ATLASES is a Finnish post metal band that I just recently got to know of. Jerkka (bass/clean vocals)answered the questions. Anders Ekdahl ©2018
Was it hard to come up with a name? What does the name mean to you? How important is it to have the right name?
-Ville-Veikko came up with the name before I joined the band. Actually, the name was ready before this project even started turning into a band. I think there can be various interpretations of ’Atlases’, but mainly it’s intended to give an oceanic vibe. Maybe a parable for an emotion, that is soothing and calm as a serene ocean, that however can turn into a dark, malevolent and endless abyss, holding enormous and destructive power within. And maybe there are multiple of these oceans, these emotions, existing in different places or dimensions. In my opinion ’Atlases’ sounds right when listening to our music, and I do think it’s pretty important to have the right name. After all it does give listeners a kind of a frame to put the band into.
Who would say have laid the foundation for the kind of sound you have? Who are your heroes musically and what have they meant to you personally and to the sound of your band?
-I could state the obvious post-metallers and pioneers of the genre, but to me, all music in general has laid the foundation for the sound we make. Most of us don’t actually listen too much of the specific genre we play, so we draw inspiration from all sorts of music, and blend them together and create something that sounds like us. I personally dont have a specific musical hero. I listen to all kind of music, so it’s pretty hard to name just one, or even a few people in the industry that have made an impact on me.
When you play slow do you have to think differently arranging the music than if you play faster and vice versa?
-Yeah, I do think that not all the same guidelines apply. Of course, you are always creating feelings sonically, whether it is fast or slow, but the delivery of the feeling is somehow different. Usually when writing or arranging material, we mostly go with the flow and let it unfold, and so far it has come together pretty easily without thinking about it too much, whether were talking about a slower or a faster song.
Will your music work in a live environment? What kind of stage environment would best suit your music; a big stage or a small club?
-I think our music works very well in a live environment, because it ha such a variety of emotions and lots of energy that gets delivered with more force. If I had to choose between a big stage and a small club, I’d have to say a small club with a big stage, ha.
It is very hard to be 100% satisfied. Everybody seems to be disappointed with something they have released. Is there something that you in hindsight would have done differently on this your latest recording?
-That is true. I recorded the vocals and mixed and mastered ’Penumbra EP’ and our latest single ’Atone’, so yeah… like always, there are tons of things I’d do differently now, and I think I would do a better job at it. But that’s how it goes I guess. I do enjoy listening to the record, and it works as a milestone for Atlases as a band, and on my personal progress as a sound engineer as well.
Promotion can be a bitch. Even today with all different platforms it can be hard to reach out to all those that might be interested in your music? What alleys have you used to get people familiarized with your band?
-Indeed it can. Well, we have done the obvious: produced and released the music, established a social media/internet presence and played gigs as much as possible, mostly in Finland (so far), but also across the Baltic countries. Pest Records released our EP as CD, and that has also been very helpful. I think that the right way to get heard is to work really hard for it.
To me art work can be the difference between bust or success. What to you is a great front cover? What should a cover have to make it great?
-I do think that too! Artwork means a lot to me on a release, I don’t care if it’s a book, a record or a movie. To me it is very important. In many cases an artwork may even inspire me more than the piece of work itself. A great cover catches your eye instantly, and makes you wonder what it holds
within. For example, ’Septicflesh – The Great Mass’ has really amazing artwork.
Do you feel that you are part of a national scene? Is a local/national scene important for the development of new bands?
-It’s a bit difficult matter. I think it can play a key role in success, but I also think it does matter where you are: bigger cities and countries may be of greater help when trying to get noticed because it can be easier to find your target audience. On the other hand, you can more easily drown among all the others. Here where we’re from, the scene is pretty small. Nevertheless, it’s good to have some place to strive from, no matter how small or big that place is.
I could just be me but I got the feeling that the live scene is not what it used to be. Could be that more and more people use the net to discover bands instead of going out and supporting new bands live. What is you experience with the live scene?
-I think the game has changed, yes. There are even fewer events to go to, and it feels like people are lazier nowadays when this matter is concerned. I’m a bit ashamed to admit it, but so am I. Maybe it’s the internet, maybe it’s something else, who knows. One thing is for certain: your internet presence is now more important than ever.
What does the future hold?
-We are currently on the pre-production stage of our first LP and things are looking good. We have something special cooking up as well. The roaring abyss that is Atlases is looking right at us, and we are embracing it. We’ll see where it takes us.