N A Z A R E N E W I T H A F A X M A C H I N E
CoC chats with Impaled Nazarene's Mika Luttinen
by: Steve Hoeltzel
Imagine my surprise when I tried to fax a set of questions to Mika
Luttinen, owner of the deranged throat which fronts this craziest of
bands - and got his voice coming out of my modem instead, "Hello?...
Hello?" It's a surprisingly deep voice, too, especially when you
consider Mika's throat-ripping high-end performance on _Latex Cult_
(reviewed in CoC #11), not to mention the band's three prior
full-length releases. Anyway, we exchanged pleasantries for a (very
expensive) minute or two, then fired up the faxes. And now, thanks to
the miracle of modern communications technology, all you Karmakeddon
Warriors out there can check out what transpired and read Mika's
report on current Impaled activities.
CoC: What's new with the band? How has the recent touring gone?
Mika Luttinen: Not much happening; writing new songs. Touring's been
okay. It has been great to play with Cannibal Corpse,
Immolation, Angel Corpse, and Gehennah.
CoC: What kind of activities have you got planned for 1997?
ML: We will tour South America in March. We'll do Chile, Columbia,
Argentina, and Brazil. After that, no plans, except we'll try to
get to Mexico before summer as well. Late 97: studio!
CoC: The latest update from Osmose says that one of your concerts in
Paris was sabotaged. What is the story there? Do you know who
committed the sabotage, and why?
ML: Believe it or not, until today I thought that we had a normal
power break during the gig in Paris, but as I just spoke with
Herve of Osmose, it indeed was caused by some anti-Impaled
Nazarene people... My guess goes for some black metal nerds.
CoC: After _Suomi Finland Perkele_, I was somewhat surprised to see
the band return to the all-out aggression of earlier releases.
What prompted this return? And how do you answer people who say
that you were simply "playing it safe" by sounding so extreme on
ML: The bottom line is that Kimmo [Luttinen - Mika's brother and the
band's former drummer] changed our style pretty much after the
release of _Ugra-Karma_. It was his vision of how we should
sound, and the rest of us weren't happy at all. It is useless for
a band like us to try to be a copy of Danzig or fucking Paradise
Lost. So, after Kimmo was replaced, it was normal for us to go
back to what we do best, i.e. play aggressive and fast metal. I
guess you're referring to Metal Maniacs, where they said we just
wanted to play it safe. If we wanted to play it safe, we would be
doing fucking gothic metal or whatever, in the line of "Blood Is
Thicker Than Water" from _Suomi Finland Perkele_. It was one guy
who wanted to go a different way, and the rest did not agree.
Nobody expected such a release as _Latex Cult_ from us anymore,
but we fucking proved that we are still here, doing our thing our
way. We can get only nastier.
CoC: You seem to approach your band's lyrics and image with a sense
of humour. Is that a fair assessment? What is your opinion of
those who are (or claim to be) one hundred percent serious about
all this black metal stuff?
ML: If somebody is one hundred percent serious about black metal,
then so what? It does not bother us. Certainly there's some
humour on our first three CDs, but on _Latex Cult_ there's none.
We were pissed off when we wrote it, and I think it shows. Lots
of shit went down two months before we entered the studio, and it
CoC: I have read interviews in which you describe yourself as a
"cynical individualist." For the benefit of readers who may
think of Impaled Nazarene as a bunch of devil-worshippers, or
whatever, could you please explain what you mean by cynical
ML: A better term would actually be "fucking asshole", but anyway, I
see the whole band as individualists, as we do not belong to or
support any political or religious movement or organization. We
have come this far by being ourselves, and that's what I'm proud
of! We never kissed ass or jumped the next trend or sold
ourselves out. For sure, we would have a way bigger following if
we had been into "evil guys and their doings", but we did not
fucking care about them.
CoC: The year 2000 will soon arrive. How does the future look, from
your own perspective?
ML: Things are starting to boil up, I guess.
CoC: What would the next hundred years look like, if Sir Luttinen
were in charge?
ML: Sir Luttinen is actually a name my brother (our ex-drummer) uses.
[Oops! My mistake. - Steve] If I were in charge, it would be the
end of Greenpeace and all things green. Cement or nothing.
CoC: If you could be born again during any past period of history,
what period would you choose, and why?
ML: I prefer present over past, so I am just happy here, thank you.
CoC: What sort of thing have you been listening to lately?
ML: Nothing but my own guitar playing, as the last three weeks I have
been composing new songs - speaking of which, everybody check out
the forthcoming _World Domination II_ CD by Osmose, as it has a
brand new Impaled Nazarene track on it.
CoC: When all is said and done, how would you like Impaled Nazarene
to be remembered?
ML: As a cult band - but I do hope this won't happen for a long, long