TK: Well, when we started we were pretty young guys, bout 17 years old, so I think it is quite natural that when you grew up your musical taste might change, or at least getting wider. So instead of get stocked to one genre and get bored of that at some point, we have carried our music to new paths, mostly because that way making music keeps inspiring and fun. We haven't think too much what people or our fans are excepting for us to do next. I believe that's most honest way to make music. I guess that has been our driving force. I do wonder sometimes when I hear some of
our albums that what the hell did we think back then to do this and this kind of album, but I believe that every step we have made in the past is very important to us, trying new things, that defines what we are doing today.
Jas : You guys have used the Kalevala as a source of lyrics over the years, what is it about the work that grabs you?
TK: The stories are very poetic, which fits to our music perfectly, in my opinion. Also all of those themes are very timeless, stories about people's relations between each others, beliefs, fears and so on. Characters are not simplified like in the movies, everyone have many sides in their personality, like in real life. Nature is also very much involved, as those stories were born before Christianity came to these areas, so people were believing to spirits, nature was their god. It's just very intriguing.
Jas : Tell me about the moment you, Esa, and Jan decided to start Amorphis.
TK: Esa and Jan were forming the band and they were looking for other players, they asked if I'm interested , but I still played guitar in Abhorrence at the time. So I decided to join as singer to Amorphis. Quite soon after that Abhorrence broke up, so we were thinking things over and I started to play guitar as well, which was/is my main thing anyway. We dropped all the songs we had so far, and started from blank table. I think that was mentally the real start point and we started to think this more seriously. I've been playing in different bands with Jan since we were 11 years
Jas : As band members have come and gone, how has the song writing and influences changed?
TK: We have been lucky because we have had many songwriters in the band always, so usually we have even too many songs when we start to work with new stuff. Naturally every member, ex and present were and are bringing their personality to the songs. I think we are taking influences from everywhere anyway, in past and today. Everyone is doing some home demos during the year, and at some point we start to check them out together in rehearsing place.
Jas : What has been the major driving force behind the upcoming album "Under the Red Cloud?"
TK: I think it's same driving force which has been driving us last 25 years. We still enjoy as much as in the beginning to make music. We felt quite inspired when we started to work with new material, then Jens (Bogren, producer) came to Helsinki for one week to do some pre-production, at that time we realized that we hired a great guy for job, as his dedication and enthusiasm for the album driving us even more.
TK: Hmmm, there's so many...First what comes to my mind now, as having open beer can in my hand while doing this interview; we were on Japan in '97, after the gig we went to local bar RockRock in Osaka and they had drink called “Elegy”, named after our album. Our exsinger, who had been straightedge for years before that, was thinking that should he try just one drink, that “Elegy” drink. That looked so yammy. After first swig he commented: “It feels like coming home!” Well, he is still drunk, heh. Well not maybe that funny story after all but that's what came to my mind...
Jas : What is one moment as a member of Amorphis where you went "I can't believe I get to do this for a living"?
TK: Well on 90's the moment was: “I can't believe I can't get living out of this”, as records were selling great and all that, and we had the shittiest deal with our exlabel. Opposite feeling came for the first time about 10 years ago, when we blank the table totally, had new singer called Tomi Joutsen in the band and things started to roll finally, financially as well. That very moment was at same times when our manager asked some of us who had sidejobs to quit those. That felt so good, as we already had 15 years with this band behind, struggling financially all the time.
Jas : Was there ever a moment where you wanted to quit everything and leave Amorphis behind?
TK: Honestly no. There has been some very down seasons with the band, but I have never even considered seriously to quit. Even when people near us has been thinking that maybe we should just quit. We are not that type of person who just quit things when it's not fun for a while, it's bigger picture we are looking. And I feel strongly that it's been right way to do.
Jas : What are you excited for in the future of Amorphis or Metal music?
TK: I think we still have few albums to do, and I believe we have still a lot to offer to our fans. We are looking ahead and still trying to do our best album, and do better and better live shows. When we don't find this exciting and satisfying anymore it's time to quit. But not for a while, that's for sure.
Jas : What advice would you like to give people trying to reach the level you have achieved?
TK: Just do your own thing, doesn't matter what others are doing or what someone else is excepting you to do. If you like what you are doing, somebody else will as well, sooner or later. And don't try to be something you're not. And read those contracts, hehee!
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