It seems that this year the power metal scene had to give us some really cool releases. On the last month of 2004 another power metal band comes to shake the troubled waters of power metal. The responsible Pete Ahonen from GHOST MACHINERY talks to us about the debut of the band, "Haunting Remains". |
Hi Pete. Thank you very much for taking the time to answer to my questions and before I ask you anything else I really want you to give us a small biography of GHOST MACHINERY and why you decided to release a solo project (isn’t that what GHOST MACHINERY really are)?
Pete: It was somewhere around January 2003 when I wrote couple of songs that didn`t "fit" the BURNING POINT`s style and I decided to put a project together just to record the songs. Suddenly we had 5 track promo cd ( Ghosts in the Castle ) in our hands. And you know, one thing led to another...Here we are with our first cd , Haunting Remains.
First I started the band as a ...project... but now it has grown to a real band. So, not a project anymore...
Through countless solo projects weren’t you afraid that maybe adding another would be a dangerous thing to do in the sense that the thought only of a solo project would draw away listeners?
Pete: I don`t have any other bands than these two. I hope that listeners could love them both : )
Reading the biography on your website I got the sense that it took you a long time to compose the song for "Haunting Remains". Was there a composition period dedicated to GHOST MACHINERY or the songs for "Haunting Remains" are just songs that you composed for BURNING POINT and haven’t appeared on their albums?
Pete: It really didn`t take that long to write the songs on the album as I got started. The songs like, 'Down In Flames' , 'Temples Of Gold' and 'Darkest Hour' are so different compared to the BP material that this other band was a natural choice to try to put those songs to the wider audiences attention.
I composed all the other songs to the Ghost Machinery and they`re not any "leftovers" from the BURNING POINT.
I have written on my review that "Haunting Remains" is heavily influenced by STRATOVARIUS and the classic heavy metal moments of the 80s. Would you agree that this is the case and if not who would you believe that influenced you while writing the songs for GHOST MACHINERY?
Pete: I really like Stratovarius but I definitively don`t consider us influenced by them. I`m influenced by the 80`s metal as I believe that Mr. Tolkki is too : ). Maybe in the Ghost Machinery I bring forward more of my AOR influences like, Bon Jovi, Foreigner and Europe.
It is obvious that the songs are mostly based on melody. Moments like ‘Blinded Eyes’ or ‘Down In Flames’ are proofs of this. How do you actually compose the songs for GHOST MACHINERY?
Pete: It really is not more than I just sit down and pick up my guitar : )
I saw that you recorded the album from December 2003 to March 2004. Isn’t this a long time to record an album? Did this play an important role to the fact that the album has such a magnificent sound and production?
Pete: We started recordings in December but we did couple of different sessions so the album is recorded some in December and some in January and so on...
I have read on the website that you prefer the fans to interpret your lyrics. Either way, the promo CD doesn’t have any lyrics, so would you be kind enough to let us know what are you talking about on the songs of "Haunting Remains"?
Pete: The lyrics are a mixture of fact and fiction. You can find the lyrics from our website.
I don’t know if you have many reviews on your hands, but generally how press and maybe fans are reacting to "Haunting Remains"? What are the thoughts of the members of your other band BURNING POINT for "Haunting Remains"?
Pete: The reviews have been absolutely amazing! And we`ve been getting lots of fan mails too! We`re very, very happy about the response : ). The BP guys really like the GM stuff too.
Are you going to promote "Haunting Remains" with live gigs? Isn’t a bit difficult to actually sing and play guitar at the same time? Zakk Wylde once said that singing and playing guitar together is like pissing and shitting. Would you agree with his sayings?
Pete: Of course were planning live shows but nothing is confirmed yet but we`ll inform you all on our website. I have done it for a few years now with BP so it`s not going to be a problem. The chord progressions are a bit different that Burning Point so there will be ( at least) another guitar player on the stage. I love playing my guitar on stage : )
Would you go on tour with both BURNING POINT and GHOST MACHINERY, or is it just too crazy of a thought?
Pete: That would be soooo cool : ) But I don`t think that my voice could handle a two shows in the same night..? Let`s see what the future brings?
I have noticed that you have a 2 full album deal with Sound Riot records. Are you going to treat GHOST MACHINERY as a full band or you are going to record a new album whenever you have the time and maybe the songs available. In few words should we expect a second album of GHOST MACHINERY in a year or two?
Pete: As I said earlier Ghost Machinery is a band so the next album will be released next year. The songs are almost written on the next album, 10 new ones and counting : )
Not to forget. Why did you choose ‘Out In The Fields’ to cover and why have you decided to call Vile Laihiala from SENTENCED to sing on that one?
Pete: We recorded it with Burning Point in the Salvation By Fire sessions but I wasn`t happy with that version so we drop it off from the album. When we were starting to record the GM cd we discussed about the cover and I remembered the Moore`s song. I wanted that there would be kind of same vibe as there is on the original song so asked my friend Ville to sing those "Lynott`s" parts and I think that he did amazing job. He truly is a professional musician !
One last question is about the strange name you choose for both the band’s name and the album name. So, why GHOST MACHINERY and what does "Haunting Remains" really mean?
Pete: Strange?? What do you mean.. ? heh... I don`t know, to me it sounds kind of cool : ). Haunting Remains name probably comes because there are few lyrics and few guitar riffs and that’s been "haunting" me through the years and finally they`re finished : ) .
Pete, I could have asked you a dozen more questions but I don’t want to tire you. Thank you very much for answering my questions and I wish you all the best on your music career as well on your personal life. If there is anything that I forgot to ask you or if there is anything you want to add for the readers of Bleeding please do so here. Thanks once more.
Pete: Thank you very much for the interview, the pleasure was all mine : )
Go out and buy the album and I hope that you`ll enjoy it as much as we did writing and recording it! Visit our website too, www.ghostmachinery.com. STAY METAL!!!