When and how was your band created?
It was originated from a band called Paine which included Veli Nuorsaari, Janne Peltomäki, Juha Ahtiainen and me. We made one release called Dioxidetunnel with a red-light and endless feeling. It was soon sold out and re-released as Zero to…666Paranormal-CD with two bonus tracks and special cover design. Now it’s available at Tulipesä Recordings-site. Juha Ahtiainen left the group and next time recording we decided to change the name.
Where is the name of the band coming from?
We found the word Stalwart to very cool english adjective. It has a nice vibe in it. Not too common and has a feeling of power.
What musicians or artists did have a major influence in your life / work?
There has been loads of artists that clearly have been influential. Obviously the Pori Jazz festival in our hometown drew early on to acquire many varied eclectic tastes. Later on the finnish label Bad Vugum’s roster had quite an impact. First Radiopuhelimet, then hometown-heroes Deep Turtle and Circle were inspirational in making own music and getting acclaimed and recognized.
What are the positive and negative aspects of being a musician in Finland?
It’s hard to make ends meet unless you’re on “superstar” on finnish level. Market is very small for bands making music outside top-40 idiom.
How could you define your style of music?
Pounding hard-driving repetitive riff-instrumentalism with some avantgardish spices. Occasional vocal antics and ventures into outer space.
During the years how has your musical style changed?
I think the upcoming material will be less in the metallic vein but more melodic and danceable. Also some unexpected stuff will be launched.
How do explain these changes?
Less overdriven sounds attract me more these days. Change is welcome. Music made with other group called Lee Miller is very hard and aggressive. Stalwart will take a step into mellower world.
What are topics you treat in your songs?
Just about anything. And the instrumental songs give room to create your own lyrics in your mind which is the best.
What is your favorite song in your repertoire and why?
I think the track called ´Layered ironies´ has overall best feel in it. It has gentle cinematic parts and contrasting strong furious soundscapes. It’s an epitome of Stalwart sound.
Do you actually prefer performing your music live or in a studio?
These days I definitely like more working in studio. I have played a lot live shows with other groups and Stalwart’s main objective has been to make music without stress of long tours. Though Stalwart has done few gigs succesfully .
During the process of making a song, what is the moment that you prefer?
I think the moment when you have finished it in the studio and realize you have hit something unexpected and new. You can get amazing kicks out of that.
A stupid question but… what is among all the songs you’ve been listening in your life the BEST song?
Oui, c’est une question ridicule! No comments!
What is your opinion, as a musician, regarding internet?
It’s an amazing way for small bands to get their music across the globe and get contacts. Benefits are enormous. Downsides of course exist but they are mostly problems of bigger corporations.
What are your projects ?
The previously mentioned Lee Miller, a band with NYC-based musician/writer Jordan N. Mamone and amazing drummer Janne Peltomäki. We have made one album ‘The Futility of Language’ and it’s very rocking, male-ish and aggressive stuff. Hotguitars is a duo of japnoise formed by sound guru T-mu Korpipää and me. Our latest release ‘Hierarkia’ came via my own small record label called Karkia Mistika. It was a collaboration with a finnish poet Santtu Puukka. Very otherwordly electronic stuff with poetic ranting above it. Hotguitars’ next album will be out later this spring on BV2 Produktions. It has some cool guests such as Father Metro (Don Johnson Big Band), Custom Drummer (Aavikko, Circle) and famed classical violinist Pekka Kuusisto. It’s our catchiest release to date. Some new relases due out via Karkia Mistika- label soon.
What “image” do you have of French music?
I like Serge Gainbourg and France Gall very much. I think I should dig deeper into the french music. Please send me music. I once played in Paris with Circle. Unfortunately didn’t have time to catch any French bands since I was sleeping in the hotel with a flu. Romantic…
Is there one French song that you prefer? If so, what song is it?
It would be ‘Poupee de cire, poupee de son’ performed by France Gall.It’s amazing, nostalgic and chic. Brings warm memories of childhood.