May 242023

(In this interview Comrade Aleks communicated with two original members of the Finnish doom band Fall of the Idols, which returned from a long hiatus with a new album in 2022, and appear to have one more album in them before bringing the band to a final end.)

Finnish doom metal band Fall of the Idols was born in 2000. They progressed slowly towards the point when their first full-length albums The Womb of the Earth (2006) and The Seance (2008) were complete. Their tragic and pretty traditional worship to the Doom Cult reached its catharsis with the third album Solemn Verses (2012), but it was released a year after the suicide of the band’s drummer Hannu Weckman, who was a huge creative force alongside the other members.

Ten years ago Fall of the Idols said that they had enough material for one more album and that it would be the last one in their discography. Years passed but nothing happened until November 2022 when I Hate Records released it – the band’s fourth full-length, Contradictory Notes.

We tried to do this interview back in 2022 but it took some time, so forgive us for this welter, there was no better choice. These songs were recorded by the band’s original members Vesa Karppinen (bass), Jyrki Hakomäki (drums, vocals), Rami Moilanen (guitars), and Jouni Sihvonen (guitars) (also you can hear Hannu Weckman‘s drums in the first track “Vicissitudes”), and we have two of them tonight.


Hi guys! How are you doing? What’s happening in Fall of the Idols’ camp?

Vesa: What’s happening? Well, after 10 years of silence our latest release, Contradictory Notes, came out via I Hate. Preliminary reception has been positive, which is nice. Apart from preparing that release, I guess nothing much else has happened under FOTI‘s banner, although many of us been active with our other musical endeavours.

Jyrki: Same ol’. With the energy crisis at hand, I’m forced to ration visits to my studio this winter – it is an old house without heating, so… every visit needs to be properly planned. It ain’t ‘fun’ to mix and engineer when the room temperature is below 10 celsius.


You know…I’ve checked it – we did the previous interview in January 2013, almost a decade ago. That was another world with a bit more fun so to say… Well, however, what did you do all this time as the band?

Vesa: As a band we pretty much did nothing, apart from slowly recording the songs we had accumulated before Hannu‘s death, and of which now four have been released as Contradictory Notes. Apart from those sporadic recording sessions the band was, for all intents and purposes, inactive, without any clear plans or even a solid lineup.


Your plan back then was to start recording sessions for the fourth album during early 2013. What prevented you from doing this? Depression?

Vesa: Like I stated in the previous answer, we did keep on recording, but we hadn’t set ourselves any clear schedule. Also our other musical projects, like Wolfshead, Black Mass Pervertor, Limator, etc., consumed most of our creative time. And since we weren’t doing any gigs FOTI was in a state of hibernation.

Jyrki: Me and Rami did record preliminary material back in 2013 but it was left on hold, because I had to take a trip to Mexico – a trip I always thought would be my last. After that trip I did something here and there, but that final FOTI record was still on hold. Maybe there is some fear that what happens after I’ve finished it all? Freedom?

And what made you to return from this creative slumber?

Vesa: FOTI ceased to be a creative force when Hannu died. What we are doing now is tying up the loose ends, clearing up the nest, and giving this band a proper send-off. It has taken 10 years but the work has never ceased. For me personally the catalyst for this “comeback” was the reassemblement of the band for live performances in 2018. I was turning 40 and thought it could be fun to play FOTI-stuff again – and not just to do old stuff, but also some songs we had worked on since Solemn Verses – so Tero Konola (Black Mass Pervertor) joined in as a live drummer and Ari Rajaniemi (Wolfshead) as a live guitarist.

Jyrki: I’ve been procrastinating, but it seems that a song – or the orchestrator – changes as time flies. All recorded material has gone under some minor alterations, because time changes perception.

But of course the question remains: When will it be ready?


Back in the same interview you told that the band has around 10 – 12 songs, and there are only four in Contradictory Notes. Did you record new material or did you work over some old tracks until they turned into something we hear in the album?

Vesa: The remaining 8 or 9 will be on our next, final release.


You said in the very same interview that the band had the concept for each album regarding its artwork’s colour. Did you leave it behind after all of these years? How did you choose material for Contradictory Notes’ artwork?

Vesa: Yes, I could say we’ve abandoned the colour scheme. Or maybe not? When it came to the commission of the artwork and layout of Contradictory Notes we gave free rein to the artist Jani Kaarlela ( to do whatever our music inspired him to do. It certainly leans more towards politically minded grindcore than classic doom metal, but it certainly is representative of the themes of the album. And you know, Lee Dorrian was in Napalm Death. 🙂


The album starts with the track “Vicissitudes” where we can hear drums recorded by Hannu. Was it your tribute to your former bandmate? What’s this song about?

Jyrki: “Vicissitudes” was made by me and Rami. Other than the fact that this song was originally built around a vocal theme, it was made into a song like any other song – although about 10-12 years late of its supposed emergence. I think every song that still has Hannu‘s contribution is a tribute to our deceased band member; there are a couple still left unpublished. “Vicissitudes” is a recollection on powers that were – and still are – but haven’t left the stage, so to speak. These individual powers with their connections (and tentacles!) and macchiavellian thought-flow still affect us all. It’s a truly virulent testament to PsyOp’s unnerving force – that what if all opposition dies… or simply withers away? That someone or something finally ‘wins it all’?

Back in the days of Solemn Verses you even used some “social” topics in your songs. What kind of stories do you tell in the four “new” tracks?

Vesa: The main overarching theme of Contradictory Notes is power and its relation to the individual. It is most certainly our most “political” release. And because of this overall theme these songs were “separated” from the bulk of material we’re working on and released as Contradictory Notes.

Jyrki: “Vicissitudes” revolves around an undiscernible pronoun “you”, whereas in “Wail of the Serfs” it revolves around the state of things in general… but with a quite cynical aspect to it all. The record’s title song is again reflecting around the pronoun ”You”, but it is very personal – so “Contradictory Notes” is that tribute to Hannu. “Thought Virus” deals with the deterministic aspect of power and why the absence of power will always fail in the world of human thought – it is those thought loops, or viruses, that keep repeating over and over again. If that isn’t doom, I don’t know what is.


“Wail of the Serfs” sounds atypically sludgy for the band, which was known for its dedicated attitude towards traditional doom metal. It fits the artwork, bit still I’m quite surprised… How was this track born?

Vesa: Usually with our songs the music comes first and lyrics come second. With “Wail of the Serfs” it went the other way around. I wrote the lyrics in spring 2011 (out of current issues then, and perhaps even more current issues today) and Rami and Jyrki came up with the music later on.


Do you feel a need to play Contradictory Notes live? Is it important to show that Fall of the Idols are alive and kicking?

Vesa: Well yes. Since 2018 we’ve done about five gigs here in Finland. We have a solid, tight live lineup and the band is at its peak when it comes to live proficiency. We’ve played some of the new stuff live, and apart from “Wail of the Serfs” I’d like to add the title track of the new album to the setlist. We haven’t done any gigs this year (2022), but perhaps next year.

Jyrki: I wouldn’t mind if FOTI was just a studio band. Doing gigs requires a lot in everything.


Also nine years ago you told that the fourth album will be the last one for Fall of the Idols. And now you say that there are some songs left. Will you stop or will you one day record the rest of the songs left from previous sessions?

Vesa: There will be one more album coming, since we have 8-9 more tracks in various stages of completion. All drums and stringed instruments have been done, so they’re mostly missing vocals and the like. I cannot say when they will be ready, but I’d reckon it’ll take less than 10 years. After they are done and released FOTI will be laid to rest for good.

Jyrki: With this pace we’re doing things, we’ll beat Def Leppard’s recording schedules in no time, hah! But seriously the material we’ve got left unpublished will be the last.

 Leave a Reply

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>



This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.