Kerava, Finland-based metallers I Revolt know how to pack a punch at their live shows, and until those resume, the band is channeling their energy into a debut album. The five-piece have changed their songwriting process and also welcomed the talents of drummer Andreas Krysl in August 2020.
For those just discovering I Revolt, start with 2020’s aggressive single “Spit or Swallow”, then work your way backward through their catalog to 2017’s I Revolt EP– six songs rife with the riff-laden, sometimes-grooving, always-unrelenting style that has since become the band’s signature.
Rhythm guitarist Sebastian Rosenlindt chatted with Metal Solstice about what has creatively stirred I Revolt—also including vocalist Ville Jantunen, lead guitarist Ville Marttila, and bassist Tony Nurminen—during the formation of the upcoming full-length. Rosenlindt also commented on the band’s plans for maintaining their stage energy in the era of social distancing, and what he feels sets them apart as up-and-comers in a supportive yet saturated metal market.
Metal Solstice: The last time I saw you play live was in March 2019 at Brymir’s album release show at On The Rocks, Helsinki. Do you have any memories from that particular gig?
Sebastian Rosenlindt: It was a fun show! We know a couple of guys from Brymir pretty well so we had a blast playing with them and partying afterwards.
MS: How have you been keeping your heads up during a year with limited live performances? Can you explain what it was like to play the Knotfest gig, and anything you learned from the livestream process?
Rosenlindt: Well, it has been rough on us all, but we manage. Positive thoughts, keeping ourselves active with writing new music, and just practicing as much as we can.
The Knotfest gig was probably the coolest thing we’ve ever done! A huge honor to get to be a part of something like that alongside such great bands from all around the globe. Big respect to Knotfest for putting that together!
It was weird to play without an audience, just in front of a handful of people and cameras. Trying to find that same energy as on a normal gig but we just felt the music and went with it. We wanted to keep it raw and real, to capture the essence of our live show. The video was edited live by the director of the film crew, and they did an amazing job overall. The stage set up was also very cool. Really proud of that show.
MS: From experience, the fans during I Revolt sets are particularly energetic. When live performances resume, how do you hope to maintain this kind of venue atmosphere without the contact of mosh pits, etc. due to social distancing?
Rosenlindt: We played a few gigs last fall and at our latest gig at On The Rocks in October, the restrictions had tightened up again with limited capacity. They had tables right in front of the stage and most people were sitting. It was weird for sure, but there goes the same mentality as on the Knotfest gig, like, “Whatever, let’s just have fun and rock as hard as we can!” And it was a damn good show!
So that is something we have learned from all of this: even though the audience energy and reactions are super important, we managed to put on a kickass show, just letting the music speak for itself. So it doesnt bother us that much, right now we just want to get back on stage asap with or without restrictions!
MS: In late 2020, the I Revolt social media accounts announced new music for 2021. How are you progressing towards releasing this? Is there a full-length in the works?
Rosenlindt: Yes, that is our main focus at the moment: writing new music for our debut album. Now that we’ve got the time we are really putting everything into these songs and we are more than exited what we have cooked up already! Our music has definitely evolved and we are trying new things- but not forgetting the thrashy, groovy sound we are known for.
All of the songs so far really vary from each other but still stand together. We have drawn inspiration from different styles and made them our own, mostly from different bands we are each listening to at the moment.
The songwriting process has also changed a bit. We used to write more at the rehearsal place, but now both of our guitarists are writing riffs at home, putting them together and demoing whole songs. Then, we listen to them together and make rearrangements if needed. Then our drummer programs drums to the tracks and they really start to take their form from there.
The lyrics come last and are manly written by our singer, but other members have written some lyrics also. Getting different perspectives to that field as well is always good. Too soon to tell about any releasing plans but we are probably entering the studio within a few months. So stay tuned!
MS: What “spoilers” can you share about future singles, or the lyrical content for the new music, for example?
Rosenlindt: Like I mentioned in the previous question, there is a lot of variety in the songs and we are exploring new things, but keeping our straightforward punch. Let’s say that more melody and blast beats than ever before! When it comes to the lyrical themes, there is everything from personal stuff to things that piss us off in this world.
MS: You’ve been together since 2017, and really started building momentum as up-and-comers- what are some ways that the Kerava/Helsinki area metal scene has supported I Revolt and your growth? What is something that you’d like any new listeners to know about your band?
Rosenlindt: At the end of the day, we think it was our live presence that people really liked. Obviously we have evolved as a live band a lot during these few years but the same energy and attitude is still as strong in us as it was in the beginning. That has never changed and never will. We were so hungry and said yes to everything.
We’ve made many new friends in the game along the years; we all support each other and keep our little community alive. At least nowadays it’s really hard to break out from the mass and there are, especially here in Finland, so many metal bands it’s crazy! But somehow we found our way to get noticed.
We always wanted to make authentic and intense music; we didn’t invent something new but maybe something that wasn’t around that much in the metal scene anymore at the time. People wanted it and so did we! It all started for us with making the music we wanted to hear and it’s awesome to see that we were not the only ones.
MS: You welcomed new drummer Andreas Krysl in August 2020; what has he added to the lineup in terms of group chemistry, creative input, and/or perspective?
Rosenlindt: He fit into the band really well right from the get-go. He obviously is a killer drummer, and is actually the only member of the band with a degree in music. He plays a lot of different styles of music and really knows his instrument. He understood and adapted to our style and overall vibe amazingly, and most importantly he’s a cool guy! What more can you ask for? We are really lucky that we found that dude! Now he is all in with us in the writing process and brings a lot of new cool stuff to the table. Just wait; people are going to be blown away!
Check out I Revolt’s “Spit or Swallow” here: