17 October 2018


ABHORRENCE is one of the great bands emerged in the good old Finnish death metal scene. Despite the long period of hiatus, the band crushed the coffin to torment the world of the living, specially with their latest EP. Jukka (vocals) answered the following questions. Read on…in reverence for putrefaction!

You are about to strike with a new EP, tell me about your feelings and expectations towards it?
Jukka: We’re feeling very enthusiastic about it, we feel the whole EP works really well, it has a nice story arc to the music and lyrics which support each other and it sounds very brutal.
As far as expectations go, we would like for the fans of the old stuff to find it and like it, to see the growth that has happened in the almost three decades. The old stuff is so iconic to some people, that they would have trouble with new material no matter what it was. If we’d gone the route of trying to replicate the old sound, that too would have been unacceptable. So we went with “this is what we like” and hope for the best.

How long have you been working on the songs for this EP?
From 2013 in a sense I guess, but the actual “working on them together” part started for real in late 2017.
What kind of sound did you wanted to achieve? Did you let it flow naturally or did you take care of keeping certain vibe of your roots?

We wanted to have a brutal overall sound, but with unambiguous layers, so that it doesn’t get all mushy. The sound was pretty much found immediately in the first rehearsals of 2012, which is basically a lot like the sound we had in 1990, but with better gear with more variation.
Basically you can hear the sound we play with in rehearsals on the Totally Vulgar Live, since it’s pretty much unaltered from the gig.
What´s the current line up? When did exactly the band reunite and how that did happen?
It’s the same old line up, with the exception of drummer, where Waltteri Väyrynen excels.
We got back together in 2012, after we were asked to do a reunion festival appearance at Hammer Open Air in support of the upcoming Completely Vulgar compilation album. We thought about it, when Tuska Open Air got in touch as well, we figured it is very important festival to us personally and we will never have another chance to play there as a group if we don’t do it now. So we did.
Can you tell about what happened with the band members since the band stopped the activities?
Life happened. Kids, family, work, career, divorces to some. The same shit that happens to everyone. Tomi kept on working with Amorphis obviously, Jussi was in several bands, I’ve done some guest appearances and such on recording and some live events, but that’s about it.
Personally I’ve stayed with music; was a DJ for over 10 years, wrote reviews and interviews for almost 20 years and I even ended up working for a gig database service and eventually publishing house that releases music magazines among other things.
Back to the EP, tell me about the concept and lyrics, if I´m not wrong it is based on the work of Lovecraft and Timothy Morton…
Jukka: Jussi will have to reply to this one.
Jussi: The ep is a concept album. The lyrics paint a vision of the ecological catastrophe we live in using the imagery of Lovecraft. The key concepts to understand our ecological predicament come from Timothy Morton’s philosophy. The lyrics start as a horror fiction but turns into something much more personal and visceral. This is reflected in the music getting deeper and darker by each track.
Which song from the EP would you name as your favorite? Was there a song with which you had difficulties until you were completely satisfied with the result? You know, that last touch…
All of the songs have bits that I like a lot, but maybe the ease of doing vocals on Four Billion Year Dream makes it my favourite, since it’s paced nicely and let’s my voice rest in between. Hyperobject I like to listen to, it was the last song we finished, so it’s the “new one”, we made quite a few changes in the studio to it and it has the speech part that I like to hear. The End is very intense and has aggressive menacing elements, but on the other hand it has a lot of vocal work and if I get too excited with it, I feel like fainting towards the end.
What kind of reactions did you receive when the band announced the return?  Are you still in contact with bands you were in contact in the early 90s?
Most reactions were cautiously positive and surprisingly many were super enthusiastic about it, few were overly negative as is the norm today.
I’ve personally stayed in contact with the people, not so much bands as many of them have broken up. But in the general sense, yes we are.
Last year you released a live album, recorded at Tuska Open Air in 2013. How the idea of this release album happened? Was it a proposal from Svart Records?
We organized a semi-secret pre-festival gig under the name Bob Horrence (I still get a chuckle out of that), just to see how we do on stage, in front of audience and to see if people are still interested. The Svart Records music connoisseur extraordinaire Mr. Pulkki saw it and asked if we were up to having the gig recorded on the spot.
We said, OK!
It took a long time to get it out, but I’m glad it did.
Live albums are not too popular these days, but I think that one really captures what those songs should’ve always sounded like.
Tell me from your point of view the most significant differences between the underground of the past with that of nowadays? Is there anything you miss from the old days?
Most significant? Internet! Period.
From the old days I miss the slow time, the period between ordering or trading something and then getting it, which made you SO HUNGRY for the thing. You spent a lot more time on each release, because you weren’t flooded with new material on a daily basis.
It was also so small and intimate that you had great relationships with almost all people involved. It was missing the clique mentality and it seemed most people were open to all kinds of extreme music. Up until the ridiculous “trve black” crap started it was just music you liked or didn’t like, nothing else mattered.
How do you see the current scene, the global scene and the scene in Finland?
I’m the wrong guy to ask. The kids have their own thing, tho it seems to me the biggest of the speed/thrash revival is already starting to die down. I’m a 46 year old graying dude, who likes heavy as shit music and happens to grown in an old band. I have no idea what the scene is like today, my fucking geriatric metal scene is the same as it ever was.
Looking back, what do you think of the demo and the 7” and the potential that the band had? What comes to mind when you think of those days?
It’s what it is. The potential was already waning towards the end, due to each individual member getting into wider variety of music and interest in extreme metal was not on the top.
When I think back, I only feel elation! It was so much fun, even after the band broke up, we kept on keeping on with great gigs and festivals and hanging out.
Do you remember when and why did the band decide to change the old logo for the current one? Who designed both logos?
First one was designed by Jussi. It was too frilly and fiddly really. When Luxi did our 1990 EP cover, and one of the old shirts as well, he designed the new one and we liked it a lot more.
I think he used our design as the source material and made it a lot more sensible, but I’m not sure about that.
What does the song Vulgar Necrolatry means for you? Do you have any special memory or anecdote connected to this song? Which version of the track would you say is the best, the demo version, the “Privilege of evil” version (in which you recorded the vocals) or the “Karelian” version? (The last two recorded by Amorphis)
It’s been along for most of the ride, so it’s really hard for me to say anything about it. We liked it so much that we gave the same name to our first demo.
A lot of bands have covered this track, so it apparently means a lot to other people. As far as the different versions go, I think they all have their merits. There is actually yet another version of it from 2009, by a Finnish band called Stench of Decay, which I also did guest vocals on (on their second demo tape). You can find a live version of it with their own vocalist on Youtube, which is pretty harsh and very fast.
Which are your favorite Finnish bands?
I listen to all kinds of music, so the styles of these are all over the place.
Right now I listen to Finnish bands like Caskets Open, Warp Transmission, Skepticism (R.I.P., but Svart Records is releasing a remastered version of Stormcrowfleet, which is excellent), Dark Buddha Rising, Throat (they just put out a great album), Reverend Bizarre (R.I.P.), Fleshpress (especially live), Vorum's Grim Death Awaits was awesome (haven't listened to the newer ones that much, yet), Circle, Superfjord, Teksti-TV 666 (especially live), The Mutants, last Plain Ride record is excellent, Musta Risti, PH (ex- Mr. Peter Hayden) and so forth. I could go on.
How did you live the emergence of black metal bands? What was your opinion of bands like Beherit or Impaled Nazarene at the time?
Personally it didn’t make much of an impact, I actually started properly listening to black metal as late as 2005 or sometime after that and I’m still very picky with it. Back then I found the whole satanist movement the same as I found any religious nonsense, kind of silly. I still do to some extent.
Esoteric knowledge and arts are great tho, I’ve read up a bit on the occult myself, but the whole scene took itself too seriously and the theatrics didn’t help any.
I don’t remember having any opinions on Beherit. Impaled Nazarene I saw play around 1991-92 and thought it was slightly interesting, but they were usually very drunk live.
What’s the strangest place and the most shocking place you have been?
I take it this is in context of the band or related to that, so I’ll just mention the party at the Mayhem house, back in 1990, where our hosts were Euronymous and Dead.
There were about 15 people, us included, one of who was Metalion of Slayer Mag. It was a great trip, slightly unnerving due to their passing out rituals (if you passed out, they’d fuck with you, ie. when Metalion dropped, Euronymous lit up his socks and let it burn until he woke up. Severe burns to couple of his toes I think) and Dead’s erratic behaviour, but we had great discussions with Euronymous and great time overall.
As far as strangest, it was a small village up north in Finland, I forget where exactly, and the locals offered us their kilju, (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kilju basically strong sugar wine) which was brewed in the district heating cross-connection site. It  was like an cramped underground concrete bunker with hot pipes going through, while outside was -25 °C the inside was humid 30 °C and the drink was horrible as well. You also get very drunk, very pukey and the next day you have a disgusting hangover from it.
What will be the next steps for Abhorrence? Shows, new songs for the upcoming album? Any scheduled date? 
Nothing planned really.
Possibly few festivals sometime next year. We are thinking about making new tunes, but things being the way they are, it’s better to not promise or deny anything.
Thanks you for your time, last words are yours...
Thanks for the interview!
Everyone reading till the end; Support your favourite bands! It’s increasingly hard for anyone to be seen and heard by interested people. Don’t forget to support your local artists, venues and records stores too. Stay brutal!

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