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Interview: Uniklubi
Joanne A. took the chance making an interview with the Finnish Rockband Uniklubi on 29th of September in Helsinki. They talked about their new album LUOTISADE.

 J.A., 22.10.2007

We asked...
 There is a vast difference between the sound of Luotisade, and that of Kehä, and Rakkautta ja Piikkilankaa ... is that a result of the band's musical evolution?

Yeah, that's quite it, and then we've got a different mixer
- yes, and making of Rakkauttaa was quite long, like, it took a year and a half, and the sessions were like you know, 2 days here and there, and now we've got, like, we had, 2 longer periods. 2 one-week sessions in Petrax in Hollola, and I think we got all the basic stuff you know, drums, guitars, basses, and like, you know, two weeks...yeah, and then we came back to Tampere, to Deerhouse studios to, do the vocals and all the keyboards, and more guitars. It really went nicer this time, 'cause you know, you just concentrate on the album.

So when you were touring and recording the album at the same time, did it feel diff to keep a focus?

Ah yeah, all the time! It was really difficult, 'cause we were always going somewhere, and we didn't have any songs and that was really difficult. When we started the sessions for Kehä, we only had 6 songs, and we were still touring, and like, there were lots of pressures, and no songs... In the studio I there were 3, and I went to play them, but had never heard them before. The producer was like, "Just listen, and see how it goes..." and pressed play. I was like, "Alright", and began to play.

So was recording the first album much different from recording the demos? In that there was no stress...

The first album? Yeah, it was like… well, actually, no! The demos were quite good on the first album. Of course we mixed and played them again- the old songs, and but it didn't felt like right, not like we were recording an album- we just went into the studio sometimes and did something, then had a few months off, then again another few days... It didn't feel like making an album, but we did it, and we had 11 songs. It was then that we sent a sample CD of 5 songs out, to every major label in Finland, and then Universal and Warner contacted us. Universal made the best offer. We were happy about that.

So how did you feel when you heard the first album played for the very first time? Were you satisfied?

Well, I'm still pleased with the first album...even though it' know, bad... well, not bad for a first album, but… there are some great songs I think...well; maybe we grew up a bit. It was 4 years ago, so now the music and lyrics are a bit more grown up, but I stand by those songs. It was an amazing feeling.


We started recording the second album whilst we were still touring for the first album and it really sucked, because you can't concentrate… but with Kehä, we had some ideas, but Lasinsirpaleilla was done, Palvelija was done, and so was Kaikki Mitä Mä we had some ideas. We got the idea for 5-6 or songs that were done, but no clue for the rest. And it was so stressful, and there was a lot of pressure. I remember waking up at night, crying "What the fuck am I going to do?!" it was horrible.


This time, we had an 8 month long gig-break, and there was, quite a lot of time to write songs, and we started writing the demos around December 2006. we did then 10 demos, and actually, of them, I think 7 of the songs are on the new album, so it was quite easy when we then made our third album.

Luotisade went straight to Number 3 in the Finnish Album Charts. What did you think about that?

Noh, well, I think it was disappointing… I was really, you know, expecting it to be number know, we're so humble. But seriously, it was good! I thought that, if it doesn't get to number 3, then I'd be anyway, it was good!!!

There was quite an intense promotional campaign in the run-up to the album's release?

Yeah, but then there was also Idols. I fucking hate them...nothing at all to do with music.

What kind of feedback have you received so far?

It's all been really good!!! The gigs...well, we've had now 5 or 6, and yesterday (in Vammala), was one of the all-time top 3. It was really fucking good. Almost sold out. We were really excited.
We're starting to get better- the songs are still quite new, so you gotta concentrate more, but we're getting more relaxed, so it begins to be like a routine, where you don't have to think so much, so you can perform more. We're looking forward to tonight.

You've already released 2 singles from the new album: Vnus and Luotisade, both in a very short space of time. Is it likely that third single will follow soon?

No...I don' think there's going to be a proper one, just a radio spot, promoting, you know… Well, I think it starts to play next week, maybe...something like that...two weeks, two months, years, never ever...

Luotisade in the band's own words:

Kiveen: It's quite an easy song, you know- dancy, catchy. The story behind it is that I used to live here in Helsinki, but I moved back to Tampere...and I was like, drinking for a month nonstop, and I'd been having fun, and then I got really depressed. The first night where I had a hangover, at maybe 4am, I got this feeling, you know- butterflies! So, I grabbed the guitar; and in 15minutes the song was done. I think it's the most personal song to me ever. And the riffs are fucking brilliant! What Pasi has made of them...made them is great… I think the C part, is great, and that it can't get any better than that.

Älä jää: Well its like, written by Janne and me. It comes from, really Swedish "In Flames" kind of music, really fucking good. There are you know, nice...what's the word? Well you know what I mean. In the verses, it's quite easy and slow, then the riff is really rough...the textures...and the chorus, it makes you want to dance I think...We were dancing at the studio when making the song. It's really groovy...and really, I think it's still really much, pop-rock, despite the riff...Radio friendly. A really good song I think...I think all are good songs....

Vnus: Its, erm, kind of party song, you know? I think it was the last song on the album, Pasi had the riff already for a really long time and we were jamming, and thinking...and then they had this...some kind of chorus on it, and I think it was Janne, and I started whining about it- I didn't think it was good enough, and then I tried...the guys went for a cigarette, and I left to the room with a guitar, and in 3 minutes I came up with the chorus that's in the song now. When I was writing the text, I remember it was something like 2 or 3 am, and I came up with an idea for chorus. I called Janne, and asked "what do you think?" and I played it, and then he laughed! "Go and sleep. It's bullshit!" But then, well the electro basses really good, Marilyn Manson... strong verses...stripped...I really love it. Really like Manson! But nothing much, it's like, quite a sing-along type of chorus, and the verses...Janne has made the verses. I really like the lyrics, except I think that they...well...nothing, the C part is really good. Nice riffing...the riffs come all the time...on this album, the guitarists have made most of the riffs which is really good...very good, 'cause they can play guitar, and I can't.

Luotisade: I remember when we were first rehearsing this song, making the demo last December, we were...I started to cry, it was awful. we were drinking and having fun, and we came to studios to rehearse, and we heard the lyrics for the first was really touching. The first idea was that the song should be fast and groovy, but it turned out like a "When Love and Death Embrace" (HIM) kind of thing....then came the Audioslave thing…quite diverse. Really beautiful songs, strong lyrics...what can you say? I almost started to cry!!

Myrkky: This was kind of surprising. When we heard it first time it wasn't that had a good chorus, but nothing else. When we started to record it, it just came up as it is now! And, it's a fucking great song; really powerful live song...all the things with the guitars... and some catchy things....melodies that aren't that typical...and the chorus is Bon Jovi-ish...very dancy, bouncy!!

Vapauta meidät: It starts really easy, but when we started to make it, we had like...'thin' guitars...and then our producer came up with the idea of violins...and I had this great chorus made...but there was no riff, so it was erm, kind of...Janne came up with the idea of the riff with the guitars, then...our producer listened to the song, and got, splendid ideas with the violins. It came up really strong and massive. The guitar sounds that start the song were on the demo...we couldn't make up the song anymore, so we used the demo guitars. It's still kind of basic, you know, nothing really happens. Nothing special...really basic rock song. Violins are from Soviet Union- a real "Live and let die" kind of thing.

Varjoon juuttunut: This is going to be the third single from the album. This is the first song Janne made on his own, for the band. He came to rehearsal with the riff and we started to jam, and he had a chorus too...and then Jussi started to sing without lyrics...and we made the was like 'whoa'. So, erm, it's really angry. Quite different I think. More angry, and it's faster, and there are really angry lyrics...and the arrangements on the verse, with the vocals...well its like, maybe the best track on the album...its really nice to play live, you can put a lot of energy into it. Catchy chorus, and erm, good verses, nice's definitely one of my favourites. The lyrics came in 5 minutes, 'cause we were so excited! I think for Jussi it's the most important song for him...the anger, he tuned into that feeling- there are these lyrics, "Kill me if you cant catch me!" It tells a lot. It's a brilliant song...and it's nice to have it as a single, 'cause for the first time, the record label is thinking that this or Kiveen should be the next single, so we are really pleased. We sense people a bit different. It's a good way to introduce the band to those who have never heard us...'cause I think pretty much people think we're pussies, 'cause we're always releasing they're going to going to find out who we are...
Antti: ...but it's true, we're a bunch of fucking pussies.
Well, yeah...

Paha sisällä: it's the first song that I wrote for the album, and I think that it was the first one we recorded... I wrote it on tour, somewhere in Pohjanmaa, you know, Lauri Tähkä country! And we...we had a really bad hangover, and I think we were waiting for a sound check in the bar, when you started to jam...I had an acoustic guitar...and I started humming and we were like "whoa its good" then I came up with the lyrics for the chorus, and I think that it was made in 10-15mins. Its about the tour and band, when its hard, and your head collapses because you drink too much, and you're tired... touring 1.5 years on the road....well, it's like... it really tells of our tour, and I think that it was the first song I wrote for the album. All the other songs I made afterwards are influenced by this- it came up really nice. At first it didn't work, 'cause it was too complicated, and we had...we was really funky...and I was depressed, 'cause I'd thought it great, but it didn't work. I was like, 'for fucks sakes!', and it frustrated me alot. Then Janne did the Alice in Chains thing which appears in the outro...the verses were identical. It was really good. The riff is so brilliant, I, I just, fired up, and then the producer made a fucking brilliant strings thing on the verses. Arrangements, it's really you know, kind of, a great song...the walls are closing in...It's really like, when I heard it properly, I was like panicking, 'cause it's so... it's too heavy...well, how can you say? Never mind...

Aika mustaa muistot: This was the last song recorded for the album. It's quite simple, a campfire song. At first there was some kind of band thing going on- we kind of wanted to make it like a heavy power ballad, but it didn't work, so we did the total opposite, with just the guitars and voices. And there is quite a dreamlike feeling with the themes, and the lyrics are quite sad, there are pretty much things, where Janne is doing the backing vocals, that are very, very personal. It's a really personal song. Janne and I came up with the theme... but we were in the studio at the time, doing the drums...I was like, producer and drummer had a break, and I said I had a song, what do you think? And he was enthusiastic, and so that's how it ended up like this.

Varjot: 1st time I heard it, I didn't like it...for first was too much like Huomenna, but ALOT worse...then it went back to the drawing board, and then it came up like this. We rearranged it a lot. At first it was like new metal, with the drumming....but it didn't work, so we simplified it, then it worked...I think that it's a brilliant song...great melodies. Tauriainen from Entwine says that it's the best song on the album. Beautiful chorus. Massive. Beautiful strings...and the end...the string arrangements. AND SINGING!! And you know the part where He goes really high? He does that live also!!!!!

Se ei lähde pois: Not your usual Uniklubi song. It's our tribute to Metallica, Led Zeppelin...all the heavy stuff. We wanted to make one song which was pretty much the music that we loved...Kiss etc...And 'cause I'm the composer, I got to compose the bass thing...the Solo. The lyrics are really personal to kind of...its the first time I'm saying this, but my father died a few years ago, and it's pretty much how I felt about it. The chorus is...a bit hard to listen to at first, but once you get into it, and it opens up, it's fine.

Antti: When you came to the studio, you played a new chorus, and I was like 'what was that' Yeah, and I was like "No no no! You don't understand!!!"
At first, it wasn't working so well...but we changed that, and when I got the drums, I was really pleased, the song was so fucking brilliant, so strong....I think that it's great!! I really love what you did with the heavy metal riff...I really love what you did...
And we were like, you know, well...mostly the last song is a ballad, so we decided that the last song should be the heaviest. Break the mould.

Vielen Dank, dass Ihr Euch Zeit für ein Interview genommen habt.


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