Maybe the best release of 2001!!! For those who haven’t heard “A Virgin And A Whore”, we say “Big Mistake”! Try somehow to hear this album. Jarmo Puolakanaho of Eternal Tears Of Sorrow, one of the founder members, who is the guitarist of the band answered to our “Crazy” questions! Just read and enjoy.
1.  First of all, I heard your latest album (A Virgin And A Whore), which I think is a really heavy and cool one, a masterpiece I could say and I enjoyed it very much and for this I voted it as the best album of 2001!. Tell me some information about the band. How did the idea for ETERNAL TEARS OF SORROW come about?

J: Thank you very much! It came to three fellow's mind in the early 90's. One of them was I, Jarmo;  the other guys were Olli (who left the band 3 years ago) and Altti. We had some projects in 1990-1994, and they slowly transformed into Eternal Tears of Sorrow. Basically, we had recorded a demo tape in October 1993 called "Beyond the Fantasy". We still didn't have a proper name and we didn't take the recording sessions so seriously. However, we got very surprised by the tape because it turned out to be much better than we expected. So, we instantly started planning a new promo tape. In May 1994 we started recording it. And during the recording sessions we made up a new name for us: Eternal Tears of Sorrow. Well, we didn't get a record deal with this demo; we needed to go to Tico-Tico studio in October to record "Bard's Burial".

2. Tell me about the musical background of each of the members of  ETERNAL TEARS OF SORROW.

J: I think I should start with Pete who has always been into heavy metal; he's been listening to it for twenty years. I and Altti have been huge heavy metal fans as well, but nowadays Altti is more into gothic music and I'm more into rock (CMX/Rammstein) and prog (Dream Theater, Spock's Beard). Pasi has always been a huge prog/jazz fan and Antti a thrash/death fan. So, we all listen to many kinds of music, not just metal only.

3. What are the things that inspire you to write such a heavy melodic and melancholy music?

J: Everything we see, hear, read, feel and so on. We just do what feels right. Our biggest strength is intense teamwork, which makes our music sound like all of us. Everybody listens to many kinds of music, and we have our roots in heavy, melodic and melancholic music, so our music just comes out that way.

4. What do the lyrics talk about and who writes them?

J: Altti and I have written most lyrics. I think our lyrics have always dealt with the dark side of mind and life. We have collected our dark emotions, modified them and inserted them to our songs.

5. Do you have some sort of interest toward obscure and mysterious things and the dark side?!?

J: Doesn't every human being have a dark side? Some of them just don't want to deal with, which may cause problems. There are just some people who know how to deal with the dark side, like horror writers. I'm very interested in the mysteries of life. I do not mean black magic or anything like that but I like to think about metaphysics, ie. whether there is anything beyond this life.

6. Do you like most your brutal vocals or the clean ones? Are you planning to change your way of singing in the future as so many others have done?

J: I like them both. You could think the growling vocals are "the whore" and the clean ones "the virgin", so the support each other. I don't know if we are ever going to change it, we shall see.

7. What do you mean by your title of  the album? Who exactly is the virgin and who is the whore? Is there a fight between the evil and the good inside of the people?

J: The title "A Virgin And A Whore" is very closely related to "Chaotic Beauty". I wouldn't like to explain any of those titles. But I can reveal they deal with the different sides of life and how everyone sees them. Nothing is black and white, after all. And everyone sees things in a very different way. But I agree, there is a fight between good and evil inside every human being every day, it is there every time we make a choice. We just usually don't see it.

8.How exactly did you get your name? What does it mean for you and what kind of situations does it remind you?

J: Altti came up with it during the tour, so he would be the best person to talk about it. For me, it reminds me of the tour :).

9. And now we go on with the “Weird Questions”!!!…..I will give you 5 words, and you will tell me what album do you believe that describes best each word. a) Darkness , b) Pain , c) Melancholy , d) Hate , e) Tears

J: a) Darkness is what we Finns have to deal with every winter, it is a very important part of winter. I like both summer&sun and winter&darkness, without darkness I couldn't appreciate summer like I do now, and vice versa.                                                                         b) Pain. An interesting word, because the band "Pain" (with Hypocrisy's Tδgtgren) has released the new album a couple of days ago :). Pain,      especially emotional pain, means growth as a human being, re-evaluation of values and so on.                                                                             c) Melancholy. Every man and woman has it. I'm not so sure whether I am a melancholic person.                                                                        d) Hate. I can't say I hate anyone or anything. It doesn't usually last long for me. However, it can still be a very positive and refreshing emotion.    e) Tears. A good way to let it all out, although I prefer to express myself in other ways.

10. Tell me 5 albums that you would rather choose to sell your soul to the devil so can keep them than loosing them! And why?

J: CMX: Cloaca Maxima - best music from Finland ever                                                                                                                             Death: Symbolic - I like four of Chuck's last albums, a tough one to choose                                                                                                   Edge of Sanity: Until Eternity Ends - heavy and aggressive                                                                                                                     Radiohead: Bends - an unbelievable and unique album                                                                                                                            Rammstein: Mutter - heavy, symphonic, great

11. Ok, I wish you the best for this new album. The last words of this interview belong to you.

J: Thanks for the interview! Check out our website at ...!

by Thanos & Kyriaki