– Hello, lots of thanks for answering our interview. How is everything going into the ETERNAL TEARS OF SORROW’s camp right now?

Altti: We’re doing just fine thanks. Starting to rehearse for the upcoming live shows.

– You have just released your new album, «Saivon Lapsi», 4 years after your previous «Children of the Dark Waters» came out. In fact with your last albums you have taken your time; is this something necessary in order to provide quality stuff?

Altti: We have always wanted to spend as much time as needed to prefectize our material and album, because we want to give every time our 110% when releasing something with the band.


– With each new album you release you have always top over your previous effort. Is this something the band strives for?

Altti: Sure. With every album we want to take a step higher and gain something new with our music. I feel that so far we have successed well with that. We have also said that we will never release two identical albums but every time providing something new and interesting for our fans.


– In fact I personally think this new «Saivon Lapsi» is your best opus to date. I know most bands use to say their last album is the best one but, do you share this same feeling?

Altti: Thanks, it’s very nice to hear that. At least now I feel as well that the new album is our strongest effort so far.


– This effort is 100% ETOS still refreshing your sound. Overall I could say is smoother and more easy-listening. Do you think this will help getting new fans?

Altti: We don’t think that too much when creating music. We just want to make music we like by ourselves. And like I already said, we always try to have something new and refreshing on each of our albums.


– There are also more contrasts, between darkness and light, brutality and melody, even between clean and harsh vocals. What importance do these contrasts have? As I guess it may keep things interested as well as leaving a bigger impact on the listener. And, how easy is to get a good balance between, apparently, opposite elements?

Altti: You’re right. Those two sides have always been in our chaos. They support each other hand in hand. It comes out pretty natural from us, so we don’t have to think about how to find balance between those.


– It seems like you are always opened to new influences. In fact you have been through several line-up changes, though this time there’s only one new member, guitar player Mika. Doe the line-up changes and new blood in the band help being more diverse and renew yourselves with each new opus?

Altti: That is of course one reason. New fresh blood always brings new energy in the band. Both on album and on the stage as well.


– And talking about such; what has Mika brought to the band?

Altti: He has brought lots of new ideas and new energy. He’s very talented guy and very devoted to the music he creates. He actually composed lots of new songs for this latest album even that they sound like old pure EToS.


– Due to the aforementioned I would like to know how is the songwriting process in ETOS like. Do the long-time members have the last saying or is it a team effort?

Altti: It’s always team work. Of course it’s one person who always brings up the basic idea/structure for a song, but after that we keep on working as a team and everybody is able to bring something own in to the song at the end. It’s the way how all the songs sound like EToS at the end.


– Musically and I think in evolution terms you are always looking forward, but I feel like on «Saivon Lapsi» you have mixed the best elements your previous albums had. In this sense, do you ever look back? I mean, do you go back to a few things you did on earlier releases when writing a new CD?

Altti: THat’s true that there are influences from our older albums as well on this new effort. But it came out just naturally and not scheduling it too much.


– On this opus you’ve had RAM-ZET’s singer, Miriam Renvåg, as guest arist. Would you mind to elaborate a bit on this (why her, how did you come up with the idea, etc.)?

Altti: She’s a very good friend of ours and we have worked with her already many times before. So it’s was very natural choice for us to ask her to join this new album as well. She’s such a professional musician and always brings amazing ideas to try at the studio.


– There’s a song on the album that totally caught my attention, the last one, «Angelheart, Ravenheart (Act III: Saivon Lapsi)». It contains everything you mix on the album: influences from different musical genres as Death, Goth, or even Doom or almost ambient passages. Did you want to have a song that caught sum up what the whole album is about?

Altti: Yes, we wanted to have grand opus to end the album and continue the Angelheart, Ravenheart saga on this new album as well. Two previous acts have been pretty massive and symphonic pieces, including very strong atmosphere. So, it was obvious that the act 3 could not be any smaller or weaker.


– And, is this musical wealth and diversity something importanf for you?

Altti: Diversity is always important. It keeps the music interesting both for us and fans as well.


– All this about «Saivon Lapsi» being said; how could you describe it in just 3 words?

Altti: Heavy, gloomy and atmospheric.


– The own band has produced the album, and you’ve got a really crystal-clear and powerful sound but, what are the pros and cons of producing your own material? I guess no one like you understand how ETOS should sound like but; don’t you feel more pressure? Is it easy to be 100% objetive and not extremely picky with your own stuff?

Altti: We have always wanted to produce our own albums because we have very strong vision how it should sound like, and how the cover artwork, promotional photos etc should look like. It’s like keeping the steering wheel all the time in our own hands because we are the only ones who know the final direction for it.


– Once more the great Travis Smith has done the cover artwork but; could you please tell us what did you want to reflect on it?

Altti: Yes, we had long discussions with Travis about the idea behind the album, about our lyrics and the overall concept. He’s just an amazing guy to make all the ideas into visual format and making them to look perfectly the way we are looking for.


– You have already done a video for «Swan Saivo». Would you mind to explain a bit how did the whole process go?

Altti: We had a very great video team «Mutant Koala Pictures» behind the video. They are young and extremely talented guys and cooperation with them was very easy and smooth. The video really visualizes the story behind the song. Video shootings were done in 2 days. One for the story parts and the second one for the band parts.


– And finally, what are your near-future plans?

Altti: Rehearsing for our live shows and play some ass kicking gigs.


– That’s all, thank you once more for answering our questions. If you want to add some final words; feel free to do it.

Altti: Thank you for the interview and see you on the road!


Tania Giménez

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