mercoledì 29 giugno 2016

LAMORI - Interview

The dark side of Åland:
Matias from Lamori talks about his band and new album. 

Interview by Michela (Anesthesia)
Editing by Alessandra

*all photo credits are reserved

First of all, thank you for this interview. I'm very curious about your new album, because I really love this genre, so I want to know you better.

LFdM: You come right from Åland Islands, is this right? If it’s true that artists take their inspiration from the environment around them, an island is sure a wonderful place.
Mat: Yes, absolutely. Everything around you inspires you in one way or another. For us it's the dark gloomy days of winter that are the most inspiring for our music. You feel pretty isolated and away from everything when you are living on an island in the middle of the Baltic Sea during the winter. It's cold, it's dark and you don't see or meet many people. That's when creativity strikes, because there isn't really anything else to do (laugh). But we all love the summer. It's the best time of year and the best time to be on the island.

LFdM: How was To Die Once Again born? Is there only one mind or more behind this album?
Mat: The songs on the album are songs that we had been working on for quite long. Some of them are pretty old, from when we started the band back in 2009. Lost in Love and Palace of Pleasure are for example songs we only had recorded as old demos. When we signed with Wormhole Death last year and got the opportunity to do a professional album with them, we felt that we wanted to record these old songs "for real" and also do some changes in them. This way they would not be forgotten. And we are really happy that we did because those two songs turned out really great.

Another old song on the album is Follow the Ghost. A demo version of it was recorded long before there even was any LAMORI. It’s partly inspired by the Guillermo del Toro film “El laberinto del fauno”.  In a way it was this song that started LAMORI. So it was really nice we finally got to record it for real and get it out there.

So the album is really a mix of new songs and songs that have been around for a while but that never really got the love that they deserved.

The whole theme of the album is about losing all you got, to "die" of sort, and having to start all over. It's painful. But in the end it usually turns out better. Because you have all that experience and the knowledge from before, you know what it is that you actually want and what you do not need.

And talking about the theme of the album, it’s a bit ironic, that while we were away recording the album in Italy, there was a fire in the house where we had our rehearsal studio back home. The whole place burned to the ground. Not only did we lose our rehearsal studio, but also all our gear. So yeah, we lost it all and had to start from the beginning when we came back home from Italy. Now we have a new rehearsal studio and new gear, so in the end it turned out pretty good.

LFdM: We have already experienced the combination between the melodic and the aggressive sides of metal with many bands that made the history of Finnish music scene. What fascinates you the most: the music, the lyrics, or is it something more intimate?
Mat: What’s fascinating is that Finland is such a dense country when it comes to rock and metal bands. Here we have this country where you can walk down the street in a city and not see a single person during the winter. But we have more metal bands than any other country in the world.

LFdM: How much have you worked on this album?
Mat: We have worked quite a lot on this new album. As we mentioned before, some of the songs have been in the works long before the band even was started. But the planning of the album began pretty much directly after we had finished our first album Deadly Desires back in 2013. But then again it wasn’t really before we were contacted by Wormhole Death about the record deal that we really started to shape it and choose what songs should be on it. Also as this is the first professional album we have done with a record label it has taken some time to get used to the whole process. Now we know how it works, so hopefully it won’t take three years to release the next album (laugh). But really, the process has already started for the next album so we hope to have that out soon enough.

LFdM. What is the best way to write texts like yours?
Mat: Have your heart broken and watch a lot of old horror movies (laugh). That probably has something to do with it. And the long dark days and nights we have during winter. But as of yet there hasn’t really been any “best way” to write.

But when you have experienced something that really leaves a mark on you, then it’s somewhat easy to get those feeling into words. It’s harder to make stuff up and make it sound believable.

LFdM: In your opinion, what is the song that represents you the most?
Mat: Until Death (Do Us Part), that song feels like a pretty good presentation of LAMORI. It packs a punch, the lyrics are about love, horror and dread and it has that diabolic middle part in it with a lot of metal influences.

LFdM: I think you are aware of a certain resemblance to HIM, in the positive sense of course, but could this affect the judgment of the public? I mean, in terms of originality.
Mat: It’s pretty hard for a band in this music genre coming from Finland not to be compared in some way to HIM. They are one of the biggest bands this country has ever had and they are pretty much synonymous with the type of gothic inspired rock/metal we play. We all grew up listening to their music. It pretty much is in our veins. A lot of inspiration for starting LAMORI came from HIM. And yeah, you can hear that in our music.

But of course we want to have our own sound and not be recognized as “that new Finnish band that sounds like HIM” (laugh). And we feel that we are moving more in that direction. As we said before this album is a mix of old and new songs. The older ones have maybe a bit more tendencies to be influenced by HIM. Songs like Until Death (Do Us Part) and Wicked Little Things on the other hand are more of a telling of what is to come in the future. Those two songs with for example Palace of Pleasure will give you a feel of the direction LAMORI is heading.

LFdM: More and more, I see young promising bands not able to get out of their country. Aside from the internet which is a great outreach tool, don’t you think that it would be necessary to tour more?
Mat: Yes. That is pretty much how you survive as a band these days. Almost no one buys records anymore and the profits from streaming services aren’t helping much. You have to play gigs. But then it’s a bit of a paradox as you won’t get any gigs if no one knows who you are, so to get a fan base you have to play more gigs, but you won’t get those gigs because you have no fan base and no one wants to book you. It all boils down to contacts, and that’s why it is still important to have good label by your side.

LFdM: What are now your next events?
Mat: We have a gig at a local rock festival this weekend, so we have been quite focused on that. Then we have all the new material for the next album to go through. So we’ll be keeping ourselves busy.

LFdM: Oh good, so we keep in touch! Thanks again.