Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Mausoleum Gate Interview

1.For those that have never heard of you before, can you tell us a little bit about the band?

Well the band was formed in 2008 with myself (Count L.F),Wicked Ischanius and Pasi Tolonen (drums).After some rehearsing with ideas we got Neva on second guitar and V.P Varpula for vocals.This line-up recorded our first EP Gateways For The Wicked. Then Neva and Pasi left and line-up changed.With some searching we found Oscar Razanez for drums and Kasperi Puranen for guitars and this is the line-up today.Our goal at first was to play NWOBHM-kind of heavy metal and that has stayed our “baseline” ever since but we also have brought in some other flavours so to speak.

2.You have a new album coming out in October, how would you describe the musical sound that is presented on the recording and also how does it differ from your previous demo and single?

Well I think we have moved to even more ancient sound,hah.There are many influences mixed up and a lot more epic stuff with Mellotron,Moog,Organ and so on but also the NWOBHM-element is very much present. Comparing to our previous releases the album presents more the different sides of Mausoleum Gate.Also It has maybe more that 70’s feel than before. Wicked Ischanius did some absolutely great keyboard work too and V.P Varpula also did great harmonic vocals that give some more colours to this palette.This time we also had two solo guitarist at work.On previous releases I was responsible for solo work myself but now Kasperi threw some great stuff in too. This gives the music great variety. And we have to mention Oscar Razanez’s crazy drumming which is really something else.His approach to playing –in my opinion- is related to those 60’s guys like Keith Moon for example.Our rhythm section is constantly on the move – riding around the pulse.It’s unusual in Heavy Metal but gives us something unique in my opinion.

3.The lyrics cover some occult themes, can you tell us a little bit more about your interest in this subject?

Well it’s interesting and fits to our music very well. I like to see our playing as a sort of summoning or ritual – especially when we play live.To reach that chemistry to improvise needs that we get into certain state of mind. Also that 19th century atmosphere and all that spiritual stuff and those characters are a great inspiration to me. And also those mystic times in the end of 1960’s. I see a lot of same in those times: The magic,the spiritual awareness and so on.That inspired the lyrics a lot.

4.What is the meaning and inspiration behind the name 'Mausoleum Gate'?

It describes our music perfectly. Also it has same kind of sound as our influences like Mercyful Fate for example. From the name you can pretty much see what kind of band we are. That’s important too.

5.What are some of the best shows that the band has played so far and also how would you describe your stage performance?

I think we have managed to play very good shows so far. Of course the first gig at Metal Warning Festival in 2010 has special place in my heart. Also the special double set in Club Heavy Metal Maniaxe in august 2013 was challenging and it was great to play.

6.Do you have any touring or show plans once the new album is released?

We have been invited to play at Keep It True Festival in April 2015 which is an honour for us.There has been plans for gigs before that too but we’ll get back to them when we have more information.

7.On a worldwide level how has the feedback been to your music by fans of metal?

It has been overwhelming in my opinion. We didn’t expect so good response. You see our goal was just to make music we like ourselves. If we are satisfied then it’s ok. We still work this way but it’s of course great to see that there are so many who like what we like too.It sure feels good to get support also.

8.What is going on with some of the other musical projects these days that some of the band members are involved with?

Well our singer V.P Varpula is active on classical “scene” so to speak.Wicked Ischanius has done some recording work during the years and is playing in few bands too. Kasperi plays in Hellboozer Union and does gigs in many areas. Oscar Razanez has also other projects goin’ on but all together they know better themselves the actual state of their projects.

9.Where do you see the band heading into musically during the future?

That’s a good question! Personally I just want to make good songs,good riffs,good melodies etc.I think there are no boundaries for us in music but I’m pretty sure we won’t sound very “modern” ever. Also improvisation will stay important part of our music.

10.What are some of the bands or musical styles that have had an influence on your music and also what are you listening to nowadays?

Well a loads of stuff really.Black Sabbath,Led Zeppelin,Deep Purple and Uriah Heep are the basis of my musical influences.Also the 70’s progressive bands have influenced us a lot.The whole NWOBHM-genre of course (Iron Maiden,Angelwitch,Demon,Saxon etc.) has been significant influence. And Mercyful Fate must always be mentioned too. Then there’s a loads of influences that are different on each member: There’s jazz like Coltrane and Miles Davis and AOR-stuff like Journey and others.Then there’s some obscure and little less known 70’s heavy music like Captain Beyond,Mountain and Grand Funk Railroad that are my favourites.

I’ve been listening to Neil Young lately.I find his sound extremely fascinating and also like that jamming stuff.I have also done some listening sessions to Byron-era Uriah Heep after a long break and found those albums really great.

11.What are some of your non musical interests?

Well I like to read a lot and history is also my favourite.I lately read book about strange and fascinating characters in 19th and 20th century like Aleister Crowley,Helena Blavatsky,Gurdijeff etc.Very inspiring things. I also like to watch movies and find them a source of inspiration for lyrics for example.

12.Before we wrap up this interview, do you have any final words or thoughts?

I use this chance to recommend our bassist and keyboardist Wicked Ischanius’s blog in which he writes about the album.It gives a good sight what is about to come:

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