On saturday, the second day of the Aurora Infernalis festival I had an interview with
Marko and Ville. I spoke with them backstage in the Luxor in Arnhem [NL]
It’s not the first time Moonsorrow is in Arnhem
M: No it’s about the fourth time, once at Arnhem Metal Meeting…
“The Goudvishall was a Cult venue!”
Yeah and two times at the Goudvishal (goldfish-hall)
M: Does that still excist? Because we were just talking about it.
Sadly it closed a few years ago, but it was a great venue
M: The Goudvishal was a cult venue!
V: It had a feeling of it’s own.
I saw you there in 2007 with Swallow the Sun.
V: And the year before we played there wit Primordial.
What do you remember of those gigs, or even Arnhem as a city?
M: Very crowded saturday, the second day of the Aurora Infernalis festival I had an chance to speak with Marko and Ville of Moonsorrow at the Luxor in Arnhem [nl].
V:The dangerous stairs.
M: Yeah the dangerous stairs!
In the back?
V: To the dressing room, very dangerous stairs.
M: with all the gear up and down…….drunk.
You played with Primordial then, did some tours with them and now again playing together in Arnhem. Do they become friends?
M: Yeah, we see them once or twice a year and they are good friends. The’re mentally on the same level also, a retarded level hahaha.
And other bands, do friendships grow while you are touring?
V: We’ve met some cool people in this business, if you can call it a business.
And do they become friends, people you call when you’re at home for instance.
M: Most of my friends are from the musicbusiness, I don’t hang around with other people.
V: You don’t hang around.
If some of the bands from abroad come to Finland I usually give them a call on the showdate and we hang out.
“We have planned that the next albumtitle should start with a C”
I read in a lot of interviews that Henri comes with an idea and Ville does the lyrics. When does a song become a Moonsorrow song?
M: We all have ideas and we try them, but everything goes through Henri’s filter haha. But still we all have our own sound that cannot be copied I guess and it’s the combination of that sounds that makes the Moonsorrow sound.
So Henri doesn’t come up with arranged parts for everyone and then practice the song?
M: Practice what is that? We do only rehearsals with drums and bass and a guiding track.
V: In the studio it is just me and Marko who do our parts in decent takes. When the guitarplayers came in it was just a paper with some notes. Playing a riff and than: oke, let’s try the next one.
M: And I think we gonna do it for the next album also, rehearsals with only drums and bass and maybe some clicktrack or so…
Plans for the next album? ideas, concept?
V: We are planning that we should plan tot plan the next….
M: We have planned that the titles should start with a C.
There is no Finnish wd that starts with a C.
V: I see that as a challenge.
M: We can make up our own title as Enslaved did with Riitir.
But no other ideas about the album.
V: Some ideas about the album and how it has to start musically, but we’re not telling that here.
M: It is not an intro! it’s an outro like Aerosmith did, back in the days haha.
Your album V:HAVIETTY had you guys on the cover. What was the idea behind that?
V:The ultimate idea was actually that we wanted the band on the cover. Because bands in the metalgenre don’t usually do that. Except for Immortal. There are no coverpictures with actually the band on it. So we thought we could do it because we always want to be a bit different.
M: And we also want the albumcovers to differ from eachother. And always use different kind of artist. I don’t know if it looks good but it looks different.
“I’m not going with my sword to the forest every morning and hunt for my food.”
In an other interview Ville says, and I quote:
I think our main inspiration sources are old legends, history, stuff like deep respect for nature and the concept of paganism; That is hard to explain, I’m not even going to try. It’s definitely stuff that doesn’t fit the world we live in now. I’m not sure if I’ve said anything sensitive, but… (laughs)
M: Respect for nature? Bullshit, you hate the rain
V: yeah I hate the rain but I respect it. It is really hard to explain what inspires us, it is everything around us. Just to differ from all the other pagan metal bands I have to say that it also inspires me to live in the middle of the city. And walk in between buildings.
M: The urban thing, the urban viking.
V: I’m not going with my sword to the forest every morning and hunt for my food.I live in the fucking city and love the buildings. And even if I would there wouldn’t be enough for everyone in this urban environment.
People always question why Moonsorrow songs are so long, don’t you get tired of that?
M: the thing is, we can;t write short songs
V: Nowadays we try to get them under 10 minutes
M: Six or Seven minutes is short for us. We don;t necessary want to do 20 minute songs anymore.
Because you can’t remember how it goes, or…?
V: Yeah we’re getting old.
M: It has to do with how difficult it is to pick the songs for the live set. For example this set tonight, we only play 5 songs and we have 70 minutes….
How do you pick the songs?
M: We try to pick out songs with the same atmosphere, we don’t like to mix songs from the last album with the more merrier songs of our past. Even though our fans would like to here them, we’d like to keep the same atmosphere from start to the end of the show. Some of the fans hate us for doing that, cause we don’t play their favorite songs.
How do you know the fans don’t like it?
V: They come after the show and say: “You didn’t play that song!”. Uh yeah, we didn’t.
M: I’d like to challenge myself with the older material. Just re-arrange it a bit so it goes hand in hand with the newer material. If the guys are up for it.
V: I am!
So when can we expect the new version of the old songs?
M: That;s when our four-cd collection will come out
Best of Moonsorrow
“I’d like to challenge myself with the older material. Just re-arrange it a bit so it goes hand in hand with the newer material. If the guys are up for it.”
Kivenkantaja is my favorite album and i’ll tell you why. I fell asleep to it for every night during a year.
M: Hahaha did you ever came past the first song?
Yeah, but never past the second.
But not because it is boring, because the whole album has on feeling. It’s like a warm blanket.
M: If you want to put it like that haha.
The last song ‘Matkan Lopussa” is a beautiful song with a female singer. Can you tell me more about that?
M: It is an old Russian traditional song but we convert it to Finnish. And put finnish traditional stuff in it and totally own lyrics.
And Petra was the female singer, was she in another band?
M: No don’t think so, she was a schoolmate of Henry right?
V: Yeah. But we ont know what see is up to right now. We have no contact, she just helped out on the Never thought of that…….That would require a lot of imagination to connect all the albums together.
M: I don’t know why album.
Last question, one of the readers of Folk-metal.nl asked if you have a global storyline across your albums.
V: What? someone would think that.
V: Then again, it was already the third album when Morbid Angel realized the album titles where in alphabetical order and the’re still doing that.
M: hahaha they should have done that hahah
And then you’ll have to come up with an albumtitle with a C, and there is no Finnish word with a C
V: We’ll come up with it.
“Next year Kivenkantaja is 10 years old and we might do some special shows, maybe do a full album set.”
Thanks you so much for the little chat!
V: Thank you, and enjoy the show
M: No Kivenkantaja songs!
That doesn’t matter, it is always a good show.
M: Next year the album is 10 years old and we might do some special shows, maybe do a full album set. There is still one song on the album we’ve never played.
V: Tuulen Tytär/Soturin Tie
We will definitely be there!