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Nightwish - A conversation with Marco Hietala

Well the day was finally there, 5 June 2004. That was the day that I had the privilege to interview Marco Hietala from Nightwish.

So I had to go to the press booth and then the guy from the record label picked me up and we went together to the artist backstage area. When I walked in the dressing room from Nightwish no one was there! But after a few minutes Marco and the rest of the band came in.


 

Hey how are you doing?
Me? I'm doing fine except that I have a little headache and I am a little bit tired but Iíll fix it up with some painkillers and some beer.

 

Finally the new album "Once" is released, was it hard work, harder than the other albums?
I don't know about every previous album because as you probably know I have just been around only for these two, but I say that this one took a longer time to do than "Century Child" but it was relatively easy because the group enthusiasm was like a sure thing this time and when I got around for rehearsing the "Century Child" the band still had some things going on in side but after we had gone on tour after "Century Child" all that got salved and basically everybody had to find out how to do this thing, so this time when we got to rehearsing we really where enjoying our selves and spend hours and hours in the rehearsing room and arranging stuff and going over structures and all that, and the same thing for the studio so that everybody was really checking out their sounds and asking; hey is this line good and making sure that everything was perfect. So it was relatively easy because the whole atmosphere was easy.


So you are getting you own sound now?
Yeah the band has always have their own sound but it's more defined now everybody definitely knows, especially Tuomas now, what the band should do at this point.

The album is already gold after selling a half day, what does that give you for feeling.
Well ehm, before the release there a lot of excitement and sometimes the fear how the thing would go down, but from the first day that it was in the stores and people bought it right away so that off course gave you it a good groove, it's working.

 

Are you aiming for a major record deal now this album sells that good?
Major record deal well I don't know, since we have this album for Nuclear Blast and Spinefarm, and the next one is probably going to be the same two, but I don't know were not consciously trying do any kind of marketing plan. I mean we were at the open market last winter and we got some major companies but they didn't fit us as well as Nuclear Blast does. And this new album has got really great reviews and so we have really high hopes for it, if it's going to get big then it suits us because as a band we would be hypocrites if we said that we said if we didn't want to get any bigger because sure we want to reach more people, not just to get our pockets full of money, I just think everybody here is really proud at what we now, more the diversity, the different dynamics more constructions that wires the metalband together it's like a tremendous brainwork behind it and everybody is proud of it and that is why everybody wants the reach more people, because we are proud at what we have reached.

 

Marco Hietala


A lot of songs of you are inspirited by the ocean, is this again the same for Once?
It has a few times some also references to that side but yes its Tuomas his thing, he is always been fascinated by the ocean it's the birthplace of all life on earth, and he wanted to be a marine biologist when he was still studying but then the band came along and things changed.

 

I haven't heard the whole album yet but In Planet Hell there is a male voice again, can we expect that more in the future?
I don't know because every time you do a song and every time you do an album it's a different thing so it just depends on it. Actually we talked about many people who have asked what is going to happen next since when you have made something grand like this can you top it, or is anything hot like the orchestra stuff and al that and get more and more and more and bigger and bigger and bigger but we don't know, I mean we have just done this album and sometime after a year or so we start thinking about probably a next or another tour or doing separate gigs, so I don't know, it depends on what is coming in the future.

 

That song is also a bit faster and louder, did Tuomas write this or did you maybe like on the Century Child album?
Tuomas has the rolling cast, like he writes the stories and has the raw melodies in is head and well sometimes I have some thing that I have some things that could be changed a little bit so looks a little bit more like my style, so we have been using that as well but Tuomas has the basic line of stories and structures where I should come in where it can be changed a little bit how I like it.

 

Before you started with the recordings of Once you had a one year brake, and I heard that Tarja was going to finish the opera school in Germany that year. Did she finish it?
Yeah it's not actually an opera school but more classical vocal studies but she did finish that and she is living now back in Finland.


Did someone else of you do some kind of musical education?
Yeah I have studied in musical college, some classical vocals but more classical guitar, and Tuomas has also had some musical college. But I actually don't know about Emppu or Jukka but I guess they have been mixed up with some kind of music in schooling and all that as well but we have never talked about it.

 

I read that Tuomas liked writing film music, has he written any music for movies yet?
No he hasn't had the chance but he is a big fan of film music so he would like to do that very much but so far there haven't been any contacts and he hasn't have them before but now that we have this orchestra he is hoping that he can use these contacts some time.

 

You have travelled all over the world and saw a lot of different countries, which do you like the most?
I don't know I am like an addict when its come to live performing, I think I like it everywhere the same as long as you can pull a good gig and you can get the crowd going and have a loud live band on stage.

 

Can we expect some more and better albums of Nightwish in the future??
I can't tell but we will try.

 

Well thank you very much for this interview do you have any thing left to say?
No not really, and they're telling that everybody has to leave for 10 minutes now, including myself.