Helsinki 2013

(c) Heavens Basement Official

"We have always been very confident when it comes to ourselves"

Suiciderock: Nice to have you finally here guys. You were supposed to play here in Helsinki earlier this year as a support act. Unfortunately this gig got cancelled the very last minute indeed.
Chris: It was really sad when we got to know that the gig or the whole tour got cancelled. We really like to play here in Helsinki. We have gained a fan base here already and we are going to come back for a own tour in November. We have been in Switzerland when we got informed that the tour was cancelled. It smashed our whole touring plan for the first part of the year. I can only repeat myself, it was really sad that we couldn’t do all the gigs we were supposed to do and we really wanted to do. But fortunately we have the chance to play here in Helsinki today.
Rob: Yeah that’s true we have played here at the Circus already last year in November together with Seether.

Suiciderock: Your debut album is still very fresh, “Filthy Empire” was released this year in February through Red Bull Records.
Rob: “Filthy Empire” is almost one year old now. It was about a year ago when we started to record it. We have been touring ever since it’s release back in February. We grew up listening to albums like “Appetite For Destruction” for example. That is some kind of bench mark for us as a band. We really wanted to push ourselves as good as we could. It was amazing to hear our songs on the radio for the first time. That never happened before. We played a lot of shows to gain a fan base but now people got also interested when hearing us on the radio. That was pretty awesome.

Suiciderock: Did you feel a lot of pressure since it was your first record?
Rob: I don’t think so. I mean of course we wanted to get the best out of the album when we entered the studio. But we didn’t have a massive fan base when we started with the recordings so that means you basically write the album for yourself and that is a positive thing as you don’t have the pressure of thinking what the other people would expect from the album. We wanted to make sure that we would make an album that we would be proud of.
Chris: We have always been very confident when it comes to ourselves. So I would say we expected us to succeed with what we do. Not because we are arrogant but because we have always believed in us and the music we do. I think you have to be that way if you want to get further in this business. It is nothing wrong with being confident about yourself. 

Suiciderock: Your debut album was recorded in L.A. by John Feldmann, though your plan for the recordings have been a bit different at the beginning at least when it comes to the location. You first wanted to record “Filthy Empire” in your home country England. Why did you change your mind? It was a quit spontaneous decision as far as I know? What made you change your mind to L.A.?
Chris: That’s right, we originally wanted to record the album in England but than we met a couple of producers in L.A. and we just clicked with John Feldmann and so we decided to record the album in the US. John had the same passion and energy that we needed so we definitely got along and he was the best we could get for “Filthy Empire”.
Rob:  The four of us had such a big vision of what we wanted the album to sound like before we even entered the studio. It didn’t matter for us where we would record the album. It could have been anywhere in the world as we have been so concentrated and so channelled on what we wanted to do with it and in which direction we are aiming to go so there was no difference where we would do it. When it comes to John as a producer. He was the first person we met there and I think it is a very good catch to find someone like him straight away. We didn’t really have that much time to work on the album. “Filthy Empire” was recorded in about eight days. We had to be that fast as we had to fly back to the UK to play at Download Festival. I think the hurry we had can also be heard on the album a little bit as the album itself is so fast.

Suiciderock: I read that you had to choose from about 100 songs which one will make it on the record and which won’t. Now the best 12 of them made it to “Filthy Empire”. Was it hard for you to chose the tracks? Did you really have that many songs ready before the studio?
Chris: No, not really. It haven’t been that many songs. It’s more about 100 different pieces for the songs. We had that riff here and that riff there and they had to be put together as songs.
Rob: Yeah we had like 100 of different things going on and we just had to find the right chemistry to put them together. We just had to try what works together and what didn’t so it was not really that difficult to choose the songs. Actually it was pretty clear which track will make it on the album and which won’t. I think that all four of us would still decide the same 12 songs.
Chris: We had some difficulties when we decided on Track number 12 but everything else was quite clear from the very beginning.

Suiciderock: That means you have already material for the next album?
Rob: At least for the next five albums. I guess we can lean back now and just let things go their way. No, just kidding.

Suiciderock: Like every other band you also went through a couple of line up changes until you found the current line up. There is a very nice story when your singer joined the band as he had to undergo a very hard test when he joined the band. He had to move in with you guys and you got him drunk to see if he would be mentally strong enough to stand all the situations that might await him on an upcoming tour. How did that go? Is it a common ritual in your band nowadays?
Chris: I don’t know. I hope we don’t have to do it that often as that would mean we need to go through another line up change. But no, we just wanted to make sure that he fits to us and to all the situations that might come up during a tour. We just wanted to secure that we could stand living in the same hotel rooms or that we are able to spent time on the road also when it is not so funny at some point. But as you can see, he is here with us today so he passed the test just fine.

Suiciderock: You’ve spent a lot of time on the road this year. You’ve done lots and lots of festivals along with some club gigs. How did this year go for you since the release of your first album?
Rob: Very good. We got the chance to play at many big festivals and places here in Europe we haven’t played before. It was a blast. We played at Hellfest last weekend and we will play at Graspop for example. It went fantastic.

Chris: Today we are playing that kind of club gig but it is part of the Rock the Beach festival that takes place here in Helsinki at the moment. We are a bit disappointed that we haven’t had the chance to play more festivals in Scandinavia this year. Hopefully next summer we will have the opportunity to have more festivals here in Finland and the rest of Scandinavia.

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 (c) Suiciderock.com