Interview with Routa, March 2004, Questions by Twilightheart

-Twi: Thank you very much for giving an interview for a little fan-zine like ours!

-Routa: Hey, no problems. Really I don't care about the fans, I just take up a chance to promote our new album, heh.

-Twi: Please tell us at first a little bit about how you ended up in Finntroll (for those readers, who might not know, Routa is the newest member of Finntroll)! I know you played some few gigs with the band before, but only as a guest musician. So how was your way as a musician before (were there other bands or projects that you were part of or still are?). Is Finntroll your main band now for the future?

-Routa: Hmm, where to begin...Ok. First, how I ended up in Finntroll? I've known most of the guys really long. Tundra, Skrymer and I were at the same school when we were kids, and lived on the same neighborhood. Before Finntroll, we had this project called Louhi with Katla, Tundra and few other friends, but that never worked out very well. We came up only with short demo and gray hairs, heh. In some point along the way I got to know rest of the guys, and...well, we were friends. Simply as that. And when Finntroll needed a stand in guitarist, i was there to help them out. So, after Somnium died and band made a decicion to continue, they asked if I would be interested to join the trollish horde as full member. I said yes, and here we are, heh. For me it was a easy decicion. In this way i can keep the Somnium's memory alive for my part. In past I have had many projects, and weird bands where i have played, but none of them have really made anything. Except the Mist and the Morning Dew, which we do when we have time...what is very rarely, heh. And, yes. Finntroll is really my main band now, and for the future...I hope, if I don't get kicked out, heh.

-Twi: Please tell us something about the coming/new album! What can the fans expect? What will be different to previous albums?

-Routa: One can expect a fucking brutal and fast album, with huge melodies combined with humppa-elements. Mr. Trollhorn and Tundra really made a great job with the writing process. The songs are really raw, but still melodic, and full of fucking trollish force! And from my opinion the most important thing is that none of the songs doesn't sound the same too much, I promise, you won't get bored with this mothafucker, heh.

-Twi: How did you start to interest for metal music? Did you have lessons for any instruments as a child, or did you learn everything just by yourself?

-Routa:I started to listen Iron Maiden, W.a.s.p and all these classics when I was about...h, maybe 10 or so. I got my first guitar when i was about 12. At first I wasn't really interested to play with it, but after few years the need to do music just got the hold of me, and I'm still doing it, heh. I've never taken any lessons, exept for this one guitar lesson. It was ment to be like for advanced players, not for good players, but to those who have even touched the guitar once or twice. And the teacher was this skinny guy, who wore a snakeskin boots and looked like he had escaped from the Circus of L.A. Guns or something. He made me play one open string on the guitar. First I thought that he would have a point in there. And when I played it, he began to play solos on it. After a few minutes I stopped, and was like - what the fuck??? And this guy is angry at me for stop playing, and asks me to continue. Ok, I do what the man says... and again, he began to play solos on it with his eyes closed...well, it isn't a hard to guess that I never went back there. So, yes, I have learned everything by myself.

 -Twi: How about your abilities in song-writing? Do the other Finntroll members already integrate you into that process??? And how in general must I imagine the process of songwriting in Finntroll? Do you all come together each week, testing out all new ideas that anyone had... or how does it work?

-Routa: I don't know what to say about my song-writing abilities...I'm notan pro, but I manage, heh. As what comes to new Finntroll material, I hope there would have been more time for me to compose. Now I only did one song what ended up to the Trollhammaren - Ep, and this short Outro called Rk. The songwriting in Finntroll is under totally dictatorship, heh. We never make any material in rehearsal room. Usually, who ever writes the song, he tries to do a little Demo - version of the song at home, and after that brings it to the rehearsal room for listening. And the others usually just give this extra edge to the basic structure of the song...hard to explain but you got the idea, I think. And this depends...Like, if Trollhjorn has composed something, he brings it to the rehearsal room as an ready song and says - Play like this. And that's it...fucking dictator, heh. Very rarely anything comes up only by jamming...we don't do that, we leave that for the hippies.

-Twi: Finntroll is going on a major tour soon. Have you ever been on such a big tour as well? How do you like touring? I mean, surely the fans are great... but there`s always many difficulties, such as not enough sleep (or sleeping unconveniently in the tourbus) or lack of hygiene. Does this disturb you?

-Routa: Only tour i have made was with Katatonia in 2003, when Trolls were supporting them. It was kinda BIG tour trough Europe.And even though everything went fucked up on that tour, everyone of us enjoyed very much. Okay, everyone had bad days, but those can't be avoided when there's a tour buss with 20 guys in it. Sleeping isn't a problem for me. I can sleep almost anywhere anytime, and the lack of hygiene isn't a problem unless it's continous.
Tour/gig organizersnshould realize that usually band want's to get a shower after a show, but like in tour with Katatonia, I had shower 4 times, which includes 2 ice-cold ones, and we were on the road over 2 weeks. Just imagine the smell on the tourbuss, heh. So, if I get a shower, food and drinks...nothing disturbs me, heh.

-Twi: Could you imagine being on tour for half a year or sth. under those conditions (if you should become even more famous in the future), or would that be the point for you to stop all that? Because at the Summerbreeze festival I saw, you all had your girlfriends with you, so you all probably are family- guys! So homesickness might be another thing disturbing a tour. Or are there possibilities for you to travel home often between the gigs?

-Routa: I can imagine being on tour as long as it would take. Easily. This is what I want to do. Even though there are things what you miss, but chance to travel around the world, and maybe getting paid for that someday is worth of sacrifices I think.  

-Twi: What are your best memories from all the concerts you gave (or festival gigs) and what are the worst?

-Routa:Too many good memories, too many no memories at all, heh. Ok, one of the best festival shows we're ever done in the time i've been in the band was Summer Breeze 2003. SAS Airways had lost all our luggages, instruments and all the stage clothes. We were really pissed of about it, and we were like ready to cancel the show. Luckily Amorphis loaned the instruments and we got a chance to must go on, heh.

-Twi: If you had totally free choice, which bands would Finntroll go on tour with then??? From a lot of fans I heared, they would love the combination of Korpiklaani as a support act for Finntroll.... how would the chances be for that?

-Routa: Fuck...Too hard to say. I don't know. Chances for a tour with Korpiklaani are probably quite slim, but hey, you'll never know....

-Twi: The next question you really dont have to answer, if you dont want to, but I wanna put it, because it`s a bit of a big mess to my opinion. > On our website (which is just starting, as I said) as well as in the big professional german metal magazines "Impaled Nazarene" gave interviews, and no matter if they were asked or not, they just told everybody that Teemu (Somnium) committed suicide (instead of that it was an accident), so now all metal fans in Germany seem to know it. Are you pissed off by "Impaled Nazarene`s" behaviour to spread that like the plaque? Or dont you just care at all? I mean, Im sure you talked about that with the other Finntroll members... so what`s the prevailling opinion about that? Do you think they blackened the memory of Teemu by this or dragged his reputation through the mud?

-Routa: Ok, i'm not getting into this shit... All I will say is that this is nobodys fucking business!!! And, yes i'm pissed of to read something like that from the net. These things doesn't belong to ANYONE. Teemu has been dead for almost a year... to everyone: LET THE MAN REST IN PEACE!..for fucks sake.

-Twi: How do you see the future of Finntroll? What do you think where you are in about 5 years?

-Routa:....i haven't got the faintest idea. Hopefully there still is a Finntroll.

-Twi: What do you think is it, that separates Finntroll`s music from other bands? What makes your music unique?  

-Routa: You should answer to that, not me. heh. I think the originality. There haven't been this kind of band before Finntroll. The band who would have combine the musical elements in such a merciless way what Finntroll does. This band isn't just a mirror image of another band, like so many other bands are. This is original.

-Twi: Thanx again for your kind support to give us this interview! Ill pay you a beer for it at the next summer-festival (just remind me... haha!). 

-Routa: Don't worry...i will. a beer is a beer. Thanks. Let the trollhammer swing again, Routa.



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