A London-based band with an international line-up, consisting of a Finn, an Italian and two Brits, namely Jaakko Turunen – Vocals, Daniele Panza - Lead Guitar/Back vocals, Ash Porter - Bass Guitar/Bv´s, Marc Dyos – Drums, plus Ben Christo as live guitarist/back vocalist. And for STALKER readers those names should ring a bell (trigger your memory with "Mama Trash" or "The Black Room")...
The band´s story started when Jaakko and charismatic Night by Night/Sisters of Mercy guitarist Ben Christo shared the stage, playing in an all-star band at Trash Fest in Helsinki, Finland back in 2010. They quickly became friends and Ben invited Jaakko to London to write music with him.
Apollo´s Child (from left) Marc Dyos, Ashley Porter, Daniele Panza, Jaakko Turunen
These sessions lead to finding the first steps of Apollo´s Child. Ben introduced Jaakko to Daniele Panza, the gifted Italian solo guitarist. His unique playing style (which can be compared to Steve Vai, Paul Gilbert, Reb Beach or Slash) fits perfectly to Jaakko’s unique 4 octave vocals, Ash Porter on bass and Marc Dyos on drums completed the line-up, and in the last 1,5 years they have been playing packed shows at some of the most legendary venues around London, such as Camden Underworld, Intrepid Fox and Barfly, where they supported the top 10 artist Jaycee Lewis. In autumn 2013 they played at Trashfest alongside Lord Of the Lost and Private Line in Helsinki, Finland and are currently working on their debut album.
And now Jaakko gives us more details what´s going on with Apollo´s Child:
Although I know something about the background story already (see above), can you tell our readers how the band came into being? Why London? Nowadays it seems that it does not really matter where musicians live to be able to be working together (on studio projects), so what was the reason you stayed there?
First of all, we are honoured to have been picked as Fresh Act of February. There are quite a few reasons that have lead us to where we are. We started working on the songs together even before I officially moved to London from Finland. I found a good chemistry with Dan in songwriting that neither one of us has had before. London seems to be a great city for the style of music that we do and has lots of things going on. People still seem to love their Rock and Metal here like it was in the 80´s.
When did it occur to you that the name of one of your old songs would also be a nice band name?
Apollo´s Child is one of the first songs that I ever wrote and the name just fits perfectly with the message and style of our songs. Life is a ride with ups and downs. Darkness and light. A lesson to be learned and everyone is an artist in The Now (Read: The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle)
How was it coming back to Finland to play some gigs (once again at Trashfest)? What was your most remarkable gig so far?
Coming back to play in Finland was amazing. It was the best show we have done in my opinion. I got to see my family and friends (Even though shortly) and sing in front of a familiar crowd (of course over using the sauna was included as well) Thank you Mama Trash for inviting us.
What are the differences between e.g. Finnish, Italian and British audiences?
I don´t think we have played in front of a completely Italian audience before so that needs to be done soon. Playing in front of any audience which is enthusiastic about live music is incredible. It´s like a drug, you get your fix and you want more and more.
How would you describe your musical style, and how did this style develop? What are your musical roots and influences?
I think that our music style is a mixture of the four of us, who we are and who are our main influences in rock and metal. From Led Zeppelin to GNR and Skid Row. From The Doors to The Cult and Sister of Mercy. Modern rock with a dark twist.
In which bands have you played before?
I´m sure all of us have played in quite a few projects and bands before but here´s a few to mention: Jaakko: Spiritraiser and Skid Raw - UK Skid Row Tribute. Dan: Achilla and Metalworks (a famous cover band that players like Richie Faulkner of Judas Priest and Davey Rimmer of Uriah Heep have been strongly involved in) Ash: Serpico Marc: Pythia
How do you write your music and lyrics, is it teamwork?
It depends. Sometimes its an acoustic demo of mine that Dan and I start working on to make it into a Apollo´s Child song, sometimes it´s Daniele´s riff that I start humming melodies to. I write the lyrics. Sometimes other people are involved as well, like a writer friend of mine Rory Winston (Rosy Walls, Memory Lane). Also a Finnish musician friend of mine Jaani Peuhu and Ben Christo of Sisters of Mercy/Night by Night have done their part in those two songs.
Is there a particular philosophy behind your works, or where do you get your inspiration from?
We get our inspiration from living our lives. In good and bad, happy and sad.
What are your goals, dreams, what do you want to achieve with your music? What was the biggest difficulty to overcome so far?
I think all of our dream is to be able to play and write music and support ourselves with it. Make other people happy and inspired while doing it. Simple.
Are you looking for a record company or would you prefer to stay in the DoItYourself mode?
We are definitely keeping all options open.
If yes - what should an ideal record company for you be like, and do for you?
A company that would properly work with us and let us do our thing at the same time.
Live on stage at Trashfest 2011: Dan, Jaakko and Ben
Do you have a weird /absurd story to tell, e.g. about mishaps at a gig/tour?
At Trash Fest 2013. Ash and his amazing ability to start the evening in the backstage room lifting weights and making great use of the benchpress provided. And later be found passed out on the same bench press with an empty case of beer. Having said that its what I love about that guy.
If you could freely choose a band to tour with, who would it be?
Hmm... One band that is still in their prime? Hard to choose but maybe Alter Bridge.
More information on the band´s page www.facebook.com/apolloschildband
The new song "NEW DAWN RISING" of the upcoming release can be checked out here:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3bAm2QBrBag Author: interview & live photo: Klaudia Weber; bandphoto & logo by Ash Smith Date: 2014-02-01