As already pointed out in the review of their latest self-made output here, it is difficult to understand why My Fate from Tampere, Finland, havenīt raised the attention of record companies yet. One good thing about it they therefore have the opportunity to open STALKERīs Fresh Act section in the new year, as drummer Vilho Rajala kindly answered all our questions. In Finland you can see the guys live on Saturday 12.01.2008 in Pori, with Amoral and Garm (Annis) and on Friday 25.01.2008, with Medeia and Garm at Hellä, Tampere.
Who are you? Please introduce all band members
Jukka Ruostila, vocals, Jaakko Järvensivu, guitar, Mikko Lehtinen, guitar, Roope Lehtinen, bass & backing vocals and Vilho Rajala, drums.
If the band members were characters in The Simpsons, who would be who and why?
The Simpsons is the best thing TV can offer. Jukka is obviously Dr. Hibbert (bad jokes & laughing constantly in the wrong places), Jaakko is probably Apu (helpful, friendly and dedicated to what he does), Mikko is indeed Bart Simpson (a videogame freak, great comedian and practical joker), Roope even more indeed Homer (impulsive and hurts himself often, especially drunk) and I am probably Mr. Skinner (trying to keep a hopeless mess together).
What kind of music do you play?
Metal! Aggressive and melodic, with a wide variety of influences. Sometimes very mellow and melodic, sometimes explodingly fast and furious.
Who do you want to reach, or what do you want to achieve with your music?
I think the band has always served a purpose most of all in our own lives. Of course we want to reach all the people in the world, but I think the band is more important for ourselves. It is a way to get away from everything else and a way to channel all the shit constructively. Writing and performing music is very rewarding, and whatever we do as a band, itīs always a lot of fun!
How did it all begin? Is there a story behind the band name?
Jaakko wanted to put up a Metal band back in 2000 and he came up with the name. We are not fatalists but itīs a good name. When he said it I felt itīs kind of the same thing Chris Cornell is singing about in the Soundgarden song "Fell On Black Days", or Dave Mustaine in "This Was My Life".
To put the beginning of the band short, Jaakko called me in March 2000 and asked me and Roope to form this new band with him. We searched for a vocalist and eventually found Antti Ojanen in August. In November Mikko joined in as a second guitarist. This was the line-up for six years. In 2006 Antti left and Jukka joined.
Who are your musical idols, what are your most important musical influences?
Personally, everything goes back to Metallica and Speed Metal in general. Megadeth, Anthrax, Testament, Pantera, Slayer, Sepultura... Thereīs many. Alice In Chains, Soundgarden and Pearl Jam have also had a huge impact on me and Jukka also listens to that kind of music.
When we started My Fate, Machine Head was a big influence along with Pantera, Sepultura and Testament, to name a few. Those are bands that we all listen to. Weīve even covered Testament and Sepultura on our shows.
Your personal Top 10 albums you would take on a lonely island with you
Ok, this is always a tough one...
1. Metallica - Master Of Puppets,
2. Soundgarden - Badmotorfinger,
3. Sepultura - Chaos A.D.,
4. Testament - The Gathering,
5. Pantera - Vulgar Display Of Power,
6. Pearl Jam - Vs.,
7. Alice In Chains - Dirt,
8. Slayer - God Hates Us All,
9. Chris Cornell - Euphoria Morning,
10. Anthrax - Stomp 442
I seriously hope I never have to face this situation for real.
Other stuff you would want to have with you on a lonely island
A set of drums and a CD player... Probably a rubber boat too.
Who writes the music /lyrics, or are all in the band responsible?
Jaakko has written most of My Fate songs but Mikko seems to be more and more involved. Also Jukka is musically very talented and heīs already brought some riffs to rehearsals. Exciting!
What do you do if you are not in the band (studying, working)?
Roope and Mikko are workers in the metal industry, although Mikko is unemployed at the moment. Jaakko works with electronics, Jukka partially owns a recording studio and works there. I study journalism and work as a journalist.
Would you sell your soul to the devil to become famous? Or worse: Would you participate in Eurovision/Idols/Big Brother/Talent Suomi?
I have absolutely no problem with selling my soul to the devil, but participating in goofy TV contests is just... goofy. I donīt think we need to go that far.
What would you pick if you had to choose between sex, drugs and RockīnīRoll?
A tough choice between sex and rockīnīroll... If I choose rockīnīroll, can I still masturbate?
What is your dream, where does your motivation come from?
This band has been my dream ever since I got my first drumkit. The motivation comes from the fact that if I wasnīt in the band, Iīd have to beat myself up painfully and severely every single day. Iīd hate myself so fucking much. Giving up is not on my agenda.
What will you do if you donīt get to have a career in music business?
Define "a career"... I mean, donīt we already have a career? We certainly donīt make a living with this, and of course that is the thing everyone wishes for, but I donīt see it as a reason to stop. Hence, Iīll simply continue doing what I do.
What was the most exciting/the most disappointing moment in your band history?
Hmm... The most exciting moment was probably our first show outside Finland, which was last year in St. Petersburg, Russia. We had a blast on stage and it was such a great trip in every way.
The most disappointing thing... I canīt think of any single moment, but I have been repeatedly disappointed to how few people have ever even heard of us. Itīs fair to say we have tried but weīve been unlucky.
What was the most absurd thing that happened to you?
Mikkoīs guitar amp burst in flames at a rehearsal two years ago, that was pretty absurd. He still hasnīt got a new one.
Another thing happened in 2007 at Torvi, Lahti. We were doing a soundcheck, when suddenly some weird music started playing through Mikkoīs amp. Turned out that his wireless receiver was receiving the karaoke show from upstairs. How very Spinal Tap...
What happened during your best/your worst live show?
I donīt know which show is our best, but I have a definition: furious headbanging, great sound, chaotic stage movement and a loud crowd.
The worst show was probably at Klubi, Turku in 2005. There was basically no one there and we had a shitload of trouble with our gear.
Is it in general more difficult for a band outside Finnish metropolitan area? What is the scene like in Tampere?
The scene in Tampere is quite small but thereīs a lot of quality. The geographic location of the city makes it easy to do shows in many places, but the "important people of the business" seem to be in Helsinki.
Which song are you most proud of, and why?
I refuse to answer that. Iīm proud of every song we have written.
What do you think is cool/totally sucks about being a musician?
Itīs cool because itīs more rewarding than anything else I know and itīs FUN! Whatīs more fun than hanging out with your best friends and simply enjoying yourselves? Itīs cool also because of the community. Whenever I meet a drummer, Iīve got a lot to talk about.
What totally sucks is that the world we live in doesnīt support this kind of lifestyle at all. On the other hand that makes it feel more valuable. You know, itīs the good old "thereīs no way to stop us" attitude.
Which band would you enjoy touring with?
I think weīd enjoy touring with just about any band! All the big names, you name it. Testament would be a very nice one.
What do you plan in the near future?
We are writing new songs and looking for a record deal. We shot a music video of Upstream and hope to get it done soon. We have a couple of shows coming up and I think there will be more in this year.
Author: Klaudia Weber, photos: My Fate Date: 2008-01-01