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kurzweil-ICH: Interview mit Disco Ensemble

Since “The Island…” you kinda went in a way of becoming a more rocky version of “Maxïmo Park”. Wrong comparison?

Jussi: That’s a new one.

Miikka: I never heard of that…

Jussi: I could agree.

Miikka: Yeah, that is actually a good band.

kurzweil-ICH: Interview mit Disco Ensemble Disco_ensemble_interview_03

You kind of have a long history by now. Founded about 16 years ago, Miikka and Lasse came and your debut album “Viper Ethics” has its 10th birthday coming up – do you feel like you have found your place in music or does this still feel like it has just begun?

Jussi: I see it the way that I guess we will never find our place in way because the place that we want to be is kinda different every time in a way. What do we want to play and where we play and why we do it changes over the years. For example with the next album after this it might be something totally different and takes us to a total other place.

Do you yet have anything in mind for the next record?

Jussi: No, no. Too early. We need to tour a year, and then we think on that.

When DisCo was formed you mainly played cover versions of bands like Metallica or AC/DC. Would you call these bands musical paragons and influencers of yours? And are there other bands you are a total fan of?

Jussi: For me and Miko, we were just about 12 or 13 years old, and it was long before we fonded the band, I guess we kinda learned to play our instruments listening to Metallica and AC/DC and stuff. So they always did have some kind of influence on us but on the other hand I don’t really see those bands serious influence our band musicwise.

Do you know / even like some german bands?

Jussi: „Or even like“, very good…

Miikka: I don’t know if they exist anymore…

Don’t say Kraftwerk!

Miikka: Kraftwerk, of course… But I mean „The Robocop Kraus„? They had this one great record. Other german bands?

Jussi: I think „The Stories“ are very good.

How does your process of writing new songs look like? What comes first, the melody or the lyrics?

Miikka: It is always the music. Like either the whole band is jamming or Jussi or someone has a riff ready or even like bigger parts of songs. The lyrics and the singing melodies come after that.

Jussi: And not many times when you make the melodies they tent to come up while we jam. We just have some kind of riff and jam around.

Miikka: Yeah, and I sing some “blablabla”…

Jussi: He sings something and usually good melodies come out of that.

And then you think of lyrics, that fit into the melody. Not a special theme / content for the song?

Miikka: I always come up with words or sentences that I like, and sometimes I have a couple of sentences ready but you never know when they will gonna fit somewhere because you don’t have the melodies yet. So they are just words on a textfile. And when I can’t come up with something I randomly flip through the file and just figure out what could be. Maybe something could get out of this word… and it kinda is like a puzzle.

How was this with the line “I sweat over your mountains and I piss into your lakes”. Was this one of these fragments?

Miikka: I think so actually. Yeah, I don’t know…

So the whole song is kinda like a puzzle with famous lines you are referring to…

Miikka: Yeah, it is… I am still not completely sure, what this song is about. But I think people get it. And that is actually more important. You know, it is a feeling. The whole song, it is like there is a theme in it… but even for me myself it is hard to grasp exactly what the song is trying to say. But I think it is a good message. People really like it, like singing to it. And sometimes you don’t have to have a great idea or a whole big theory behind the lyrics. If you think about rap music and that kind of stuff. There are some really great lyricists. And they don’t know half of the time probably what they are talking about either because it is just a stream of conciouseness things. And everything doesn’t have to have a meaning to have an impact.

kurzweil-ICH: Interview mit Disco Ensemble Disco_ensemble_interview_04

In the booklet of the special edition of “The Island…” you name several tracks as your favorite ones and that these feelings and opinions sometimes evolved during the process of making the record. Is it the same with “Warriors”? Are there any songs you even disliked in the beginning and do love now?

Jussi: Yeah, I think that happens on every album in a way. At some point you are like “ this certain song is the worst one and I am not gonna like it ever”. But when you get some distance to it and you listen to it after a while or you play it live and you realize “okay, it is not that bad”. And then actually after a few times “okay, this is really good!”.

Miikka: Yeah, especially now we wrote songs for two years, that is kind of a long time. So sometimes you come back to the songs you wrote a year ago and kind of almost forgot it. And you think “oh, not these songs, let’s make new ones”. Then you listen to them again or the producer says that this is great or whatever and you get a new perspective.

Jussi: Second Soul actually an example of that, which was like forgotten for a long time and we decided to open it up again to see what is good in it and what is bad. It is just kind of a resurrection of a good song. It was really close to not even be on the new album, but after we did reopen it, the problems kind of disappeared.

Miikka: It just started working.

Jussi: Of course it had some big changes, but it was a good feeling to kinda save it.
Miikka: And is a good thing to realize that you can trust your instincts. That if you really feel “this song has something” then it is worth working hard to find the essence of it.

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