Sunday, July 10, 2011

Crimfall: The Interview

What inspired this album, lyrically and musically?
I would say lyrically my inspiration for this album came from the untold stories of folklore, the side often left in dark of heroes failing in their cause or leading legions to their hollow graves. How the tale is written on the side of those conquered and defeated. Other inspiration was northern winter as we wanted the mood to be different from the fiery debut. I know Jakke draws his music from all kinds of different sources, finnish nature, movie soundtracks and works of other talented composers.

A question we have always had is how the music scene in Finland works. In the US, Rap, pop and country are everywhere, and metal is still a smaller genre. is metal the music of choice in Finland? What is the live music like?
Here in Finland we have been living few years this weird period where metal music broke from underground into mainstream. It has always been more popular in here than some other countries but these past times have seen it dominate the music charts, summer festivals and even eurovision contests (spit). This of course brings lots of opportunities for the bands but also raises lots of mud from the bottom where people forsake their integrity to grasp out for easy money and quicker more shallow solutions in music often seen more in pop than metal. The best thing in all this is the amount of excellent bands we finally got here to play live you never expected to see in your lifetime.

How much did traditional music and folklore impact your style?
I would say somewhat but definitely not the main reason for Crimfall to exist. Traditional music with traditional instruments is often constricting and results in poor imitations or nostalgic trips rather than creating something great and unique. That being said Crimfall is very visual music and often the picture portrayed is from the old times of tradition and folklore, this means it is usually better to use the sword than the composing pen.

Do you have plans on touring in America?
It would be great but unfortunately still a distant hope. This 70.000 tons of metal thing would be interesting as it is something completely different.

Do you have any bands (big or small) that you would want to tour with?
For Jakke our small tour with Turisas was one of the big things happening for this band as he has huge respect for their music. Personally I would like to share the stage with Primordial or Eluveitie. Some more unusual combinations with more popular bands would be good as well to bring our music to wider audiences, not just folk metal.
What are your thoughts on the downloading of music? Do you see it as a problem, or is it helping to spread great music across the world?

For the metal music it is not such a big problem, metal fans tend to want their music in physical concrete form along with the lyrics and artwork. Of course you can clearly witness the fall in record sales but to my understanding this is also caused by the explosion of quantity. It is so much easier to record and produce good quality sound as studio technology evolves in leaps. Back in the old days if you managed to get a record deal and release an album that was not utter shit you could count on at least decent sales. Nowadays the percentage of new bands that sell well is much smaller. Downloading can of course help in the discovery process but it won’t resolve this problem. I also think that services like Spotify will replace the downloading in the long run. In the end bands need to find new ways to cut profit from their work, live concert tickets and merchandise are all part of that, especially in metal music where they still hold their value.

What does the future hold for Crimfall?
I see Crimfall in the crossroad now; one path leads to bigger audiences and wider recognition, other leads to more underground status. We managed to get a good concert booker and are beginning to invest heavily on touring. Next year we will focus more on the third album. The direction we go with that is still in flux.

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