QUICKIE OF THE WEEK: A short interview with Otto Salonen (DEPRESSED MODE)

written by Marko Jakob | 29.01.2022 |

Pix666: Hello Otto. Thanks for your time. How are you doing these days? How are the other guys of Depressed Mode?

Otto: Hello, thanks for the interview! I’m doing fine, lots of work though, but otherwise everything is well. The others are fine as well, just work and family time.

Pix666: What kind of music does Depressed Mode make and how and where did you meet your current band mates?

Otto: We’ve started off with funeral/ gothic doom, but I’ve never been restricted to genres. I really don’t know how to describe our music otherwise than ”Hybrid symphonic death/black/doom metal”.

We’ve known each other for ages now, and honestly I can’t say where we met. We have always kinda been there so to speak.

Pix666: Recently your new single ‘Death Walks Among Us’ was released – how were the reactions to this song so far?

Otto: Fantastic! People seems to love the song, no harsh critics so far, but we all know they do exist as well as people who like the song. The song, as well as ‚Endless November‘, reached Spotify’s Black & Dark Metal, and Metal From Finland (Metallia Suomesta) playlists, which is really cool!

Pix666: For your first new single in November 2021 you were supported by Veronica Bordacchini on the microphone. How much do you like the result of this collaboration and is this something you would like to try more often in the future?

Otto: We love Veronicas voice! Her voice fits perfectly to our music, and she handles both operatic and modern type of singing. No doubt we’ll ask her again to sing if needed.

Pix666: The new album will follow in May. What can fans expect from ‘Decade Of Silence’?

Otto: You can expect a really epic album! Lots of different type of melodies, epic orchestrations, versatile vocals, explosive drums etc. You really can find a lot of genres combined to one epic record, which has been composed and produced with great enthusiasm.

Pix666: When can fans pre-order the album?

Otto: The pre-order is already available in Inverse Records webshop: https://www.inverse.fi/shop/catalog/product_info.php?products_id=958

Pix666: You had a break that lasted about 10 years. How did the cooperation within the band work after this break and what influence did the Corona Pandemic have on the processes in the work on the album?

Otto: I started composing just a month before the pandemic hit us. I did compose a few months so I had a few songs ready before I contacted the guys. I was really nervous to contact Iiro, Teemu and Henri at first, but they were with me right away. So we started pre-production meetings with Teemu in summer 2020. We decided to produce the album together, as well as the recording and mixing. Well mixing was mostly Teemu’s work, I just brainstormed different ideas with him during the mixing.

We started recording the album in November 2020, and after we had all the drums recorded, we deleted the whole session, and did it again. We weren’t happy with the sound, and honestly thought it could be better. The same happened with everything, vocals, guitar and bass as well, so basically we recorded the whole album twice to get the sound we wanted. We had no rush, cause we’ve hadn’t signed a new record deal yet.

Pix666: Let’s talk a little bit about your songs. How do you create your songs? Is there a certain plan? Who in the band is responsible for what and what themes are the lyrics of your songs about?

Otto: I start the whole composing process myself. I record a basic structure with my piano, and then start building around it. Then I make a demo drum track that I think suits the song. I usually compose a guitar track as well, but not always. After I’m done with the basic structure I send the song to the guys, and Teemu starts planing the guitars etc. Teemu is also in charge of the studio. When the structure is complete I begin building orchestrations around it, and we continue at the studio after that. After the song is recorded as a demo, I start writing the lyrics. The themes are often built of my own experiences and feelings. Sometimes I write a story and build the lyrics of it.

Pix666: You are signed to Inverse Records. How much does it help to work with an experienced record company these days? What kind of work do these guys do for you?

Otto: We are really glad we signed with Inverse! They help a lot with how music business works nowadays, cause of Spotify etc. They take care of all the stuff concerned to releases, promotion, statistics etc. Last time we’ve released an album was back in 2009, and there was no streaming services, so we are quite new to this stuff.

Pix666: People say Finland has the highest density of metal bands. What do you do to help music fans find your band within this huge number of bands?

Otto: We do things the way we want to. We make our music sound different than thousands of bands. As I said we don’t fit to genres. At mastering for our new album, the mastering engineer told that he can’t compare us to any other band, which actually feel quite neat!

Pix666: During the time of your break as a band, there was a strong development in the field of social media. What advantages and disadvantages does this development bring for a band, and especially for your band, from your point of view?

Otto: As it happens, I have much experience of social media. I started my own company facebook page back in 2010, which I’ve been running since, and that have thought me very much how social media works! Of course a company and a band are different to run, but still the same, cause they both sell a product. Our band is still just a hobby to us, so I don’t work our social media with a taste of blood in my mouth.

Instagram is better for a band in my opinion, and I’ve put a lot of time and effort to grow our page. Still it’s quite hard cause the algorithm has changed a lot during a few years.

Pix666: Tell me a little bit about your dreams…. In which locations or at which festivals would you like to perform and with which band(s) would you like to go on tour in the future?

Otto: An european tour would be great! Not a month long, but a week or so. Wacken Open Air would be the bomb! And of course a tour in the USA would be fun.
Just to name a band, maybe SepticFlesh would be a great match to be on tour with!

Pix666: Do you have some – typically Finnish – hobbies? Here in Central Europe they say that ice swimming, drinking alcohol, ice hockey and sauna are a must for Finnish men 😊.

Otto: I don’t think I have any special Finnish hobbies. I don’t like the cold, but maybe hot tub in winter outside under the stars is quite perfect! During the summer I go fishing a lot, both fly fishing and with lure. I don’t even drink alcohol, so maybe I’m a bit boring 🙂

Pix666: Do you have any other news, that you would like to share with the fans?   

Otto: Yes! We still have two more singles coming before the album, so stay tuned and follow our social media and Spotify! Every new follow counts and is much appreciated! Also don’t forget to buy our album! Thanks for the interview!

Pix666: Thank you very much for the interesting answers – Good luck for the future and stay healthy!!!



photos © Depressed Mode