Friday, 4 July 2014

INTERVIEW: Severnica

Severnica are a 5-piece symphonic metal band from Turku, Finland, who we recently featured on Femetalism with their debut EP - Long Lost Longing.

As promised, here is a little more from the band. They recently took the time to answer a bunch of question from yours truly.

Can you give us a brief history of how Severnica came to be?

Maarit says:
Severnica dates back to the beginning of 2009 when I threw the idea to Teemu about forming a band together. The thought grew larger until we finally decided to fulfil our dream and form Severnica near the end of 2009. First to join the band was guitarist Lauri and drummer Ville. The three of us played cover songs for awhile until some drafts of our own songs came along. At this point we reached out to find a bassist and a second guitarist. Luckily it all came together: first Timo joined to play the bass and later on Tuomo the guitar and so Severnica was whole. :)

Can you tell us a little about each member of the band?

Tuomo says:
Maarit is obviously the voice and the visage of the band. Her voice and persona are a huge part of Severnica's essence and we guys tend to listen carefully what she has to say about the music and how we play it. Her sense of humour is also quite commendable - otherwise she would have grown tired of our "guy talk" a long time ago!

Teemu on the other hand is the band's mysteriously quiet leader, who composes most of our music. The rest of us add details here and there, but the core or the "main plot" of the song is always skilfully woven by Teemu, who conjures enchanting melodies and atmospheric backgrounds to our songs.

Ville is a precise drummer who is always ready to try something new. Ville seems to be capable of focusing in the entirety of a song even while playing - I'd say that this skill has allowed Ville to coach me to be a more accurate player. Ville definitely has got a good ear which he put into use when he produced our first EP. It was quite a task and the rest of the band are grateful to Ville for a job well done!

Timo is our versatile bass player who has a refreshing approach to bass lines. He is quite into funky and progressive music - I'm sure we'll get to hear some minor prog twists in Severnica's music! Timo is also keeping everyone's spirits up with his witty and dry humour.

Ville says:
Tuomo is always up for a good conversation and brings much welcomed energy to any given situation. Tuomo's guitar playing is always spot on and his melodic style fits Severnica perfectly. Tuomo is also full of good ideas when we're arranging songs and can also deliver some kick ass lyrics when needed!

Where did the name Severnica come from?

Ville says:
Actually we decided to change our name pretty last minute during the recordings of Long Lost Longing. We found out that a new band had emerged that had the same name than us and even played the same genre! So we we're throwing new ideas around with the band and I quite liked the idea of North Star symbolising a guiding light in the darkness. However I didn't feel like the English or Finnish word for North Star was suitable so I was looking for other translations. Then I finally found the Slovenian word Severnica, which to me sounded perfect. Happily everyone else in the band agreed!

How would you describe the sound of the band?

Teemu says:
We play symphonic/melodic metal, and maybe you can also find traces of progressive metal too?! All of the band members have a quite wide taste in music and I think that is where the uniqueness of our sound comes from.

What are your main musical influences?

Tuomo says:
That's a tough question! Obviously we owe a lot to bands like Nightwish, Epica and Sonata Artica, but the influences and the musical tastes of our band members are wide and varied. Sometimes this causes interesting situations, for example when we are trying to start rehearsing! Imagine four or five guys jamming up a cacophony of 70's funk, progressive metal, classical music, classic rock, heavy metal and what not. Not pretty! Still I find the different tastes in music and a general respect for all kinds of music an important source of creativity in this band.

What motivates you to make music?

Teemu says:
Like Tuomo described above, I'm the quiet one in our band. For me music is a way to express myself, my thoughts and feelings. Also nature is an inexhaustible source of motivation and inspiration and I believe you can hear it in our music. Generally speaking, everyone of us feels great passion for music, what would be greater motivator than to do what you love?

Can you tell us about your debut EP - Long Lost Longing?

Teemu says:
Our EP contains four songs and all music and lyrics were written by me except for My Journey which lyrics were written by Tuomo. There is a common lyrical theme, which is finding your own path and learning who you really are. However the songs are independent so this is not a concept EP.

Ville says:
The art on the EP was illustrated by the amazing Australian fantasy artist and author Enamorte. The cover is heavily linked to the titled track Long Lost Longing and the girl and the woman leaning on the tree are in fact the same person in childhood and adulthood. It's a multilayered symbolisation for longing for something long forgotten and also about finding your roots so I think it sums up the whole EP nicely.

The EP was self produced - can you tell us more about this process?

Ville says:
We had most of the equipment in our rehearsal space needed for recording and I was really interested in learning mixing at that time so it seemed like a good idea to just do everything ourselves. It also felt easier financially and psychologically as we wouldn't have to be on the clock like in a setup where we would pay some studio for the work. Self producing the EP proved to be slower than we had anticipated and I had to learn a lot of things along the way, which made it even slower. But I think that it was a great learning experience for all of us and hopefully produced a more original sound to the whole EP.

Which Severnica song do you most enjoy playing live and why?

Maarit says:
This is a very easy question! I love singing Mirror And Me because I enjoy singing high. In that song I get to use my strengths and really get into a good flow. Musically Long Lost Longing pleases me the most. That song has something…magical! It also lets you be whatever you want to be even if just for a moment. :)

So what is coming next for Severnica?

Maarit says:
There's a lot of plans but the most important one is training hard so we could start gigging in the autumn. We're also working on some new songs so finishing those is also a priority.

Severnica says:
We'd like to thank Femetalism for this opportunity and wish all the readers a nice, metal-filled summer!

And Femetalism would like to thank Servenica for their time talking with Femetalism. Long Lost Longing is a great EP and a solid foundation to build upon.  We are very much looking forward to hearing new songs from you guys!

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Originally posted by Emma Sheridan to Femetalism.