Max Lilja is a cellist, who has been involved with quite a few bands already. He was one of the founding members of Apocalyptica (till 2001), is cellist in the Finnish band Hevein (since 2002) and also in Tarja Turunen´s band (since 2007) – these are the major milestones of his career. Besides being a rock musician, Lilja occasionally plunges into classical music as well.
Thus, he takes his influences from many different sources and already back in 2006 he began his quest to find THE sound of an electric cello. Now, he finally found it and managed to put it on a record. The album´s title is reminiscent of the debut album of his most well-known band: “Apocalyptica Plays Metallica by Four Cellos” – back then, cello rock was something new, just as Lilja´s music is something new and hard-to-pigeonhole now.
The result is an instrumental album that combines electronic with cello sounds – and it was done in an impressive and fascinating way. Monotony is no issue at any time thanks to the different and diverse tonal elements. Every song tells a new story that the listener can make up in his or her own mind.
The mix of electronic beats and the melodies, carried by the diverse cello sound, are pleasantly catchy and help the listener to relax and just focus on the music itself. It´s not advised to put this record on while you´re doing something else, as it would clearly be a waste - too many details would get lost. Time and time again, Lilja manages to build up atmosphere and suspense in his songs, and manages to sustain them from start to finish - this is quite an achievement!
Absolute must-listens are “The End” and “It is in”, yet also “Like this” as well as “Count Phase” are close on the two first mentioned songs´ heels! As a conclusion: Lilja managed to create an album that you simply want to listen to over and over again as there is always something new, new sounds, influences, for you to discover. Thus, the music never loses its fascination. One can only hope that this is not going to be the only album of this kind by Max Lilja!