Finnish rock/grunge band PHOENIX EFFECT started as a solo project, but much has happened since the first song. The debut album “Cyanide Skies” was released in February 2009 via POTF’s Insomniac. After the release Phoenix Effect has concentrated on doing as many shows as possible and spreading the music as far as possible.
Metal Shock Finland‘s Melissa La Giglia had a chat with Janne Kärkkäinen, Phoenix Effect’s vocalist and guitarist.
Hi Janne, how are you doing today?
– Hello! I’m doing great thanks.
How would you describe the band, the sound and the project?
– It’s always a bit hard to describe the thing you’re doing your self. Someone once described it as “progressive grunge”. I could really relate to that.
Represent us the members and their roles in your band?
– We’re four guys with pretty different backgrounds. I’m more or less “the daddy” since I was born in the stone-age..;). I’m envolved in pretty much in everything. In good and in bad. Lauri is probably the “pop” in our team. He’s an ad and a producer as well, so he has fingers on more or less everything as well. Anton used to be a lead singer&songwriter of a band call Feiled. After that he picked up his original instrument, the drums. In my opinion he’s one of the greatest drummers I’ve ever seen. Pyry is “the artist” of our band. He’s a guitarist and an actor, to name a few of his professions. We don’t have a single songwriter, we all contribute to our songs.
About your band name “Phoenix Effect”, why did you choose this name? and what does it mean?
– It represents a force that will raise you when you think that you can´t do it yourself anymore. We chose it because it´s a phenomenon full of hope, and a couple of us have already whitnessed it.
Do you remember your first gig? tell us about it…
– I’m not sure if I do. I’ve been playing in bands since high-school. It must have been some sort of school event. I must have been so nervous that I’ve forgotten about the show.
Janne, you’re the singer and guitarist of the band, but tell me how and when you found the music?
– Well.. I’m pretty sure that it is somehow a built-in thing. I’ve been playing tennis rackets since I learnt to walk. I´ve elder bros, who are much older than me, used to listen to the classics all the time. So I kinda grew up to the likes of Zeppelin and Deep Purple.
What means “doing the music” for you as a band?
– I don´t think we have a choice. In a good way. We’re all individuals who live to create something. In our case it’s music. It’s a way of life.
Who is the band’s leader and why?
– In general, we try to be as equal as a band can be. Of course it can’t always work, but at least in the big picture we need to agree. Otherwise it’s not a band.
Where do you find the inspiration to write the songs and lyrics?
– It comes from life itself. I tend get stucked in some thought that I need to just open up and write down. It’s the only way to get it out.
Which are the main music influences?
– The most bands that I look up to come from America. They all represent this kinda “honest” way of playing rock. Foo Fighters & Alter Bridge to name a few.
About your latest album Phoenix Effect, Which is your fav song and why?
– It really differs depending when you ask me. Right now I would probably say “Stand Your Ground”. It’s in my opinion “the spring song” of the album. And it is spring time!
How your audience has welcomed the album?
– We’ve got a lot of great feedback, and we’re blessed to have so much inspiring people cheering us. Of course we’re an Indie band on an Indie label, so it’s always a bit tricky to break through to mainstream.
Which song characterize you the most?
– There’s a lot of different songs on the album. I would say that it would be “Killing the afterglow”. It’s really strange and straight forward at the same time. As we are…
Which is the main message you want to spread on stage?
– It has to be the energy of ROCK music. These days it’s sometimes hard to find it within the industry.
You’ve a lot of gigs in Finland, have you ever performed in Europe? and where?
– We’ve played shows also in Germany and Russia.
What act, so far, has given you more satisfaction?
– To be able to do this. “The whole nine yards”. It’s something that the most people never get to experience.
With whom you’d like to play someday? a band, a singer, a festival or else…
– I’m excited to play with these three fellows in PE. Of course the legendary festivals are on top of the wish list, Rock Am Ring, Roskilde etc.
Which are you future plans?
– Right now we are starting to wrap up some new tunes. Of course some shows here an there but most likely we’re entering the phase of creating something new.
What are your greetings to our readers?
– Stay true! And bookmark this fantastic site 😉
Thanks Janne for this interview! All the best for you and Phoenix Effect, keep us updated with your news!
– Thank YOU! And have a great and HOT summer.
Interview by Melissa La Giglia
Phoenix Effect – King See No Evil