What are your OTHER favorite bands?
Metal:Blind Guardian, Elvenking, Scar Symmetry, Sonata Arctica, Angra, Symphony X, Sentenced, Ulver, Vintersorg, Solefald, Kamelot, Edguy, Enslaved, Turisas
Non-metal: Tom Waits, AFI, Beastie Boys, Decemberists, Silverchair, Hopesfall, Katie Melua, One Block Radius
i need to stop
What OTHER bands got you into the metal scene and around when?
Blind Guardian would probably be the first metal band that got me interested in the metal scene back in 2002, maybe. I heard their song "Lord of the Rings" and then got Nightfall in Middle-Earth, which is still in my top five favorite albums of all time. If I wanted to look back a little further, I could venture to say that Faith No More was the first "metal" band I got into in a big way, but they were so much more diverse than just metal, and they didn't really lead me into the metal scene I know and love today.
How and when did you get into Kiuas, and what sets Kiuas above and beyond those other guys?
I got into Kiuas right when they got signed to Spinefarm records. I used to host a radio show back in college, and we were always looking for new bands and music to play, so we'd scour metal label pages for new bands. Well, we came across the clip of Warrior Soul, and it was basically the catchiest thing I had ever heard. From there, I proceeded to order The Spirit of Ukko and it was just perfect. It blended all my favorite metal genres (power, folk, prog, black) into the perfect meaty combination. Then I aqcuired every single song ever recorded by the group. The rest is history.