Creinium was founded in early 2012 by former band mates Aleksi Holma (drums) and Antti Myllynen (keyboards). During the spring and summer, they found the missing links to complete the band’s lineup, and from April 2012 to May 2013 they recorded Creinium’s first demo “Modern World Tyranny” DIY-style, piece by piece. After their first bass player left the band, Miiro Varjus took his place, recorded the bass lines, and then mixed and mastered the demo. The demo was finally released on the 14th of June 2013. It received positive feedback and was titled “Demo of the month” by Finnish hard rock Magazine “Inferno”. Soon after that they signed a deal with Inverse Records.
Creinium combines all kinds of metal influences in their music, such as black, melodic death, death/doom, dark and progressive metal. Their music is characterized by a strong presence of keyboards, unusual song structures, abundant melodies and diverse growling vocals.
In April 2013, a few months before the release of “Modern World Tyranny”, Creinium already started to record their second release, soon to be an EP called “Project Utopia”. Once again, they did everything by themselves. In January 2014 it was finally finished and ready to go. “Project Utopia” will be released via Inverse Records in April 16th 2014.
Can you give a little biographical and historical info; who is involved in the band, and how did you guys meet up? You know, how the journey started, what the members were doing before…
Aleksi: Creinium was founded in early 2012 by me (drums) and Antti (keyboards). We had been making music together for years, so we decided to bury our old band and start a new one. Our former band mate Juuso Putti (guitar) joined the crew and we recorded a few songs with video footage to recruit the missing band members.
Later we decided to use that audio further, so we recorded the other instruments and made it into our first demo ‘Modern World Tyranny’. It was titled “Demo of the Month” in Finnish Hard Rock Magazine “Inferno”, and soon after that we signed with Inverse Records.
How would you define your genre?
Aleksi: Well first of all, I’m not so sure what our exact genre is. We’ve been categorized as many things, mostly like progressive technical melodic black death/doom dark metal.
I listen to all kinds of metal music: black, melodic death, death/doom, progressive, dark, funeral doom, folk… But also some electronic music. So, I take influences from everything and mix them into my songs.
Antti: Yes indeed, our genre is extremely hard to describe. I could actually say that our genre chose me, not the opposite way. I’ve always composed music that just feels good, and my present style have developed during several years.
How did the initial musical and thematic elements evolve?
Aleksi: In our old band – in which I and Antti were also in charge of writing the music – we used to play some basic and boring melodeath crap. Guess we just didn’t know better. We started going into a more distinctive direction, but then we quit. When we founded Creinium, we had already decided to leave all those basic melodeath things behind, and make music that would somehow resemble the sum of both of our musical tastes.
And we are constantly evolving. That’s why there’s no knowing about how we sound like in ten years. I constantly keep finding new great bands I like, and all of that has an influence on the music I write.
Antti: Aleksi pretty much summed it up. Evolving is endless process and you can’t ever know what kind of music you’re going to create next year.
Are you happy with your product? I mean, what aspect of it do you think you guys nailed, and what parts do you think you could improve upon?
Aleksi: Most definitely yes. So far. Of course I have to say that I’m not so happy with our first demo anymore, but I was when it was released. I aim to outdo myself in songwriting constantly, so I’m not happy with a song I’ve written, if it doesn’t feel better than the previous one. Same goes with the production. We wouldn’t have been happy with Project Utopia, if it would’ve sounded like our first demo.
I can’t really think of much to improve, because we have already improved everything as much as we possibly can. Otherwise we wouldn’t be satisfied with the material. But I could improve my drumming skills, so we could play faster songs, haha.
Antti: I think that I can’t ever be perfectly happy with my products. There is always something that could have been done better. The curse of perfectionism I think… Actually I and Miiro have made quite a long list about the “mistakes” that we won’t do again while working with our next release. I’m not saying that Project Utopia isn’t good but if we had started recording it today, would it sound so much better in every way.
How has the overall reception been?
Aleksi: Surprisingly positive. Of course we’ve always thought that our music is good, but it really feels good to hear that someone else agrees with that. Naturally some elements in our music tend to divide opinions, but that’s how it is. We’re not aiming at being the next mainstream metal band. We’re aiming at making music we like and hoping that someone else will like it too.
Is the band going to get more involved in performing live at some point? What’s next? Album? Touring? Any international tours?
Aleksi: Right now we’re gonna have half a dozen gigs before the summer, but after that there’s nothing confirmed. We might even start recording a full-length after the summer. But can’t say for sure. We still have quite a few songs to write.
What do you see for your future? How is it looking?
Aleksi: It seems to look pretty good. The feedback for our EP has been almost entirely positive, and since our future songs will be better than those on the EP, people should like it. Or they might not. But we will for sure. There are lots of crazy ideas on our newer songs. How they will end up? That remains to be seen.
There’s still tons of work to do, if we want to be at least semi-big a metal band. But Rome wasn’t built in a day, right?
Could you tell us about the lyrics / themes /concepts you focus on or plan to focus on?
Sami: We pretty much focus on the dystopic stuff and chaos etc. The ideas mostly come from everyday’s news. The lyrics don’t really have an effect on the songwriting, since I usually write the lyrics after the song itself is finished.
Which is more exciting? being on the road or studio?
Aleksi: That’s a hard one to answer. It’s just amazing to be in the studio hearing how the small pieces and all the instruments combine into a complete song. But I guess being on the stage is always a bit better. Despite all the roadie stuff and plentiful waiting around, when everything is finally ready and you get to play for an audience, it just rocks.
Antti: Definitely being in the studio. That’s the moment when composing finally ends and the song gets its final shape. Also, many great ideas are created in the studio like my “piano solo” in “New World Order”. Of course playing live is also nice.
Who is composing the songs? Writing the lyrics?
Aleksi: Me and Antti. We’ve done that since 2007, so we kind of know the drill. Mostly we write songs both on our own, but we’ve done some great work together as well. But the most important part is that we criticize and improve each other’s work. We can criticize and complement each other without limits, so if something sounds like shit, that’ll be dealt with.
Sami writes his own lyrics, and the rest of us mostly just revise and approve them.
So what bands do you guys draw your inspiration from?
Aleksi: Wintersun, Carach Angren, Dimmu Borgir, Fleshgod Apocalypse, Swallow The Sun, Moonsorrow, Fintroll, Dark Fortress, Omnium Gatherum, Insomnium, Darude, etc. etc. In truth, it’s pretty much an endless list. But that should cover the most important ones.
Antti: Some of the artists and composers I greatly respect are Mike Oldfield, Liro Rantala, Jordan Rudess, Mikael Åkerfeldt, Juha Raivio, Devin Townsend, Mathias Nygård, Ihsahn, Obsidian C. and of course their bands & projects. Few other bands to mention are Von Hertzen Brothers, Uriah Heep, Fleshgod Apocalypse, Periphery, Katatonia, Ghost, Job For a Cowboy and Ghost Brigade.
Anything else you think your fans should know?
Thanks to all our fans. You can support us and buy “Project Utopia”. There are only 1 000 copies, so they won’t last forever.