This interview with the guitarist Kristian "Kride" Ranta and the vocalist / guitarist Petri Lindroos of the Finnish melodic death metal band Norther was done through an internet chat in May 2003.

How are you then?
I guess we are fine.

Guess? You normally know those things :-)
Well normally but I guess we are not that normal always :)

Me neither :-) First of all, congratulations on the new album! What has the response been so far from fans and reviewers?
We have gotten really good reviews here in finland, mostly like 9/10 and 4/5. The fans have also liked the album really much. so basically we have gotten fucking good response and we are really happy for that.

That sounds great. Are you fully satisfied with the new album yourselves as well or are there things you think you could have done better?
Well I must say that we are really satisfied with MoM, everything went really good with the recordings and mixing so we are happy. We also like the songs a lot.

How would you say that "Mirror Of Madness" differs from your debut album?
It's a lot more versatile than doew and I think that we have developed as song writers and players. We paid a lot more attention on the sounds than on doew. When we composed the songs we paid a lot more attention to the structures of the songs.

The Japanese version of the album features a cover of Offspring's "Smash", are you big fans of the band?
At least used to be, now they have gone too commercial.... Offspring used to be really good and they really had something to.... not anymore :(

I agree with you on that, I liked them when I was younger but their newer songs are just mtv commercials...

Some fans obviously wanted to hear some more harmony solos from you, will they be left satisfied?
Oh yes, harmony solos are here to stay.

The lyrics are yet again filled with hate, frustration and death. Where do you find inspiration for these words and who writes them?
In finland the winter is fucking long and we are all so depressed and fustrated.... We just find it easy to write about these kind of thoughts.... It's good to let the steam out sometimes. Jukka, Kride, Petri and Tuomas write the lyrics.

What would you like to say to the parents who think that metal is all about hatred towards society, established values and authorities in general? Is metal music only for violent, depressed and suicidal kids who are innocent victims of a cold and harsh world?
Well I would like to say that we find it better to express these negative feelings through music and lyrics rather than beating up people in the railwaystation... I think that anyone can listen to metal, and not all the lyrics are that suicidal or so... In quite many songs we have these kind of imaginary lyrics so not all of them are based in real life experiences...

I know that you will be doing mostly Finnish shows during the summer, there are no other touring plans being worked on?
Nothing certain yet, hopefully a european tour in the autumn.

You have now released two albums through Spikefarm / Spinefarm, are you happy with the work they have put into the band?
Sorry, we are playing in gates of metal in sweden 2.8.2003. Yes, we are really satisfied, they have worked really well.

Kride: Norther was formed already in 1996 but then by the name Requiem. Did you know the band before joining them in the year 2000?
No, i did not.

How did they find you?
They had put announcements in some web pages and on some magazines, I happened to read one and went for it.

You brought with you two friends, Sebastian and Joakim Ekroos. Why did they leave the band so quickly?
Their playing abilities didn't quite match the need... So we thought that the band would work better with some other guys.

Do you know what the Ekroos brothers or the other former members Tuomas and Roni have been doing since they left the band?
I don't know that much about them, neither does Petri... I guess they still drink bear.

Why did you change the name from Requiem to Norther after you had joined the band? Does Norther have a meaning to you or did you just pick it out of the blue?
Requiem was already used so we had to figure out an other name... Norther just came out from a dictionary and it seemed to suit our needs really well.... you know that it is windy as hell here in the winter :)

I know what it's like :-) No matter how much you hate it people continue to compare you to Children Of Bodom, how do you feel about this? What do you think makes you different from them?
We don't care... We have been discussing this thing with the bodom guys many times and neither one of us thinks that we sound like each other so people can think what they want. And what's different? Well I guess that our music is straightforward and so... You have figure it out yourself.

Did you have any other band experiences before joining the band? I know that some of the current members are working on small projects outside the band, could you tell us something about them?
There has been nothing official. Well I play sometimes with one funk band, some old friends from school, just for fun :)

Ok, sounds like fun :-) The Finnish metal scene is very rich in bands and is growing rapidly all the time. Does all musicians know each other well or is it a lot of hard feelings and jealousy going on?
well at least we know a lot of guys from different bands and in general the feeling in the scene is good, no jealousy.

Sounds good! Do you have any message to the fans who want to hear your old demo material? What does it sound like?
Sounds like shit.... :)

Ok :-) What music do you listen to yourself? What are your favorite bands at the moment?
Petri: slayer, ozzy, tarot
Kride: soilwork, arch enemy, in flames

What do the band members do except for music, do you still go to school or work?
Well, Petri and Toni work, I and Jukkis go to school, Tuomas just is, he also works sometimes but quite seldom.

Spikefarm / Spinefarm is as most people probably know by now a label located in your home country of Finland. What are the advantages of signing with a native label instead of for example Nuclear Blast or Metal Blade? Are there any disadvantages?
There are many advantages, we get free tickets for all kinds of gigs in Helsinki, we get free CDs and so... It's a lot easier to deal with things when you can speak finnish and when the office is near your home. No disadvantages come to mind...

Then you have obviously made the right choice :-) Did you have any other label offers to choose from?
Spinefarm was the quickest, they offered us a deal just after we had finished the recordings of our first demo.... Wo we took their offer because it was quite good.

Ok, any final words to close the interview with?
Stay Heavy Sweden!!! Are you still pissed of because you lost the hockey final? :) Just kidding, greetings to all fans out there and hope to see you in gates of metal.... Metal!!!!

Then we're done :-), thanks a lot for the interiew!
Thank you!!!!

Links of interest:

Spinefarm Records