A little over a month ago, I was contacted by Enter My Silence and my interest was immediately peaked by the interesting name and great samples on their website. A month later, I am listening to one of the best debut albums I've heard in a while! I was once again able to contact Tuomas Jappinen, their guitarist, to gain some more info.
Wayfaerer-First off, congratulations on Remotecontrolled Scythe, its one of my favorites so far this year! Whats the response been in general?
Tuomas-Thank you, Kyle. The response so far has been above all expectations! We're constantly getting great feedback concerning Remotecontrolled Scythe, so it has been great to see that people really love the disc. As for reviews, I've seen only a few so far and they also have been very positive, so looks like those are going ok as well.
W-How did the recording for RC Scythe go? Anything that was
T-Well, actually the whole process was quite memorable since this was our time recording a full length cd. I think it's a milestone to remember for any band. We spent three weeks in Studio Watercastle in our hometown Jyvaskyla with Arttu Sarvanne who recorded and mixed the album with us, and did a great job by the way. The sessions went really good, we had a great time recording this album. Of course there were some bad moments when we couldn´t get anything right and therefore got a little frustrated, but luckily someone invented beer! That´s usually a big help in such moments. All in all, it was a great experience and we're looking forward to record our next one.
W-Could you tell us a little bit about the band?
T-We formed the band back in late ´95 with Teemu, Ville and myself under the name Captivity. During the early years, I also did vocals for the band. Then a few months after we started, Arto joined us to play second guitar and with that line-up we recorded two demo tapes and the ´99 Sophia's Eye -mcd that got us the deal with Mighty Music. I quit singing for the band in early ´00 and we got Mikko to do session vocals for Remotecontrolled Scythe just a few weeks before recording it. Nowadays he's a full time member. As of this moment, we're just a bunch of five having fun playing and waiting to see what the future holds for us. That's the story in brief, I could go on and on about this but, I don't think that anyone is interested in reading a full length bio in an interview, so lets leave it here, shall we.
W-If you could pick one word to describe EMS, what would it be and why?
T-Well, if I had to go with just one, I'd obviously choose the word "metal". And don't even ask why. But I think we need to dig a little deeper here. To describe our sound, I say it's groovy, guitar-driven Scandinavian Death Metal. Lots and lots of nice'n'catchy melodies backed up by a big, fat, crunchy rhythm base. Lately we've been using the definition "death metal that you can dance to"! Ain't that a killer?! Mikko has also become a crucial part of our sound since he is, I dare to say, one of the best and most versatile growlers around today. Like you must have heard on this album, he easily goes from ultra-low Florida sound to those hi-pitched black metal screams and sounds great all the way. He has it all: hi, mid, lo.
W-Who are some of your biggest influences?
T-I believe our biggest influences come from up north as well as us. Bands like At The Gates, Dark Tranquillity, Sentenced, In Flames and Amorphis maybe. I don't like to compare us to any particular band, but I guess people need some comparison, especially when a new band like us is in question. There was a funny situation a few weeks back when me and Mikko were doing an interview for a mag here in Finland, and the reporter named about 15-20 bands that he had found influences from on this album. All the way from Edge of Sanity to Slayer to Megadeth to The Haunted and so on...I tell you, that was some weird shit. Megadeth?!!?! Come on. But the thing I'm happy about is that there was no Metallica on that list, I'm sure you know what I mean :) Well, you have my permission to cut that out, Lars will sue both our asses if he happens to read this on the web.
W-Do you have any tour plans at the moment?
T-Unfortunately none at the moment. We're just doing some occational gigs here in Finland every now and then. We´d love to do more, but I don't think neither Mighty Music or especially us have the resources to arrange any tours or such in the near future. Sad but true.
W-If you could tour anywhere, where would you go?
T-Don't tell this to anyone, but I've decided that we will tour America some day. Even the rest of the band doesn't know about this yet, so it must be kept a secret... But seriously, I would love a busride across the US, sippin' beer, strumming some chords on an acoustic and just hanging out with the guys. And naturally those gigs would be the best part. But hey, let's get back to that in a couple of years maybe, I'm getting emotional...
W-How did you decide upon the name Enter My Silence?
T-When we were preparing to record Sophia's Eye, we felt that we needed to renew things other than musically as well. We thought of a bunch of different names for the band but had a hard time coming up with anything good. Then one day I was listening to our second demo, and there it was: track no.2, Enter My Silence. We thought it would be a cool name, since it's easy, unique and memorable. We wanted to have a some kind of connection to Captivity, so it was logical to choose a monicker we already had something to do with. The name itself doesn't specially stand for anything, and like you propably noticed listening to the album, we have next to none to do with silence...
W-I thought Remotecontrolled Scythe was a really cool name for the album, what exactly is a remotecontrolled scythe?
T-Now this is my favorite question of all time! It's an age old metal cliche that scythe has something to with death, kill & murder, isn't it? And since we did a killer album, why not call it a scythe?! The remotecontrol part simply comes from the fact that nowadays every cd player on earth is operated with a remote, so it's mere logic to name the album as Remotecontrolled Scythe. A cool way of putting it, don't you agree?
W-Wow, that's actually pretty interesting! With the artwork, Niklas Sundin's artwork is outstanding, as always! What was the main theme you wanted to portray in the artwork?
T-The cover story.hmm. Actually, Ville, our bass player was supposed to do the cover artwork for this cd in the first place but the Mighty Music fellas weren't too happy about the sketches we sent them, so they sent us the front cover image by Mr. Sundin for a view, and we obviously fell in love with it right away. He had done the image before even knowing about our album, so it wasn't specifically designed for that. However, Niklas is only responsible for the front and back cover images, booklet design is Ville's work following Sundin's theme. Artwork on this cd is, like you said, outstanding and I think it's mainly because of the colouring. There really aren't too many death metal cd covers where white is the dominant colour, is there? It's great, really draws your attention in a cd store among all those dark shaded metal covers.
W-Do you have any ideas at this point about future songs will sound like? Will the next album be more of a perfection of the present sound or an evolution from it?
T-We're still a young band constantly developing and evolving, so its hard to say where our sound goes in the future. I have a couple of new songs finished, and I'd say they differ quite a bit from the material on RC Scythe. The style is basically the same but I'd say they're a more versatile and multi-leveled than before. It's hard to say at this point, I'll write what comes naturally. It could be an "evolution from the present perfection"... :)
W-Does anyone in the band have any side-projects or play in any other bands?
T-Mikko also sings in a black metal band called Funeris Nocturnum, who just recorded their second full length album for Woodcut Records and Teemu did session drums last week for a melodic death band, Dark Forecast for their self-financed mcd, but other than that there are no other projects going on at the moment. We're always talking about how we should do this and we should do that, but nothing ever happens. I believe it's because we're usually drunk when talking about that, so no one remembers anything the next day. I'd say we've formed from 10 to 15 projects with guys from other Jyvaskyla-based bands, but I must say I haven't witnessed a rehearsal yet.
W-Where do you see Enter My Silence in say, 5 years from now?
T-That's really hard to say. Hopefully touring the US like I mentioned earlier. But seriously, we're very down to earth with this, so let's just see what happens. A good way to avoid disappointments is not to expect too much.
W-What are your thoughts on the internet as a promotion tool? Also, what are your opinion of mp3s?
T-How the hell we could have lived without it?!? Today, if someone came and took internet away, all of us would be fucked. I think it's an essential part of promoting music(or anything) nowadays. Mp3s are a good a way for a new band to bring their music to the world's attention, but I don't think much of it as a format. I don't have a one single mp3 file on my harddrive. For me, cd and md are the only ways go. When it comes to mp3s and Enter My Silence, at this point I don't care if people download a half a million copies of RC Scythe from the internet, because the important thing now is to bring our music to as many people as possible. But I suppose the Mighty Music crew could possibly have something against it.
W-The melodic death scene in Finland has been on the rise lately. Do you have any explanations for this?
T-Is it really? I haven't noticed. Though I'm not a fanatic follower of the underground, so I don't know what's going on in the demo scene. The only band that comes to mind is Insomnium, who are just about to sign, if already haven't, a quite promising record deal. I don't know what you're talking about, sorry.
W-What have you been listening to lately?
T-Actually I don't listen to music that much nowadays except when I'm drunk and hanging out with friends. But some albums that have made an impact lately are Dark Tranquillity's Haven and the new Dimmu Borgir album. Also, the fantastic Animatronic by The Kovenant is still a frequent visitor in my cd player. But in general, probably the only situation I listen to music is when I'm doing the dishes. Sad, huh?
W-Finally, any closing comments that you'd like to make to the readers?
T-I have two:
1. www.entermysilence.cjb.net (samples + info about the band).
2. www.mightymusic.dk (ordering information for the album)
And thanks to you Kyle, for the interview and all of you guys for taking the time to read this through. Keep it heavy!!