Finns MARRASMIELI are not afraid to use instruments that aren’t that metal in their black metal. Anders Ekdahl ©2018

Do you feel that is has gone the way you intended when you formed back in the days?
-Better than intended, to be honest. When we formed the band we just wanted to make some music for fun and then self-publish it. Well, everything went as we had planned except that instead of self-publishing we got signed to a label.

How do you feel about your latest recording? Did it come out the way you expected it to?
-Very good! It absolutely did, and maybe even better. Especially considering it was the first time Zannibal (who wrote both songs) was writing anything like this (as in folk/black metal) and it was also first time Nattvind did vocals for a band.

Do you feel that you by now has found a sound that is the band and that you can build on it ?
-Yes, it seems like we have found our sound. Our up-coming album is following in the footsteps of the EP.

Is having a message in the lyrics important to you? What kind of topics do you deal with?
-Our songs don’t really have any messages. Some songs may have some deeper meaning hidden behind the metaphors but it’s more about being something relatable than sending a message. So far our topics have dealt with nature and mythology.

How important is the cover art work for you? Can a really cool cover still sell an album in this day and age of digital download?
-It’s definitely important! It does set the mood for the album and you’re more likely to check an album out if it has cool artwork. And people still absolutely buy physical releases.

Why is it so hard for bands that come from places not the US or UK/Sweden/Scandinavia to break big? What is success to you and is it something you’d like to achieve?
-That might be because of the fact that for in example in Africa metal is even more marginal music than in Europe and therefore bands might not get a big enough following to get big. But it’s hard to break through anywhere. Even in those countries mentioned in the question just because there’s so many bands. To us success basically means getting a solid fanbase and getting your music heard. We would definitely like to achieve that.

Today the competition is harder. You got plenty of digital platforms for new talent to display their music. How do you do to really stand out in a world where everything but the music is blind to the listener?
-Either do something unique or do something well. That really is all there is to it.

What is your local scene like? How important is a national scene for a band to be able to break out and make it international?
-There used to be quite many young metal bands around in our area but most of them quit a few years ago when people got into their twenties. There’s still a few bands around but most of them are pretty much doing core stuff which got very popular in the early 2010s. A national scene’s importance depends on a few factors. You could say that for most genres you first have to break out in your own country but when it comes to underground black metal for example it might even be easier to break out in other countries than your own.

Rock and metal has come a long way since the early 70s but still some people’s attitudes towards it seem to be left in the stone age. How accepted is metal in your area? Is it like in Finland where it seems to come with the mother’s milk?
-Most people dismiss metal as noise and complain about the lack of melody, but it’s not seen as evil or anything like that. However, it seems like most people have some metal band as their ‘guilty pleasure’. For example Raskasta Joulua, which is a very famous concert tour for metal covers of Christmas songs.

What does the future hold for you?
-We’re currently working on an album.

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