EMQ’s with SOULWOUND
Hi everyone! Welcome to our new EMQ’s interview with Kouvola, Finland based Metal band, Soulwound. Huge thanks to drummer, lyricist & composer, Janne Huusari, for taking part.
What is your name, what do you play, and can you tell us a little bit about the history of the band?
Name’s Janne Huusari, I’m the drummer and lyricist and one of the composers of the metal band Soulwound. The band is the direct result of me, and my brother Niko (guitar) learning to play and jamming with some friends back in the 90’s. The band solidified in 2005 when we settled on the name and released our first demo in 2006, after which we began playing live shows. We’re currently on our third full-length album, and our younger brother Mikko (guitar) has also been in the band for the past two albums.
How did you come up with your band name?
It’s taken directly from the tracklist of the digipak version of the “Obsolete” album by Fear Factory. We had a really hard time coming up with a good name that wasn’t already taken, and out of all the suggestions we had, Soulwound stuck.
What Country/Region are you from and what is the Metal/Rock scene like there?
Kouvola, a town in southeast Finland. The local scene was really thriving when we began playing live in 2006, with plenty of bands and venues, but since then, almost all of those bands have called it quits and many venues have closed down.
What is your latest release? (Album, EP, Single, Video)
We just released our third full-length album, called “The Suffering”, in September 2020. It was originally supposed to come out in May, but then the coronavirus outbreak threw a spanner in the works.
‘The Cult Of I (Official DIY Video)
‘Pleasures’ (Official Video)
Who have been your greatest influences?
Probably the classic metal we listened to as kids, everything from Metallica to Slayer. Those formative influences serve as the foundation for our sound, but of course, we have plenty of other, even heavier and more modern influences that we like to throw into the mix.
What first got you into music?
Music itself, namely my mom’s vinyl albums. I’d have her put on some stuff like Black Sabbath, Van Halen or Iron Maiden for me back when I was too young to even use the record player myself. In fact, I don’t remember ever really listening to children’s music. I went straight for the good shit, and “Master Of Reality” by Black Sabbath left an ever-lasting impression on me.
If you could collaborate with a current band or musician who would it be?
I’m gonna go off the beaten path here and say that I wouldn’t mind doing something completely different from the intensely physical metal drumming I do with this band. As a big fan of the Silent Hill game series, I’d love to play drums for Akira Yamaoka in some kind of a project.
If you could play any festival in the world, which would you choose and why?
This answer is far from inventive or surprising, but Wacken Open Air springs to mind immediately and I don’t think it needs any introduction.
What’s the weirdest gift you have ever received from a fan?
Hmm, either we haven’t really received anything weird or I’ve just completely forgotten about it.
If you had one message for your fans, what would it be?
Fuck trends and what other people like. You are not a sheep and society is not a herd. You have a brain with the capacity to form your own views and opinions, and you’re squandering it and doing yourself a major disservice if “fitting in” and following others is a priority for you.
If you could bring one rock star back from the dead, who would it be?
Dimebag Darrell. His death shocked me more than any other celebrity’s death, especially considering the fact that he was known for his friendliness and fun-loving nature almost as much as his insane guitar skills. And who knows, maybe Vinnie Paul would still be alive as well if that tragedy hadn’t taken such a toll on him.
What do you enjoy the most about being a musician? And what do you hate?
Both the creative expression and the live experience, which are completely different things but equally satisfying to me. What I hate is that not only is playing music a stupidly expensive hobby, but it’s also really difficult to do it effectively when every band member has a job and different schedules.
If you could change one thing about the music industry, what would it be?
I’d like artists to be compensated better for their music. Of course, digitalisation has destroyed record sales, but who knows, maybe things would be different if record labels had immediately tried to adapt to it and somehow monetize file sharing instead of trying to fight it and maintain the status quo.
Name one of your all-time favourite albums?
Oh man, that list would be way too long. There’s no way I can even narrow it down to ten, but I can point to three albums that I listened to as a little kid and are pretty much responsible for my love for heavy music: “The Number Of The Beast” by Iron Maiden, “Fair Warning” by Van Halen and “Master Of Reality” by Black Sabbath.
What’s best? Vinyl, Cassettes, CD’s or Downloads?
I love the convenience of digital music, and I actually listen to music mostly as MP3s while running or streams on my computer. That being said, I also like having physical CDs and looking at the artwork and reading the lyrics. I also like the sound of vinyl, but I don’t have a record player myself. Cassettes, on the other hand, I consider to be a completely shitty format and I’m glad I no longer have to bother with them.
What’s the best gig that you have played to date?
I can’t really name any one gig that would be the best, but the most memorable one for me was when we got to play in a decommissioned mill in the Slovenian mountains on our European tour in 2014. That was an absolutely fantastic experience that I could have never anticipated.
If you weren’t a musician, what else would you be doing?
We don’t play music for a living, and I like the fact that we don’t have to deal with any of the pressures of trying to make it as a professional musician. We all have jobs, and I’m a translator by training and profession.
Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?
You know, I’m such an introverted and antisocial hermit that I’d rather not even have any sort of formal dinner party. I prefer a relaxed setting and people with whom I can relax and be myself.
What’s next for the band?
It doesn’t look like we’ll be playing any more shows this year (2020) and there’s no telling how the coronavirus situation is going to develop, so we’re probably going to start putting together songs for our next album. We already have plenty of rough ideas to work with. If things go well, we’ll do another European tour next September.
What Social Media/Website links do you use to get your music out to people?
Our Facebook page is where we post our latest news and information. As regular working dudes, we simply don’t have the time or the energy to create a big social media presence for ourselves by constantly pumping out content.
Jaffa Cakes! Are they a cake or a biscuit?
Now there’s a question I’ve never though about. In fact, it has never even occurred to me that people could consider them to be anything but biscuits, as that’s what they’re called in Finnish. I’m partial to the raspberry variant, personally.
Thank you for your time. Is there anything else that you would like to add?
Thank you! To all the readers who made it this far, please check out our album “The Suffering” if you’re into aggressive and intense metal with an uncompromising attitude. This stuff is coming straight from the heart and I believe you’ll be able to hear it. Cheers!
Check out Tammy’s full review of “The Suffering” here:
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