Almost 20 years have passed since Mary-Ann played together for the last time . They formed in Kouvola back then, turning from a Rock’n’Roll and Punk inspired band to the Gothrock band To Die For, where only two of the Mary-Ann members still are active. Back then there was no room for Mary-Ann, but now the time is right to bring it back to life. And the passion for this band is shining in the members´ eyes. A reunion with almost the complete original Line-Up. Only Tonmi Lillman (Otus-Lordi) is missing, as he died in 2012. We talked with the band at the Pioneerifestivaali about their first gig after 16 years in Kouvola, and about their future plans for Mary-Ann.
When was the last time you played together as Mary-Ann? Jape: 16 years ago! Before To Die For, I think it was in 1998. Juppe: Or 1997 with this Line-Up Aba: Maybe you have to tell about the people who played in the band back then. Jape: Same guys, except you (points to Matti) Because of Tonmi Lillman died, he used to play Bass so this young bastard came
So what are you thinking about this first show? How was it? Jape: It was fucking messy. We had only two rehearsals with the whole band before this show. We didn’t know how some songs start and how they end.
But you were improvising quite well then! Matti: Yeah, maybe during the song, but you know that it is supposed to stop like this, but it stopped so quickly that it just sometimes didn’t work. Jape: But now when we had this first gig, we are more sure about the next one. We know what we have to rehearse more and what we have to practice.
So the passion is still there for you? When you told me about the band in Tampere, I just could see this passion in your eyes about this band, the reason why I am here today. So it is still there? Juppe: Yeah definitely!! Before the gig I was so fucking nervous about my playing and everything. But everything went quite well and now I am really excited about the next gig. We know what to practice. Jape: Of course we know it exactly! Especially with Juppe because with To Die For we always did things like this; we always rehearsed and when we go on stage we know exactly what to do. And this is like even it is a old band, it starts all new. Doctors had to operate his back (points to Aba) so we couldn’t practice so much. And so we had only two rehearsals with the whole band. Juppe: Now we know how to practice! Jape: Drink beer and play. (laughs) Juppe: We have been drinking and ..well, now we know that we have to practice some details only. The playing all in all is really good, but some details we have to be really aware of. Matti: That is true and I have to say as a new member of the band it is more than an honour to play in this band. Because I only know that these dudes are very, very talented musicians, and what do I have? I only have the talent of the village musician. Jape: You have a big dick! Matti: Noooo I don’t have a big dick. But anyhow it is more than an honor to be playing with these guys. Jape: Shout the fuck up…(laughs) Next one…
How did you find this crazy guy then? Matti you can still talk! How did you got into the band? Matti: How? There is one guy called Juppe and that’s the leadplayer of the band and he asked from me if I would be interested to play in a band called Mary-Ann and play some gig at the Pioneerifestivaali and I said yes. And that’s so cool that I was in! Jape: (very dry) Yeah but not after this gig, now he is out… (laughs) Juppe: Everybody is out except me.
The music style of Mary Ann and To Die For is not really the same, that is also the reason why you changed the name back in 1999, why didn’t you just keep on doing Mary-Ann next to To Die For back then? Jape: Because of To Die For. We didn’t have time for both of them. We had so much things to do with To Die For. When we signed a deal with Spinefarm for To Die For, there where still more of us in the band, but during the recording sessions he (points to Andy) left the band. So we had to rearrange everything. Juppe: It was not the right time for this kind of music. It was all Metal music and there where many rising bands in this genre. Jape: Finland was full of Goth Rock. Yeah but that is also why we are there after all. Because of To Die For.
Why are you bringing the band back to life now? It’s 20 years ago since you founded the band, is that the reason? Jape: Personally I just wanted to have some …I have never been listening that much to metal music. And this is something you can do more free minded. You don’t have to take that much of a pressure. It’s like a lifestyle. Juppe: This kind of music comes straight from my heart. Easy to play and easy to listen. I don’t have to listen all the time the other guitarist like: “Now he plays like this, then I have to play like that.” And things like this. I can play more free, more rough style. Jape: But that is Punk. Juppe: But we have to keep it that kind of sharp that it doesn’t go straight like punk music. Keep it in line. Matti: There are two lines one is Rock one is Punk and we need to be in between of them. Jape: Yeah Punky kind of Rock’n’Roll.
Juppe if you would have to choose, which band would you take? Juppe: Oh shit that is not the question I want to hear!
But I’d like to know the answer! Juppe: Maybe I would do another third band then.
Wouldn’t it have been easier just to start with a new name? All Nonononono! JapeActually I was thinking about it, because Mary-Ann has never been that big name anyway. It’s well known but not a big name! I was thinking we should have been called Partners in crime or something like that. Because I hate comebacks. That’s why! And Partners in crime is a song of the Lords of the New Church and Stiv Bators is my god! After Jim Morrison but anyway… Juppe: Yeah because we do all crime together all the time! (laughs) But I think why should we start again if we have a history and plenty songs we can play together. And players who want to play.
And people already know you around Kouvola, how about the rest of Finland? Jape: I don’t know! I think one good thing when it comes to Mary-Ann is that in Finland we don’t have this kind of music that much. We have a lot of Metal, that’s why we come from the bushes and are so different. We will see…
Your last record was released in 1998. Anything new coming up any time soon? Are you already writing new songs? Jape: It was Deeper Sin but it was already with Keyboards. Juppe: We have already recorded a new song, “New Rose” By The Damned (a cover) and played it already in the studio. And it is coming in the internet, next week.
The song can be found here: http://youtu.be/mFQR_4Yn_vU
But do you plan to make a complete record? Jape: I don’t know because nowadays it feels very stupid. It is more wise to make 2 or 3 songs and then a video for one songs and let see what happens. After that we can think about if we should do a whole album. Juppe: If someone pays for it then we can do the full album. Jape: We are not gonna pay ourselves any album. Matti: If there would someone come and tell he would pay for the album, it would be more then a honour for me, but Jape and Juppe are making the decisions and if they say there is something going on and we go to the studio, that’s fine.
So recording it yourself is not an option? Juppe: Maybe yes, but we need more time if we are doing it by ourselves. And we need lot of gear and a guy who is mixing/recording it. How we did with To Die For and our last album. But it takes too long. It lasts two or three months and we want to do it in one week. Matti: My wish would be that we do with all these people. Jape, Juppe, Aba, Andy and Me. I would like to have one piece of heaven and that means one week and we record all the shit and then we offer it to some people.
I think it is not so easy anymore nowadays. Juppe: No I think it is much more easy when we do it ourselves and just put it to the record store by ourselves.
Ok one last question concerning To/Die/For - how is it going on with it? Juppe: Yeah of course both are going on. These are totally different bands and we are going on with both of them.
Might depend for which one your passion longs more? Juppe: Ahhaa no,no…that’s the third band which I am not going to mention now. Matti: There is only one thing I can say no matter if there is Punk or Goth rock, Juppe always goes with his heart! Juppe: Where ever I am, I am with my whole heart. Aba: I am definitely hoping that Mary-Ann goes far. But the future shows how it is gonna be. Juppe: Yeah and even if I am in toilet I am in toilet with my whole heart! (laughs)
Anything you wanna add or shall we end the interview with your toilet heart?? (all laugh) Matti: She wipes with her right hand! (points to Juppe) I say her, because he looks like a woman!
Ok anything meaningful to add?? (laughter) Aba: We gonna fucking rock the world!!!! Juppe: and we are doing it with Looooooovvvveee! Matti: Mary Ann and To Die For go separate ways but both go on in passion! Juppe: And you can put there every word which is about the word Loovveee! AbaWe are five people who love to rock!
The new song “ New Rose” can be found at: http://youtu.be/mFQR_4Yn_vU
More information at: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Mary-Ann/174644629368300?fref=ts