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Interview - Pasi Tanskanen (Thaurorod)

Interview with Pasi Tanskanen from Thaurorod
by Lior "Steinmetal" Stein at 29 January 2014, 1:24 PM

Recently, our very own Steinmetal was lucky enough to sit down with Pasi Tanskanen of THAUROROD, shedding some light on not only the band's influences and beginnings, but also the meaning behind this epic band!!

Hello Pasi, greetings from Metal Temple, thank you for taking the time for this interview. How have you been?

To be honest pretty busy with everything going on with the upcoming release but doing really well anyway and everything looking really good.

As one of the veterans of your band Thaurorod, for those that haven’t gotten to know you guys, what can you tell about it? Also if you can shed light about the band’s name that is quite intriguing.

Thaurorod is epic/symphonic power metal band from Finland except for singer who is from Sweden. We are just about to release something to rock your world and this is called ANTEINFERNO our 2nd studio album.

Thaurorod name comes from quenya a language of Tolkien and the meaning for it is sounds of death which is pretty describing as our lyrics are much about battles, wars, etc. Still LotR and other fantasy themes are not involved of band’s lyrics.

In the next couple of days Thaurorod will issue its second album, “Anteinferno”, three years after the highly successful debut, at least on my bill. Similar to the first, you guys pulled it off with flying colors depicting hauntingly catchy Euro Power Metal similar to late 90’s classics. What do you think made this new album different than the first music wise?

The songs are just so much better! Also there is a bit more simple song structers than what it was on UHB which makes some songs easier to listen. This is a lot more melodic album and focusing more in huge choruses! I’d say ANTEINFERNO leans a bit more in the 90s and even 80s.  The vocalist, Andi, brings a whole new sound for Thaurorod and his vocals, melodies and vocal harmonies are just gold and honey for ears…Andi is so creative and knows very well what sounds good and what doesn’t.

Following this new release, what do you think that makes Thaurorod different from various other Power Metal bands from Europe?

Imagination in song writing, and of course our live shows full of fire and power!!! Andi's vocal sound and the whole band is just full of exceptional musicians!

What makes your music spicy? Do you believe that Thaurorod is beyond the usual labeling of Power Metal driven band?

Yea I can live with the label power metal on Thaurorod but it’s pretty versatile power metal which sometimes is very much traditional heavy metal and sometimes even something more extreme metal but it’s always very melodic and symphonic.

What is “Anteinferno”? What is the story behind the name?

Anteinferno is about the 3rd canto of Inferno part of Dante Alghieri’s The Divine Comedy. By the book everyone who was not faithful to God but did not rebel either but were only faithful for themselves were the souls who were rejected by both heaven and hell and they had to suffer in a place by the inferno …anteinferno. They were sad souls with no hope for ascending or dying again.

Which of the songs do you like most? What can you tell about that particular song?

For me the most melancholic songs are usually the favorites though I like the songs with positive mood as well just can’t stand if it’s like over-happy! :D So therefore I’d say my particular favorite song would be either Marked for Diablo or Anteinferno.

Let’s go with Anteinferno…This 10-minute-long song has an intro with a speak part by Christopher Bowes from Alestorm / Gloryhammer and Owen Kelly. After intro the song starts growing little by little and getting more and more heavy with the creeping lyrics going on. There are a lot of different kinds of parts on this song. 1st solo is Lasse’s, then keyboard melody and some guitar melody with harmony. The slow intro is repeated in the middle of the song with a speak by David Bower from Hell. Then pretty rockish solo by Emil. Some chorus again and outro. The end. Very interesting song indeed! I'm really looking forward to hear what people think about this track!

What was your role on the writing process? Who is usually in charge of writing the material in the band?

For this album we had more song writers than before as Lasse started to write material as well. I guess the music is composed so that Emppu wrote 4 songs, I wrote 3 songs, Lasse and me together but mostly Lasse's songs there were 4. Then Andi wrote lyrics on 2 songs and I did the rest of the lyrics to remaining 8 songs as 1 is instrumental.

For the next album I am sure there will be some music composed by Harri and Andi as well so now as we have basically 5 composers we should be very creative band in the future!

Right after the debut “Upon Haunted Battlefields”, you changed your lineup along with replacing Markku Kuikka in favor of the Italian Michele Luppi. However, right before turning your attention to “Anteinferno”, Luppi left and you got Aeon Zen’s Andi Kravljaca. What happened over there exactly?

Well Markku Kuikka left the band in Paris during the tour with Sabaton and Alestorm leaving us nothing but a text message "Paris - De Grande Finale". Not a nicest thing to do for a band…somehow Markku had seriously hard on being on a tour. He complained about everything…the food, the partying, the other bands on a tour… It's funny when something what's dreams come true for someone can be a living hell to another guy in the band… Anyway we brought in another guy to sing for the rest of the tour but it didn't work out that great either… End of the tour and time to find a new singer…

At the very beginning we told Luppi that we cannot afford to have another vocalist change so we wanted him to know what we expect from him! Everything seemed perfect…we even wanted to make a test show with him before announcing him as a new frontman. We played at Nosturi in Helsinki with him on vocals and it was still looking perfect. Pretty soon after announcing him as a new vocalist it started to be hard…it was just that he couldn’t get things done. He wanted to be in the band and promised to do whatever he needs to. We wanted to give him time and trust and believe in him. Such an awesome singer so we didn’t want to fire him…eventually we had had enough of waiting and told Noise Art that we need to continue without him.

Then we started to look for a vocalist and again we tried to find him from Finland…this time we made it official that we are looking for a vocalist hoping to find one easier but no…there just are no guys in Finland that are committed enough and good enough….next Sweden…-oh here's an awesome vocalist on youtube from Sweden…lets contact him!- Andi was interested and after his audution video we scheduled a test rehearsels with him. We just loved the guy and everything worked exactly like we had wished for! Next srep before announcing him was to do 2 test shows with Wintersun…after seeing and feeling his stage presence we were just blown away…YOU ARE IN!!!

On a personal angle, what have been your influences as a bass player?

I guess it all started as I was and still am a huge Iron Maiden fan and Steve Harris was just hugely inspiring me…yea also I guess I have a bit similar style of playing but mostly he have inspired me as a song writer and a leader of a band. Of course I've listened to many bass players but never really been a big fan of any bassists but more a fan of song writers and that's what I think I'm good at! I play bass sure…but my focus is on song writing and promoting Thaurorod! Still I have to say I have a principal to not use a pick with bass…not that I would be any good at it either but I look up to bass players using fingers more…of course I know there are great bassists who uses pick but still…maybe I'm a little old-fashioned guy!

In general, what do you think of the progress of Metal music worldwide, particularly in Europe which is your main scene?

I think I am seeing a change in power metal into more positive direction over the last 1-2 years as it has been really down when folk metal ruled so much on the more melodic side of metal…now folk metal seems to be going down a bit while power metal is reaching to the surface.

Furthermore, what about the industry? Do you believe in the existence of music downloading as a promotional tool for both underground and rather known bands out there?

Of course but this has also a negative side…It's a good thing that you can get noticed more easy and people can listen to your music more easy but then again when they don't bother to buy the album even though they would love the music..that's really a shame. Albums are selling less and less and the whole music industry have gone more and more into live business..there's nothing wrong with that but I would just encourage people to buy the albums they like even though you would anyway listen them thtough Spotify but still this is what you owe to the band who gives your life a good entertainment via music…bying a cd that costs something like 3 beers can not really be a financial catastrophy to anyone! Also you have the whole package only when you listen to the songs with cd booklet on your hands and you can't get that feeling with a download…neverever!

Pasi I wish to thank you for this interview. I have to admit that I find your band quite inspirational and hooking. Any last words for the readers?

All the fans of melodic metal buy our new album ANTEINFERNO…this will be the best album you've bought for a long time!!! Come to see our shows and let us know your opinion on the songs for example on Facebook…we'll read it and reply  the comments every once in a while. Also like us on Facebook! Get yourselves ready for some serious power metal inferno! It's getting hot…


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