W.A.I.L. is an underground Finnish death/doom band that takes influence from black metal as well. The band released their debut LP back in 2009 before seeing the CD re-release come to life just recently. After reviewing said re-release, I had a chance to talk to the brain behind the sound, guitarist/vocalist A.E.
Tell us a bit about the origins of the band. When did you form? Were there any difficulties solidifying a line-up?
We rose from Osva with Tapios in our hands and came to be in late 2006. There were no difficulties with establishing the line-up but more with the motivation to come together at certain times.
Wisdom through Agony into Illumination and Lunacy was initially released in the latter half of 2009, but only as a very limited LP. Was there a reason for such a limitation?
It wasn't "very limited". We made as many LPs as we thought there would be a demand for.
How did you come in contact with Ahdistuksen Aihio Productions? The CD re-release (March 7) will help in gaining the band potential worldwide recognition. How does that prospect effect you as a musician?
He contacted us with the mindset of buying a few LPs. After a while he asked if we had plans on releasing this on CD and that he would possibly be interested in releasing it...
I will never make anything or change anything (i.e. tarnish my vision) because of this or that demand from this or that source, but I guess only time will tell an answer to your latter question.
Having read a few online reviews of the album, in addition to publishing one myself, a variety of reviewers list several "similar
bands". What bands are some of your biggest influences?
I have heard/read people compare us to bands I haven't even heard so I guess all the sankarit ["heroes"] hear that which they listen to most (regarding "similar" music) in our outputs. Everybody that has interviewed us thus far has demanded a boring list of influences so here's some copy/paste madness. Certain records or even songs by:
Mercyful Fate/King Diamond, Bathory, Manilla Road, Black Sabbath, Candlemass, W.A.S.P., Metallica, Ved Buens Ende, Thorns, Abigor, Rotting Christ, Root, Sentenced (Shadows of the Past mainly) Akercocke (Rape of the Bastard Nazarene kills), Kingston Wall, Mana Mana, Tenhi, etc.
Do you let those influences effect your sound, or do you make a point of sounding original?
I/we don't try to sound "original" for the sake of it since that's a perfect recipe for material that's a parody of "original" rather than authentically being something of our own. The music I listen to most (e.g. those I described above) surely influences me on some level or another, but my intentions are somewhere else rather than trying sound like a certain band/genre/era.
What was going through your mind in terms of the emotions or messages you wanted to capture? The debut does an excellent job at evoking strong feelings of spite and regret. Was that part of the plan?
Can't remember all the feelings I had or was going for (since my memory is more or less like raejuusto), but (among others) I wanted to capture both musically and lyrically my own journey so far. To capture my own metamorphosis(es). I was going for those feelings through various riffs and lyrics, sure, but I also find feelings related to relief, enlightenment, excitement, joy, determination etc.
People seem to only grasp the most obvious vibes but things surely aren't just black and white. Also, to give you a hint - for example - in the track "Agony", there's a clear musical continuation throughout the song for me with a wide spectrum of different moods placed in a certain order. After suffering came wisdom, relief and certainty but a new door was already to be seen on the other side of the "room"...
Some people have said your album is "a lot to take in". What kind of strain does it put on the musicians, if any, to apply so much
energy to one album?
At times, when recording and making the album, I felt like I had gathered an overwhelming burden on my shoulders so there sure was a dark and heavy strain of sorts hanging in the air from time to time. When ready though, the feeling was otherworldly knowing we had channeled those energies that needed to be channeled just as the vision demanded. We had successfully cultivated the ground and harvested the crop.
Is there an issue with maintaining focus during the writing process, or does the band's discipline overcome that?
There wasn't or isn't any continuous writing process when it comes to W.A.I.L.. I composed my material for the full-length in three years. When the inspiration jolted me, I wrote, after which I gathered the pieces and started to construct the puzzle. Other members added their spices to the mix in the recording process which was a mishmash of focused determination and unfocused improvisation. Also, a few pieces fell into their places by "accident" and that's why I believe this full-length is more than the sum of its parts.
W.A.I.L. is, at the time of this interview, without both a MySpace page and an official website. The way the internet as a medium
dictates - in terms of music - which bands are good, and which are bad, is this an attempt to step away from that judgment? Or is
it a matter of trying to remain enigmatic?
No. I just simply don't see any reason for us to have those to further occupy our time. There's much more important things we are busy with as a band not to mention as individuals. If people want information about us, they can find it from the internet and/or - oh, the horror! - read interviews from zines etc. If they want to hear us, listen to the samples and songs floating around the net and/or - god forbid us! - buy our music.
Lastly, is W.A.I.L. a live band, or are there plans to perform in the near future?
We have plans but we'll see if they form into action.
On behalf of Metal Storm I would like to thank you for reading and answering these questions.
Thank you for the interview.
Posted on 13.03.2011 by
A Metal Storm Staff member and official reviewer since 2011, Troy is well-trained in the art of black metal and mockery.