Ensiferum are a four piece Melodic folk metal band that was formed in 1995 in Helsinki. Ensiferum memers are Petri Lindroos on Vocals and Guitar, Markus Toivonen on Guitar and Vocals, Sami Hinkka on Bass and Vocals and Janne Parviainen on Drums.
Ensiferum have had seven studio albums titled Ensiferum (2001), Iron (2004), Victory Songs (2007), From Afar (2009), Unsung Heroes (2012), One Man Army (2015) and Two Paths (2017).
We got to speak to Sami about their up coming Australian tour and more.
TM - What can fans expect from your Australian tour?
SAMI - We haven't been there that many times so it's still a challenge with the setlist. We are still promoting the latest album so the setlist will be a challenge because we want to play some old song some rare hits and some of our new stuff. Fans can expect an ass kicking dip there's always a high expectation from our side because we pull a lot of people.
TM - What's your favorite song to peform live?
SAMI - That's impossible to say for me. The whole life thing about the interaction with the crowd and of course some songs are crowd pleasers but it's impossible to just say one.
TM - What are you most looking forward to doing in Australia, is there anything you really want to do when you are here?
SAMI - I really hope we have some time because it is a really short trip. We are in the middle of a touring cycle so there will be no chance on having a holiday there, which would have been very nice. I am a weird person, I really like koalas. They are my spirit animals so it would be awesome to see some koalas.
TM - You have done acoustic tours before can we expect any acoustic songs while you are in Australia?
SAMI - I don't think so that comes down to the money because we are already flying to Australia and that is quite expensive. We come with alot of gear and if we brought the acoustic guitars and acoustic drum set it wouldn't be possible. We did an acoustic tour just outside Finland for the first time ever last December and it was a very big success. There has already been questions from fans, they have been asking if we can do it again. I hope one day we get to do an acoustic World Tour.
TM - Since you have done the acoustic tour with the whole band would you ever consider doing an orchestra tour?
SAMI - Funny that you mention that, we were actually talking about that on the end of our North American tour, We just finished a couple of days ago. Stuff like that needs a lot of organizing, it is possible that we will do something like that someday but at the moment we have our calendar packed with traditional metal shows.
TM - Can you do it on Hellfest please because that is one of our favorite festival.
SAMI - Actually that is a fantastic festival. Last year I went with friends and a tent and last time I did that was 20 years ago. I went to Hellfest as a guest, it was a great festival one of the best I have ever participated at as a musician and guest.
TM- I definitely agree, I love Hellfest. It feels like my second home every time I walk in.
TM - Can you tell us more about your side band Metal Defacto?
SAMI - We are mixing our first album at the moment. It is a powerful and heavy metal band because Ensiferum isn't going into that direction. I love power metal, I have always loved it. Iron Maiden and Halloween has been a big part of my life. Our guitar technician used to play in a heavy metal band in the early 2000 and I said yeah wouldn't it be cool to do something like that and he said yeah.
I had some ideas and then we started talking about it. It is a really cool concept because every album is a theme album. Their first album is going to be Ancient Rome the second album is going to be something completely different. Each album will have a different form so they're not stuck with one, it is super fun the whole band is participating in it we are mixing the album now. I hope we get it out this summer or late autumn the record labels want to have four months to promote it.
TM - You played Summer Breeze festival how was that show and how was the after party?
SAMI - Summer Breeze is a legendary festival is always very good to play at. The after party, I really need to ponder what happened there because in the long run everything just gets into a big blur but if something really crazy happened it's better not to mention. It is always nice to go to festivals because you see a lot of friends and a lot of bands you have liked over the years festival several great place to have drinks catch up and talk b*******.
TM - If you could have any bands play one of your songs which band would it be which song would it be and would it be in your style or their Style?
SAMI - bjork from iceland playing one of our songs in her style.
TM - If you could collaborate with anyone who would it be and why?
SAMI - Iron Maiden because they are my favourite band.
TM - Did you enjoy Iron Maiden at Hellfest?
SAMI - That was my highlight of hellfest besides my own gig as we were scheduled to play at the same time. I am a fan, so what I watched an hour of Iron Maiden and had my stage clothes on. Five minutes before we had to go on stage I ran for the backstage area to my stage to play our own gig. We thought we were going to have no one watching us play on stage because Iron Maiden was playing but our tent was so full that there were people outside of the tent for our show that was a really nice experience.
TM - That Is sweet, I definitely love how you can just walk to different stages to watch others play.
SAMI- It is great that the stages are so close together.
TM - For your new album Two Paths for some of the songs you didn't use click tracks what insured you to write the album like this?
SAMI - The way I see it Two Paths is a twin of one man Army. The process we started for One Man Army was an album that sounded extremely tight but live album so it sounds like the band is playing live and re really achieved it with Two Paths. We pushed it a bit further with analogue things and dropping the click track for some songs Ensiferum is a live band and we really like to achieve that.
TM - Anything else you want to announce to your fans?
SAMI - We are coming to Australia and it has always been a pleasure to rock with all of you. We look forward to playing for everyone and if you haven't heard our new album check out Two Paths.
TM - Thank You for this interview, we really appreciate it.