Finnish melodic death metallers Norther are back with a new record, simply entitled N. In order to promote this record I was asked to send them a few questions, and so I did. The answers came from Kristian ‘Kride’ Ranta.
First of all, congratulations on the release of N. I just read that the record has landed on #5 in the Finnish album charts, so you all must feel very pleased. How are the reactions from the press and fans so far?
"We have been very happy with this release. 5# position was a very pleasant surprise. Also the media coverage has been excellent and far better than before. Press reactions have been from good to excellent and fan reactions have been mostly excellent."
How long did it take you guys to write the record?
"First melodies and riffs were composed in the end of 2006. More material was written during the spring 2007. We started the production with Anssi Kippo in June. Then we worked our assess off during the summer and then went to the studio in the beginning of August. That's about it."
What was it like to work with long time partner Anssi Kippo again?
"Always cool to work with Anssi. He's such a pleasant guy. He brought in some pretty good ideas as a producer this time and I think that it had a big effect on the result."
Most of the time, when you ask a band about how their upcoming album is gonna sound, the answer is "heavier". To me, N sounds less heavy than the previous albums. Was it your intent to take the music into another direction, or did it just turn out this way?
"We wanted to make a more produced and kind of like distinguished album this time. Till Death Unites Us was rawer and kind of like thrashier or so in our opinion. This time the production made a difference. I guess one might say that this album is not so heavy since there are more clean vocals and other production stuff and so. I guess my answer doesn't make any sense but whatta hell."
The first four Norther full-lengths were all released through Spinefarm Records, why did you leave and sign with Century Media, and how does the cooperation suit you so far?
"We were working with Spinefarm for so long that we just felt the need to search for something new. We were maybe not 100% happy with them either. After our deal had ended with Spinefarm we started discussing with many other labels. Century Media gave the best offer and therefore we were happy to sign with them. So far everything has worked out really well with them."
I'm proud to own a copy of the 'EP' DVD Spreading Death. Are there any plans for a 'full-length' DVD?
"There has been a lot of discussion about a possible DVD in the future. At the moment it seems that the DVD might be released maybe in 2009. Let's see if we can get some stuff recorded and so."
Can you tell us something about the video "We Rock"?
Did you manage to take one (or more) of the hot chicks in the video home after the shooting?
"Heheheheh, they were there in a strictly professional manner. :)"
Is there a band hierarchy in Norther?
Can everybody in Norther live of the band?
"No. Petri is actually the only one doing nothing else than being a musician. I, Tuomas and Jukka study and Heikki has a day job."
Iron Maiden or Metallica?
Dark Tranquillity or In Flames?
Ensiferum or Wintersun?
With which bands did you grow up listening to and what is your all-time favourite album?
"I started with bands like Yngwie Malmsteen, Europe and so. Mainly because of my older brothers. At the moment my all time favourite album is maybe Lambretta - Lambretta :)"
What are the latest releases you've been listening to a lot? Do you listen to your own records as well?
"Lately Sybreed - Antares, The Haunted - newest one..."
Can you tell us something no one knows up 'til now?
"My other name is Heikki ;)"
What can we expect from Norther in 2008?
"Hopefully a lot of shows and so. Thank you and greetings to the readers!"