Tom Murphy of Denver Westword recently conducted an interview with guitarist/vocalist Alexi Laiho of Finnish metallers CHILDREN OF BODOM. A couple of excerpts from the chat follow below.
Denver Westword: When you were starting out, what was it like being in a band in Finland?
Alexi: It was more like an underground scene. Black metal and death metal and stuff like that. The scene that we were a part of…it wasn’t easy to get a gig, and you had to really be out there and beg every fucking venue to have you play or open up for somebody. So yeah, it was pretty harsh. I mean, it was pretty rough, but it didn’t stop us. We just wanted to go forward, and we would do anything to get a record contract and after years of playing shows in dingy dive bars and whatnot, we ended up getting signed. It was a lot of hard work but it was worth it.
Denver Westword: Your band seems to be touring constantly. What is the most challenging aspect of that, and what do you find the most fulfilling?
Alexi: Obviously, the playing part. To me, it’s the perfect lifestyle. We move around all the time, and it’s a different city every night and different people and different lives, so I like that. I have a hard time staying still anyway, so it suits me pretty well. It can be a lot of fun and there’s a lot of partying going on, but when you’ve done that for a year and a half in a row without a decent break, it does get to you. You start to see the wear and tear, especially when you have to fly everywhere or like when you’re in South Africa or Asia and they don’t have tour buses, really, so you lose so much sleep. Just things like that. It can definitely wear you down and it’s definitely not for everybody.
Denver Westword: On your web site, you list a few of your favorite albums of all time. Why did you include the OZZY OSBOURNE album “Tribute”?
Alexi: It’s my favorite Ozzy album, and it was the first one I ever heard. I was supposed to learn “Crazy Train” for this music school thing that I was going to. I had never heard Ozzy before. I’d heard Yngwie Malmsteen and stuff like that, and I didn’t know who Randy Rhoads was. When I heard that album, it was pretty amazing. You know, the guitar playing and good songs and the whole vibe on that album, just the whole live thing. It’s pretty intense.
Read the entire interview from Denver Westword.