Hello and welcome to Musicalypse 2.0!
We’re really excited to finally unveil our new website to you, so to celebrate, we thought we’d give you a little history on the site, where it came from, what the hell happened, and what’s going on now!
Musicalypse.net was founded in 2007 under the name “Music-Photocalypse” by Jana Blomqvist (Russia/Finland) and Cornelia Wickel (Germany). These two never exactly had the same taste in music, but nevertheless kept shooting the same bands, and found each other on Deviant Art as a result. What made these two click was their similar ideas on what actually makes up a good gig photo. It soon became clear that they both had the idea to put together their own website so they could post their photos how and when they wanted to. Cornelia came up with the name, “Music-Photocalypse,” and thus our little site was born. Soon, Tanja Caciur (Russia) and Victoria Maksimovich (Russia) were brought on as well to cover the journalistic aspects of the site, and by 2010, Music-Photocalypse had become a fairly well-known local music media with guest photographers and writers and everything!
It’s a shame to say then, that it was around that time that the site started to die. Tanja lost interest in music journalism, and Victoria and Cornelia simply became too busy with their day jobs to find time to write and photograph live shows regularly anymore. As for Jana, though she does still shoot for us from time to time, she moved up to the big leagues some years ago and most of the time these days you can find her material on Rumba. She also runs the Artisti artistin silmin blog over at Inferno (formerly Rumba). Neither of the girls wanted to see their site fade into obscurity, as there were over 15,000 photos in the original archives, and that’s a lot of art to lose, not to mention the interviews and gig reports as well!
I (Bear W., Canada/Finland) met Jana, funnily enough, on Deviant Art as well when I moved to Finland and started admiring her photos. We met in person for the first time at the Within Temptation show at The Circus back in 2010 and have been good friends ever since. By 2012, it seemed that Music-Photocalypse was pretty much dead, as there hadn’t been any updates on the site in nearly 2 years. I was writing little gig reviews and posting them on Facebook for fun, so Jana asked me if I wanted to try writing reviews for the site, which she now referred to as “Musicalypse,” and so I went to see The Used at The Circus and wrote a little review that is available now for the first time!
After giving me some tips on writing and their style, my first official review for Musicalypse was of Sabaton at the end of 2012, and by 2013 I was the only staff left to hold up the weight of the site on my shoulders. This is starting to sound a little weird, but my friend Lene L. (Finland) from – you guessed it – Deviant Art, is also a music photographer and so I started harassing her to join my staff. She’s a pretty busy gal, but I managed to get her to shoot Finntroll and a few others in 2014. It took about 2 years for me to convince her to fully join my team, but I’m thrilled to have her on board – even with just one more person, the weight of carrying the site was so much lighter.
However, by 2014 I wasn’t sure if I wanted to keep going with the site or not. I always joked that as long as the amount of money I spent on the server hosting was less than the amount I would normally spend on concert tickets, I’d keep the site – after all, festival tickets are expensive, but the truth is, writing can get tiring if you do it a lot. Then when Nummirock 2015 rolled around, Lene asked if she could divide her duties with a friend, Essi Nummi (Finland), and I told her to go for it. She’s been part of the team ever since, and I’d be swimming blind and bloodied in an ocean of confusion if she hadn’t helped me get a handle on how to use Instagram.
Ville Karttunen (Finland), on the other hand, I’ve known a few years now. Whenever a metalhead starts out at a new place, they tend to be drawn to the other people in band shirts, so when I started up university as a freshman in Tampere, his Katatonia shirts (among others) caught my attention and we discovered a mutual love of music. It just happened to turn out that he’s an exceptionally good writer who had a music blog as well, so I brought him on and I’m very glad to have him.
I found Eliza Rask (Finland) at a friend’s wedding in the summer of 2015. As she was hanging out and taking photos, I learned that she was interested in gig photography, and she learned that I happened to run a music website that was fairly short on photographers. I love her enthusiasm and she’s never afraid to take on a project if she’s got the time in her busy school and work schedule.
Maria Sawicka (Poland/UK) was actually a guest photographer we had back in 2013, and was one of the only regular guest photographer/writers that posted anything after 2012. When I worked with Xeniya Balsara (Russia/Finland) on the Turmion Kätilöt gig in October 2015, she mentioned that Maria might like to do some shooting again and since I loved her work at Sauna Open Air 2013 (a gig that I had happened to be at), I was glad to have her on board for real! She’s in London these days, but that hasn’t stopped her from seeing shows in other countries!
At this point, Musicalypse has some new staff on trial in Helsinki and a couple of journos trying things out in London to join Maria’s squad, and we’re hoping to get back out there and into some other countries! We’d love to cover some summer festivals in Germany again, and there’s always room for more languages!
At for the site itself, I’ve been debating whether or not I wanted to put any money into fixing this rather broken site for over a year. Back when it was just me, I couldn’t be bothered. I had no idea if anyone even read Musicalypse and if the site was just me, myself, and I, why would I put any money into it? When I finally had a staff to help me out though, it was just a matter of finding the time and money to fix things up. The old site design, while fun, never clicked with me. I loved the camera cannon, and I did think the exploding photos was a cool idea, but the overall design always struck me as “90s metal site” and we’ve never been a strictly metal review site.
I’m also not a web designer. I’ve learned a lot about the internet from running Musicalypse, but Cornelia had stayed on as our content manager, and it always made me feel so guilty about keeping her on the line when she was so busy all the time, plus constantly asking her to go back and fix things every time I fudged something up. I wanted to be able to post things myself without having to worry about her or anyone else. It’s my site now – it should be my responsibility!
So when my dear friend and photographer, Mika Ringman, posted a link to his friend’s web design company, Sea Fury Inc., I decided to ask for a quote. They were interested in taking on the project and I’ve been dying to fix up the site for ages, so the site has been in their hands ever since. These poor guys have been solving my every problem for the last month, putting up with my sheer and utter web ignorance, and have created something absolutely fantastic!
At the time of writing, the website is still not quite finished. You may or may not have noticed that we’re having some server issues and are hoping to switch our web host shortly, and the banners are not up yet since we’re still waiting on some word from Google. The site still needs a background as well and there are a couple of small design details that need to be touched up. And even though I’ve been spending every spare hour of the last 2 weeks plugging content into the site, we’re still missing a ton of content from before 2013. The Behind the Scenes material, Interviews, and Album Reviews are all up, but the old site lost a lot of our photo galleries and there’s just a ton of gig reviews to go online – it takes time. Jana and I are searching her archives for her lost galleries (from the last gallery switch-over), and one-by-one I’m getting the old reports back up.
I am, however, very pleased to announce that Musicalypse is back and better than ever! We can’t wait to be 100% online and fully functional so that we can continue to share our love of music with you! To those of you who visit the site, browse our galleries, read our reviews, and so on, thank you so much for your support!
Concert-goers, it’s time to put down your cell phones! Musicalypse is here to document the experience so that you can immerse yourselves in the moment!
- Bear W.
Owner, Editor in Chief