Level of depthness
Do you want straight or twisting music? If your choice is the latter one, then read on. Depth Beyond One's hail from Oulu, Finland, and they released their debut full length album 'Red Lines Entwined' March this year. It tells a story clad in prog music form. Baffled about it, AM contacted the band and forming members Jani Kuorikoski (drums) and Jari-Pekka "Jarru" Kanniainen (bass) provided the answers.
AM: Nice and warm summer is over and people are waiting for the virgin snow to cover the quiescent ground. How was the summer for the band and how are things in Oulu right now?
Jani Kuorikoski: Summer was pretty quiet for DBO but we did a couple of gigs to support the album 'Red Lines Entwined'. Things are looking interesting now, new tricks coming up!
AM: Would you shed some light over the band's history, please?
Jani: Sure. It all started by chance in 2003 when I met Jarru and we jammed out some prog covers. Also own material was made and two short gigs were played. We got together again in the fall of 2005 to start writing music more seriously. After completing few instrumental drums 'n' bass tunes we decided to get a guitarist to complete our sound. Mikko Logrén filled in soon and we composed the rest of the songs for our first demo 'Soledad in the Gale' (2006) that was released very quickly. At the time we had vocalist Antti Karhu and keyboardist Raine Oikarinen as a session musicians but when 'Ebb' (EP 2007) came out they were officially in our team. Time went by and after some shows and a bunch of new songs the idea of a full length album was risen. The recordings began in late 2008 and after four rather burdensome months, 'Red Lines Entwined' was complete. The album was recorded, mixed, mastered, funded and released by ourselves.
AM: Depth Beyond One's. What does the name mean?
Jari-Pekka "Jarru" Kanniainen: Ah, a very common question. I'll quote myself from another interview since I got it pretty well squeezed: "I've kept the name in mind since I first came up with it in 2004. To be beyond one's depth is to be in such of a situation - psychosocially, physically or both - that there's no way out with your own means. Simply, the band name states that this is that level of depthness. I knew from the start that this is not grammatically right, but I believe one determines one's own truth as we construct our language and
understanding. This is true to me, and hopefully it will be for our fans too. Languages are dynamic and in constant state of change - especially in this huge phenomenon called globalization."
AM: Your debut album 'Red Lines Entwined' was released in March 2009. What kind of an impact has it caused in people and media? It was independently released. Are you still satisfied how it came out?
Jani: We've got very varied reviews from the media. And from the people too. I guess it was quite a hard album to digest. Actually I haven't listened 'RLE' in a while because I blasted it so much in the mixing process... Surely some things could have been better but I'm satisfied with the outcome.
Jarru: I am very satisfied with the album and the reactions it has made. I expected that there'd be both barks from left and right and some very good reviews. The album is a twisted prog mix, that's for sure, and it definitely can be seen from the reactions. We have been thanked, accused of being insane, kicked and fatherly patted on the head, sometimes all simultaneously.
AM: Depth Beyond One's play very multifaceted music indeed. Metal, prog rock, even jazz are the building blocks of the music. Can you give your view about your music?
Jani: We just try to mix our influences together and that's quite a soup. There's no limitations really.
Jarru: Any influence comes in and goes through, but metal and prog are the ones that stay.
AM: Is the music the result of five guys having their say? Can you name your influences?
Jani: Yeah, pretty much. With this album all of us had our share in the writing process, not equal but still. We all listen to different kind of music and I think that Meshuggah is one of the few that can be counted as a mutual influence. My influence is all good music and right now it's mainly Wolves In The Throne Room and Absoluuttinen Nollapiste's new album.
Jarru: The outcome is the result of all five, but the deep arrangements have been mainly done by Mikko, me and Antti.. Though, Jani and Raine have their spoons thrown in the soup too. There are lots and lots of influence, but the thing that not a single one of them is hearable too heavily in our music is a very good mark. Well stick on to it.
AM: Ok, so now it's clear why DBO sound like they do... Very wide influences! br>
'Red Lines Entwine' is a conceptual work. How was it all built up?
Jarru: The concept was created by me. I started it years back while writing the lyrics for 'Black Years'. We had been discussing the possibility of recording a whole album and I decided to put a concept to glue together the songs wed been composing. The name came to me one day and that was it.
Jani: It's not that conceptual musically but the music does adapt well to the brooding lyrics. There's few downright connections as some riffs from the opening track 'Wraith' appears also later on the album but that's about it.
AM: Can you tell the story the album tells?
Jarru: 'Red Lines Entwined' tells about the destinies and "red lines" of our lives and how they sometimes mix up to be one hell of a mess of hope, despair and blood (in its larger meaning including both the liquid blood in our veins and blood relativity thing, you know). Everyone gets the concept differently I suppose. Tales from minds, both gone and still here. Feelings, memories, shrugs; sometimes mind does tricks to all of us. The time stretches on and different songs are from different times and places, different minds and red lines. They are merely moments scattered in front of you, glued together by persons named Maximillian and Emma.
AM : The music is apparently well performed, also technically. Are the guys in Depth Beyond One's educated musicians or self-taught?
Jani: Well, thanks! I've had none education in drumming. Sometimes I think that would be a great idea though.
Jarru: We all have different kinds of histories with music, but mainly we are all self-taught. My dating with the extraordinary lady of music started when I was 17 years old and I decided to grab a bass.
AM: Well, maybe being self-taught means being more individual in how person shows his soul through an instrument. Enough of this psychological babble! br>
Most of you guys have more or less active band projects going on, right?
Jani: Yeah, we all have other bands going on. Mine includes Clock Paradox (www.clockparadoxband.com) that has Antti on guitar/vocals and Joint Depression (www.jointdepression.com), among few projects.
Jarru: Only one other project at the moment. Its a nameless ambient-doom-progressive-electronic-metal band I guess.
AM: How you see Northern Finland's metal scene, and especially your hometown's? Bands, clubs, gigs..?
Jarru: Step by step, Finland is getting more and more really good bands. Still underground tho. Come on already and start signing us for 1+1 deals! Nowadays technology gives tools to communicate without having to listen our Finglish.
Jani: I'm not too aware of the commercial bands out here, but a special mention for many great unsigned bands. Recently opened Nuclear Nightclub hopefully lives long because it seems like a very professional place also for underground bands to perform. Sadly there's not many places like that here.
AM: Can you reveal any hot news from Depth Beyond One's camp? Any new music coming out? If yes, what kind of stuff?
Jani: Right now our future is indistinct. But I promise there will be some big surprises ahead! More about that when the time comes.
Jarru: Changes, oh yes. But probably you have to keep digesting 'Red Lines Entwined' for a bit longer. What Depth Beyond One's was with the last album, it was awesome, but keep your ears open for our future stuff for it'll be... different! But still DBO!
AM: Future shock?!?! br>
We have reached the end of this interview. If there is something that should have been said, you can do it now.
Jarru: If you are more than a 100% DBO fan (Finnish) and could be interested sharing our crooked prog-visions, you might want to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thanks for the interview!
Jani: Thanks a lot for the interest!
AM: Thank YOU, guys!
Depth Beyond One's (left to right):
Mikko Logrén (guitar)
Jari-Pekka Kanniainen (bass)
Antti Karhu (vocals)
Raine Oikarinen (keyboards)
Jani Kuorikoski (drums)
Interviewed by Lane