Triosphere – Just Doing What They LoveSunday, 30th November 2014
Dead Rhetoric: You’ve had some great touring situations in the past, be it opening slots for Sonata Arctica and Labyrinth across Europe or special festival dates. What do you think you’ve learned the most on stage about Triosphere and where you’ve been able to apply this to make the act that much stronger?
Haukland: One thing is for sure, you learn a lot when you are touring! Playing live in general- you learn so much about yourself, as a band what throws you off, which situations you need to keep yourself calm, because being on stage on a tour especially as an opening band you don’t have a soundcheck, so it can be mayhem. What people hear going out in the speakers is not what is heard on stage. You have to survive many interesting listening situations when on stage. Sometimes you hear just the drums, or the guitar on stage, so it can be all kinds of chaos according to what you hear when you are supposed to stand there, perform, and deliver everything.
You learn to keep control and calm in different environments. You learn a lot from the other bands you are touring with, we have been so lucky to tour with awesome bands, both headlining acts, special support, festivals, and everything. You pick up a tip here and there, how to be more solid. The goal is always to be consistent, to deliver a 100% show every night. When the auditory conditions vary from night to night, that is a great challenge to be consistent, so you learn a lot about that. Personally I have picked up several vocal tips, both when it comes to poise and warming up. There are so many talented people out there, it’s very good to drink in their knowledge.
Dead Rhetoric: You also opened a few shows for W.A.S.P. in your career, correct?
Haukland: Yes, we started with that before we even released Onwards we did a small Norwegian tour with W.A.S.P. That was a great crash course to learn what it’s like to be a supporting band (laughs). 15 minutes before the doors open, you are thrown on stage, get your gear up there, get sound, get off. You learn to just own the situation, be professional, be on time, do what you are there and get the hell away. W.A.S.P. were strict but they were fair, and we have made many lifelong friends with people in the band. An amazing experience that makes you grow up quite a bit.
Dead Rhetoric: How does it feel to finally have a permanent drummer in the fold Kenneth Tarneby after recruiting session people for recording and touring purposes? Has it been a struggle to get the right musicians together considering the style Triosphere plays?
Haukland: First and foremost we are overwhelmed with relief that we found Kenneth – we have been a consistent lineup band since 2006. T.O. Byberg, the blond rhythm guitarist joined permanently right after we released Onwards. We have had a unique chemistry, we knew how we wanted the band to sound, and we built the sound together along the way. So of course when Ørjan made the decision to leave last year even though we knew for quite some time it was going to happen and as you said we had session guys on tour with us since 2011, it was a really tough period because he had been there since the very beginning. The drummers that we tested are fantastic drummers, great guys, but it wasn’t clicking in the band. For myself since I am the other half of the rhythm section, it felt like it wasn’t merging, melding in the way it should. We used Facebook to advertise, and out of nowhere this guy comes out who is further down south in Norway, he sent us an audition video where he played flawlessly. So we sent him up here to test out how it feels to play with this guy, and what kind of guy is he. After one hour we knew this was it, it felt like we had been playing together forever. It was a huge relief, we figured it would take time to build the band back up to the level we once used to be. But Kenneth picked up exactly to the point we had been, and we are now back on track more than we have been for years. The transition couldn’t have been smoother.
Dead Rhetoric: How do you feel about the healthy development of power/progressive metal in Norway? There are a lot of bands making huge strides in terms of international followings and impressive label deals, be it Pagan’s Mind, Circus Maximus, and Leprous – do you think artists like Roy Khan from Conception/Kamelot and Artch before that were the impetus to springboard a very fertile, creative market for musicians in your country?
Haukland: That’s a very good question. Of course it will always be very important with national heroes. Personally I must say the hard rock band TNT has meant a lot in general, much further back in the years. Artch and Conception and Roy Khan, it was very important to see that it was possible, that you can definitely make high quality music and reach beyond the borders of Norway with your music. In Norway you have a strong public opinion that you are not supposed to think that you are something. You aren’t supposed to stand out, but you are just as good as anything outside of Norway and that you can make a name for yourself. I think nowadays Pagan’s Mind are very important for new bands coming in today, and for the last few years. They have made a solid position in Norway, Europe, and the USA as far as I can tell. They’ve been quite an inspiration for me as well.
Dead Rhetoric: In terms of your home country of Norway, you don’t have a real peer or even a similar band to emulate. Therefore, which bands do you most identify with?
Haukland: What shall I say, we don’t! (laughs) There aren’t any other bands that I feel we are similar to; then again I can’t say I’ve heard every single band in the world in the same line of sound as we are. What is for sure, we are always focusing on making the music that we want. We never start a song thinking that we want it to sound like a particular band, we don’t ever take that angle when we write music. We are on subconscious levels inspired of course by things that we like and listen to, but we make music the way we think it sounds great. We feel that we have something a bit unique.
Dead Rhetoric: Where do you see the power/progressive metal scene at this point in time? Are you happy with the number of releases on the market – and that it’s truly an international market at this point? What changes (if any) would you like to see?
Haukland: It definitely seems like it’s in a positive development. I would like to see (this music) receiving a stronger profile in the Norwegian market, because I still feel that the general Norwegian media/music industry are still caught up a bit in the extreme metal bands. They will not acknowledge that Norway actually has a lot of good melodic, power, and progressive metal bands as well. Generally around the world, it seems like it’s going the right way. I can’t say I’ve noticed anything that specifically has to change. It seems like power/progressive metal is on the right flow.
Dead Rhetoric: How do the individual members handle down time? Is it a tough balance between family/work related responsibilities and developing the music and business end for Triosphere?
Haukland: Hmm… that’s a difficult question. We are more or less continuously doing something with the band. Either working on new material, working on booking gigs; for myself and Marius the band is what we focus on besides the necessary day jobs. So for us it’s always something to do, we don’t feel there is down time as such. We would like to tour more, we are always trying to make something happen. T.O. has a family, so he has his hands more than full. We hope with the new album it’s possible to get management or a booking agency. It is a challenge for us to try arrange all these administrative and promotional things especially live gigs on our own. We hope that we will get in touch with these things over the course of this record.
Dead Rhetoric: My family is hooked on the television series from your country Lilyhammer that I watched seasons one and two on Netflix. Any of the members also watch the series – and do you think it’s accurate in its portrayal of your country?
Haukland: Yes! (laughs). I don’t know if the others are watching. I try to catch the episodes whenever I can, I am often occupied with other things when that show airs. Accurate… it’s always dead winter in that series, isn’t it? The winter in that area is probably like that, but it’s not winter year round. You will find, I don’t think that Norwegians are that gullible, you might get the impression of that in this series. You will find those characters more or less in real life too. It’s really popular here in Norway too, they have creative characters which we can identify with also. I think it’s a really good series, and funny to hear that you like it too.
Dead Rhetoric: What are you hopes and aspirations as far as Triosphere activities over the next 12 months? Where would you like to tour (and with who) if money and time were not an issue?
Haukland: I really hope that it will be possible for us according to offers that we get along with the financial and logistical challenges that we would like to tour much more. We want to do many of the big summer festivals in the summer of 2015. We really hope to tour not only Europe but also North and South America plus Asia. I know that’s a lot to hope for in just one year, but that is our dream. I hope to a certain degree that we get to cross the Atlantic Sea with this album- we are going to be on a cruise in January 2015 for the 70000 Tons of Metal going from Florida to Jamaica. That is a cruise, so we hope to do more land based gigs of course.
If money and everything was no issue… we would like to really tour North and South America with Sonata Arctica. I mentioned them before and when we toured with them it was such a great experience, great people to travel with in 2011 and it was awesome. Besides that, let’s see- there are so many. It would be great to go out with Nightwish, we think that could be an amazing tour as well. Megadeth, Arch Enemy for sure, I’m sure there are others… it would be insane to tour with Whitesnake, but I’m a bit uncertain that the audience would go in shock if we played first. One should never underestimate the audience, but I don’t know if we would be the ideal support act. I saw Whitesnake and Journey performing at Wembley (Whitesnake’s line up was of course with Doug aldrich and Reb Beach) – it was amazing.
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