FOR SELENA AND SIN,
founded in 2004, is with no doubt one of the future major names in the
scene of female fronted metal bands. Performing a unique mix of metal,
rock and pop, FOR SELENA AND SIN have found their own distinctive
sound right from the beginning. With their first demo (‘Draining’, 2005)
the band showed such potential that it wasn’t a great surprise when a
record deal with the Dutch label Mascot Records was signed.
In 2007 FOR SELENA AND SIN recorded their debut
album ‘Overdosed on You’ in Studio Watercastle with producer Arttu
Sarvanne. The album was highly praised by media in Finland and abroad.
Following the album’s release, the band toured through Finland, Europe
In 2009 FOR SELENA AND SIN head to Studio
Underground in Västerås, Sweden, to record their second album ‘Primrose
Path’. The collaboration with producer Pelle Saether brought out the
more energetic and diverse side of FOR SELENA AND SIN. The new
masterpiece features 12 catchy songs, including the Kylie Minoque cover
song “Confide in Me”. A music video was shot for the first single,
It appears there is much to talk about, here you can read
what guitarist Pasi Kolari had to say about the new album.
Two years ago we talked about your previous album
‘Overdosed on You’, can you give us a little update of what’s been
happening since that release and could you introduce the new bandmembers?
After the release of our debut album we spent a lot of
time on the road. We played a lot of shows in Finland but also in
Europe. Feedback was something we didn’t expect, even though we knew we
had recorded a strong album. But our songs were being played on the
radio and the album reviews we received were really good. So I am
satisfied and I can’t see any other way to make things better. We have a
new guitarist called Martti Pohjosaho. He was initially meant to act as
a session player for the shows, but everything worked out really great,
so he asked for the chance to stay in the band. After ‘Primrose Path’
our former bass player decided to focus more on a different way of life.
He was replaced by Aapeli Kivimäki who plays guitar in the Finnish death
metal band called Soulfallen. Both are great guys and it’s cool to have
professional players in the band.
you launch into writing material for ‘Primrose Path’ and how much time
did you spend on the songs?
started writing new songs, things went quite smoothly. We had written
some basic concepts for the songs a long time ago, but when we booked a
studio for the second album, we had about 6 months’ time to get the rest
of the songs ready. I’ve never wanted to make songs a 100% ready before
studio sessions. I like to finish guitar solos and some other stuff in
the studio and check what kind of mood we have at the time. Basically we
had about 70% of the songs ready when we entered the studio.
approach did you choose to create this album, did you go for a more raw
exposition.. or something more reminiscent of your previous other works,
or something all together different?
idea was to create more energetic songs. I didn’t want to make same kind
of album again. It was quite hard to play the slow songs off the debut
album on stage. I’m not saying that people were asleep during our shows,
but it was almost like that, hahah…We like to play live, so it’s great
to finally add a little faster material to our set list.
we imagine you work on new songs, what's the typical writing process
like for FSAS?
I think we
work in the same way as many other bands. Someone has an idea for a
verse or a chorus and then we check these riffs in the rehearsal room
and start building a whole song around it. For example the way I write
songs is quite simple. I take a beer or a couple more and start playing.
Sometimes good stuff comes out of it, sometimes it’s only shit. But I
don’t need any special mood for the writing process.
the release of your debut album you experienced some line-up changes.
Did these changes influence the new songs?
This is a
good question…I was really surprised when I realized how tight these
guitarists sound. So our method and concept stayed stable even when we
got a new guitarist. I don’t see any special influence on our music.
comes first, lyrics or melodies?
come first and lyrics afterwards. It’s easier to write songs in this
way. Even when we have lyrics ready for the studio, we always make some
line changes etc…If I remember correctly, we had a couple of songs
without lyrics when we entered the studio and we completed lyrics during
the recording sessions.
were the goals you had in mind when you started to record ‘Primrose
Path’, any elements you definitely wanted to include on the album?
to make faster and more catchy songs and get more of a rock feeling on
it. We decided to record the album as far away from home as possible
this time to get a peaceful ambience. Sweden was the right place for us.
you describe the implications of the title ‘Primrose Path’, what does it
stand for and is there a special meaning behind it?
for the title came from our singer Annika. Like our debut album title
‘Overdosed on You’, ‘Primrose Path’ is also just a name for the album.
We don’t have title songs on our albums. For me there’s not any special
meaning behind the name and it doesn’t walk hand in hand with the songs.
But it is simple and works as a title for the album.
Can you give us a little background information on the
songs, is there a story behind them?
The last couple of years I have moved a little in another
direction than the metal scene and I have listened to different kinds of
music. Maybe this has something to do with our new songs, because you
can hear some elements from different music styles. Ok, there’s not any
reggae or anything that doesn’t fit with rock music. But, for example
some guitars solos could be taken from the 80’s hard rock and some songs
are composed in a little bit of a pop/rock format.
you get your inspiration for writing lyrics and can you tell me more
different kinds of stories from our personal lives. We wanted to keep
the lyrics quite simple, so I think people will find out the red line. I
don’t want to give too much background info, but for the example bonus
track “Five Days In A Row” is a really sad and true story of how someone
you have loved from your heart is fading away. Although the album
contains stories like “Five Days In A Row”, there is also softer
“rock-pop” lyrics to keep the balance.
important is it to you that people pay attention to your lyrics apart
from listening to the music?
it’s important, but there are always people who get the feeling from the
music. Let’s think about the situation when a band plays live. Even
though you can hear and understand all the lyrics, you keep an eye on
how the band plays and the first thing you pay attention to is the
music. It’s always positive to hear that someone has found something in
the recording process proceed, did you work differently this time than
you did with your previous albums? How much time did you spend in the
we worked in Sweden. We booked a studio for 3 weeks and we had a chance
to use it for 24 hours. Mostly we worked 10-12 hours/per day, so it was
hard work, but also I felt it was more relaxing than our debut album
you think are the main differences between your debut album and your new
album ‘Primrose Path’?
If we think
about the sound world, this time it’s heavier and the guitars are quite
strong if you compare it to the ‘Overdosed’ album. I don’t want to
compare the songs on the album too much. Basically both albums contain
the same elements, melancholic music, but I think I could say ‘Primrose
Path’ was recorded in a more professional way and the production was
also a little bit better. But, I still love ‘Overdosed’ a lot, so it has
a place in my heart.
album was produced by Pelle Saether, what made him the perfect man for
He is a
really cool guy, but he also wants everything to work out. You know,
when you are working with him, you are working hard. Personally, I don’t
like lazy people and when you have 3 weeks time to make an album, you
have to focus on the recordings. He kept a tight schedule and that’s
just what I like.
elements on the new album can one clearly hear his vision and ideas?
We had our
own vision of the songs. His main responsibility was to take care of
mixing and to help with the vocals. But, mostly he was a boss who kicked
us to make our work even better and better.
Have you received any feedback on your album yet?
The album was released in Finland and Scandinavia in
October. We have received some feedback and it was really positive. But,
it’s too early to say how it will go in Europe, as the album will be out
Overall, are you pleased with the outcome of the songs or
would you have liked to have changed anything in retrospective?
I am really satisfied with the result and I don’t see
anything I would like to change. The studio technique is highly advanced
these days and you can make whatever you want in a studio, but sometimes
it’s better to keep it simple. Of course it allows you the chance to do
things differently, but in our case the album is just how it was mean to
With two albums under your belt, how far has FSAS
surpassed your original dreams and what would you say is the most
rewarding part of being in the band?
This is our second album and we are looking forward to
pushing the band to become bigger. This means hard work, not only by
band but also by the record company. As you know, these days albums
don’t sell like they used to. I am happy that we have been playing a lot
of gigs and we will continue touring, so I am sure it will help us to
find new fans. I think it will be easier to answer this question when
we’ve made our third album.
have been the highlights and low points throughout your career?
hard when you have line-up changes, but so far we have survived them
well. We have had 11 different people in the band, also counting session
members. So, sometimes this gives you a little bit extra work to get
things worked out. It’s hard to say what are the biggest highlights, but
it’s always great to play outside of Finland and meet new people who
like our music.
makes FSAS different from the other ‘female fronted’ metal bands out
Hard question… To be honest, I don’t like many female
fronted metal bands, especially melodic bands with soprano singers make
me feel bad. Even though we play metal and FSAS goes for this category,
I see these days Selena’s more as a rock band who want to have a fun on
stage. Sometimes rock ‘n roll life goes a little bit over the top on
What can we expect from For Selena and Sin in the near
future, any live shows or festivals next summer?
We will start a European Tour in January 2010. This will
be part of our new album promotion, so let’s see how it goes. We are
looking forward to playing in Europe again. After this tour we will make
another new music video and play shows in Finland. There have not been
any festival shows confirmed yet, but I am sure people will find us on
the festival stages, too.
Is there anything that has been left unmentioned?
I wish a happy new year to all readers! Don’t forget to
check our new album and “Psycho Lover” video from our ‘Primrose Path’
Thanks for your time!
Annika Jalkanen - Vocals
Pasi Kolari - Guitars
Martti Pohjosaho - Lead guitars
Teemu Oksanen - Keyboards
Aapeli Kivimäki - Bass
Taneli Sillanmäki – Drums
Sini Pajunen - Vocals
Kuha Sillanmiski - Drums
Mika Minkkinen - Guitars
Teemu Turkia - Bass
(2009) Primrose Path
(2007) Overdosed On You