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Kalmah interview (10/2003)

With: Antti Kokko [guitars]
Conducted by: Iced Iñigo
Published: 02.10.2003

Band profile:


- What are your expectations for your new album Swampsong?

We hope it will reach more fans that we have today. We have had great feedback and reivews and done lots of interviews, so, it seems things are moving forward with good speed.

- What are the main differences between your albums?

I think the basic elements on each album are the same but the songs represent Kalmah differently. The first album represents Kalmah that is totally relieved and the songs have some primitive energy. Second album has lots of speed and agression with touch of anger. Third album represents what Kalmah really is. It is a mixture of great ideas from all the band members and it is as a whole the best album we have made so far. There is great melodies, even if I say so...:], and the atmosphere of that album is great.

- How will you define your music style?

I think it is pure swamp metal with melodic and aggressive death touch.

- Which is Kalmah´s relations with swamps…?

Swamp is a kind of a inner thing inside the band. It is hard to explain but the area we live in Northern Finland is 60 precent covered by Finnish swamp. Swamps and nature give us peace of mind.

- Is music in general very important in Finland? Why are so many really great metal bands there?

That is hard to tell. Music is very important for Finns that is true. I think the reason for such many metal bands is that in the cold winters there is nothing much to do than play. I don't know.

- Kalmah has never done a tour, why? I think that the band is good and famous enough to tour. Are you going to tour presenting your last album?

The reason is we have never been asked for a tour and we don't have a booking agency behind our backs to organize one for us. Hopefully we could tour after this album but at the moment I can't tell anything about the future with tours involved. We are going to play some local shows.

- You played in "Wacken 2002", what can you tell me about that gig?

That was the best metal festival we have been and the best gig we have played! We had only 45 minutes to play and we sure did. We played in a tent and the temperature was about 30 degrees, so, the atmosphere was very warm...:]

- What a person who has never heard of Kalmah can expect from your music?

He can expect so aggressive and melodic blast that he can never be the same after that!

- What are your plans for the future?

We are going to play some local gigs and after that start to write material for the next album. I believe we are going to be on studio within 2 years and hopefully we could be on tour one day!

- Do you see Kalmah in 10 years of time?

Yes, definitely. If the inspiration gives us reason to continue, why not.

- What do these bands represent for you:
Led Zeppelin: Stairway to heaven
Metallica: Great albums and great music. Metallica was one of my favourites in the 80's.
Children of Bodom: Great musicians with great attitude.
Nightwish: Band that created something original and did a great job for all Finnish metal bands.
Eternal Tears of Sorrow: Good memories.
Mayhem: I have one demo of Mayhem. It was something new and very original those days.
M. Manson: Madness.
Kalmah: Cheers!

- What was the first metal album you bought? And the first concert you went to?

The first metal album was Megadeth Rust In Peace. My big brother did all the music investments, so, I didn't have to. And the first concert was actually midsummer festival in Jyrkkäkoski with Stratovarius and stuff in 1994 or something.

- Which are your favorite bands?

Well old Judas Priest, Pantera, Sepultura, Paradise Lost, Megadeth, In Flames. Death and DT to mention a few.

- And which bands have influenced you most in your music in Kalmah?

Megadeth was the reason I bought a guitar.

- What do you enjoy doing in your free time?

Sports, greyhound racing, hunting, having fun with my friends.

- If you want to say something to all the metal-heads that are waiting for Kalmah all over the world…

I hope you like the new album! And remember the third is the magical...

I would like to thank Antti Kokko [Guitars] for answering my questions and Nelli Ahvenlahti [Spinefarm Records ] for making this interview possible.


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