Ilosaarirock  / Joensuu 2011

"Flying Colours" Album Cover pics by Marek Sabogal, Design by Ville Granroth

"Playing is like a religion for us"

Suiciderock: You have been warmly recommended to us by Mikko from the Von Hertzen Brothers. The band was found back in 2006,  what can you tell us about The Blanko?
Pauli: Well, that`s great to hear, wow I`m really taken by this compliment from Mikko. We have also been inspired by them. Though it is weird to hear that kind of a nice compliment as I feel like the opposite. The Von Hertzen Brothers are definately a great band. Ok, The Blanko consists of three parts if you want to say it like this. Drums, bass and me on guitar and vocals. We play melodic, progressive power pop that has been inspired by many legends like e.g. Jimmy Hendrix, Jeff Barcly,… just to mention some names. We are not putting anything together on purpose, everybody is inspired by something.

Suiciderock: Your debut album “Flying Colours” hit the Finish stores in April this year, so it has been on the market for a while now and it received some good critics so far. Let`s get a bit more into that. Can you describe the record and the songs it contains a bit?
Pauli: It came together pretty well in my opinion. There are no bad songs on the album, the album doesn`t have any fillers or b-sides on it. And as you said, we have received very good critics for it so I`m happy with what we have done.

Suiciderock: Who is responsible for the song writing in general?
Pauli: I do the song writing. It normally goes like this that I write a song and than we go to the rehearsal space to work on it and to put the sound and the lyrics together. Our songs are about love, miserable life.

Suiciderock: Is your life that miserable?
Pauli: *smiles* No, no it is not. But we are all also into blues and maybe the blue mood comes from that direction a little bit. Maybe miserable is the wrong word and I should use melancholic instead.

Suiciderock: You have already released an EP when you started with the band, would you say that the EP is a lot different comparing to your current record? Soundwise / Lyricalwise?
Pauli: You must know that all our recordings are sort of a reflection of a certain period of time. Our new stuff what you can hear on “Flying Colours”  is different than the songs you can listen to on our EP. But I think that`s something that comes naturally. We all have grown up and so has our style and our songwriting as well. The EP was done back in 2007 and we had to record something to let people know that we are existing.

Suiciderock: The bands name “ The Blanko” relates to an idea of a blank canvas: How did that idea come up?
Pauli: The band name was kind of a democratic decision. I can`t remember who came up with the name. I think Marco, our bass player was the first who had the idea for the name. We had other names in our minds as well but than we found out that all the band names that mean something special are already used so we decided to create this emptiness in our name and we are the ones who add the colours to that blank emptiness with our music.

Suiciderock: So it was clear that you will choose something with “Colours” for your debut album?
Pauli: No, not really. Our album title “The Flying Colours” has a double meaning which I won`t reveal now. But we already had this song called “The Flying Colours” and so we thought it would be cool to use the title also as the name for the entire record.

Suiciderock: But you really should explain that double meaning now…
Pauli: Hm, I can`t remember so well anymore… *smiles*

Suiciderock: Ok, let`s keep it that way than. You have gained a  impressive life act reputation during the years the band is existing. Was it easy to get gigs without having a record out? You had an EP to offer? Was that enough?
Pauli: Apparently it was. For us playing is like a religion, that`s the reason why we are here on this planet. We just kept on playing and playing everywhere and that`s how people got the hint of our band and so we got more and more life gigs. We have always been playing lots of gigs, I think that`s what bands should do. We got a lot experience along with all the shows.

Suiciderock: What can people expect from your life shows?
Pauli: They can definitely expect a lot of energy. They will see how much energy this band has to offer on stage. I think our drummer is the best drummer on this planet and so is also our bassplayer and we just put our best together to create something unique at least in my point of view. Every gig is something different.

Suiciderock: We are at the Ilosaarirock today, you have played quite an early show, around 13.00, which is almost lunchtime. How did you feel? How did the audience react?
Pauli: To be honest we thought that there wouldn`t be any people in the audience. But we said before that show, that we would anyway give our best as we always do, no matter if there are three or three hundred people in the audience but luckily it wasn`t that bad and there were many people who showed up. It was great to play here today, even at this early time. However I must confess that we are night persons and that we prefer evening gigs. I personally think that in the evenings or during the night the channels of the people are more open to experience the music and the show. 

Suiciderock: There are some well- known bands playing today, Michael Monroe for example. Are there any bands you want to see yourself?
Pauli: I would go for the Von Hertzen Brothers of course.

Suiciderock: You are touring a lot and you will be performing also a lot on festivals. How do you keep yourself in shape for that?
Pauli: Haha, that`s uncool if I say that I go jogging or to the gym now. Rockstars don`t do things like that. So you shouldn`t say that if you are supposed to be a Rockstar. I rather should mention bad habbits now but this helps indeed.

Suiciderock: Your future plans for the band?
Pauli: Play, play, play. We have some plans to go on tour abroad as well. It`s still in progress so I can`t really talk about this right now. Again it doesn`t really matter where we are and where we play. As long as we are together doing our thing.

Find The Blanko on MySpace & on their homepage