Amorphis are twenty years old next year. Twenty whole years, full of creation and music. The band started playing Death Metal, then the boys experimented, crossed the river, added melodies and clean vocals to their music; they have become a GREat band and they will keep on making GREat music... A few hours before getting on stage, singer Tomi Joutsen is meeting with us. He’s got the flu, yet he is more than willing to talk with us about the band’s next step and the dominating Finnish Metal scene. Oh, by the way, Tomi is a cool daddy, he’s got three kids of his own!
Interview by Costas Koulis and Nikos Astifidis.
Rockpages.gr : “Skyforger” was released last May. How’s it going so far? What’s the feedback?
Amorphis : Feedback... It’s positive... People who like albums like “Silent waters” seem to like to like this one, too... So I guess we did something right! (laughs) It came out quite fast after “Silent waters”... I think that this album gives a very good picture of what we are... What we are about the moment.
Rockpages.gr : Would you say that this album is the last one regarding concept albums?
Amorphis : I don’t know... Let’s see what happens because next year is kind of a special year for us... It’s gonna be our 20th anniversary. So I don’t know what will happen... What album we will record...
Rockpages.gr : Is it going to be connected with the Kalevala (e.n. the national epic of Finland) once again?
Amorphis : I don’t know! (laughs) We definitely have to think of something completely new, but we’ll continue doing this kind of music.
Rockpages.gr : Can you imagine your new album not based on such stories but on every day life?
Amorphis : Maybe... but I really like these stories and that kind of atmosphere. The Kalevala is a good inspiration.
Rockpages.gr : “Silver bride”, the single, it was released in Finland only... why?
Amorphis : In Finland Metal music is famous... Radio stations play Metal music...
Rockpages.gr : Speaking about this single, it reached No 1 and you’ve just released (e.n. October 28) a new one (e.n. From the heaven of my heart). I’m just wondering whether it’s gonna be released Europewise or not...
Amorphis : I think it’s gonna be sold via internet. You can buy it over Nuclear Blast web shop... And we are releasing a video as well... I don’t know when it’s gonna be ready.
Rockpages.gr : Is it gonna be a live clip?
Amorphis : In a way yes. We shot a few shows...
Rockpages.gr : I checked the tour section over your website and saw that you have been touring since the beginning of the 2009.
Amorphis : Almost...
Rockpages.gr : How has it been so far? Hard?
Amorphis : It depends... Sometimes someone is sick...
Rockpages.gr : Like now! (laughs)
Amorphis : Yeah! The distance might be long. But we are trying to act like professionals and put a good show for the fans. That’s our main concern, that’s the reason we worry. Of course we all have families... Sometimes it’s boring to go to the venue and have nothing to do. But now we do our jogging, we have a gym bag, weights and stuff.
Rockpages.gr : I have a question about your music style. You started playing something else, then you evolved to another wave. Is that way the natural path to play as you go along?
Amorphis : Well, of course I wasn’t there when we started... I can see some kind of folk thing going... especially some melodies... the style... I think that these things can guarantee Amorphis music and I’m really happy this band made albums like “Am Universum”... Nowadays we can do really almost everything. The guys did a really good job.
Rockpages.gr : About all that thing about Folk Metal... Like Ensiferum... Do you think you are a basic influence for such bands?
Amorphis : Hard to say... Amorphis in Finnish Metal Scene... They are pioneers in a way... We started something else earlier... Bands have been influenced by us...
Rockpages.gr : Do you listen to new bands, Amoral and stuff?
Amorphis : I’m trying to follow the scene but I don’t know so many bands... Sometimes I find some new bands through Myspace and stuff. I’m reading Finnish Rock magazines, I’m trying to be open-minded. I’m listening to the latest Paradise Lost album, the new Alice In Chains album... There are so many bands in the Power Metal Scene and Metal Core Scene. I just can’t follow...
Rockpages.gr : The German scene is very important, so is the Swedish scene. But would you say that Finland has become the Metal capital of Europe?
Amorphis : I don’t know... I love Swedish bands, so it’s difficult to say that Finnish bands are better than Swedish! (laughs) In Finland we think, in a humorous way, that Sweden is better than Finland, but there are so many good Finnish bands. It’s amazing that so many young people can play good Metal music.
Rockpages.gr : Music is your life now?
Amorphis : Yeah! I was working when I started... Now I’m just doing my music, while trying to be a good father... I have three kids.
Rockpages.gr : Are you going for the fourth?
Amorphis : Hope not! (big laughs) I’m really satisfied now...