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Negative (I)

Interview mit Jonne & Larry [Negative], 12.08.2006, Altena/Burgrock

In diesem Jahr 2006 stand das Burgrock-Festival in Altena ganz im Zeichen der Nordlichter, hatten sich doch mit Amorphis, Negative und Apoptygma Berzerk, den Hauptacts des Abends, gleich drei skandinavische Bands ins Sauerland eingeschlichen. Am selbigen Abend traf ich kurz vor ihrer Show, Sänger Jonne und Gitarrist Larry von der finnischen Band Negative. Im Rittersaal der Burg Altena machten wir es uns gemütlich und hielten einen kleinen Plausch über News und Schmankerl aus dem Leben der sechs Negative-Jungs. Schwerpunkt des Gesprächs war natürlich das neue Album der Finnen…
Your third album „Anorectic“ will be published soon. What is its difference in comparison to “Sweet & Deceitful” and “War Of Love”?

Jonne: This time we had this really strong feeling for the album, we had that vision of the music and the songs, that what it`s gonna be like. I think with the new album we are really close to Negative`s future-sound. You can really hear that we have done a lot of shows. We wanted to catch that live-feeling on the new album.
Larry: I think the beast is getting more hungry. “War Of Love” was more like a collection of demo-tapes. The second album “Sweet & Deceitful” showed more the melodic side of us and now there`s a certain kind of hunger in this new album. We grew up as a band, getting more realistic. I mean, it´s a more aggressive album. Life is not always so beautiful. In the other way the new album is also a bit psychodelic and strange. It`s not so easy to listen to than to our latest ones.
Jonne: For the first album it was more partying and we didn´t even realise that it will hit the stores some day. But actually it was very successful and we needed to publish a second album soon. We recorded that with a pretty rush. We were in the studio at the same time while we were touring. The second album became our first real album, but to me it is a little bit plastic. Don´t get me wrong, of course I´m really fucking proud about what we`ve done with “Sweet & Deceitful” and “War Of Love”. But I`m also really proud of the new album. It`s heavier.
So let me know, what does “Anorectic” mean for you and why did you choose this title?
Jonne: We chose that name, because we want that after many years people are thinking “Hei, that´s a classic one!” So that`s the reason and it was a provocating simple name.
Larry: To me it´s just a cool rock`n`roll-title for the album. Jonne`s original idea. It makes you think about it.

Jonne: Yeah, it`s not a typical name for an album. But there are new songs on the album. They are about what we`ve gone through as a band during the latest 3 years. And that name “Anorectic” comes from there.
And this time you worked with Hiili Hiilesmaa (e.g. HIM, Sentenced, Amorphis) together in the studio. How did the studio-work with Hiili look like? Any special moments?
Jonne: I was surprised. I mean, he has done a lot of really successful albums and he`s been doing the producing for a long time now, but still he always finds great new ideas. He`s not tired of bands, a kind of typical producer.
Larry: I was expecting there`s coming some kind of a really freaky guy. And now I understand why people call him “crazy professor”. It just comes out in a different form. He`s a really unique person.
Jonne: He really believed in us. He was like “I know you can do it better! Just take off your shirt and dance whatever!” For example he told Jay to get naked. Jay was in the recording room and Hiili was saying “You have to get that aggressive beasty jungle-feeling! So take off all the clothes!” (all laughing) And you can hear on the new album that the band is playing more aggressive and much better together. You can hear that – as Larry already told – that kind of hunger. So maybe there that “anorectic”. (laughing)
Can you tell me, what are your favourite songs from “Anorectic”?

Jonne: At the moment..(long break)..that`s the hardest question ever.
That`s why I´m asking.
Jonne: It´s like you have many children and you have to pick one favourite one.
Just in the moment…
Jonne: Today it could be “One last shot”, but tomorrow it´s a different one.
Which song do you think will the fans like most?
Jonne: I don´t have a crystal ball, hopefully all of them.
Larry: “Song for broken hearted”. I think it will be the fave one of the fans.
Jonne: On the whole album you can hear so many different moods and different songs. There are really fast driving rock-songs and there`s really psychodelic progressive stuff. It´s a surprising album. We cannot wait to see the reaction of the fans. We`ve been listening to that album a lot and time after time it´s getting better. We wanted that kind of album that you don´t have yet, that you select for the foreplay, you know, before you are having sex. Just turn the record on… (all laughing loudly) And if you´re listening to it too much, your erection is going down.
Okay, let´s turn to another question…The first single from the new album will be “Planet of the sun”. Around two weeks ago there was the video-shot in Munich. I`ve read that you, Larry, had to go to the hospital during the shot. What happened?

Larry: I don´t do so much sports and I smoke three packages of cigarettes every day. This working with the Rock`n`Roll-Thing is so different, because sometimes you have to wake up at 6 in the mornings, sometimes at 12. I´m not a good sleeper. Sometimes I just stay awake for hours. I have to remember to eat well and drink a lot of water and getting over to the video-shot…it was so hot out there. I was like drying and it was too late to start drinking.
And you were brought to the hospital…

Larry: Yes, but I wanted to leave the place and the doctors said: “No, you are sick. You have to stay here.” I was fucked: “No, I have a gig tomorrow in Finland and a video-shot today. I won´t stay here.” Then I had to sign this paper and I could go.
And what is the video about? I`ve heard it´s taking place in a circus?
Larry: I don´t want to tell too many details. There are different kind of scenes. It´s happening in a circus, yes. It´s a surprising video. It`s not a plastic one, you know, where a girl is walking and the band is playing. There`s this circus-thing going on. We just wanted to be as free as the record.
We are excited! Again it`s a big festival-summer for you. Lots of gigs and interviews. Yesterday (11.08.) you were at Summeri TV in Finland, today you are here in Germany, three weeks ago you played at the Amphi-Festival in Cologne. What were you own impressions playing between Electro-, Medieval- and Gothic-Bands there?

Jonne: I usually don´t listen to those other bands. I don´t have the time and I concentrate only on our shows. Of course it´s always exciting, when you can see the reaction, if it´s positive in a crowd and it was there in Cologne! I mean, this Intro was on and the crowd was shouting “Let´s fuck!” That`s different than in Finland.
Larry: There they haven`t found that “Let`s Fuck”- thing yet. Here in Germany they are shouting more “Let`s Fuck!”, I think.
Jonne: They even printed some t-shirts for merchandise.
Larry: Today it`s your 21st gig in Germany. What are your expectations for this evening?
Jonne: I think it`s gonna be a fucking brilliant show!
Larry: It´s quite interesting. Sir Christus has this new “toy” on the stage, this talk-box.
Jonne: During “Naïve” he will try to play that one and he has never tried it before. It´s like that guitar-sound is coming to your mouth. It`s that stuff Bon Jovi have on stage as well.
Larry: (laughing) We have to wait for what happens. Christus never tried it before.
Jonne: (also laughing) Maybe his head will explode.

Larry: (serious again) Yeah, it´s dangerous, because if you´re playing it too loud…
Don´t fear me! In February you have been on tour here with HIM and The Rasmus. Coming November there will be your second headliner-tour in Germany. What can we expect?
Jonne: Unforgettable shows and they will be totally longer than the ones we played with HIM and The Rasmus, because there we were a supporting act. But that was the best position for us. There were a lot of HIM- and The Rasmus-Fans. We had to win them on our side. I really cannot wait to see how many people we caught on the tour with HIM and The Rasmus.
Larry: It will be like joining the circus, when you are coming to our tour. We have the video with that theme, the cd-cover, songs, so our show should also be with that theme. It´s like a Rock`n`Roll-circus.
There are some rumours that Bloodpit (band from Tampere/Finland) will support you in November…

Jonne: No, no! Probably there will be that band from the States... (he cannot remember the name) ...and Rose Avenue (band from Tampere/Finland). For a few shows, I mean, some biggest ones.
Larry: It was a hard question. Actually I don´t know what the final decision will be. Maybe different bands in different places.
Jonne: Yeah, nothing is confirmed yet. We would really like to get a local band from Tampere. It would be nice to get some new friends. I don´t have a certain name in my mind referring to the band..(silence)..maybe the Scorpions? (all laughing)
If you had your own festival, what would be its name?

Jonne: Dick-Rock!
Larry: Cock-Rock!
Jonne: Cock-Rock (actually Rockcock) already exists in Kuopio. We played there this year. It was really weird. There weren´t toilets in the backstage-area. But we know the guy who is working in the organisation of the festival, so we forgive him. (laughing)
Larry: Say Hello to Igor!
Jonne: Yeah, he has done a lot of porn-films.
Larry: (smiling) Actually it´s one of my dreams to make the music for his videos some day. I`d make something more like 70`s stuff.
Jonne: Some groovy shit! Dudududuududuuuuuduuu… (singing; snipping his fingers)
What is the first thing you do when you are coming back home from tour or a longer trip?
Larry: I throw my bags on the floor and just lay down.
Jonne: Yeah, sleeping and sometimes, it depends, if you´re in a bar-mood, we are going to Amadeus (music-bar in Tampere/Finland).
As I did it two weeks ago. I met Antti there.
Jonne: Yeah, it´s like a tradition. We are coming home from where-ever and going first to Amadeus, only stopping by. But sometimes you´re so tired that you don´t wanna do that, so you just crawl into your bed.
What do your family, relatives and friends think about Negative?

Larry: In my family music has always been a really big part. My father is a musician, his father is a musician, his brothers are musicians. It runs in the family, but yes, they are happy for me. I don´t know about the music, do they like it or not.
Jonne: My grandmom, she really supports me. She is turning to 87, but she still has the best sense of humour in the world…really dirty jokes. (all laughing) About my father: he used to play drums in a band. It was that kind of traditional finnish music, called humpa. But then he was fired, because he drunk too much and was always too wasted. But he`s really happy for me. I just don´t see him so often, so when I`m going to him, he is like “Why the fuck you don´t call me anymore? Oh you are too busy!” (imitating with his father`s voice) But he`s saying that as a joke. He has also a great sense of humour. And my mother – well, my parents are divorced – I also don´t see her very often, maybe once in a week, once in a month. But she always calls me and asks: “Do I have to buy some new newspapers? Are there any articles about you? I wanna collect them all!” (imitating his mother; all laughing)
Larry: Actually that`s quite funny. It´s a different thing, but nowadays we are not talking anymore about interviews. Jonne is doing some interviews in Tampere, for example for Suosikki. It´s like the finnish Bravo. One day I was just walking on the street and there was this big commercial. Jonne was on the cover of that magazine.
I remember it…
Larry: I was wondering, thinking about do we have a rehearsal tomorrow? But I did`t hear from you guys (talking to Jonne) and so I was like “Okay, I can go to the bar, we don´t have a rehearsal tomorrow!” And then there was this commercial. (laughing)
Jonne: (coming back to the topic) I believe my family is proud of me. First we started to get some success in Finland. They said “Oh, nice!”, but…I`m an asshole these days. We´re not so close to each others. That`s a good ending.

Is it? At last, what do you like to say to all people around the world? Maybe in Finnish?
Jonne: In Finnish? (thinking) Pitäkäähän kiinni, sillä me tulemme taas! “So hold on. We are coming again!”

Larry: Olkaa kärsivällisiä sillä rokkipellet tulevat teidänkin kaupunkiin. Tulkaa paikalla niin tekin tulette varmasti.
Oh, please write it also down…

Jonne: “Be patient ! Clowns of Rock`n`Roll are coming into your town and…”
Larry: “…you are coming, too!”

Jonne: So if you wanna get some chicks, come to see us, because there will be all the beautiful girls! (all laughing and the guys are writing down the Finnish sentences on paper)

Interview: Lea S.
Website Band: www.facebook.com/pages/Negative/23035109280?fref=ts

(c) darkmoments

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