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Pompei Nights: No Sleaze, no Glam - Just Rock`n`Roll!

Pitch-dark and loud like you`re standing in the bar itself, that was the atmosphere in the backstage area of the "Green Room" in "Bar Bäkkäri" when we interviewed the five guys from Stockholm in October 2011, right before their first gig in Finland. Against all odds, we had a lot to laugh during our conversation. One reason for that may be that Pompei Nights are much more than just another good-looking Sleaze band from Sweden. But according to the quintet, they have nothing to do with Sleaze anyway...

As this is your first interview with STALKER, would you like to introduce yourselves?
Joey Eden: My name is Joey Eden and I am the lead singer.
Devlin: I guess my name is Devlin, at least it is said so on the album, and I play the drums.
Matt Cosby: I`m Matt and I play guitar.
Olli Cox: I`m Olli and I play guitar.
Rob Cole: And I`m Rob and I play bass.


How would you describe your musical style? When I heard Pompei Nights for the first time it sounded for me like "Nicke Andersson is joining a Sleaze Rock band"...
Pompei Nights: Rock`n`Roll!
Matt Cosby: And we are not Glam. We don`t have anything against Glam at all but we don`t wanna be just another Glam band...
Joey Eden: And we don`t want to be considered as a Sleaze band either. We`re a Rock`n`Roll band.
Devlin: We want to be more modern than all the 80s bands even though we are influenced by them. So we are a "New Rock`n`Roll" band.

Tonight`s show will be your first outside your home country Sweden and you are going to play your longest set ever as well. Why here?
Joey Eden: They gave us the opportunity to play a long set and we took it.
Matt Cosby: We will play about an hour...
Joey Eden: … and in Sweden, it`s mostly half an hour only.
Matt Cosby: The live-scene in Sweden is pretty bad...

Really?!?
Pompei Nights: Yeah!
Matt Cosby: There are too many bands and only a few places to play that kind of music.
Devlin: There are not enough Rock`n`Roll people...

When did you start to play gigs at all?
Matt Cosby: Two years ago. Our band is existing since two years but we didn`t know our bass player back then... We all met at the Swedenrock Festival 2008...
Rob Cole: … except me. I was the last dude that joined the band. I saw an ad in the guitarschool, "Bass player wanted". I checked the listed influences, I liked them and so I listened to the band on myspace - and then I sent an email to them.

When was that?
Rob Cole: Late February 2010.

Did you have any line-up changes?
Pompei Nights: No. Not since we came up with the bandname "Pompei Nights" which we have stolen from the movie "The Rocker". [Laughter] But we meanwhile changed our stage names about three times... [Laughter]
Joey Eden: So one might think that there have been different people in the band but it`s not the case.
Devlin: We think that stage names are pretty cheesy but you have to have them because Swedish names suck.

Funny, I hear that pretty often from Finnish musicians as well. By the way, is this the first time that you are in Finland?
Joey Eden: The first time with the band, yes.
Matt Cosby: I`ve been here when I was a kid but I don`t remember that much from it...
Olli Cox: The same. As a kid.
Rob Cole: I just took the boat to here - and then I went on another boat to go back home. [Laughter] So the only thing I`ve seen was the harbour.
Devlin: Me too. I`ve been on the boat to party but not to see anything.

Did you have the chance to see anything from Helsinki this time?
Rob Cole: We were pretty sozzled so we slept most of the time. We arrived already yesterday and, actually, we were here. Party like hell! "Bar Bäkkäri" is a great place. We love it.

Will you have the chance to see more from Helsinki? For how long will you stay here?
Rob Cole: Only till tomorrow. Then we will go back home to our boring lives...


How come that you will play in the "Green Room" of "Bar Bäkkäri" tonight? And do you know the other two bands who are playing beforehand?
Pompei Nights: No, not at all.
Joey Eden: And concerning the gig, it`s a contact that we have through a friend of Rob. He booked us. He wanted to bring us to Finland. That`s pretty much it. And we will have a world premiere tonight; we have a brandnew song...
Matt Cosby: Yeah, it`s brandnew. We have rehearsed it like two times only... [Laughter]

Will you play any coverversions as well?
Matt Cosby: Yes, "Search And Destroy" [Iggy Pop & The Stooges] and "A Day Late, A Dollar Short" [Hanoi Rocks].

So you like Hanoi Rocks?
Pompei Nights: Yeah! Sure! Who doesn`t?
Joey Eden: They have influenced some of the biggest rockbands in the world of these days. They have really good songs...

How about other Finnish bands? Are there any you like and listen to?
Joey Eden: Well, Hanoi Rocks... Lordi...
Rob Cole: The 69 Eyes, of course. HIM... I was a great fan of HIM when I was younger...
Olli Cox: Children Of Bodom, they rule!

By the way, how about further gigs outside Sweden?
Matt Cosby: We will have a small tour through Italy in December. We will play in the Northern part of the country, amongst others in Milan...

Italy, Wow! Why there?
Joey Eden: Because our record company "Street Symphonies" is based there...

"Record company" is a good point, let`s talk about your debut album "Rather Die Than Livin` In Boundaries" which received mostly positive critics and was produced by no one less than Crashdïet`s guitarist Martin Sweet. Probably everyone is asking you that question but how come that you worked with him? Did you know him before the recordings?

Joey Eden: No, we just met him on the first day when we recorded.
Matt Cosby: It was just a great opportunity we got but we recorded only three songs at his "Sweet Studios" and the rest at our own "Pompei Studios" and then we sent it all to him for the mixing.

Are Crashdïet rolemodels for you?
Pompei Nights: No.
Matt Cosby: We like Crashdïet but there are too many Crashdïet clones nowadays and we don`t want to be one of those...

And what`s your opinion about The Hellacopters? As I mentioned already, Joey`s voice reminds me a bit of Nicke Andersson...
Pompei Nights: They are great! We like them a lot!
Rob Cole: I know the drummer. He is a great dude!

Are there any Swedish bands you would recommend our readers to check out?
Pompei Nights: MAMA KIN! Great Swedish band!
Olli Cox: MAMA KIN, Crashdïet...
Devlin: Europe... [Laughter]
Pompei Nights: Hardcore Superstar...
Joey Eden: They are great!
Rob Cole: I liked them when they had their first guitarist Thomas Silver. When it changed to Vic Zino, I think they have gone more to this New Metal sound which I don`t like at all...
Devlin: They still have a lot of good songs but their best albums are indeed "Hardcore Superstar" and "Dreamin` In A Casket".


How about Vains Of Jenna and Vietcong Pornsürfers? These are the next Swedish bands that will play here after you...
Joey Eden: Vietcong Pornsürfers are on the same label like us but we are not into Punk. And I like the recordings of Vains Of Jenna with the new singer Jesse Forte but I saw them with him Live at "Harry B. James" in Stockholm and that wasn`t good at all.
Devlin: The previous singer Lizzy DeVine had more personality...

As far as I know, Vains Of Jenna moved from Sweden to America for better career opportunities. Could you imagine to do the same?
Pompei Nights: Yeah!

Oh, this answer came like a shot! Wouldn`t you miss anything from Sweden?
Pompei Nights: Nothing!
Rob Cole: Well, maybe Swedish beer... [The second band The Riot Soul starts to play and due to the volume it`s absolutely impossible to continue the interview]

Ok, I`m afraid it`s already time for the "Famous last words"...
Rob Cole: Well... Get our album! Oh, damn, you can`t buy it at the moment `cause it`s completely sold out...

Really?!?
Rob Cole: Yes, but the second edition is gonna be released soon...

We are looking forward to it! Thanks a lot for this interview and see you guys later on stage!

http://www.myspace.com/pompeinights

Author: Stefanie Singh, photos by Stefanie Singh and Mirva Hartikainen / Promotional picture by Gustaf Sandholm Andersson
Date: 2011-12-05

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