
CLARENCE, NEW YORK
https://www.facebook.com/GoblinHovel/

WINTER NIGHTS
MELODIC DEATH FOLK METAL
BROOKLYN, NEW YORK
https://www.facebook.com/winternightsofficial/

SEKENGARD
WORLD FOLK METAL
BALTIMORE, MARYLAND
https://www.facebook.com/Sekengard/

WANDERING OAK
PROGRESSIVE FOLK METAL
WESTERN NEW YORK/MASSACHUSETTS
https://www.facebook.com/WanderingOakVinnland/

LAST LEGION
VIKING DEATH METAL
NEW YORK
https://www.facebook.com/LastLegionBand/

TURNCLOAK
FOLK METAL
PALMERTON, PENNSYLVANIA
https://www.facebook.com/turncloak/

FIAKRA
POWER/FOLK METAL
FREEHOLD, NEW JERSEY
https://www.facebook.com/fiakrametal/

WINTERS WAKE
VIKING METAL
STATEN ISLAND, NEW YORK
https://www.facebook.com/WintersWakeMetal/

The Vendors:

SVINFYLKIN
HEATHEN WARES
https://www.facebook.com/Svinfylkin/

MOUNTAIN HEATHER CUSTOM CREATIONS
WALL ART, WEARABLE ART, WINDOW HANGINGS
https://www.facebook.com/ArtistAtLarge66/

THE MOUSOLEUM (SATURDAY ONLY)
ODDITIES, PRESERVED CREATURES, TAXIDERMY, SKULLS
https://www.facebook.com/The-Mousoleum-1303430103055715/

DODSON DESIGNS
LEATHER AND WOOD CREATIONS
https://www.facebook.com/drdodsondesigns/

TATTOOS BY JAKE
TATTOOS AND PIERCINGS
https://www.facebook.com/Freedom-Tattoo-Company-1909786679251369/

THE HEX FACTORY (SATURDAY ONLY)
HEX SIGNS
https://www.facebook.com/Hex-Factory-433137713561021/

SHIELD MAIDEN MAILLE
CHAIN MAILLE JEWELRY ACCESSORIES
https://www.facebook.com/shieldmaidenmaille/?ref=br_rs

ENCHANTED SANCTUARY MYSTICAL GIFTS
METAPHYSICAL ITEMS
https://www.facebook.com/pg/EnchantedSanctuaryMysticalGifts/about/?ref=page_internal

DRAGON SWAMP CURIOS
JEWELRY, ACCESSORIES, ARMOR AND LEATHER GOODS
https://www.facebook.com/DragonSwampCurios/

ODIN’S ANTIQUES
CELTIC, SLAVIC AND VIKING JEWELRY AND MORE!!
https://www.facebook.com/Odins.Antiques/

THE PAISLEY PATCH
UNIQUE GIFTS AND HANDMADE CREATIONS
https://www.facebook.com/paisleysandmore/

 

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