The progressive realm of metal is wonderfully filled with amazing artists and bands, such as Death’s Head And The Space Allusion, directly from Finland. I’ve had the luck of interviewing their talented vocalist Valtteri Virolainen. Want to know more about the plans for this year or his favorite breakfast? Keep on reading!
Hello! How are you doing at the moment?
Valtteri Virolainen: We are doing great! We’re still excited about our latest release through all the feedback we’ve received :)
You have recently released your latest fatigue “Luc-II-Farul” and I think it’s a wonderful album. What are DHATSA’s plans for 2024?
Valtteri Virolainen: Thank you! “LUC-II-FARUL” is our newest baby and all praises and criticisms are welcome! We are planning all kinds of stuff for 2024! We have our next gig on the 3rd of February supporting Warmen in Oulu, and right now we’ve been focusing on rehearsing for that. But after that, we’ll continue progressing with other things already in motion. Hopefully, we can lock in dates for gigs in other cities around Finland, and maybe even another one in Oulu during the spring! And when we’re not planning or rehearsing for any shows, we usually work on new material on the side :) So basically if we don’t have gigs in line or we’re silent on social media, we are not idle.
Can you share with us the process of how you write or compose music?
Valtteri Virolainen: Usually, the process is quite simple for the band as a whole. Antza does most of the work since he composes the majority of our songs. I cannot tell for sure about his writing process, but If I’m right, it usually starts with an idea about a killer guitar riff! When a song is complete, he sends it to the rest of the band as mixed and mastered demos! Vocal melodies are then worked after that, sometimes alone by me, but usually, it’s me and Antza as a duo that lock in the melodies usually without lyrics. It’s easy enough for the rest of us to work on our part after that. We continue to work on the song as a band and make changes on the go if someone gets a worthy idea. So even if the demo is fully played with drums and all, it’s not necessarily the final version of the song as it lives and moves through our rehearsals quite a lot. The final touches are made during recording sessions when all old and new ideas can be played on tape and listen to how well they work in the songs as a whole. And then the lyrics. They are written randomly throughout the whole process. Sometimes Antza already has lyrics ready for the demo, and sometimes they are written after the base of the melody and vocal rhythmics are recorded. A long explanation maybe, but you can see all the songs are written a bit differently :)
Has there been a real-life situation that inspired any of the songs from “Luc-II-Farul”?
Valtteri Virolainen: Most of our driving force comes from real-life experiences and observations and they are then stirred with history, a bit of mysticism, and sometimes even occultism. The base idea might be a rush of a feeling in a moment, a traumatic life event, or even a documentary on TV! Lyrics are also written on the same basic experiences, but we try to release them in a way that people can relate their own life experiences to them. Sometimes the message might be crystal clear to someone and foggy to others. You could say the idea of human stupidity shines through most of the time since we are all idiots at some point in our lives. Some more than others :)
Let’s say that someone comes up to you, and tells you that they dream of being on stage. What kind of advice would you give them?
Valtteri Virolainen: I’d say do everything in their power to try to fulfill that dream! Why? Because the feeling on stage is amazing! First the probable excitement and anxiety backstage before the gig, then the rush of adrenaline and euphoria on stage once the anxiety lifts off and you see that people are moving and enjoying themselves from the sounds you’ve put out there :) But they need to be ready to do the work, if they want to shine on the stage it needs a lot of practice for most of us. It’s worth trying out, but I know it is not for everyone. You are putting yourself in the spotlight and open and vulnerable to criticism. Sometimes it might be overwhelming.
What do you think the pandemic has taught you?
Valtteri Virolainen: Although our plans to rule the world were somewhat delayed by that damn pandemic, we didn’t stop. We put our world tour plans aside and started to work on our 2nd album :) So maybe we learned that plans don’t always go through so we must be ready to change them on the fly.
I am a huge pancake lover. What do you usually eat for breakfast?
Valtteri Virolainen: I myself am a bread guy. Rye bread starts the day! Don’t know what the other members eat, we haven’t really talked about that yet :)
Tell me an unpopular opinion (if you have one!).
Valtteri Virolainen: Don’t know if this is an unpopular opinion or just a 50/50 kind of debate, but cheese goes below the cold cuts. (The ones that get it, get it.)
Winter is slowly coming, and I guess that Finland’s winter is pretty cold. What would you do if you found a penguin when you opened the door of your house?
Valtteri Virolainen: Winter has been in Oulu since September/October so we’re hoping the winter would release its hold on us already! But a penguin inside the house? I’d just carry it to our neighbors and say “Please buy Pete a new leash already!”!
Thank you so much for taking the time to do this interview! Is there anything else you’d like to add to Chaoszine’s readers?
Valtteri Virolainen: Don’t forget to check out our new album “LUC-II-FARUL” and keep us on your radar, we’re starting the work on new material already! And just keep listening to all kinds of music, there’s something for everyone :)