Answers mostly by founder Pasi Tanskanen (bass)
Other members are: Erik Kraemer (vocals), Harri “Haba” Hytönen (guitars), Joonas Pykälä-aho (drums)
Can you tell us about the origin of the band name, a history of the band and a little bit about the various members?
The band name Amorta combines two Gods from Roman/Greek mythology. God of love Amor and the goddess of death Morta.
I (Pasi Tanskanen) started putting up a new band some time after my other band Thaurorod had released its 3rd album “Coast of Gold” back in 2018 and it came clear that the album wouldn’t do too well in sales. I was really happy with the album itself and the promotion we did with record label Drakkar but I was very disappointed for the sales. I felt like trying a new fresh thing with mostly new guys in the band and so I slowly started to plan the whole idea and write new music. I wanted to do more straightforward guitar oriented heavy metal with less tempo and harder sound than some of the over-tempo songs we did in Thaurorod. Also I wanted to cut keyboards out completely, leaving more room for rougher guitar sound and everything else.
Well I was bass player and one of the founder members in Thaurorod and also wrote songs and lyrics there. We had a good run from 2005 to 2018 peaking maybe in 2009-2011 when we did some European tours warming up for Sabaton, Alestorm, Symphony X, Nevermore and palying shows with Wintersun, Turisas, Ensiferum etc. Good times!
In drums we have Joonas Pykälä-aho, the only other guy from Thaurorod. Joonas also plays in Amberian Dawn for example. They just finished off their recent European tour. Joonas also plays in black metal band Azaghal and probably in many other bands too but I’ve lost count. 😀
In guitars we have a live guitarist of Kalmah Harri “Haba” Hytönen. Thaurorod’s keyboardist Harri Koskela had toured with him in his band Lost in Grey and knew the guy from that tour and recommended him to me knowing I’m putting up a new group. I played some new songs to Haba in Virgin Oil, Helsinki and he seemed to like the material so we now had a guitarist with awesome sense of style.
On vocals we have Erik Kraemer. We did a few shows together with his band Simulacrum. Back then Erik wasn’t in Simulacrum yet but later I saw some introduction videos when they took him in and I liked his sound. I remeberred him when I was looking for a vocalist for Amorta and we met when he was singing in Maiden Fest in Logomo, Turku. Played him my songs and now we had a kick ass vocalist as well. Erik have been working with Timo Tolkki for example and sings in theatre touring across Finland.
Are you all from the same area? How did you get together as a band?
Me and Joonas live in city of Hyvinkää which is 60 kilometres north from Helsinki where Haba lives. Erik is from Turku, Finland.
I think I answered the last part of this question in the previous question already 😀
Who are your favourite artists/bands and how have they influenced your own sound?
The best band in the world for me will always be Iron Maiden. We just went to see their Future Past Tour in O2, London with Joonas this summer, amazing, just amazing! I know Haba loves Annihilator and Erik at least Queenrüche and Geoff Tate. Other singers and bands/artists that have influenced Erik are also Dio, Finnish singer Kirka and Miljenko Matijevic from Steelheart. Of course everything we heard as kids and as teenagers and even more recently have an enormous impact on what we have become as a musicians and song writers. Also when touring with bands like Symphony X and Sabaton you are bound to be influenced by their live shows and professionalism.
Did you always have the ambition to be a musician and in a band or did you originally have other plans?
For me as a little kid I was more into sports and football and not really into music at all but already at the age of 11 I picked up bass and started listening Iron Maiden, Megadeth, Helloween etc. After that I devoted everything for music and a bit later for Thaurorod for the next 2 decades. I was determined to bring my band to the arenas and stadiums one day.
What songs or albums are on your current playlist?
I have to say I don’t listen too much metal anymore. I mean I always check out the most interesting bands and their latest releases but for me when I listen to music by myself it’s quite often glass of wine or gin&tonic some cooking and I might put some Billy Joel or Bob Dylan on. I don’t think I could never write music like what they do but sometimes it’s just easier to relax with softer tones than metal being nearly at the age of 40 already 😀
Do you sing in the shower?
Not really but alone in a car sometimes 😀
Do you have any plans for the band for this year and into next year?
We will put out some more new music this year but before an album, there’s tons of work to do and so I’m gonna have to take a lot of time writing new songs during 2023-2024.
Do you currently have any new songs/albums ready to be released?
We recorded 3 songs and now we have released 2/3 so the best is yet to come! After the 3rd single there’s gonna be a bigger gap before some new music and debut album but we’ll work on it.
If you could play at any venue in the world where would you choose?
Long Beach Arena, Los Angeles
Do you have a favourite album? If so, what is it?
There are quite many but I could pick Seventh Son of a Seventh Son from 1988.
Do you have any guilty pleasure songs/albums?
I love some of Phil Collins stuff and Madonna have some great tunes as well…maybe not the most popular tracks but her best.
If you were putting together the greatest show on earth, who would be playing?
That group would be:
Vocals – Ronnie James Dio
Guitars – David Gilmour
Guitars – Jeff Beck
Bass – Rudy Sarzo
Drums – Jeff Porcaro
Can you remember the first album you bought with your own money? What was it and do you still have it?
Erik – Black album – Metallica
Haba – Rock and Roll Over – Kiss
Joonas – A Real Live One – Iron Maiden
Pasi – Rust in Peace – Megadeth
As your fans will be reading this, is there any message you would like to send out to them?
Go listen to our songs and if you like it, add it to your playlists and follow, subscribe and shit like that on all the fucking social medias out there as that is the world today!
Finally, let us know all your social media sites so your fans, old and new, can find and follow/like you!
You will find Amorta from Facebook, Instagram, YouTube and Spotify
Follow us in Spotify as well!
We, at The Metal Asylum, would like to thank you for your time. Is there is anything further that you would like to add?
I guess we covered most about Amorta for now! Remember to follow us to get the word about new music! Cheeeeerzzzz!!!
This interview is the property of The Metal Asylum