Tampere 2008

Mauri Pennanen

"A New Start"

Suiciderock: The band has gone through big changes since we met when you supported NGT on their German tour which was nearly 2 years ago. What happened since than?
Jann Wilde: Basically I would say that it was one big change as only half of the group and half of the name is left. We felt like we have to change the name of the band out of that reason. We have some new players in the band, so we kept the first part of the name because of commercial reasons. It was much more easier to work that way. The only thing we did was changing the second part of the name “Rose Avenue” into “The Neon Comets”.

Suiciderock: So you didn`t want to keep the name?
Jann Wilde: Our recordlabel wanted us to keep the name but it simply didn`t match for us because we are not Jann Wilde and Rose Avenue anymore, we are different band. So we really felt the need to give the band a new name.

Suiciderock: Who made up the “The Neon Comets” than?
Jann Wilde: Well, you should know that I`m a big fan of rock music out of the 60`s. I`m also a big fan of Bill Haley and his Comets. I think Jann Wilde and The Neon Comets is just a modern version of that name. Maybe I should call it the neon version. *smiles*

Suiciderock: Would you say that “Jann Wilde and The Neon Comets” is a completely different band than “J.W. and Rose Ave.” or can there still be found some “old influences”?
Jann Wilde: It seems like that yes. If you see it from the musical aspect it isn`t. I write most of the songs like I did on “Tokyo Okei”. It is not so different.

Suiciderock: So you have no difficulties to play the former material as well?
Jann Wilde: No, no not at all. There are no problems because I wrote the songs and so I own the rights.

Suiciderock: You have a complete new line-up, except you and Tender could you introduce the new guys briefly?
Jann Wilde: Sure. on the guitar we have a marvelous rock`n roll musician, Mr Robin Savage. He is a great person as well as a very talented guitar player. On the bass we have Dean Martini, an old friend of mine. He actually played in the first version of Jann Wilde and Rose Avenue some years ago. So he simply returned to us. Kayde Palmer is on the keyboards he is an old friend of mine, too. He joined Jann Wilde and Rose Avenue before we split up. He has already been a member of the band before.

Suiciderock: You were searching for a new guitar player on the internet. How many people did apply for the job?
Jann Wilde: Yeah that`s how we got to knew Robin. The only thing I asked him when we met was “Do you like T.REXX”? Luckily his answer was “yes”, so I told him that he is a part of our band. It was obvious that he should play in our band cause he likes T.REXX.

Suiciderock: Did you have many applicants for the job?
Jann Wilde: Many people applied for it. We were quite surprised as there were not only Finnish guys also some players e.g. from Germany wanted to join us. There were some pretty good ones as well but it would have been difficult to arrange everything. They would have had a very long trip to come to the rehearsals and gigs. *smiles* But it was really funny to see how many people have sent us an email. There were only five from Finland. There were some heavy guitar players, too.

Suiciderock: Did you invite some of them to play with you, or did everything happen just via internet?
Jann Wilde: There was no need to do that because after we had met Robin our decision was made.

Suiciderock: Bandsplits seem to play a big role esp. in Tampere at the moment? What`s up? Is it some kind of bad air or what is the reason in your opinion?
Jann Wilde: Yeah, maybe there is something in our water. That happens all the time. Bands split up or the members change every now and than. It`s sad, it`s really sad but if you have to work so hard and you want to continue with the music you have to make such decisions from time to time also when it`s difficult. It was really sad when we had to do that with Jann Wilde and Rose Avenue, it was a really good band, I really miss the guys. Arde is now having his own band, he is a talented guy, a good songwriter and a good singer. So he deserves his own band. Rene is playing in Ardes band,too, he is a much better guitar player than bass player.

Suiciderock: You have 2 songs on your MySpace profile, “Glamtronik” and “Polaroid” so people get a taste of what they will get by the end of august when you release your new record, that will be called “Neon City Rockers”. What can you tell us about the album?
Jann Wilde: The album will come out on 27th of August, the sound is much more rock. There is also some jazz on it. It`s a good album in my eyes.

Suiciderock: You write all the songs and you have done that in the past as well. Do the new members bring in some of their own ideas as well?
Jann Wilde: No, not this time. All the songs had been written before they joined the band. I`ve done the demo versions of them on my homecomputer already. So they have been ready to record. I burned a copy, gave it to the guys and all they had to do was to learn to play the songs.

Suiciderock: You performed at Yo-Talo together with Heijaste and Renoise. How did that come up?
Jann Wilde: Oh that was very simple. Chris from Renoise called me and asked us to come to play with them and our answer was “Yes, why not”?. We know the guys from Heijaste since many years so it was kind of a uninon. *smiles*

Suiciderock: Now the main question: Will you come to Germany?
Jann Wilde: Yessssssssss, definately! Maybe not as a supportact anymore. We would love to play some small clubgigs in Germany, e.g. at the Wilde at Heart in Berlin. That would be very nice, maybe we could come there for five gigs or something like that.

Suiciderock: Anything planned? Any dates?
Jann Wilde: Unfortunatly not yet. We have to wait and we have to see how people react when the album is out. Maybe spring 2009 would be a good time for a tour.

Suiciderock: Will you release the album in Germany so the German fans can grab a copy as well?
Jann Wilde: Hopefully it will. It was quite difficult when we wanted to release “Tokyo Okei” in Germany.

Suiciderock: Could you name three positive aspects of the new band?
Jann Wilde: This band works very hard. We are very good friends and I don`t play guitar anymore which is a positive thing in my opinion as I can`t play this instrument. *smiles* Luckily we don`t need two guitars anymore. We have the keyboards which we didn`t have before. So the sound is much better. We have a really good friendship inside the band and we had a great time together. I think that this is very important.

Suiciderock: Are you still in contact with Arde and Rene?
Jann Wilde: Yes, we are friends. Maybe we are better friends now than we`ve been before. We don`t have to discuss about music anymore. Nowadays it`s very easy; I write the songs and Dean Martini is something like the musical maestro in our band. We don`t have to discuss such matters anymore. That makes everything a lot more calmer, there is no reason to fight.

Suiciderock: What will Jann Wilde and The Neon Comets sound like? Can you tell us something about the songtitles?
Jann Wilde: The album includes 12 songs, the first track is called “Baby Said Yeah”. It`s very 70`s like.
The second track , “Danceroom Bop” is very 50`s like with a little bit of punk.
“Screams at the Ballet” is a song about dragqueens. This song is very important to me.
Than we have “Neon City Rockers”, the name speaks for itself.
I continue with track nr. 6, “Superstar Cocktailbar” this song sounds a bit like the Swedish band, called The Ark, it`s one of my favourites on the album. The last song, “The Motion Picture” is something special because it`s something we`ve never done before. We have all this violins and a chello. The song is five minutes long. Maybe it`s a bit too long to sing it life. Oh and than there is this song called “Forever”. It sounds like Queen. Kayde does almost all the backing vocals. It`s a funny song.
The new album includes much more brit pop and not anymore that much of David Bowie. I think it was a really good move for us. 

Suiciderock: Where did you record the album?
Jann Wilde: It was recorded here in Tampere. The studio was just opened and we have been the first band there.

Suiciderock: Who was the producer?
Jann Wilde: A guy called, Mephisto Mietinen, He has played in some punk bands before. He is very famous here in Tampere.

Suiciderock: What was the recording process like?
Jann Wilde: The recordings took us about two month. We made it in different parts. We went to the studio for a couple of days. Than we had some days off. Pretty nice actually. It turned into a little rush when it was time to mix the album as we had only two days left so we had to hurry up a bit.

Suiciderock: How did it feel to record with the new guys?
Jann Wilde: It was a completely different situation. When we recorded “Tokyo Okei” it was a big mess in the studio but this time we hold on tight to what we want and we were very concentrated through the entire recordings. It was hard work.

Suiciderock: Did you get any response about the new material from e.g. your fans already?
Jann Wilde: Yeah most of them were positive. Lot`s of new people wrote to us that they`ve found our band. They told me how good it is that we have changed our style that way, I mean also our looks.

Suiciderock: That`s true, you are not that colourfull anymore…
Jann Wilde: *smiles*, Yep the overalls didn`t fit anymore. You know? *laughs* It was good to change the style. My hair was in such a bad condition. I was afraid that I have to shave it. I always wanted to have long hair but I never had any.

Suiciderock: Which song has the honour to become your new single?
Jann Wilde: The first one will be “Polaroid”, which people can also hear on our MySpace profile.

Suiciderock: When will you shoot the video?
Jann Wilde: We are going to shoot the clip for the song in a few weeks. It`s going t be funny. It will be shot at some punkclub like Vastavirta we are using some neonlights. Hopefully we can shoot it somewhere here in Tampere cause it`s much more easier for everyone.

Suiciderock: You recorded “Too much love will kill you” together with Chris from Dead by Gun and Jonne from Negative but the single was never released?
Jann Wilde: Yeah, that`s right. I don`t know why. When we recorded that song I had a terrible flu and I lost my voice when we were in the studio.

Suiciderock: Your future plans?
Jann Wilde: I really hope that most of the fans will like the new album, too because I know that some people think that we are not the same anymore. But it`s boring to make the same kind of album and music all the time.


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Find Jann Wilde & The Neon Comets on
MySpace & on their homepage

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