Insomnium recently signed to Century Media Records to release their upcoming studio album, One For Sorrow. I recently got the chance to ask guitarist Ville Friman a few questions about the new record, signing with Century Media Records and their music video for “Through The Shadows”. Read on to learn more about Ville Friman and Insomnium.
You guys are going to be releasing your album, One For Sorrow, on Century Media Records. How thrilled are you to unleash your album on a new label?
Ville: Very. So far the response has been really good and we have done more interviews than ever. We have also scored very good reviews and high positions in soundchecks which is always nice. Guys at the Century Media are hard workers like we and hopefully this will lead to new bigger things with Insomnium.
How did you guys get hooked up with Century Media Records?
Ville: We sent a promo package to Century Media when our deal with Candlelight came to an end. CM wasn’t interested in us at that point, but we were able to convince Jens Prueter at one live show in the end of 2009. We just kept in contact since and finally inked the deal with CM in the spring 2010.
Any certain bands on the label you really enjoy?
Ville: There are loads: The Haunted, Dark Tranquillity, Arch Enemy, Borknagar, Napalm Death, Devil Sold His Soul, Architects, Tesseract and the list just goes on. CM is an amazing label with amazing bands and we are so happy to belong to this fine company.
Check out the song “UnSung” here.
So the album, One For Sorrow, how did you guys come about naming it that?
Ville: We “stole” the name from old English nursery rhyme. The rhyme is based on superstition according to the number of crows you see sitting on a tree branch will determine your luck in future life. The original rhyme had ten alternative destinies, and similarly, we have ten songs on our album as well.
I really like the cover art for One For Sorrow. Who came up with it and is there any meaning behind it?
Ville: A guy called Wille Naukkarinen did the cover art for One For Sorrow. He did the visuals on our last album Across The Dark as well, and as a side note, plays guitar in a great Finnish metal-sludge-post-rock band called Ghost Brigade. Honestly, you all should check this band out (I’m just traveling to their show in Plymouth, UK as we speak). The cover art is based on the lyrics and the concept of this old nursery rhyme and I’m glad to hear that you like it.
How would you differentiate this album from your prior releases?
Ville: You know, this is probably the hardest question I’m asked to answer. I think our last three albums are like siblings and in a way carved from the same wood. However, naturally there are differences. I think the One For Sorrow is probably most diverse album of these all and incorporates all kind of different musical influences from doom to post-post rock. Everything is still held together nicely in my opinion. In general, the album is sad but there’s also hope. Like in life, there’s often tomorrow after today.
How do you guys go about writing your tunes and do you ever think of the live performance?
Ville: I write my stuff at home and record demos to other guys. Niilo does riffs and melodies at home and his songs are often put together at rehearsal place. When I’m writing I mostly think about the album instead of live situation. However, it’s really natural for us to make both slow and fast songs. As a result we have different kind of songs for the live set as well. But in general, album comes before the live situation.
What lyrical content do you guys cover?
Ville: Well, our lyrics deal with many universal themes such as love, death, grief and loss. Inspiration might come basically from anywhere: books, movies, comics, politics whatever. In the end, our stories are about people. Personally, I like to have some focal idea in the lyrics which could be personal experience, or then something that is more universal. For example, “Through The Shadows” is about being homesick and tour sick at same time while opening “Inertia” relates to current political situation in the world.
Recently a music video for “Through The Shadows” was released. Who directed it and came up with the concept?
Ville: The music video was shot, written and produced by Obscure Entertainment and Ville Rissanen. We have been working with these guys for the last three music videos and it has always been a pleasure. Really talented, professional and cool guys. They also do all kinds of neat documentary projects and you should check their homepage if you got interested.
What are your touring plans? Any plans in the works to come to North America?
Ville: We are currently working on it and hopefully we get North America already next spring. However, nothing’s certain yet. We’ll be doing our first headliner tour in Europe first in this November and take it from there.
Any last words you want to tell the readers?
Ville: Thanks for the interview and if you haven’t check us out yet, surf our renewed web pages at insomnium.net.
Check out the song “Through The Shadows” here.