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Discussion in 'Children Of Bodom' started by COBHC Webmaster, Oct 17, 2005.
Kinda Off- Topic, but didn't Janne study something, too?
I don't know. Of course you can get an education for a job in here in a year or two. I guess these guys are so talented they can be in the music scene for a long time. I see no reason for Alexi, Janne, Roope and Jaska to stop doing COB as long as they can do it. I suppose they'd all work in the music scene somehow, it's not easy to get a proper job in Finland, getting to university is hard as hell, and basically getting any fancy job is difficult. Of course are more clever detours than straight trying for university. And would they settle for some shit job after years of touring as metal gods? It would be interesting to know what plans they have.
Alexi probably quits CoB the day he dies.
Roope will stay in the music business as well. He's a gifted veteran and will get a place in another band no problem.
Janne, I don't know.
Henkka can do political stuff if he wants to.
Jaska, I don't know.
There are more than 100 supermarkets/ ice- cream houses in Finland, so they will probably get something
FMJ interview with Alexi
Children of Bodom frontman Alexi Laiho was a guest on Full Metal Jackies radio show over the weekend. He talked about the bands current 15th anniversary tour, taking part in a Finnish cooking show and more. If you missed Jackies show, check out her full interview with Alexi Laiho below:
The 15th Anniversary tour is now under way, when you look back on your entire career for an anniversary tour what stands out most that you never realized before?
Well theres a lot of things that happened, a lot of things that I never really stopped to think about during these last 15 years. Obviously, the first time we got the record contract that was kind of like the biggest deal in my life and certain little things like the first time we went to Japan and the first headlining tour in the U.S. and a bunch of little things that might not sound like a big deal. I could go on and on.
Do you feel like it sort of happened quickly in terms of your level of success here and notoriety and showing up on Guitar World magazine and things like that?
Yeah, absolutely. Like I said I really havent had that much time to stop and think about everything thats happened but sometimes youre like, Wait a minute, did I just do that, was I just on the cover of Guitar World with Zakk Wylde and Steve Vai? Really, me? I mean thats pretty awesome right?
Were you giddy that day when that photo shoot happened? I kind of remembered seeing behind the scenes photos, I cant even imagine as a fan of those guys what it must have been like for you.
Well I was trying not to, I think I did a pretty good job too. [Laughs] The thing is that those two dudes are definitely like my ultimate guitar heroes and the guys that I grew up listening too when I was a kid and I still do. Both of them were really cool and we just hung out it was really comfortable to hang out with them.
Does being made more aware of your entire history, being this is a 15th anniversary tour, does it make you rethink the direction of what the band does next?
Usually I really try not to think about stuff like that. I like to keep it spontaneous and before I start writing music I dont really sit down and think about what we should sound like. I just grab the guitar and see what happens. Thats always been the method thats worked for me anyway.
Tell me about something you did recently, you were part of a Finnish cooking show?
[Laughs] Yeah thats very true, I know it sounds pretty messed up but it was a lot of fun. Basically the whole concept of the show is that this guy who is a famous chef in Finland he visits Fins who live outside of Finland somewhat famous or known people. He came out to L.A. to see me and he taught me how to cook and we hung out and we had cocktails and stuff like that. I dont know how to cook, I can make us some sandwiches but thats it. [Laughs] He taught me some stuff so it was definitely a lot of fun.
Will we in the states get a chance to see that at some point or is this Finnish only?
Its only in Finland.
You guys have always been known to do some crazy cover tunes which crack me up every time I do a Metal cover special I play the Britney Spears cover because I cant get enough of it, its so good. Tell me what a bunch of Finnish guys like about a 1985 electro-pop song by Eddie Murphy, no less to want to cover Party All the Time.
That was another moment of not knowing what to do, after you cover Britney and what not, theres no way you can top that but I think we actually kind of did. Somebody came up with the idea of covering that Eddie Murphy song because for some reason during that recording session, that song was always around and we would drink and hang out and that was on the party CD or mix CD and someone came up with the beautiful idea of covering that song and we were like, What dude? What the hell, well see if we can pull it off. I think it turned out pretty good, I mean as long as you have a sense of humor otherwise youre just going to hate it.
What is going on in terms of plans for the next Bodom album, is there some kind of a timeline or are you guys working or writing anything so far?
Right now were in between tours but were going to keep going until next fall so were going to do this U.S. tour and then we got a bunch of European festivals throughout the summer and as far as I know I think were going to start writing new stuff sometime this autumn. I already have written something but basically I really dont write while Im touring, its just kind of the wrong kind of environment for me writing. When youre surrounded by psycho drunks just screaming 24/7 [laughs].
Are you talking about us or your bandmates?
[Laughs] Of course not you, just the bandmates. [Laughs]
Nice. Thanks Sleeper.
Children of Bodom (due tomorrow night at the Gothic Theater) formed in 1993 in the Finnish town of Espoo. Lead guitarist and singer Alexi Laiho and drummer Jaska Raatikainen formed the band around the age of fourteen under the name Inearthed. By the time the outfit released its debut album, 1997's Something Wild, the band had filled out its line-up a bit and changed its name to Children of Bodom, a reference to the infamous 1960 murders of children in the Lake Bodom area near where the band grew up.
Though sometimes referred to as black metal, the music of Children of Bodom bears closer sonic kinship with the melodic death metal that had come out of Gothenburg, Sweden, in the handful of years before Bodom got together.
This act seems to tour more often than it is home, and its latest release, Relentless Reckles Forever isn't really the sound of a band maturing so much as one where Laiho and company definitely aren't afraid to crack a smile -- particularly on the Japanese import of the album, which includes a cover of Eddie Murphy's "Party All the Time."
We recently spoke with Laiho who had woken up for the long night ahead on stage and discussed his early years in music, his deep appreciation for the various Ozzy guitarists and the bowling accident that took him out of commission for a bit a handful of years ago.
Westword: You learned to play many different styles of music growing up. How did you get involved in playing heavy metal?
Alexi Laiho: I started playing violin when I was seven years old so there was a lot of classical music going on. My older sister, she started getting into hard rock and heavy metal and that held an instant appeal for me. When I was really little I was listening to her tapes. I just became a fan of that style of music.
Who were the most inspirational guitarists for you as you were developing your own style?
You know, the guys who played for Ozzy like Randy Rhoads, Jake E. Lee and Zack Wylde. Then like Steve Vai, Yngwie Malmsteen, Paul Gilbert. Guys like that.
Why were the Ozzy guitarists especially influential on you? It sounds like you have a special affinity for them.
They just seemed to have the most character in their playing. They all had different styles but they had a special kind of thing going on.
Are there any guitarists today that you very much respect?
Oh yeah. Not that I can think of many at the moment. Though Jeff Loomis, who used to play for Nevermore -- he's pretty badass.
What specific guitars do you like to play the most and why those guitars?
Oh, I have a signature model for ESP. It's the same shape as what Randy Rhoads played. It's pretty simple. It's got a single pickup, a whammy bar and twenty-four frets. It plays well so what's not to like?
What about the Lake Bodom murders inspired you to take that name for the band?
It was just the thing that we grew up near that lake where everything went down and we were at a point where we had to change our name for the first album.
When you were starting out, what was it like being in a band in Finland?
It was more like an underground scene. Black metal and death metal and stuff like that. The scene that we were a part of...it wasn't easy to get a gig, and you had to really be out there and beg every fucking venue to have you play or open up for somebody. So yeah, it was pretty harsh. I mean, it was pretty rough, but it didn't stop us. We just wanted to go forward, and we would do anything to get a record contract and after years of playing shows in dingy dive bars and whatnot, we ended up getting signed. It was a lot of hard work but it was worth it.
Did you play outside of Finland early on?
Yeah, after the first album came out, we did the first European tour opening up for Hypocrisy and Covenant. It was mostly in Germany and Western Europe. That was amazing and at that time something like that seemed so huge.
How did you have enough of a bowling accident to be out of commission in 2007 forr a little while?
I don't know dude, I was totally wasted, and we were bowling with friends. I slipped somehow and did a fucking 180 in the air and landed on my shoulder. Which probably makes look like the biggest idiot in the whole fucking world, but yeah, I broke my shoulder bowling.
When I read that, I wasn't sure if it was even true.
Yeah, dude, believe it or not, it's for real.
Your band seems to be touring constantly. What is the most challenging aspect of that, and what do you find the most fulfilling?
Obviously the playing part. To me, it's the perfect lifestyle. We move around all the time, and it's a different city every night and different people and different lives, so I like that. I have a hard time staying still anyway so it suits me pretty well. It can be a lot of fun and there's a lot of partying going on, but when you've done that for a year and a half in a row without a decent break, it does get to you. You start to see the wear and tear, especially when you have to fly everywhere or like when you're in South Africa or Asia and they don't have tour buses, really, so you lose so much sleep. Just things like that. It can definitely wear you down and it's definitely not for everybody.
What video games do you like to play most often now and what have been some of your favorite video games?
I like GTA games, but usually driving games, and I liked the type of games like Resident Evil or Silent Hill. But I haven't bought anything new recently, so I need to check what's out there.
On your website you list a few of your favorite albums of all time. Why did you include the Ozzy Osbourne album Tribute?
It's my favorite Ozzy album, and it was the first one I ever heard. I was supposed to learn "Crazy Train" for this music school thing that I was going to. I had never heard Ozzy before. I'd heard Yngwie Malmsteen and stuff like that, and I didn't know who Randy Rhoads was. When I heard that album, it was pretty amazing. You know, the guitar playing and good songs and the whole vibe on that album, just the whole live thing. It's pretty intense.
You went to music school. Did you have a lot of freedom in what you were learning to play, or was there a more strict regimen of education involved?
When I went to music school, it was mostly jazz and stuff like that that I was learning and musical transcription. Just shit like that.
When you're at home in Finland, do people generally know who you are say out on the street?
Well, yeah. I get to do my thing in peace but I would just say that in Finland where the non-metal people would know who I am.
What do people there generally think of someone who makes his or her living being a musician?
Mostly people respect what I do for a living. Of course in the vein that you have the balls to drop out of school and do something that you love. It is true that not that many people get to do what they love for a living.
What's the most unusual or interesting place you've played in your career?
There's so many countries, it's hard to pick just one. I don't know, dude, the whole fucking planet. We haven't played Alaska yet, and I haven't even been there so that would be cool.
Audio for Alexi's appearance on FMJ last weekend
video interview with Henkka
Another one with Henkka:
"DVD's on hold ..." () ... " 'Best of' album in the spring for the 15 year anniversary"
I hope that they keep the setlist a bit 'oldschool' throughout the summer. To promote the best of album obviously..
'Best of' album instead of live DVD... :/ Live DVD would've been some kind of 'best of' tracklist of course, but it's not happening now. Well I certainly think their live set now is too shit and too similar to CRY to be released now. They should dig up a good live recording from 2000-2001 and release that, and fix their current live stuff cos it's probably gonna be their last live DVD.
Nice one! Thanks!
Q&A with Children of Bodom keyboardist Janne Wirman
Don't think squealy keyboard solos belong in a heavy-metal band? You've never witnessed Janne Wirman, 32, ivory shredder for Finnish group Children of Bodom.
The melodic death-metal band delivers a ferociously technical blend of in-your-face guitar and keys:
Q: You just got back from a five-day ship cruise with a ton of other bands called 70000 Tons of Metal. What was that like?
A: It was pretty cool. I'm sure from the fans' point of view, it's really, really cool. I was really happy that we had so many Finnish bands on the boat, so I had people to hang out with. (Laughs) Because, you know, it's pretty hectic and so much people everywhere.
Q: As long as the captain wasn't Italian, then all was good.
A: (Laughter) Yeah, he was Norwegian, so we were all good.
Q: There's a video on YouTube of Bodom singer-guitarist Alexi Laiho singing the Bee Gees' "Staying Alive" during "metal karaoke." Was that craziness the norm on the ship?
A: Yeah, it was like a constant party. It was like people partying all day long everywhere on the boat.
Q: So bands and fans were mixing?
A: I guess that's like their whole idea. When I'm sober, I'm very anti-social. I wasn't like too happy about the idea. But you know, once I get drunk like everybody else, it's fine. (Laughs)
Q: Extreme metal bands from Scandinavia often sound much more melodic than U.S. bands. Why do you think that is?
A: I seriously don't know. That's something that I get asked a lot in interviews. We were trying to think about it, and then we come up with funny answers like, you know, it's so cold and dark.
Q: Do you sometimes feel like the odd man out as keyboard player in a metal band when you tour the U.S.?
A: I'm pretty used to it. We've opened up for Slayer and (stuff), and it still doesn't feel that odd.
Q: You started playing piano when you were 5 and played a lot of jazz before you joined Bodom. Your frontman, singer-guitarist Alexi Laiho, took violin lessons as a kid. Is Finland a musical place for children?
A: I think it is. Or just who I grew up with. All my friends played something, and already when we were 15, we were playing in bands and all that kind of stuff. I think Finland, they put a lot of (importance) into the whole musical education thing. I think even the government somehow is endorsing the whole thing.
When I joined Bodom, I was still sure that I was going to become an architect. But then after a few years, I became a rock star. (Laughs) When we started, obviously, we didn't know what was going to happen. The music was very extreme. But nowadays, we are really happy and really fortunate to have been able to do this for 15 years.
Q: You guys are still young, in your early 30s. But you probably don't party quite as hard as you did a few years ago, do you?
A: (Chuckles) No, which is a good thing, because we partied pretty (expletive) hard for some time. I'm just glad nobody got hurt or killed. Yeah. Somehow for me, it's funny but when you turn 30, somehow, like, I started taking a little bit more responsibility about things I do. We still party, but not that hard.
Q: One of the signature sounds of Bodom is you and Laiho trading solos and matching super-fast notes - guitar and keys. Was that an obvious progression?
A: It wasn't an obvious thing, but then somehow we realized that it works really well between the two of us. It's really cool when we make these solos - mine and his playing style nowadays, I know exactly what he is doing, and he knows what I'm doing. It just fits really well.
Q: Did playing in Bodom force you to develop a different skill set? There's the pitch-bend wheel you use a lot.
A: Definitely, I had to learn, like, (a) whole new way of playing, basically. Because classical or whatever piano you studied - even keyboards and piano are different instruments even though they kind of look the same. And then the whole, like you said, the whole metal way of that thingy. So you pretty much have to learn a whole new thing.
Q: Do you ever sit down at a grand piano and try to whip out some Dave Brubeck or something and feel like, "These keys are so heavy, they're hard to push down!"
A: Yeah. (Laughs) Actually, it (ticks) me off that I don't have a piano at home right now, so I haven't been playing a real piano for years now. I should, actually.
Q: Oh no.
A: Yeah, yeah, I know.
Q: Can you see yourself doing this for a long, long time in Bodom?
A: I definitely wouldn't mind playing for like five more years or something. It's a lot of fun and it's a great gig, the whole thing. So I wouldn't mind at all.
Q: Bodom just won Metal Album of the Year at your country's equivalent of the Grammys (Emma Gaala). I saw a photo of somebody (dressed quite spiffily) accepting an award at the show. Was it you?
A: It was me. Yeah.
Q: Was that kind of fun? It's cool that a band like Bodom gets awards there. Here in the U.S., bands like yours frighten us.
A: Yeah. It's kind of weird in this awards thingy, full of like the pop or whatever music ... for our sorry-ass punk band to be awarded.
Read more here: http://www.macon.com/2012/02/10/1899892/qa-with-children-of-bodom-keyboardist.html#storylink=cpy
She spoke during the entire video
However, nice one
It was all about drinking and smoking and the lady not letting Alexi tell he was a good singer but now it's just screaming.
Not much of an interview but he's really relaxed and that's nice to see every now and then.