Recently I had the opportunity to chat with Finland's Mausoleum Gate. In case you missed it I just reviewed the band's phenomenal, self-titled debut-album. The link to that is posted below this interview. I want to thank the band for taking time out of their busy schedule to talk with us and encourage each and every one of you to check out this amazing band and their N.W.O.B.H.M-infused take on hard rock/traditional heavy metal. If their debut album is any indication at all (and again, it's a absolute killer release!) then Mausoleum Gate are going to be huge in the near future!
Andy (A)-Mausoleum Gate-whose who and what is it all about?
Mausoleum Gate (MG)-Mausoleum Gate was formed back in 2008 and nowadays the line-up is: V.P Varpula-voc,Count L.F-gtr,Kasperi Puranen-gtr,Wicked Ischanius-bass/keys and Oscar Razanez-dr/perc. Mausoleum Gate plays traditional heavy metal based on NWOBHM and adding elements from 70's heavy and progressive rock.
A-How did the band first come together and what made you decide on your current moniker?
MG-Well it was through an add how Wicked Ischanius and I met. Then there was also our first drummer Pasi Tolonen. That was the first step really. If you mean with the word "moniker" the name of the band then that was really a result of changing ideas. I remember that I first thought something like "Litihium Gate",heh. But the name is cool in many ways really: It's quite unique as a band name and has straight similarities to bands like Mercyful Fate and Black Sabbath or Pagan Altar and so on.
A-After the release of your debut EP you had the chance to play at Germany's Metal Warning Festival. How in the world did that come about?
MG-I must correct this: The festival was at Helsinki,Finland.
Otherwise your information is right: We played there with Cloven Hoof and Sargofagus among others. Actually we got there because Metal Warning organizers were interested in our demo EP. That was a huge chance for a first gig I think.
A- Now, Your compilation CD "Gateways for the Wicked / Obsessed by Metal Sessions" includes a seven minute plus bonus cut. What made you decide on including "Through the Aeons of Sorrow"?
MG-It's really "Through The Dark Aeons Of Sorrow". Well the track was originally recorded at the same 7'' sessions as Obsessed By Metal and Infernal and released in the internet only and got quite popular there. On the other hand it was a bit too long for 7'' so we decided to put it on that compilation on CD so it's available on physical format too. And I think CD nicely puts everything we have released before the full length in one package.
A-Could you tell us about the creation of "Mausoleum Gate"? Before conducting this interview we talked briefly and you mentioned how it was a long process. How so?
MG-It truly was.The actual recording didn't take so much time but it got a lot of time to get from one point to another: To record,to mix and so on. To arrange schedules was challenging. You must remember that we had our day jobs and other activities. The songs are also from a quite long period of time. Some of them are older than songs on our latest releases and some are newer. The title song "Mausoleum Gate" for example started during the days when the band was formed and last ideas to the song came last year.
A-Before we go any further can I just say once more how impressed I was with your self-titled album! Has the album received similar high praise and are you happy with how it all turned out?
MG-Sure! We are very happy and very pleased about this reception we have had. It's quite impressive and much more than we expected. I'm glad you like the album 'cos we really just wanted to make music that we like. So it's more than pleasing to hear that there are so many who share this vision.
A-What are the chances of your debut album getting a vinyl release?
MG-There's going to be a vinyl release with gatefold sleeve and insert. Unfortunately it seems that vinyl release will be delayed a bit and will be released a couple of weeks after the compact disc/digital release.
A-That's awesome to hear (the fact that it will be seeing a vinyl release and not the fact that it will be delayed) seeing as I certainly won't be the only one looking to buy a LP copy of it as well as a CD one. After your debut album drops what's next? What are your plans as far as touring in support of it, etc?
MG-Well we have this Keep It True festival in April in Germany and possibly a few other gigs in Finland but we will inform from them as soon as we have something confirmed.
A-In our e-mail exchanges you talked about the possibility of another release on the horizon. Possibly a single of sorts if I'm not mistaken. Would you mind sharing that information with our readers?
MG-Well that plan is a bit open yet. We have actually recorded more material than we have on the album. Time will tell what happens to them.
A-Hopefully they will be released sooner then later. Especially as I'm now trying to get my hands on as much music as possible from Mausoleum Gate! Back to the band though. It's not just your name that links you to bands like Mercyful Fate, Black Sabbath and Pagan Alter is it? Atmosphere-wise "Mausoleum Gate" has the same kind of mystical vibe as those three older metal acts. Is that something that has natural evolved over the years?
MG-It's really was a natural process like everything has been with Mausoleum Gate so far. I like to have some mystical atmosphere in music - maybe somehow tragic and sad atmosphere too. I see that we have the same kind of mood in melodies as Sabbath or Pagan Altar have: That same kind of fatal,dramatic feeling. Also some supernatural vibe is present too in my opinion like Mercyful Fate had
A-And speaking of your sound, Mausoleum Gate draws it's influence from so many different directions. Was that so much a collective decision or are the various tastes of each and every band member that diverse?
MG-There certainly is a variety in our musical tastes in this band but of course there are similarities too. Otherwise it would be hard to get music together, heh. I think the way these different tastes mix in our music is something that gives the band its own sound. That's one thing we try to achieve really: To have the sound of our own which at the same time brings out something from our influences.
A-You've already played with Sargofagus and Cloven Hoof. Who are some other classic bands that you would love to perform with?
there are some in Keep It True Festival to me at least - like Uli Jon
Roth (ex-Scorpions). I also remember listening Exciter's "Violence And
Force" in cassette back in 80's and now we're playin' on the same stage.
That's great. Of course to me it would be massive to play with likes of
Mercyful Fate, Maiden, Sabbath etc.
A-Where do you picture the band being in five years?
MG-I can't say really but I hope we continue to make music. We have got so far so why couldn’t we go on further really? There’s lot to say musically I think.
A-Where can fans find your new album and other information on the band?
MG-This will be a good place to start:
Also our bass player Wicked Ischanius' blog is worth checking for:
A-I'll have to check that out then! OK, to round things up I usually let band's have the last word. Is there anything else you'd like to add or anything that you would life to share with your fans?
MG-Let's keep it simple: Keep It Heavy!
A-I couldn't agree more!
Review of "Mausoleum Gate":
Labels: 2014, interview, Mausoleum Gate