(We bring you KevinP’s interview of Ben Pakarinen, vocalist/guitarist for Finland’s Coprolith, whose second album Death March was released this past spring by Violent Journey Records.)
K: So you’ve recently returned from a tour in China. Is this your 3rd time playing there?
B: Yes, we are back from China. It was Coprolith’s second time touring there. Last fall we toured with my other band, Antagonist Zero.
K: Seems like you have a fairly big following to tour there twice. Does China give you more “love” than Europe?
B: Yeah the shows are awesome and the crowds are crazy indeed. And this time we also released our latest album, Death March, as a special edition with 3 bonus tracks. But we have also toured a lot in Europe, the Baltics, and Russia. I think when it’s a good show and good crowd, it doesn’t matter which country it is.
K: Speaking of your newest album, Death March, which was released earlier this year, tell us about it?
B: Death March is the second of the three-album concept. The debut, Cold Grief Relief, was about Death and the things you handle when you have just lost someone close in your life. Death March is about Hate. That feeling of why this loss- and death-filled life can be pure hatred. The third album is going to be about grief. The sadness and grief that all the death in one’s life can be imagined.
Death March contains 9 tracks of pure hatred and melancholy combined together. And soon there will be a special Chinese edition with 3 bonus tracks. The album has great guest appearances from:
Mathias ”Vreid” Lillmåns (Finntroll), Tor Stavenes (1349, Pantheon I), Einar ”Eldur” Thorberg Gudmundsson (Fortid, Den Saakaldte), Heljarmaðr (Cursed 13, Grà).
K: Tell us about these bonus tracks?
B: The bonus tracks are”Dead Inside”, “Deserting Reality”, and “War That Carries My Name”, which were recorded at the same as the Death March studio session. They were created especially for this limited release. It released in China on September 4th and just recently here in Europe/rest of the world.
photo by Hannu Mikkola
K: What I noticed about both releases were: the debut, Cold Grief Relief, was black/death metal throughout. Yet Death March has a few songs that are black/death, but some that are almost exclusively death/doom, death metal, black metal. But it doesn’t feel as disjointed as it sounds. Was this intentional or something you’ve noticed (or even agree with)?
B: Compared to Cold Grief Relief the composing process for the Death March was different and also easier in a way. I had a fresh mind and I had a chance to start from a blank table, so to speak. The songs on the debut were already really old when we started recordings for the album. So this time we had more energy and excitement to do Death March and finalize it properly. So it’s not intentional, I think it’s a natural improvent. But also when we speak concept albums, it’s good to have differences that still come together.
K: Since you already know the concept of the next record (Grief), do you find it easier to focus, or is it possibly restricting by having to fit the sound of the music into a pre-conceived idea, as opposed to just letting it happen organically at the time you begin writing?
B: I’m already masterminding the album inside my head. And I think the vision is there. When I started to compose the first album, I had the concept ready for all three, so it will be the grief album for sure. But as always, when I start to compose it and record it, it will have its own personal touch for the end result, which is just great. In a way, you know what you want, but you don’t know what you will get.
K: When did you ditch the face paint/hoods, and what made you decide to?
B: We have never used corpse paint in live shows, only a few early promo pics. We decided not to use them fairly early on. For us it isn’t a thing to do and we decided it’s better to be natural in a live setting, as the music is very intense and the lyrics are very personal.
K: Here’s the point of the interview where you promote any new live shows you have coming up?
B: The next live slaughtering will take place at the November to Dismember Metal Fest in Bucharest, Romania, 29.11.2014. It will be the first time for us performing in Romania. We have also confirmed several tours and festivals for 2015, so the Death March shall continue even stronger in the future!