Interview With Phenomenal Finnish Old School Death metal Band Purtenance

Finland's purveyors of chaos and wrath, Purtenancefrontman Ville unveiled about their upcoming album, bands history and many more.On this year Finland based old school death metal band Purtenance will release their third full length album. Earlier this old schoolrotten death metal band Purtenance served up some devastatingly sacrilegious, rotten, phenomenal death metal album, EP.
So recently I’ve interviewed Purtenance Vocalist Ville. I was very keen to interact with him and I’ve tried to enlightenon their upcoming new album and tried to explore more about his bands. Check out the full interview below. Interview done by SouvikBasu.

1. Hello, how are you doing today?
Ville  : Thanx for asking, I'm fine. I just went back to work after summer vacation and I must say Purtenance have had keeping me very busy during my holiday.

2. Purtenance was formed in 1989 as “Purtenance Avulsion” and later changed their name as “Purtenance”from 1991,Can you give me a briefhistory of how the band got together?Had you been in any bands or musical apparition before Purtenance?
Ville  : First I have to clarify something. I'm not part of the original line-up, just because I was 9 years old when Purtenance started!And I was 11 when "Member..." came out, so I have basically grown with that album playing in my stereo's! Harri is my cousin,so that's why I'm here now. But what I do know from the beginning of Purtenance is something like this: Harri and Juha were friendsand shared the same kind of taste what comes to metal, so they started to play together and grappedTimoHayrinen for vocals (and bass at first!).They played and practiced constantly until came time to make a demo. So they went to record demo with TimoTolkki (yes, the one and only)and soon after that changed their name to just Purtenance and started to write material for "Member..." and other members joined them,like Toni Honkala for instance. They played some local shows and few somewhere else, with names like Amorphis, Sentenced, Beherit,Convulse and other's just to name couple. Purtenance was basically their first real band! But when it came time to "grow up", which means in Finland,you go to military service, Purtenance went on hibernation, just to awake again in 2011! I've used to play drums in a punkrock band but it was just a hobby.

3. what bands inspired the direction that Purtenance took and motivated you? Writers?Visual artists?Movies?Books?
Ville  : Amorphis, Sentenced and other legendary Finnish bands sure had their influence to Purtenance,but for some reason all Finnish bands tend to have their own unique style, if you compare to Swedish bands,they have their HM-2 sound in almost all of them. At least bands from that era. Horror movies, Lovecraft, Chris Moyen, H.R Giger and many other'sall have had their art to give inspiration to the chaos of Purtenance. I personally have been drawing inspirations from the works of Tolkien and Terry Pratchett,so that's why I might have slightly crazy ideas for lyrics etc. And my musical background have punk and hardcore in it, so there might be some echoes from there too.

4. There are two basic ways of looking at music. In the first, there is a mechanism to the arrangement of certain tones, musical style.In the second, a narration occurs where a story is told or a poetic function completed. In your view of compositions, which is more important?Where were you when you first thought the project had longterm potential for you?
Ville  : It all starts from the soundscape. It lays the foundation for songs to grow. Stories build up from there, they rise to their high when all our membersgives their twisted essence to the plot. I think old members never actually thought that Purtenance would survive through the times.But for some odd reasons here we are still playing and enjoying what we do!

5. What for you is the significance of the name, “Purtenance”?
Ville : The name itself have no deeper meanings. It just happened to pop in someones eye and seemed suitable for death metal band.So sorry, no supernatural or occult or blasphemous or anything like that in the name! For myself, Purtenance stands the fact that Harri have started this, with his friends,long time ago and that I do respect a lot and thank the opportunity that I can be part of this now.

6. If you could tour with other bands in metal, who would you pick if you were looking for bands similar to Purtenance?
Ville : Ouch, though one, Incantation would be very great band to play with or even tour! But we donÕt do this for living, you know, so big or long tours are not in our plans.

7. Purtenance  released their debut album in 1992. After that a huge gap Purtenance unveiled their sophomore album in 2014 and the third one will release on this year.From 1992 Purtenance shaped the style of old school, rotten death metal music. How do you maintain this consistency yet keep developing with each album?How do you write your riffs, songs? What is the most difficult part about composing songs as you do?
Ville : We are simple people with limited talents. It is the way we have always been. We just in somehow seem to find ourselves writing this kind of music and it is all four of us nowadaysthat came up with songs that have very similar formulas in them as old ones but still they all have something uniqueness in them.Juha writes most of the music (we all write something to every release) and rest of us just brings our own spices to the mix.

8. Do you have a preference for type of equipment? In your mind, how important is equipment to the production of music?
Ville : With good tools you can achieve lot. But with decent equipment and with practise you can survive. We are not rich people that have lot of money to spend on equipmentso we use what we can afford. But in the end it really does not matter how good your equipment is, as long as you have good songs and music to release the magic is there.Of course if we would follow trends, which we don't, production should be super polished with squashed dynamics like most modern day acts have. We are just not in to that.

9. well, now I’m going to the main point about new album “...to Spread the Flame of Ancients”. Already we have saw the new album artwork released and the manifestationfrom upcoming album “Invocatio”. To be honest the artwork and track both is wicked. When were these tracks written, and how does Purtenance go about the writing process?
 Ville : Album art is yet again done by the great Chris Moyen. He once again had total freedom to do whatever he wanted and the results are filled with that dark and morbid artthat he has almost trademarked. Big thanks to him again! The whole album was written during 2014 and 2015. All songs spawned from ideas that we all had. We just arranged them together.We all wrote some music to new album but Juha brought most of new music to it. I did almost all lyrics, Harri wrote lyrics for couple of songs, but I edited them to fit to songs and tomy singing. After the songs were written we played them through again and again to find that final form of them.

10. What's going on as far as lyrical themes on new album ?
Ville : There is lot of occultistic stuff in there. Dark stories of mystic things that reflect modern life through metaphores. I tried to write about things in a way that I haven't previously done.Some of tunes just gave so much inspiration to write about and rhytmic elements spawned words in to my head. Of course loose all around theme circles around Ancients, what of course isstraight from Lovecraftian novels and stories. I even (once again) wrote one songs in finnish language, cause it just seemed more fitting to that song, I also wrote the music to that song.

11. How did you get into this rotten, old school, heavy form of music and kindly explain about this music genre according to you?
Ville : Death metal is the must straight forward style of metal with what you can express yourself in it's boundaries. Brutal, truthfull, sincere, crushing way to release your own visions.When I was younger I listened lot of more "easier" music, but when I got older I started to search something more extreme. Then I found death and black metal, and for some unknownreason death metal inflicted fierce flame in to my soul. Maybe it is it's heaviness compared to any other genre. Black metal also is close to my heart, but it is it's musical side, notthe philosophical in most cases.

12.How would you describe the sound of the new album to someone who hadn’t heard it, and what distinguishes your music from any other act in the same genre?
Ville : Heavy with echoes from the past. I don't know if we are that different from any other, but at least we try to keep ourselves honest for what we are doing. We don't do decisions basedif something would sell or not. We do what we wan't to do.

13. Do you guys have any official videos coming out soon?
Ville : Aaah, we have been planning something but in this case we just haven't decided yet should we do video or not. We have couple of ideas but there is no certainty will we ever put them on use.

14. How do you explain the album title “...to Spread the Flame of Ancients”. what it means and the album art and how it coincides with the lyrics, themes?
Ville : It is sort of word play with many different meanings. It can be seen that we are old band that still have the flame of death metal burning in us and we wan't to share it too. Or it can beseen as a title for the loose theme and story behind some lyrics, Lovecraft again, anyone? I wan't to give people change to find the meanings by themselves and not try give too much answers already chewed.

15. Who came up with the album cover? I personally cherish Purtenance’s each and every album artwork because those are truly indelible, remarkable, appreciable too.
Ville : As said, Chris Moyen did the artwork again. And if we can decide he will be making our album cover's forever. If we ever make any more albums that is. He has kept that constant high level on hisart through the years and we own him so much for helping us to have that visual side to our music that seems to fit every time perfectly.

16. What's the first gig you ever went to? Have you been to any killer live shows lately?
Ville : It seems that my first live show experience have been lost in time (or at least from my memory!). But last killer show I saw was when AnaalNathrakhwere in Tampere, supported by Mörbid Vomit!Even thou AnaalNathrakh played super fast and memorable show, Mörbid Vomit played some new songs from their upcoming album, and I must say they were the best thing that night! Just wait that album!It won't let you down, I guarantee!

17. In before you guys performed a lots of gigs so, Which show was the most memorable to you so far? Do you get a good crowd response? Did you get offers to play in other countries oranything like that?
Ville : Well to this day, we haven't played that many shows, but two shows have been most memorable. Our first show in 20 years at Steelfest Open Air in Hyvinkää, Finland and Ritual Zombi Fest atMadrid, Spain.Both in 2013. They might not been our best shows, what comes to performance, but still they were something so unbelievable, that they can't be forgotten. Usually we have had decent response from the crowds, nobody have beaten up us, yet! From time to timewe get requests to play outside of Finland, but to this date, nothing has ever really happened. We don't know why, 'cos we don't even ask that much from coming to play, but for some reasonsthese things just don't seem to happen, even that the promoters and fans really would like us to play in their places.

18. Do you study other bands music to come up with ideas?
Ville : Simply, no.Cause that would just end in, us taking too much things from them. We of course listen music a lot and we can't help if our subconsciousness takes influences, with we try to do our musicjust by ourselves. What really can't be done, because Black Sabbath have already made all the best riffs.

19. Your vocals style is raspy, aggressive,tortured and raw. appreciate your vocal style. how do you prepare your vocals before the studio or especially for live performances?Did any band in particular inspire you in the shrieking department?
Ville : I don't prepare! We just have rehearsals so often that my voice is practiced there already. TimoHayrinen might have the voice that I have listened and drawed influences the most. After all,I must have had listened "Member..." at least thousand, if not more, times! Or do you mean the screaming stuff? I have listened lot of Norwegian black metal through the years, so from therecomes that.

20. Is there a difference in the band’s sound as compared to the EPs and full length album you’ve released in the past?
Ville : Well of course there is. It is partly because we have different members now and different amps, guitars, pedal etc. We also play with different tuning than guys used to play back in the days.For some reason we still manage to sound slighty the same, no matter what year it is, or at least we think that it is like that.

21. XtreemMusic  has been a great supporter of extreme metal, you’re signed to them now. How did this happen?
Ville : Story that has been told so many times but here it is again... Dave originally released "Member..." through his Drowned Productions. Guys kept in touch with him and in 2011 when Dave heardthat Juha and Harri started to play again together (I have been playing with Harri since 2006 in a different group), he proposed that if he would release "Member..." again for it's 20 yearof existence and that if Purtenance would rise from the grave he will make a contract with us. So we released "Sacrifice..." in 2012 and "Awaken..." in 2013. "... to Spread..." is actuallyour last album within this deal, so we have to see what future brings to us...

22. What do you do as individual band members to relax, when not working on music? Do you have jobs or business?
Ville : Somethings is just best to keep private, but yes, we all have our day jobs. Purtenance does not bring food to our tables!

23. What albums are you listening to lately or just the bands and albums in general you're really digging right now and tell me about your anticipated album of this year?
Ville : Lately I have been listening lot of Tau Cross. I'm a huge Amebix fan and especially enjoyed their last album "Sonic Mass" and when I heard that Rob Miller has a new band,I was really excited! For this year I'm really waiting Mörbid Vomit's debyt album!

24.last one question, what are your future band goals & tell us  something about upcoming tour. Lastly, a lots of teenagers aim to be full-time musicians.Many of them might be without any proper guidance, any words of wisdom for them?
Ville : We don't have any plans after confirmed shows this year and 2016 spring. We have to sit down and think what we are going to do... We are really waiting the Finnish Death Metal Maniacs Festthat is happening next week,TimoHayrinen will perform with us for the first time in 20 years and probably for the last time ever! Well we don't do this for living, but couple of good tipscould be that never stop believing in yourself, always respect others, don't talk shit about others and lastly, if you don't know something, ASK nicely and you will have answers.

25. That's all I've got right now. best of luck for upcoming release. This album is one of my anticipated release of this year. thanks a lot for enduring this torture haha.Any final thoughts, comments for the readers? If I forgot anything, please insert it in here.
Ville : Thank you and hopefully you don't disappoint to "...to Spread the Flame of Ancients". Haha! I will end this like we always end interviews, STAY TRUE, STAY BRUTAL!

Interview done By - Souvik Basu. Published on 02/09/2015.

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