Interview With Lullacry
Band Photo: Nightwish (?)
Last Friday ( Aug 20th) I had the pleasure of interviewing the lovely people from Lullacry after their gig with Nightwish. We talked about the band, their music and ... drinking (every time I talk to Scandinavian people I'm having so much fun).
My questions were answered by Heavy ( bass) and Tanja (vocals). Many, many thanks to Toni from King Foo Entertainment for arranging everything.
Gothique: I wanna start off by asking you what does the band's name mean?
Tanja: I think it comes from lullaby.
Heavy: Basicly, you have the idea of the word lullaby- you know, baby in the cradle, nice and sweet. I don't know, maybe it's just our Finnish minds that it sounded like it could be a lulla-cry; it's still sweet but it has that little punch to it. But the name was anyway invented by our old drummer Nalle [ Österman]. He was so drunk most of the time that I'm not sure about it. [ laughs]
Gothique: That's your first time touring with Nightwish?
Heavy: Yep, yeah.
Gothique: How did you like the crowd response tonight?
Heavy: I used to live in Oklahoma City for a year and at the time I was, well, I'm still in, bands like Pantera nad Slayer and stuff and, you know, every time you go to see those bands and they have from 1 to 3 warm-up bands and let's say, maybe 80% of the crowd wouldn't give a shit about these bands. So I was telling all these guys a kind of horror stories about this and I was actually so fuckin' surprised about tonight. Seriously.
Gothique: So you're happy with it [ the crowd response]?
Heavy: Oh, hell yeah.
Gothique: "Crucify My Heart" came out last year and it got some really good response in the media. When is your new LP coming out?
Tanja: Next year. In the beginning of next year.
Gothique: Your EP "Fire Within" is to be released next week in U.S. and it's already in the Finnish charts.
Gothique: Why did you decide to cover W.A.S.P.'s "L.O.V.E. Machine"? Is it a personal favourite?
Heavy: Uhm, yeah, we still had our old singer [Tanja Kemppainen] at the time when we did our first European tour with Edguy and some of the guys from the record company were like- "maybe you should play one cover song, a song that everybody knows and that would appeal to most people. Maybe you should get one song and if you could get the crowd going, they'll follow you through the rest of the set." So everybody was like- yeah, ok, and we really didn't have that much time. Sami [ guitar, vocals] and Sauli [ guitar] are like huge W.A.S.P. fans and basicly Sami is a big fan of the 80's metal anyway and so we included this song in our set. We just wanted to, you know, give a taste of the upcoming album.
Gothique: And you re- recorded the song "Cricify My Heart" with her [ Tanja], right? It's also included in the new EP.
Heavy: Yep, yeah. Basicly the whole idea of the new EP was like- maybe we should try to convey 80% of the ideas a bit differently, give it a little twist, because what's the use of recording and putting those songs as they were [ in the previous album]. Because most of the people who want to buy this EP already have the album. Also, Tanja has a great voice so we wanted to show that.
Gothique: Were you around when the band was started? Because I'm wondering if it was supposed to be a female- vocalist band from the very beginning or did it happen accidentally?
Heavy: Actually, I joined the band when the old singer was already in the band and what attracted me the most at the time was the really heavy music with really good vocals. But the thing is, as Sami ans Sauli told me later, they had something like 20-22 guys auditioning at the rehearsal place and none of them qualified. And then Tanya walked in and they were like- "Alright! It's a cick but we can't help it". So that's how she got this far.
Gothique: So it wasn't like- "we're looking for a female vocalist"? She was just good enough for the job?
Heavy: Oh, she was like, twice better than everybody else. I heard some of the singers who tried to be in Lullacry. Even after some years had passed and I heard them with other bands and it wasn't really encouraging.
Gothique: And now the inevitable question- you're Scandinavian so you HAVE to drink a lot, right? [laughs]
Gothique: I'm asking you this because I was looking at the tour pictures on your website and there's a large number of empty beer bottles pics. Is this the rock star image or do you really drink a lot? [laughs]
Heavy: Well, actually, no, it's not an image, unfortunately [laughs]. I wish it was, you know, we could save a lot of energy like that. No, the truth is like, yeah, we're Finns, we drink occasionally. Well, especially on tour it's kinda like the same old story- you wake up in the morning, you wait for the catering, you wait for the sound check, you wait for everything and you go out [ on stage] and you give everything you've got. You are really exhausted and then you come to these surroundings [ bakcstage lounge] and it's like- oh, there's beer. [ laughs]
Gothique: Is this your favourite drink? You only drink beer? What about vodka and stuff?
Heavy: Of couse, I mean, anyhing there is. Anything that's available.
Gothique: But is it true that every weekend all the people in Scandinavia get wasted? Like, habitually? [laughs]
Heavy: It is very common. Not all the people, but you know, it is very common. Most people drink on the weekend. And quite a lot. You know, most people in Finland don't go out and drink like- ok, let's go to a bar, have maybe a couple of beers and have a good time. It's more like- let's drink a bottle of vodka at home, before we go out and so it'll be cheaper in the bar and then drink as many as we can afford. That's pretty much how it goes. It's true, yeah. [laughs]
Gothique: OK, now a question for you, Tanja. How do you feel in the band, I mean, replacing the former vocalist?
Tanja: I feel great. I don't know, I never really felt like I replaced someone. It's more like stepping in my own place.
Gothique: Any last words to your American fans? Your newly acquired American fans?
Heavy: Wow, well, I don't even know if we have any fans in the U.S. but come to the shows and hopefully you'll like us.
Tanja: Yeah, we try our best
Heavy: Yeah, I mean, we're not a big name or anything like that, we don't think we're big rock stars. But the thing is, like, when we go out to paly, it's always like the first show, you know, the energy level goes through the roof. I mean, it's alwasy like that. Even if it's a small crowd, even if it's like, really bad conditions, it's just like...
Gothique: You put your heart into it
Heavy: Yeah, yeah. Seriously, it's always like as if this is the last time we're gonna be playing live or maybe this is the last time those people will see us. Most people paid for the tickets to see Nightwish but still maybe there're some people who came to see us and there's no way we're gonna let those people down. And I also think one of the strengths of the band is that we really put on an energy show and it's always one of the main goals. It's not necessarily to play like, you know, we're not Joe Satriani or anything like that but we want to feel good about what we're doind and we also want to show the crowd that we feel good about it. And we trust our shit, basicly. So, if you come around, come talk to us and listen to the music and drink some beer with us. [laughs]
Gothique: Thank you very much for your time and good luck with the tour.
Tanja: Thank you.
Heavy: Thank you. Take care.
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