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Mantar – Hanno

April 9th, 2016

 

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INTERVIEW WITH HANNO FROM MANTAR 

Mantar being a-two-man-outfit hailing from Germany has gained the ultimate following during the past few years. Mantar’s debut album Death By Burning got the excellent feedback and responds. The band’s newest opus Ode To The Flame is another piece of great slap from Mantar catapulting them into another dimension of the success. Metal-Rules.Com talked with the band’s vocalist/guitarist Hanno about the second album ODE TO THE FLAME and of course a little bit how everything started out in the first place.

Interview and pics by Arto Lehtinen


Guten abend – Hows it going there in the Mantar camp ?

Alright so far. Enjoying my last days in my new home in Florida before I go back to Europe and start the festival season 2016. Excited!

Before going any further, as Mantar is relatively a new band coming from Germany to most of readers, therefore it would be awesome to start an interview by asking how Mantar came about ?559031

We know each other for more than 18 years. Met in Bremen in the late 90s when i was playing with my kid-punk band in a local squat. We remained friends and always wanted to play in a band together but for several reasons that just happened a couple of years ago when we started playing as a two piece band called MANTAR. In 2012/2013. We both lived in Hamburg at that time. We just wanted to record a demo and put out a tape for friends and maybe play some small local shows. Well, It came different than we thought. It´s pretty much the first band we both are in that gets the chance to do all these things. Pretty funny how long it actually took us to even form a band considering how fast it went to get attention once we had our shit together. Maybe it was the right time to do so.

Did you have other older bands in the past before founding Mantar ?

Yeah, but mostly unknown local bands. Nothing you would have had heard about.

Mantar as a name has an interesting meaning behind, as a matter of fact you could shed more light the meaning of the name and how and where you got it ?

Due to the fact Erinc has Turkish roots we were thinking about the idea of choosing a Turkish name. I liked that idea. He came up with MANTAR, which as far as I know means something like mushroom or something like that. But names don´t mean shit. It just sound cool, hard and aggressive. Fits quite good for a IMG_1571band with the same characteristics.

When you started Mantar, did you have a clear vision of how Mantar is supposed to sound and look in the first place, or has the sound evolved into the entire new direction and approach ?

Well, we just got together and started jamming along. 2 hours later we knew we have a solid new band. Probably the best stuff we´ve ever did in our lives. But no, we didn’t have a masterplan and still don´t have any. We just always try to play as hard and intense as possible. We like to groove. I think that´s something we both could agree on. I love Erinc´s simple drumming. Fuck all those gimmicks.

Which bands and artists influenced you as musicians in the first place ? How have these influences effected on how Mantar sounds ?

I grew up on punk. The whole attitude, you know, this whole DIY thing was very important for me. When I was you, pretty much at the same time, I got into thrash Metal as well, as it had kinda the same vibe to me. Fast and aggressive. But my love with heavy/rock music starts well earlier than that, back in the late 80’s, when I was a kid, my dad gave me two AC/DC tapes (Highway To Hell & If You Want Blood…) that changed my life. Till this day nothing even comes close. This band is GOD to me. The whole beat, the simple riffs… This band had more influence on me than all other bands together is used to listen to. Black Metal for example came much much later into my life. Even though I really enjoy this dark atmosphere a lot. Erinc was a Kid in the heayday of Grunge music. He grew up on The Melvins, Nirvana, Mudhoney and stuff. Our roots ain´t necessarily in “Metal” music…

I don´t think we chose any kind of influence on purpose, as said, we just try to play as heavy and intense as wen can. The result is what you hear. You know, it´s always hard to describe your on music or try to analyse it. Maybe we just should´t. But more important than certain styles of music or other bands, it´s more a certain feeling that´s important for us. It´s gotta be simple and most of all, it has to groove. I think a lot of bands in any kind of extreme music genre forget about the basic and primitive needs of men. They have so many gimmicks, but don´t not how to groove and roll. We do.

Mantar is a two-man outfit consisting the singer/guitarist and the drummer, but it is interesting you have no bass player involved in the line-up, not on albums, not at the stage either. Was it a determinated and mutual decision to operate as a two piece ?IMG_1553

No. When we started simply no one else wanted to join. Easy as that. We figured out pretty quick though that we are able to raise some serious hell anyhow even without further members. It´s not about the quantity of the members. It´s about the energy and rage between the musicians.

Do you think you could add the bassist to the rank for example in the live situation or do you rather remain as a two piece at the stage as well ?

I think further members, no matter how talented, would just weaken this energy between Erinc and me. We know each other so good as friends as well as musicians we THINK and ACT like a machine when we play. No one could keep up with that.

As far as the sounds and the music of Mantar is concerned, how would you like to describe your style ? I find it a hybrid mix of sludge, doom and a bit of black and death metal…. do you share my opinion ?

As said. Names don’t mean shit. Labels and genres don´t mean a lot to us. You would have no idea how uneducated we are when it comes to all these subgenres. I do like a lot of bands that are labeled the way you described us, but to be honest I don´t know what we do or don´t. We just play and enjoy the beauty of destruction. Primal rage. Even if we would understand all these genres and what you gotta do to fit in our possibilities as musicians are very limited. What you hear on the record is what we can do best. We concentrate on that and skip the rest. Call it whatever you want. No offense. I guess labels are important for young people or a so called “scene” to justify their taste in music or their licking for a certain band. I am too old for this. We always stayed away from any certain “scene”. Never regretted that.

The second Mantar album named ODE TO THE FLAME came out on Nuclear Blast whereas the previous album DEATH BY BURNING was released on Svart. Did Nuclear Blast come into the picture and what made you ink the deal with them after all ?IMG_1559

The step toward NB was mostly a step toward a way better infrastructure. You have no idea how many people wrote us and asked why they cant get the record in their store next door or why the record is 20 bucks shipping. As the band grows we wanted to make sure to get the chance to push the record to the people. You know, we are not a super wannabe important underground elite bullshit band. We just wanna play and everyone who enjoys it is invited. And surprisingly that´s a whole lot of people so we wanted to make sure have a good partner that works well all over the world. When we decided to do another record we thought either to go even more underground or thinking big. All in between wasnt an option.  So we went for the label with the most fair deal regarding our artist freedom and the best distribution to make sure everyone have access to the record. For me most important was that no matter which label pretty much just leaves us and our music alone.

Was the deal with Svart for one album or did you have an option for the second one ?

One album. They only do that. Good label.

I can’t help asking if you were pleased with the way how Svart worked ?

They did great products and did everything we asked for when it comes to packaging and so on. Of course they know though that their possibilities are limited when it comes to promotion and all that stuff. But they don´t bother. They work with very simple and fair deals for (mostly) smaller bands. Surprisingly a lot of people got interested in MANTAR and we wanted to move on a little bit. I guess they understand and I am very glad we worked with Svart. Great Bands, great way of making “business”.

Now being on Nuclear Blast, what is the biggest difference between the small label Svart and a huge multinational label Nuclear Blast ?

Well, first of all there is not a big difference for us at all. That´s why we signed with them. We have a very strong DIY background and like to do things exactly how we want them to be. All bands should work like that. That´s what makes a band unique. Nuclear Blast just helps us pushing our shit to the people. But they pretty much leave us alone. They understand our vision.

How was the recording process of the second album ? Who was involved in the producing stage of the album ?IMG_1565

The recording was pretty much the same. Again, no prodcuer, just a friend who recorded us where we usually rehearse. Pretty simple, no gimmicks. Hard and raw. A lot of the songs weren´t even finished when we hit the studio. That´s a good way to keep thing exciting. To much comfort makes your record weak. (your band too)

Did you record the album in Hamburg from the beginning to the end or did you use other studio to expand the soundworld of Mantar ?

We recorded the drums in our hometown Bremen in a friend´s studio. We work a lot with natural room sounds to make it sound big. That why we were looking for a bigger drum room. I love how the drums sound. Good choice.

As for  the lyrical content, what kind of topics do you deal with them in the lyrics and where do you ladle all the inspirations and ideas for lyrics ?

To be honest I don´t really know. I don´t write with a certain topic or plan. I just take a piece of paper and a pen and let it flow. It sounds cheesy but my lyrics write themselves pretty much alone. I just start putting words together and the outcome almost everytime is the same kind of theme I explained above. I have no Idea where all this dark extreme and drastic content comes from. Maybe there is a side of me that comes to live as soon MANTAR starts to play. Don´t get me wrong, I am no poser and not even a misanthropic person. For me all this dark stuff is no gimmick or image and my lyrics ain´t just “occult” either. I leave that to retro rock bands and bands who need stereotypes. I wouldn’t call my lyrics “negative” either, it´s just drastic. I always try to put it in a poetic context though. I leave the preaching to other bands. We have no other message than destruction.

In general are you pleased with ODE TO THE FLAME and how it turned and sounds or do you find some things which should have been carried in other way ?

If it would not be 100% what we wanted and had in mind it would not come out. We inked the Deal with the record label AFTER we finished the record to keep the freedom of not releasing a second album at all. We were not interested in making a step backwards with a worse album than the first one.

In which way does the second album and its material differ from the debut album from your point of view ?401105

I am very confident that all people who liked the first record gonna enjoy the new one too. We didnt try to change the band at all. We know what we like. But of course we may have figured out what we are especially good in. I guess we improved the things we liked and are good in and skipped the rest. The new record is a status quo of MANTAR 2016. The best we can do. If you like it, great, if not, nothing we could do about it. I do think though we totally still have the grooving, rocking vibe as that´s definitely one of our best skills. But it´s true that this record probably turned out to be catchier but also even darker and sinister than DBB. I think we were just looking for new extremes and limits. But we really did not put to much brain in it, trust me. We are a very simple band. With simple goals. One of ´em is to be as violent as possible. Maybe we just learned in the last two years what we are especially good in and made that strength even better. As said before, next to that you wanna try some new things as you don´t wanna play exactly the same stuff all the time. And obviously I like the dark, black metal, melodic stuff a lot… so I might have improved my way of guitar playing a little bit. Overall it´s still important though not to lose your identity as a band. We like what we do. We don´t have to reinvent the wheel. People like that, I guess… But if you wanna listen to real experimental  melodic and “interesting” music we still are the wrong band for you. We want to create stress not art.

What kind of process was to create, compose and write the Mantar songs for ODE TO THE FLAME ? And how do you start creating a platform for a song ? Which comes firstly : lyrics or music ?

Most stuff is created while jamming a long in the rehearsal room with the two of us. Sometimes I bring a riff. But if it works you won´t know before we both play and jam on it. So sometimes things don´t work out at all and other stuff were you didn’t have any expectations seem to work just fine. We try to write fast, simple and focused. We don´t write songs for 2 years, we want them to sound spontaneous and raw. That´s why we enter the studio by the time when they are only 80-90 % finished to benefit from the “magic of the moment”. I complete the lyrics on the day I record the vocals. Most lyrics are made out of oparts that I write down whenever I feel like it in a little notebook I have. When we record I put together the parts that seem to fit best together.

I took a glance at the video clips of your recording process and it looked it was very intensive, but when doing the vocals do you have IMG_1569to be under the certain mood to reach the right vibe for the vocals ?

I don´t drink or take any drugs during the weeks of recording to be as focused as possible. I sleep very little and usually very bad. I don´t like studio too much. But I need to come in this focus were I can´t think about anything else than the songs and the music. Doing vocals is just a part of the process. That´what takes the longest time. Because I am not a professional singer or even professional technical “death” metal singer. I just want it sound as fucked up and pissed as anyhow possible. So I lose my voice after every song we did for at least 48 hours. But the result is quite convincing, don´t you think?

As a two man band, what kind of technology advances do you use in order to create such a massive, to be honest, crushing the sounds of which Mantar is known for ?

Volume is like a third member for us. We try to play as loud as wen can. Play I play a whole lot of amplifiers and cabinets at the same time. Big bass cabs too to bring the low end. Next to the technical part much more important is how the band plays together. A stated before we know each other very well. We THINK the same when we play. We become one. A machine so to speak.

I came across the video footage of St. Pauli Sessions, could you tell a bit more about the session ? Did you ask people to jam into the studio ? Did you wanna test the music sounds in the studio environment ?

Well, we just wanted to prove that we totally can put the record sound on stage and that we are able to pull of the same wall of sound live. We used and still use the same equipment for recording as well as for playing live. We  thought it was  a cool idea to prove it. So we invited a few friends bought some beer and just played the songs for them.

How many songs were played in the St.Pauli Sessions ?

Only 8 as we just started the band and couldn’t play the other two back then, haha. We just played 3 or 4 shows at that time. We didn’t even start touring.

I have witnessed Mantar as far as I can remember four times : Roadburn, Jalometalli and Summer Breeze and Wacken I have paid to how the drumset had been placed on the (right) side of the stage and the micstand was in front of the drum set, I assume there is IMG_1552some obvious purpose for that ?

That´s just how we started to play in our rehearsal room when we started to practice. We did that most of all for practical reasons to see what the other onje is doing and to communicate with our eyes during the songs. When we started playing shows we just kept it that way as we still totally were a brand new band and needed that for orientation. Nowadays we just do it as we are used to it. Furthermore I like they idea not playing FOR the people but having the people watching us doing OUR thing.

In general have you been utterly surprised to see the amount of interest by metal fans and press toward Mantar, obviously you didn’t expect when working on the first release ?

Yes. It was very strange and surprising. WE are grateful and take none of it for granted. Plus we don´t tale ourselves too serious. We take our band serious but not ourselves as persons. So we don´t think we are the coolest dudes ever just because people like our little band.

What is the next coming up for Mantar ? Obviously gigs ?

First I am gonna hang some more time in Florida where I live nowadays when we don´t tour and slowly get my power back as the last two years have been very exhausting to be honest. After that we will play a whole bunch of festivals all over europe and North America and hope to see as many people as possible at the shows. Plus we´ll  do a few small club shows to try the new material. We will travel countries we never have been to before and spend pretty much all summer in planes i am afraid. After the summer we will eventually tour Europe and the US and finally have two albums to play live. That´s awesome. If you can, stop by and have some beers with us. Overall we are very happy to play countried we have never been before. Having this band is a great way to explore the world. All in all I just hope to have a good time. That´s all. If it stops to be any fun it´s over.

I for one thank you for your time for doing the interview,,, but the last words are yours ….

Thanks for your ongoing and steady interest in MANTAR and your support. Spread the word and enjoy the new record.

The official Mantar sites :

https://www.facebook.com/MantarBand

https://mantar.bandcamp.com/

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Posted in 2016, Heavy Metal, Interviews | Comments (0)

Exodus & Lost Society : Nosturi Helsinki Finland

March 26th, 2016

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The 19th of March 2016

NOSTURI HELSINKI FINLAND

Article and pics by Arto Lehtinen and Marko Syrjala

When the legendary Bay Area thrash metal veterans visited Helsinki with their own headlining gig fronted by Rob Dukes and Paul Bostaph some years ago, there were hardly 300 or even less thrash metal maniacs having attended the show. Well some years have passed since then until when Exodus hit the Finnish shore with another headlining gig with the domestic thrash wonderkids Lost Society supporting them. The expectations of the number of the attendance were guessed in advance before the show, but having over 500 tickets sold in the pre-sale was beyond the expectation for sure. That was definitely awesome. However the Finnish young thrash patrol Lost Society gave another lesson of violence.

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When arriving at the Nosturi club there was a huge line of the thrash metal maniacs waiting into the club. Lost Society had already kicked the maelstrom of intensive headbanging and a pure riffstorm. The band has relied on all kinds of lame of humor aspects in the past shows, but supporting slot for Exodus proved Lost Society is definitely a vicious and intensive and murderous live act. When abandoning all the worthless and needless hassling, just focusing on creating the total of riff thrash storm with the incredible headbanging at the stage, that gave the entire new meaning of the brutal performance for Lost Society. The four piece just proved to be one hell of a thrash metal war machine by sacrificing themselves at the stage and gave a lesson of the master guided riff playing. The set list consisted of the material off from the new album such as “I Am The Antidote” and of course the mandatory “Terror Hungry” is the essential one for the hyperfast thrash hymn.

Braindead
KILL (Those Who Oppose Me)
Hollow Eyes
Terror Hungry
I Am the Antidote
Riot
Only (My) Death Is Certain

Lost Society

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OFFICIAL LOST SOCIETY WEBPAGE

LOST SOCIETY IN FACEBOOK

 

EXODUS

When Lost Society’s intensive gig was over and the audience was still gasping for the air, the stage was prepared for Exodus’ tempo of thrash. The latest Exodus offering BLOOD IN BLOOD OUT is still amazingly intensive refreshing brilliant thrash piece of slab. Therefore it was expected to hear quite a few songs picked up from that 10th full length album. Yes indeed those new songs sounded damn catchy as well as brutal as “Body Harvest”, “Salt The Wounds”, and “Blood In Blood Out” were the part of the setlist. Not that surprising the classic debut album BONDED BY BLOOD played the biggest role in the night’s setlist. All in all six songs off from the classic debut album encouraged the crowd go utter insane and bezerk in the pit. The pit turned out to be a merciless and savage and time to time the whole floor was on fire when the insane thrashers crushed their sweating bodies against each other. It surely did help when Steve “Zetro” Souza’s commanded the pit go brutal as hell. But to be honest, Exodus sounded really tight and brutal. Tom Hunting’s clock tight drumming creates the essential part of the Exodus sound. His incredible way of blasting the drums along Jack Gibson’s crushing bass lines and the double guitar work by Kragen Lum and Lee Altus created the total crushing sounds of thrash by Exodus.  The five-piece is definitely in the vital strike and they can still deliver the tempo of the old school thrash metal at its best. “Toxic Waltz” has become one kind of hymn for pit rioters, when the opening riff cut the air, the pit turned an incredible huge, bodies were flying all over and when the final song “Strike Of The Beast” concluded the set with another chaotic pit storm.  Indeed Exodus stroke now back with the vengeance. Even though Gary Holt was now missing, he was busy with his duties with Slayer, Exodus still lives strong and the band still breathes metal more than well in 2016. It was definitely overwhelming and pleasure to see the packed venue on Saturday night in Helsinki. Above all the domestic young thrash guns Lost Society showed their skills  skills and they proved that they’re now ready to conquer the metal world. All in all it would be fabulous to see more often as many metal fans as today to attend upcoming metal shows in the future.

Black 13
Blood In, Blood Out
And Then There Were None
Children of a Worthless God
Deranged
Salt the Wound
Body Harvest
Metal Command
Piranha
A Lesson in Violence
Blacklist
War Is My Shepherd
Impaler

Encore:
Bonded by Blood
The Toxic Waltz
Strike of the Beast

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OFFICIAL EXODUS WEBPAGE

EXODUS IN FACEBOOK

 

MORE PICTURES FROM THE SHOWS

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Nightwish with support on Endless Forms Most Beautiful European Tour 2015 Falconer Theater Copenhagen,Denmark

January 29th, 2016

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Nightwish: Endless Forms Most Beautiful
European Tour 2015

Arch Enemy – special guest
Amorphis – support act

Falconer Theater, Copenhagen,Denmark
16/11 – 2015

Live review and pictures by: Anders Sandvall

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Lost Society – BrainDead- listening party at Sonic Studios Helsinki

November 21st, 2015

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The Finnish thrashers Lost Society got thrown into the larger attention after winning the Global Battle Of The Bands and inked a deal with the prestigious Nuclear Blast. The four young thrash maniacs took the metal world by storm with the intensive fast and furious speed/thrash maelstrom, but with the obvious sense of humour. The debut album titile FAST LOUD DEATH got the overwhelming respond and with the second opus TERROR HUNGRY gained more and more attention from the metal world.

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Jonne Järvelä – Korpiklaani

November 18th, 2015

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INTERVIEW WITH JONNE JÄRVELÄ OF KORPIKLAANI

Korpiklaani has been folking since 2003 by conquering the folk metal world with the Finnish culture and nature. Being one of the heaviest and hardest working bands with the nine albums out by now proves Korpiklaani’s folk metal machine is unstoppable. The ninth album called NOITA is another fine slap of the catchy folk metal with the obvious ancient Finnish myth and culture of the past. Some water has flown under the bridge since the previous Korpiklaani interview, therefore it was about to have a conversation of the mastermind of Korpiklaani, Jonne Järvelä.

Interview and live pictures by Arto Lehtinen


Good day – how does the touring life look in the Korpiklaani camp ?

We are just now in Hamburg at Heidenfest 2015 and everything is fine. Ten days behind and about the same still left.

 NOITA – NEW ALBUM

The Petrax studio has been a home studio cave for Korpiklaani for a while, Do you view that finding the right Korpiklaani sound is easier and natural progress there at the Petrax studio with the essential know-how how to carry out a good sounding album with the catchy hooks ?_MG_5399

Absolutely. Petrax is good place to record because it is farm place at countryside. There is its own peaceful atmosphere and we really like to record there. Also it is one of the best studios in Finland and near my home, so it is easy choice.

Noita being the 9th album in a row in the Korpikaani catalogue, that proves Korpiklaani is one hell of working band around, you don’t rest on your laurels at that much – where do you find that much energy and inspiration to keep going on ?

I don’t know actually. This is fun thing to do and at least for me this is the only thing that I can do, so maybe that drives us to keep going on.

You have systematically released new album every year or every second year, as for the time gap between NOITA and MANALA, there is a three year gap, how come it took a bit longer to have the ninth album out ?

We toured even more than usually, so we couldn’t find the time for song writing so much than before. Also I wrote, recorded and produced my “solo” album JONNE, which is not actually a solo album because I got help so much from many musician friends of mine. Then I produced, mixed and partly recorded Oceanwake new “Sunless” album, which also took some time.

How did you start working on the material for the NOITA album ? Do the lyrics come first before the music ?

Tuomas Keskimäki wrote most of the lyrics again, so there were lyrics first but I don’t put my focus on lyrics yet when writing music. When the main structure of the song is ready I start to think which of the Tuomas’s lyrics would fit to the character of the song.

What was the most challenging part of the whole writing and composing process of the NOITA album ?IMG_7450

Find the time to do it. The songs came very easy and naturally and we actually dropped some songs away from the album whole.

What does the title of the album originally come from ?

There are some songs about witch what Noita means in English and one of the key songs on the album is Ämmänhauta. It’s about one finnish folklore that lives strong in one little village, called Vesilahti, where I’m from with our bass player Jarkko. One powerful witch lived there and when she noticed that the end of her lifetime in here will be over soon her last wish was to be buried into the sacred ground of the church. So she managed to find four men to carry him to there secretly because during those times pagans were not allowed to be buried to the “holy” ground. Before their journey begun she had one important rule for those four men; If she would die before they reach their destination she must be buried straight to the place where that happens. They didn’t manage to get to the church’s graveyard and when the witch took her last breath those four men could not move her anymore because of her spell. So they buried her immediately to that place and threw birches on her grave to hide the body. Later on the story started to spread from mouth to mouth and people started to throw birches on the witches grave because they feared that witch will curse them if they would not do that everytime they passed her grave. So even nowadays there is a great pile of birches on the same place where the witch was buried.

The Korpiklaani figure known as Vaari did the first appearance on the front cover of TALES ALONG THIS ROAD and since then it has been an expected figure on covers. How did this come about ? Did you find it a good idea to have a mascot of your own ?

Exactly. I like the idea how for example Megadeth or Iron Maiden has their mascot adventuring always on the album covers. I wanted something similar and Vaari is our Eddie in a way.

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FOLKING SINCE 2003

The main core of the line-up of Korpiklaani have soldiered up as a united team for about ten years, whereas the violinist got changed as well as the accordionist, as for finding these replacements – was it an easy going process to audit and find right guys with the suitable background and attitude to Korpiklaani  ?

We have been lucky because every time when people changed in this band we’ve getting stronger. I don’t mean to put anyone down because we are really good friend with every _MG_5405ex-Korpiklaani members still but it is a fact. There always been a reason for the changes and it’s been both way deal. Some people got enough this kind of life style and they might to want to do something else in their lives. It was easy to find first Tuomas about four years ago and now Sami three years ago…time flies. Sami is still a new guy in our books  J

Since the VOICE OF THE WILDERNESS album the guitarist, bassist have been in the band beside you and drummer Matson, apparently this has created the bond between you to take further steps for Korpiklaani and focus on building the band’s success ?

I think it is important to keep the band as stable as it is possible. That’s how we all can develop together as a band because this is teamwork if something.

When some member has departed, is it like the end of the marriage, that’s it and goodbye – or do you maintain some sort of contact to each other ?

Yes we are still contacted and friends with ex-members.

The Finnish language has been the big role in the lyrics, leaving the English kind of aside. The whole lyrics or could I say the poetry is fascinating, tending to go deep in the Finnish ancient culture, but do you feel it is kind of odd to have lyrics written in Finnish as the foreigner fans may miss the point in the meaning of the lyrics ?

I don’t feel it odd because nowadays it is easy to translate the lyrics if you want. Internet makes it very easy. Also we have explanations of each song on our booklet of the albums.

Do you feel kind of natural to sing the lyrics in Finnish on tours or do you have to switch it to the English after all ?

It is way more easy for me to sing in Finnish, my native language. Also it is easier to catch and share the feelings of the lyrics using Finnish.

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SOURCE OF INSPIRATION

How much do you spend time exploring and studying the Finnish ancient mythology and culture to ladle them for the lyrics and ideas to develop the soundworld of Korpiklaani ?

I don’t study about mythology or culture but being in this band has been teaches me a lot and still doing it all the time.IMG_6786

When penning the lyrics, do you have to have some certain place and atmosphere to reach the need mood for coming up ideas on papers ?

I’m not writing lyrics so much but when I do, I can be anywhere when I got an idea. I’ve been driving car when I got an idea and then just pulled over and writes it down. I’ve been sitting,  when suddenly got inspired and just walking outside. You never know when it hits you.

You have traveled all over the world, have other cultures and social aspects brought more new ideas, visions and influences on the creation of the musical ideas ?

Absolutely. In the end everything is about your lived life. Met people and places. Being in the band is extremely good chance to meet lot of people and travel around the world.

The four Korpiklaani albums came out on the Austrian Napalm rec, which was a home for Korpiklaani for a long time, nowadays you are at Nuclear Blast. What is the biggest difference between these two labels from your point of view ?

Nuclear Blast is bigger and they can load a little bit more volume on marketing. Of course it would be easier and good to be on some of the Finnish label because being on contact would be easier but unfortunately “know how” and contacts are better at record labels abroad. That’s why most of the Finnish metal bands that are doing international career are on the lists of some record label from abroad. But in our case the interest of the record companies stands at abroad. Finnish record labels are not interest or ready to invest to band like Korpiklaani for some reason, which is sad.

I can’t help asking what was the main factor making you thinking of switching to Nuclear Blast ?

They offered the best deal and they have worked already some Finnish bands like Amorphis and Nightwish, so Blast just convinced us about a good business relationship. We signed again to Nuclear Blast filling second deal with them just before Noita.

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I have paid attention to the behavior and acting of the crowd at Korpiklaani’s gig, the people usually go utter beserk and the feeling is lik_MG_5406e getting catapulted thru the ceiling especially during the fastest tunes, being played. Do you try to set the place on fire and get people nuts on gigs or do you have to calm the moshing and pitting and surfing down time to time ?

We like to see when people gets crazy. Maybe that’s why we have so many up-tempo songs but to keep the feeling and drama of the show it is important to play also some mid tempo or even slow songs. That’s how the fast songs sounds even faster.

Where is the strongest and loyalist fanbase as well as wildest ones ?

Germany and Europe over all is at least most loyal because we can see the familiar faces on every gig for example on this tour now but North America and Canada are rising and rising for us all the time. The most wild audience is definitely in South America.

The videos of Korpiklaani seem to have been an important role. Do you view videos are the one way to catch some attention for Korpiklaani ? Obviously there will be a new video from the NOITA album ?

Now when TV doesn’t show music videos anymore, videos are in the web nowadays. Like on Youtube but I think it is in big role as before. At first we put out a video of Tein mina pillin pajupuusta, which shows us on stage. It’s filmed in Moscow, Russia. Now just a while ago we released a video to Ämmänhauta song.

When Korpiklaani was interviewed back in 2003, the whole thing was in the early stage of kicking the whole on as apparently it was based on the DIY attitude, how do you coordinate and keep your eyes on the business and so on and how do you make the last call what comes to booking festivals and gigs ? Btw are you still involved in Natural Born Records ?

We have a good management to take care about our booking and record label business, so we can put our focus for the music more but of course we are speaking everything through _MG_5395our management, so we know all the time more or less what is going on. Natural Born Records is JonneMusic nowadays and it handles my producer works, some part of merchandise works and publishing for Korpiklaani and JONNE bands.

Speaking of your solo, in my opinion the stuff on the solo album differs quite obviously from the Korpiklaani stuff, was it a conscious choice to separate the stuff from Korpiklaani by working them on the solo output ?

It was the reason for the solo album and band because those songs were so different, than Korpiklaani style. I didn’t have any need to put out a solo album but the songs were asking it if you know what I mean.

Can we expect more solo stuff from you ?

Yes, next album is already under work. JONNE is also real touring band, not just my solo project anymore but because there are also very busy musicians for example Santeri Kallio and Jan Rechberger from Amorphis we can’t play live so often.

All right I thank you for your time to do the interview for Metal-Rules.Com and wish all the best and I let you conclude the interview ….

Thank you so much and see you on gigs

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The official KORPIKLAANI sites :

The Official Korpiklaani Facebook

The Official Korpiklaani Homepage

The Official Korpiklaani YouTube Channel

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AGNOSTIC FRONT live at The Underworld, London

October 12th, 2015

AGNOSTIC FRONT
with guests OLD FIRM CASUALS and COLDSIDE

Live at The Underworld Camden, London

3rd October 2015

Review & Photography by Fernando Bonenfant
https://www.facebook.com/fernando.bonenfant

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Tonight BROOKLYN finest Agnostic Front have travelled overseas to shake the souls of London. Outside Metal fans are queuing, drinking, smoking and hustling with the guy on the door to try to get ticket to The Underworld sold-out show.

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Venom INC and Vader live @ The Underworld, Camden

October 7th, 2015

VENOM INC
With special guests VADER, DIVINE CHAOS and WITCHES

 live at The Underworld Camden, London

September 21st 2015

Review & Photography by Fernando Bonenfant
https://www.facebook.com/fernando.bonenfant

The opening act of the night were WITCHES; a French death metal band from Antibes. Witches, formed in 1986 are first French band with female guttural voice. They have been touring with bands like SIX FEET UNDER and EMTOMBER and were a perfect act to open for this old Skool extreme metal night.

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Interview With Overkill Vocalist Bobby Blitz

September 11th, 2015

Overkill

Interview with Bobby Blitz

8th September 2015

Interview by Jarod Lawley

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With the imminent release of their Historikill: 1995-2007 box set we had a chat with Overkill’s iconic vocalist Bobby Blitz to discuss belt buckles, being a tourist, and what’s in store for the fans with this mega, 13 CD box-set.

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Unleashed – Anders Schulz

March 9th, 2015

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The Swedish death metal warriors Unleashed have been forging with the hammer and the anvil since 1989 and released a number of albums. The most recent album titled DAWN OF THE NINE being the 12th in a row is another death metal masterpiece showing no slowing down or wimping out. The four piece warrior squad have maintained  and been the loyal to the deadly sounds. Unleashed’s s long time drummer Anders Schultz was approached with a few questions dealing with DAWN OF THE NINE.

Interview and pics by Arto Lehtinen

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Edguy with support act Freedom Call on Space Police World Tour 2014 – European leg 1 at Kulturbolaget Malmo, Sweden

October 25th, 2014

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Edguy – headline act
Space Police World Tour 2014 – European leg 1
Freedom Call – support act

Kulturbolaget, Malmo, Sweden
21/9 – 2014

Review and live pictures by: Anders Sandvall

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Accept with support on Blind Rage European Tour 2014 at Amager Bio Copenhagen, Denmark

October 20th, 2014

Accept Blind Rage European Tour 2014

Damnations Day – support act

Amager Bio, Copenhagen, Denmark
19/9 – 2014

Live review and pictures by: Anders Sandvall

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Amon Amarth with support act Carcass and Hell on Deceiver Of the Gods European Tour 2013 – Scandinavian leg at Kulturbolaget Malmoe,Sweden

January 17th, 2014

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Amon Amarth

Deceiver Of the Gods European Tour 2013 – Scandinavian leg
Carcass (Special guest)
Hell (Support act)

Kulturbolaget, Malmo, Sweden
6/12 – 2013

Review and live pictures by: Anders Sandvall

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Doro: Raise Your Fist 2013 – 30th Anniversary tour, Scandinavian leg at Amager Bio Copenhagen,Denmark

June 16th, 2013

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Doro

Raise Your Fist 2013 – 30 years anniversary tour, Scandinavian leg

Dirty Passion – support act

Amager Bio, Copenhagen, Denmark
30/4 – 2013

Reviewed and live pictures by: Anders Sandvall

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The 69 Eyes with support on I Know What You Did Last Summer Tour 2013 I still know European tour Kulturbolaget Malmoe, Sweden

April 2nd, 2013

The 69 Eyes – headline

I Know What You Did Last Summer Tour 2013 I still know European tour

Baby Jane – support act

Kulturbolaget

Malmoe

9/3 – 2013

Review and live pics by: Anders Sandvall

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Accept on the Stalingrad European Tour 2012 at Amager Bio Copenhagen, Denmark

December 8th, 2012

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Accept

Stalingrad European Tour 2012

Amager Bio

Copenhagen

Denmark

30/10 – 2012

Reviewed an live pictures by: Anders Sandvall

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