Only a couple of days ago, MOONSORROW published their 5th album, Viides Luku - Hävitetty. Drummer Marko Tarvonen found the time to tell us a bit about it and much more. |
Hey Marko! First, please tell us a bit about the new album „Chapter V – Ravaged“. What is the concept all about?
Marko Tarvonen: There’s an end-of-the-world concept through the whole album. It reflects the old beliefs that the new world will be born after the old one dies and it’s kind of adapted into this day. Just watch the news and you know what it is all about. Most of it is [MOONSORROW vocalist - ed] Ville’s feelings and some mythological symbolics.
„Chapter V – Ravaged“ features only two songs. Was that your plan from the very beginning or did the music just develop into these epic dimensions? Why didn't you separate the two songs into a couple of CD tracks to make it easier for people to listen only to parts of the album?
Marko Tarvonen: No it was not planned at first. Actually we thought of doing a very normal Moonsorrow album. But then when we started writing the songs we found them quite epic enough and thought, whatta hell let’s do it in a big way then! So they kind of just turned out like that. We had written thousands of different riffs and song parts and started to sort out the best ideas and tried to arrange the best possible effort as a whole. And it was out of question to split the tracks to many indexes and I’m sorry how would it be easier to listen the songs with just some parts?
Thomas Väänänen of Thyrfing performed some of the vocals on „Chapter Five – Ravaged“. How did it come to that?
Marko Tarvonen: We met him first at Heathen Crusade festival in USA last January and asked if they had thought of doing some lyrics in Finnish with Thyrfing because Thomas is a Swedish Finn. Then we contacted him after some months and asked if he was available to contribute on our album and he liked to do it very much. So I guess this was the first time he sings in his mother’s tongue. He did a superb job.
Old fans will miss some of the folky tunes on „Chapter V – Ravaged“ (especially on 'Born of Ice Stream of Shadows') that were a part of your former recordings. What made you write a more traditional Black Metal album?
Marko Tarvonen: Umm... I wouldn’t say black metal at all but yes I know what you mean. We got bored with this folk metal scene totally and wanted to do something very different already on Verisäkeet. There will always be some folkish echoes in Moonsorrow’s music but most of all we’re metal bands for gods’ sake. If you want easy-listening happy melodic shit, try Korpiklaani then. They do it very well but it isn’t my cup of tea.
In contrast to your last recording „Verisäkeet“ you have reduced the guitar work to mere powerchord strumming on large parts of the new album. Don't you think that this is a restriction on your expression?
Marko Tarvonen: No, as there are not so many actual powerchords played on Hävitetty. You have to listen more carefully... almost all the time there are two different chords in the riffs + a different bass line. They are not easy to block out but I can tell they are not those ordinary powerchords we use. We use those very big chords where every string on the guitar is used. So yes, the album is more guitar-orientated than previous albums and reflects our live sound as well
As always, you recorded the album at Tico-Tico studios with Ahti Kortelainen. And as always, I'm not happy with the sound, particularly the vocals and drums. Why did you never chose to change studios as MOONSORROW was growing bigger?
Marko Tarvonen: We don’t want polished sound. We want cold mean shit and Tico-Tico is perfect place for us to get that. We don’t care if people don’t like that.
MOONSORROW has been very productive in the last couple of years. „Chapter V – Ravaged“ is already the fifth album since 2001. How do you keep your creativity flowing?
Marko Tarvonen: Maybe that’s because we haven’t toured so much. But now that seems to change too as we’re getting more and more shows so I guess the next album won’t be there anytime soon.
When you were headlining the Ragnarök Festival in Lichtenfels last year, you had to play late at night when most people were already exhausted from the day. Nevertheless you decided to come back this year...
Marko Tarvonen: Well, the festival is at the same time we’re touring so it was easy to organize that on our schedule.
I heard that there will be only one song on the final MOONSORROW album. Are you already thinking about quitting?
Marko Tarvonen: Someday yes, haha!
Thanks and keep up the good work!
Marko Tarvonen: Thanks for the interview. See you on tour, cheers!