Today, I am with Zarthas for another Q&A Session. They are a hard rock band – with electronic, metal and progressive flairs – from Oulu, Finland. They released their debut album, So Mote It Be, in 2011 and at the moment they are working on their second album.
Now, without further ado…
Lady Obscure: Hello guys. Let’s start with some history… Who is involved in the band, and how did you guys meet up?
Zarthas: Current line-up is Lauri Huovinen on vocals and guitar, Sanni Huovinen on keyboards, Jarmo Luttinen on guitar, Pekka Junttila on bass and Toni Virtanen on drums.
Lauri and Sanni have been involved with the band since the dark days of 90’s. After several demos, and couple of compilation CD’s we had a few years of break.
In 2008 we got together with Pekka and Toni, and started to rock again. Jarmo joined the band in 2012.
LO: So, you guys make hard rock with different flairs. How did the combination come about?
Zarthas: Great music can be found in any genre, and we all listen to lots of different kind of music, not just rock or metal. We believe in good music more than in genres, and that is what Zarthas is all about.
LO: Are you happy with what you have done so far?
Zarthas: Writing songs might be our best area. We could, and we will improve our sound.
LO: About your debut album, how has the overall reception been?
Zarthas: Some love our music, some can’t stand it. Guess it’s a good start.
LO: OK, so what’s next? What do you see yourself doing in the future?
Zarthas: We see our next album. And we look forward to play as many live shows as possible.
LO: Live is good! When is the album out? Will you be touring afterwards? Any international tours?
Zarthas: We start playing live again in March. Our 2nd album is currently in production and it should be out in spring. We have promoted our band all over Europe but for now all our gigs are in Finland.
LO: So, do you like recording more? Or do you prefer being on the road?
Zarthas: Both are exciting in a way. In studio you get to really focus on songs, what works and what doesn’t. And on the road again, it’s good to see people and just play from the bottom of your heart for them.
LO: Let’s go back to your second album. What can you tell me about the lyrics, themes and concepts?
Zarthas: Our next album is called “Spit / Ignite”. It is also kind of a theme album about the structure of our society: should we try to change it, or is it worth changing? Current economic system is definitely not very fair. So should we begin to think of creating something new? Should we consider thinking about people instead of profits? Ideas for this kind of a theme are not very hard to find. It’s a reality all over the world.
LO: Who is composing the songs? Writing the lyrics?
Zarthas: Lauri writes most of the songs, Pekka and Sanni compose too, and Toni writes some of the lyrics.
LO: When writing, which one do you focus? Catering to the audience or music for its own sake?
Zarthas: Music of course. It’s our music and we do whatever we want to do with it. If someone likes it, good. If someone hates it, let ‘em.
LO: So what bands do you guys draw your inspiration from?
Zarthas: From a lot of bands. We all listen to music from grind core to country, from dub step to jazz, and everything in between.
LO: When you look back your music career, what do you consider to be your greatest accomplishment?
Zarthas: The greatest accomplishment is yet to come.
LO: Thanks guys!