Helsinki 2013

(c) Band of Vipers Official

"A New Start"

Suiciderock: Your debut album “My Half Burnt Heart” is out since February this year. If you check out your lyrics it is obvious that the album is about heartbreaks.
Matti: That’s true but there is also one positive story between all those heart breaks. The song “Middle Of The Night” is actually about something positive, the song tells about finding something good.

Suiciderock: The album is a concept album. Did you plan it to be a concept album before starting to work on it or did the idea come up later?
Matti: I would say it evolved. I wrote all the lyrics and when they were done we realised that all the songs are dealing with the same theme so it came naturally I would say. It wasn’t a hard choice it just developed itself. Of course, we could have done some changes to the lyrics that they would have been a bit different and not so much all about this heartbroken stuff. The songs were something that went on in Riku´s and my head for a while. In the end that was what we wanted to sing about so why change anything if everything fits?

Suiciderock: Why only a half burnt heart? Everybody out there has experienced a heartbreak at least once in his life. Normally your whole heart crashes…
Matti: Maybe I’m dealing a bit different with that cause I’m getting older. I think there is always some hope left even when your heart breaks. You can always find a new love or whatever. My heart is quite ok, not broken right now at least.

Suiciderock: You and Riku did still play in Iconcrash until last year. When did you decide that you want to form Band Of Vipers?
Matti: True yeah. Actually we were still playing shows with Iconcrash last year when we found the band. We had a rough tour with Iconcrash in the end of 2011. We spent almost half a year in a row on tour, that means we travelled quite a lot. At some point on that tour it turned out that Riku and me got the great idea that we should form a band that plays only Finnish Rock Cover songs. Our plan was to make some kind of Eppu Normaali Coverband. Luckily that never happened. But I think we both started to realise that we would leave Iconcrash or whatever happens we would have a band together. So 2012 came and Riku came up with a song and he wanted that I sing. It turned to be a really good song and will be our next single that will be released next month. We had to change the song a little bit but we are really proud of the result.

Suiciderock: So no more ambitions for an Cover Band for you than?
Matti: Actually we have this cover band called the Hell Satan’s where we play some cover songs. But this happens only on so called special occasions, when our relatives ask us to do so. So that means one gig per year for us. You can see that band keeps us quite busy.

Suiciderock: It all happened pretty fast for you. Did you even have the time to rehearse the new material before going to the studio with it?
Matti: Yeah all happened really fast for the Band of Vipers. This change was also some kind of turning point when it comes to my music career. I have been playing in bands for about ten years and I always loved being the guitar player but I always wanted to sing as well. We rehearsed for the record by arranging the songs together. That together with the life shows was the best rehearsal. We had all songs ready when we went into the studio. It was pretty easy. We knew what we wanted to do when we started the recordings.

Suiciderock: How many bands did it take you to change from the guitar to the microphone? How does it feel? Was it a big change for you?
Matti: Only two. I played six years for Iconcrash and before I was playing guitar in another Finnish band. It feels great and for me it was really easy to change. Sometimes when I was on stage with my guitar I got the feeling that I rather would like to sing. It wasn’t difficult for me at all and I still have to play guitar if it is not broken…

Suiciderock: Did your guitar ever broke?
Matti: Yeah we were playing this show and I realised that there was something wrong with it. I couldn’t fix it or find out what was wrong so I decided to throw it away after the third song. So we didn’t have a guitar for the rest of the show. But never mind, that gig was just great. Luckily we have the synth on stage so it was not some strange unplugged gig.

Suiciderock: The music that you do now is slightly different from what you’ve done with Iconcrash. Is that what you really are?
Matti: From my point of view it is not that far from what we did with Iconcrash. You can still find the same elements in Band Of Vipers. There are guitars acoustic and electric drums on stage. Of course, Iconcrash was much darker. We like to have the edge. We call ourselves a synthrock band. That was the best we could find. We like to share the rock energy. We wanted to have a great sound. You can especially hear that when you visit one of our life shows.

Suiciderock: Your brother Lassi joined the band on drums. Was it always clear from the beginning that you want him in the band and how is it to be in a band with your brother.
Matti: We fight a lot and harder. But we both are really cool people so it always goes by. But it was clear from the very beginning that Lassi will join us.

Suiciderock: Now that you have played a couple of shows already. How did your old fans react? Did you get any feedback?
Matti: We had three shows last year and all in all we met three old Iconcrash fans. I guess they just didn’t know that we have a new band. I don’t think that there are any hard feelings when it comes to that. I hope and I’m sure they will still like us and the music what we are doing.

Suiciderock: Do you think that it is or was easier for you as you have already lots of experiences and contacts or is it still difficult for you with the new band?
Matti: No, I wouldn’t say that it is any easier for us also if we have that experience with Iconcrash. This is a hard business, the hardest I have ever been in. There are so many great bands out there. The people don’t show up at the shows anymore as they used to do. Maybe it is easier for us in that sense that we know all the people and what it takes. But I hope that it is our music that speaks for us as a band. Experience helps you but when you start with a new band it always starts from the very beginning. It is a refreshing feeling.

Suiciderock: What happens after the Finnish tour?
Matti: We had a nice practice last night and there are a couple of great songs waiting. So there is already stuff for an new album but of course, this has to wait a little more. We will tour more in Finland until the end of the year. Let’s see what else happens.

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