Tuesday, January 22, 2019
GIK Acoustics - Europe
GIK Acoustics - Europe
The Moshville Times

Interview: Markus Hirvonen of Insomnium (London, 2017)

Just over a week ago, I had the opportunity to catch up with the drummer of Insomnium at their show in London. After a brief catch up, we got talking about, amongst other things, Crimson by Edge of Sanity and cycling. Read on for all the details…

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How’s the tour been so far?

It’s been really, really great so far. I think the package is really strong and we’re all friends. We also complement each other well and it’s been getting better and better on this tour. We sold out Paris and Lyon in France and we also sold out Birmingham as well so the numbers have been really good so far.

This is also the last night that Ville is playing on this tour if I’m correct?

Yes. He’s really busy with his work so he was only able to play this first week of the tour with us. Thankfully we have Jani Liimatainen covering for the rest of the tour and he arrived today to see how it was going so far and also get a feel for the shows. He’s played with us in the past as well so there should be no problems.

Winters Gate was released back in September. How do you feel the response has been?

I think the response has been great and the fans liked it even more than the media. Everbody seems to love it and it feels really good and also unreal as to how well it’s been received. It’s funny because when we play it live, people are stood there in like a trance and then when we come into the standard rock set the crowd really starts to get going. But no, the response has been absolutely amazing.

You also used Dan Swanö for this album. Was that mainly because of the Edge of Sanity thing or for another reason?

In a certain way the inspiration for the album came from Crimson, which was done by Edge of Sanity. It’s an excellent song and we thought it would be cool to do something similar to that and it kind of made sense to work with him. Markus Vanhala has worked with Dan for a while now and it felt natural to work with him. We knew that he was good and it was interesting in that we’ve both done the same thing before!

Has your drum setup changed much since last time or is it pretty much the same?

I’ve added a few cymbals but that’s it basically. I added the second hi-hat as we now have faster blast-beats that are more comfortable to play open-hand and I’ve added another crash cymbal as well. On this tour, Joonas from Wolfheart is using an 18’ floor tom so as a result I’ve been using 16” and 18” combo which has spcied things up a bit. I don’t actually have an 18” on my own set but it’s fun to spice things up a bit.

I’ve noticed that you’re a bit of a cyclist. How difficult is it to cycle on snow?

Well, it’s normal in Finland. Everyone cycles in Finland during the wintertime and the snow isn’t that slippery. It has a bit more friction than ice but if you’re going on ice then you’ll use studded tires for that. But yeah, I am a bike enthusiast and I own quite a few.

My hometown, Joensuu, is one of the most active cycling cities in the whole of Finland. I think that the lion’s share of people commuting is done on bicycles and as a result a lot of investment has been done to make it better for them. You obviously need to have the correct gear of course to make sure you don’t freeze to death. It was -25 in the video for the tour by the way!

Is there any advice you’d give to new bands?

Do what you love and keep the faith. Never give up as it takes a lot of time to get anywhere. Don’t be arrogant and also be nice to people. There are so many bands in the world and we never expected to reach this point. It took us a long-time as well and we’ll see where it goes from here.

Describe yourself and the band in 3 words.


Epic, Dynamic and Childish. That’s both the band and me!

Insomnium: official | facebook | twitter | instagram

About The Author


Multi-Instrumentalist. Eclectic. Melodeath Demon. Photographer. Lancashire Lad. Bit of a fan of pie & gravy...

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