Monday, 5 November 2018

Helsinki Industrial Festival

That short break from blogging grew longer than was supposed to, but let's get back to business.

I lately haven't been at any gigs/raves, so I had nothing to blog of except new albums and I was busy with Club Interface and the podcast, but now things are easing up.

So I went to Helsinki Industrial Festival for friday (had to skip saturday due illness) and had a blast!
First up on stage was Larva. Sadly it was yer typical harsh electro stuff with nothing new. Reminded me quite a lot of Formalin, since tempo was slower than most bands have. Singer looked like he was out of Marilyn Manson's group and keyboard player from 80's hairmetal band. Set was okay, but nothing special and didn't work for me. It was okay, but done well. I'm sure they will find their target audience.

Next up Sirus, which I was really looking forward to and they didn't disappoint. Good stage energy and chrarisma plus killer tunes is always a winner. I always liked their albums because they are bold mixture of different influences and sounds.You might get a dubstep break in industrial song etc and they just managed to make it work somehow when it's not supposed to work at all. They really rocked the crowd well for such a early spot. Would love to see them again live.

Grender was next up and this was surprise. They've gone much more rock direction than I expected them to. And this was bit of a disappointment, since I'm not fan of rock, loved their electronic style and latest album, but now it went more into industrial rock, almost metal from time to time. They did put on a good show and as you can guess, rocked the crowd.

End of the evening was Nachtmahr, which I wasn't very familiar with. I only had heard few tunes and liked them (and had one single). I knew it would be full show and show they certainly did put on the stage! Loved the energy of the songs, they were enough varied so I didn't get bored or anything like that. And show was full on with old news footage projected on screen, uniforms etc. I became a fan of the band. Songs really have enough oomph to grab my ear and show was nice add to the mixture. Also you could see of the crowd who came for Nachmahr.

Wednesday, 27 September 2017

Musical education with In Strict Confidence

Hiya!

time to FINALLY write something here. Been just too busy with Interface podcasts and other projects. But now I'll take a breather from them and tell you of my latest musical venture.

Gloria is one legendary venue that is like made for this kind of music. Main arena is dark, round and has bit of underground vibe in it that suits electronic music so well. Been there many times at various events and I like the place.Sound there is also very good quality these days. But let's move on to musicologu

First up Kuroshio. This was  a rare treat. It's been long time since I saw this band live and they never fail to rock on stage. I sadly missed the first song, since I got there bit later than planned. Set was just pure gold as always and could've been longer one. A good start for a perfect evening.

Next was Forgotten Sunrise from Estonia. This was band I've never previously had heard so I was excited to be introduced to them. This was hard to categorize. I have no idea what genre it should fall under, maybe avantgarde/experimental would be closest one. It was mixture of guitar, electronics and freaky vocals and hard basslines. This might sound like trip hop description, but it was far from that. To me this was bit tough cookie, but somehow it worked very well live. Would I listen to it at home? Hmmm, maybe. Good to see this kind of bands on stage in Finland! Bold booking Dark Helsniki!

And the main dish was up next. In Strict Confindence was band I had heard of but somehow managed to avoid hearing, so this was something I looked forward to a lot. Especially since it was vintage show, it sounded interesting. Was it good? Hell yeah! Did I become a fan? Most likely. Will I buy the cds? For sure! Shut up and take my money :D The band really rocked live. They have that energy on stage that radiates and puts you under the spell and you can't help but to dance. Singer had same roughness in his voice as Funker Vogt's singer has too and it suited the music. ISC's singer's voice is softer, not as roary as Funkers so it is bit easier to listen to. Good melodies, good singer and good stomping bass makes you dance for sure and this band had all those elements. It really felt like the band played for 15 mins when the set was over and made me hungry for more. Time does fly when you have fun and are educated musicwise on gigs. Big thank you Dark Helsinki for this wonderful evening of musical education!

Saturday, 1 July 2017

Ten After Dawn

Hi all!

Another week, another interview! This time with Teemu Salo of local heroes Ten After Dawn. Hope you like it :)

Here's an interview with Ten After Dawn!

1. What was the first record you bought and which was most influential?
the first CD that I bought myself might be “Haloo” album of the Finnish ”Neljä Ruusua” band. My first LP I got from my mother was Deep Purple's "Deepest Purple" compilation. The Music was exciting of course, but the cover was really cool I thought! My mother was working in a record store so already at age of 6 I got my hands onto many different kinds of music. It's impossible to say what music's been the most influential (we are talking about the early days as a little kid now, right?) because I have been thru most of all usual bands from Kiss, Mötley Crue to whatever Metallica's and of course 80-90's dance music to rock n roll and blues classics like the most kids did back then. But at age of maybe 4 very first artists that have really got my attention were Finnish female singers Katri Helena and Paula Koivuniemi! My parents told me that I was just staring the speakers in a trance while listening to them! My taste in music has always been very diverse. I think it's a bit funny when an artist is often labeled as a person to that particular music genre that he/she is working with. Music is an endless wonderland, go and explore it! If you don't like it, turn it off to something else! Or then you might want to give it some time and try it later again.I have my favorites in almost every genre. And there's always so much more!

2. What is the story behind Ten After Dawn?
I had made music with ”ordinary” bands for years already, and at some point it became very frustrating because even when you have talented musicians in your band, it's hard to get that vision thru to everyone what it all should be about. That final big picture. Basicly you have to make all kinds of compromises usually. And usually that doesn't lead you anywhere. For me Ten After Dawn represents much more freedom. It doesn't mean that we don't know who we are or what we want to do with our music, it's all about the idea of freedom. Any art or music is of course mostly about framing the picture what it is all about, otherwise it's free jazz, right?..So..we made some songs with Toni already in..maybe 2005 or smth like that, mostly industrial rock..had other musical commitments back then, but a few years later we thought ‘let's do this’, and we started to realize what we would really like to do with this.

3. How did you come up with the name?
It was just an early morning's idea of mine if I remember right;) ”It's already Ten After Dawn”

4. Who are Ten After Dawn?
The ones who might have something else to give to the world of dark electro than an average one!

5. First thing that comes to mind when thinking of finnish scene is heavy metal and rock. What made you choose such an alternative sound?
We wanted to do basically just something different. As I said before, metal and rock are very old fashioned in many ways genrewise. It still starts from a song and lyrics with us, sometimes it can be a sound, which ever makes me or Toni to have some kind of idea for the song.. But in the end of the day you can take off all the production and usually you'll have a song that is arrangeable almost to any single instrument or style if you would like to!

6. Teemu you are also behind Dark Helsinki, tell us of that and why start it
Dark Helsinki started when we wanted to bring some bands to Helsinki and to arrange club nights too. At the moment we are organising a few events per year with DH. It is a separate from Ten After Dawn organisation and Anna DH is in charge of that. However Dark Helsinki does a part of TAD's management as well.

7. Which artists influenced Ten After Dawn sound?
Ten has been started much as an industrial rock band, and we came from that to this more dark electro sound. Of course artists like NIN were important back then. Also for example IAMX has been one of those to make us understand that you can truly do whatever you would like to in these more electronical landscapes. We are still using some acoustic instruments if needed, anything that fits the idea. We don't want to sound anything else but ourselves, and I think that there are not too many bands you can compare directly to us. Our nordic sense of melodies makes it sound somehow different too, I think.

8. Which comes first: melody, sounds or lyrics?
It can be any of those first ones! Sometimes I can even write a good A4 sheet of lyrics based on some beat in my head, and at the same time I may have a clue of a vocal melody too. What becomes melodies then..I'm a bit strange in a way because I don't particularly have to struggle with them usually..I just start to sing and I will always get some kind of melody..it's usually very easy. It's just an improvising, and then you just start looking for more details fitting to the lyrics.

9. You've done also remix for Solar Fake and vice versa (released on Another Manic Episode), how did this happen?
I just asked Sven if he would like to do a remix for us. I was a bit surprised when he said ”Ok” even without hearing the song first! He had of course heard us playing live as we opened for them in Helsinki already in 2014. Then he asked me a little bit later if we would like to do a remix for their album too. Remixing is fun, hopefully we would have time and other cool opportunities to do some more soon! It's refreshing.

10. Now that Melody ep is out, when can we expect album?
I think you mean ”Best of Both Words” EP (yes, editor)? We have already got some new songs and ideas for the full album, hopefully it will be out in 2018! And before this some singles etc.

11. What are your future plans?
We love to do live shows so hopefully a lot of new live dates! But we have already started focusing more and more on new material now. I'm writing all the time. It's something that I have used to. A way of living for me. We have already got quite a good idea of our full album:)

Monday, 5 June 2017

Vampire in Berlin

Hiya!

I finally got a chance to tell you of my latest adventure in Sonicland. This time I went to Berlin to see BlutEngel acoustic and full show. Boy am I glad I saw both shows!

This was just dream come true in more than one way. I'm in love with the music and a chance to see 2 shows for less than 30€ each sounded like a superdeal. And I love Berlin, so it was perfect weekend getaway. The venue, Astra Kulturhaus, is interesting one and good concert place, eventhough it is bit hidden. Due gothic look of the place, it was more than perfect stage for these gigs.

First acoustic one. I'm always keen on hearing different versions of the songs and Chris wanted to challenge himself once more by doing an acoustic show. And it was very special one too. First on stage Solar Fake. Oh wow what a set! These songs work acoustically so well and sometimes maybe even better than original versions. The lyrics step out to play bigger role than in electronic music. I was really looking forward to this too, since I saw the dvd of previous acoustic show. Sven has big stage voice definetly and he's got the charisma for big stages. Andre knows how to take audience when playing keyboard or guitar like this time, so they work so well together. Songs sounded beautiful and melancholic in this stripped format. What made this even more special was the elderly couple who loved every minute of the set, shined the love for eachother and really showed it they were having a good time. It just melt my heart.

And how about the main feature? It certainly did not disappoint. Chris seemed really comfortable and laid back during the concert. All of them sat in red chairs, chatting with audience (understood only coca cola light) and seemed to be at ease. This made the gig feel really intimate one and not yer typical big show. Only shame was that not too many people arrived for this show. On the other hands good thing, but they missed helluva show. I can say same things as I said of SF gig. Songs worked so beautifully acoustically and lyrics standed out more than ever. Set was longer than I expected and the band came to meet fans after the show. And that's when second dream come true. A chance to thank Chris for the interview, get cd signed and take a photo with them! Only sad thing was security guys rushing things.

And 2nd night was also awesome as you can guess. Opener was Massive Ego, which was new band for me and really liked their sound. Nice, poppy, melodic sounds. Perfect way to open the night. Singer has taken quite influence of Leigh Bovery and was in band with Boy George (Jesus Loves You). Another good voice and show. They have unique look and it sets them part, because you do remember them after seeing the show.

And BlutEngel full show followed. If compared to previous dvd releases the show was bit scaled down, which I didn't mind. Dancers, screens and fire were all there to make the show look good. This sometimes felt theatre almost but in a good way only. You heard all the songs you wanted and got a long, and I do mean Long, set. plus 2 encores, so you got your' money's worth. And this time Astra was packed. Umm I just don't know how to describe the show, go see it yourself!

Wednesday, 29 March 2017

DRS Interview

Hi all!

I am proud to present you guys yet another interview, this time with DRS! And I can promise, this one is inspriing one. He tells how he overcame various issues in his life and to be honest, he really deserves a medal and to be huge dj!

1. Hi, thanks for the interview! Let's start from the beginning. What are your musical influences and what lead you to the hardcore scene?

Yoww man! I've always liked any harder kind of music genres and I actually started listening hardcore at the age of 10 when a Dutch friend of mine moved into Belgium and told me about it. From that moment on I was addicted to the Hardcore music for sure. 

2. What inspired you to start making hardcore? 

Well, I never had a musical background. I always played soccer and was into boxing. One day I got injured in a fight and couldn’t go on with these hobbies. But besides this, also my dream of joining the army was suddenly gone. From this moment everything in my life turned upside down. My 4-year-old relationship suddenly came to an end, I lost my job and when my little brother was stabbed down this all together put me directly on the wrong pad in life again.

Than one year later at the end of December 2012, I totally collapsed and went into rehab for 2,5 months. 
This certainly was the darkest moment in life. And from this moment on I knew that I had to do something with my life. My father told me that I couldn’t go to hardcore parties anymore and that I had to search for a decent job, because he was afraid that I would use these drugs again. But this wasn’t possible for me because Hardcore was the only thing that kept me going. This made me start thinking. I had to find a way to make other people happy so I could feel useful again and I silently hoped this would eventually make me feel happy again as well. So I decided that I wanted to be a Hardcore DJ/Producer. 


3. You really had meteoric rise. How much did this change your life and view of the music of did it change it?

This completely changed my life. At first I always was like the black sheep in my family. Also In my daily life people always looked at me as if I was a criminal, racist or some kind of problem child. In the beginning of my career nobody believed in me becoming a DJ/Producer. So I locked myself up in the studio for 3 years, starting to teach myself how to produce music to prove everyone was wrong. During this period I worked as a mailman to finance my studio equipment. This was a hard time for me because all of my friends always where just chilling, they bought nice cars, went on vacations and started to live on their own while all of my time & money went into my music.

A lot of „friends” suddenly disappeared during this time. So it was me against the world, with nothing to lose. This all made me hard as f*ck. And than suddenly there was a moment of light.. I’ll never forget it: Francesco aka F.Noize told me he saw himself in me and he would support me. From this moment on I felt like I was unstoppable. 
I worked my ass of to get what I have now (which took a lot of energy and caused some medical problems). A few months later Michael aka Angernoizer contacted me. He wanted to have me in his BKJN team. This was my ultimate dream back than to sign at BKJN Bookings. So I signed and I still don't regret this choice.

Nowadays I feel like a lucky guy because I met the love of my life Beau aka Estasia, also I started my own record label “Triple Six Records” and now music is my fulltime job. It’s like I’m living the life I dreamed of back in the days at rehab. That doesn’t mean that I’m chilling my ass of right now.. These days I work harder than ever before.
During the week I spend most of my time in the studio producing new music. In the weekends I play at parties in different countries all over the world. Together with my DRS crew (Pieter, Dieter, Gilles, Raymond, Klaas & Leander) and my agency "BKJN" we’re busy to realize our future goals. 

It’s just beautiful to see that I can make a lot of people happy with my music and that I was able to prove my family that I ain’t useless to them. That I’m able to give them the life they deserve is indescribably for me. Also all of those warriors sending me these nice supporting messages, asking for photos/signatures and travel over half the world just to see me play is just crazy. When I think about all of this, it still gives me goose bumps. 


4.  Where do you look for inspiration for a track?

My inspiration for music comes mostly from situations I’ve experienced in my personal life. I always want to bring a certain kind of a message to my warriors through my tracks. Something that could make them stronger in some kind of way. It should be a motivation to know that anything is possible as long as you keep working at it and don’t back down.

5. How is the scene in Belgium?

The Hardcore scene in Belgium had some hard times but is growing again and harder than ever before. This thanks to a lot of new upcoming artists, party’s and young gabba’s who spread the virus. It’s nice to see that more and more Belgian people connect with each other because of Hardcore music. This music gives people strength, hope and the feeling that they belong somewhere. And because of this I know for sure that our Belgian scene will be getting bigger as well again. 

6. Uptempo is definitely on rise as well as Frenchcore. What is your view on this? Does it reflect somehow global situation that also music has gotten faster and harder?

According to me uptempo is the harder, faster and rougher kind of hardcore music. I think uptempo made a serious rise in the past 4/5 years because of all the new upcoming DJ’s/Producers who love to make this. New upcoming producers are trying to get seen and they all try it in a different kind of a way. In my opinion allot of music genres are getting harder. For instance when you look at the house music; a lot of House DJ’s are playing Hardstyle tracks in their mixes these days. And you should ask yourself why they are making it harder..? I think it’s all about creating some kind of adrenaline rush in the people.  


7. How did you get in terror?

Well to be honest, I really love terror but in the past recent years I didn’t like the most terror tracks anymore. And as everyone knows I always build up the tempo during my mix. So I needed some new terror tracks to mix in at the end of my sets. That’s why I started to produce them by my self. But I want to make one thing clear: I like terror but my heart still lies with the harder kind of uptempo music. That’s what I really love to do. 


8. What is your studio setup?

I work with:
  • Ableton live 9 on a Macbook pro.
  • An apollo audio interface 
  • KRK Rokit 5 monitors 
  • Akai synthesizer 
  • DT 990 Pro Studio Headphones
  • A Sh*t load of plugins  


9. What goals have you set yourself?

I’ve always wanted to make a track with my all time hero’s: Drokz & Angerfist!  

I also hope to get a chance one day to prove myself at one of the biggest hardcore events like:
  • - Masters Of Hardcore
  • - Thunderdome
  • - Dominator
  • - Defqon 1
  • - Decibel Outdoor


10. What are your plans for the next year?

Playing in countries I’ve never been before. Making some new solo tracks and allot of new collaborations.

To name a few upcoming tracks:
  • DRS ft. Mc Komplex - DRS Warriors
  • DRS vs Partyraiser - Have A Good Time
  • DRS vs F.Noize - Devil's Pray
  • DRS vs The Vizitor - Hell Yeah
  • DRS vs Estasia - DOPE
  • DRS vs Dissoactive - Genius
  • DRS vs Angernoizer - TBA 
  • DRS vs Chaotic Hostility - TBA
  • DRS vs Vandalism - TBA
  • DRS vs NSD - TBA 
  • DRS vs MBK - TBA

What could I say more.. Expect the unexpected.

11. Any advise for DJ’s/producers starting out?

Always do what you like to do no matter what others say.
Work so hard for it that people can’t ignore you anymore.
AND MOST IMPORTANT —> „NEVER SURRENDER!” 

Ohyeaah one more thing! 
If you would like to release a solo / collaboration track at @Triple Six Records, send your demo(’s) to the email address below:

It doesn’t matter if you’re still an upcoming or experienced producer.
If we like the track, we’ll release it ! 
#DRS #ARMY #WORLDWIDE #BKJN


Thank you very much for the interview!


Grtz,
Junot DRS

Sunday, 19 March 2017

Sins Of The Siren interview

Hi all!

I han an honor of doing interview the one and only Sins Of The Siren. They are just amazing band I fell in love with their music when I heard it for the first time. They are independent artist (that's always a plus!) and you can find them on Bandcamp


1. How did you come up with the band name?

(Joe) I suppose, since we had a female with a great voice in the band, I wanted to use the word “Siren” in some way (referring to the sirens in mythology, that would sing and lead sailors to their deaths). From there, our old drummer came up with “Sins of the”, and just like that we had our band name. 


 2. When did Sins Of The Siren start and whose idea it was?

(Joe) Sins of the Siren was born in late 2011. I suppose it was my idea, as I had music laying around from the late 90’s that I had written and programmed, and wanted to bring back to life. So with the exception of some of the lyrics, and some of the drums, most of what you hear on our debut album was first written in the late 90’s! 


3. Is it hard for an independent artist to get noticed? 

It is. It helps of course to have good music, and then something else that makes you unique from the tons of other independent bands out there. The trick is to get people talking about you. The trick is also to not be in it for fame or money, but to do it because you love it. 

4. How big is the scene in US? 

The underground goth/industrial scene seems to still be alive and kicking. It has a different feel than in the past, maybe not as many bodies, but still alive nonetheless. 

5. Where does inspiration come from for lyrics and music? 

Lyrics can be from personal experiences, mythology, fantasy, romance, and in some cases, nothing at all. Musically, we’re pretty influenced by older industrial and 80’s music. Perhaps some goth too… 

6. Many artists are releasing music on Bandcamp and I think it is good way to reach out to the audience. Your thoughts on this? 

We love Bandcamp. We have our debut album temporarily free to download on that site. It’s a great way to get your music into the hands of people all over the world… 

7. When will there be 2nd album? 

We are currently working on it. Ideally, it will be done by the summer of 2017. But realistically, it’s quite possible it could be cold out by the time it’s finished… perhaps even warm again. 

 8. What other plans you have for the future? 

We have a show coming up in May in Southern California, where we are going to attempt to play 2 sets for the first time ever. (totally different songs for each set). We would also like to start playing more shows with similar bands, or at clubs that play music similar to our style. And of course we need to finish our 2nd album… We would also love to make a music video for our song Luxuria, which is from our first album. It’s a very sexy song, that needs a very sexy video. Perhaps we could make some shirts and other merch too... That’s about it. Thanks for the interview!

Wednesday, 15 March 2017

New party crew introducion

Heyy folks!

Something new is cooking in Helsinki and it is called Full Circle. And what I've heard of their plans, it sounds like rave culture is coming to full circle. They promise to bring the good old rave feeling back to the scene and urge us think outside the box. Sounds promising? Yes it does!

And the people behind Full Circle ain't newcomers so they know their stuff. People like Waily and Dj Neon are behind it with rest of the crew,Elina Mikkola and Johanna Jo Jo Voutilainen, who are familiar faces in the party circles. So everybody is lifelong raver. Why new organization? They told me because events have gone concise and I gotta agree with that. In the old days you could hear all sorts of music at raves, these days it is more club oriented catering to one or two genres at each event. Full Circle has promised to bring the old style back and blend genres on each night. And people do miss that and also miss the feeling united at raves. Okay, that feeling happens at hardcore parties abroad, but over here in Finland we are missing it.

The whole idea started cooking in the 90's festival (somehow quite fitting) and they soon gathered like-minded people together. Aim is to bring old ravers together again after too long sabbatical leave and hopefully younger generation will also find their events.

Why would this be different you ask. Well, they do promise to bring all genres under one roof and bring old rave feeling back. Also they will bring back visual side and that sounds good. Vjs are standard at clubs of all sizes, but decorations aren't anymore. Hopefully they will fulfill their promise. With people like these onboard, most likely they will. Think outside the box!