Heathen Hearts with Jere, Lauri
Art: Gogo Melone
Heathen Hearts is a metal / hardcore band from Kotka, Finland. Founded in the summer of 2021, the band consists of experienced musicians with different backgrounds who found common ground in what they call” northern hardcore”. The music is a mix of metal and hardcore with melodic guitars. The lyrics describe the world we live in from a darker perspective. And the atmosphere could be described best as an outburst of fury, aggression and frustration. Self-titled debut EP was released in May 2022, accompanied by two music videos, Ichor and World of Ash. Both music videos have been published on one of the genre’s most followed YouTube channels – Hardcore Worldwide, among other channels. After the first release, the band has been featured in multiple publications in Finland and abroad, such as Rock Hard (Italy) and Metalized (Denmark). Heathen Hearts cooperates with PR agencies, for example, from The UK, and this is ongoing work. The aim is to gradually make the band more and more known, build ground, and follow for future releases. The next release will be out sooner than you might think.
HMA: How did your last release develop regarding production, songwriting and creative direction?
Jere: We have yet to talk about our next release. It is behind the corner, but a few details still need to be planned. But compared to the first EP, even the sound-wise, the borders have been expanded a bit; the screw has also been tightened entirely. We recorded everything ourselves except the drums, and the overall sound is a bit ‘cleaner ‘compared to the first one. Still, it’s a fist in the face and not sounding too polished. At least we are very happy with the outcome. However, we discussed that we will never do recordings again by ourselves. I tried and did, but never again.
Lauri: Jere’s last sentence sums up the experience pretty damn well. It was fun to press the record button since this was the first time I had done something this big. But some ears from outside the band could be nice to have in the future.
HMA: What would you say is the central focus of the band?
Jere: Making quality songs with efficient arrangements works best when played live. We are doing music for ourselves, and it’s therapy; if someone else likes it, it is a bonus. Of course, we are working our asses to reach as many people as possible.
HMA: Could you describe your artwork and how it fits your music?
Jere: Well, the original Heart symbol and Heathen Hearts logo were done by Gogo Melone. We have used both in the first EP artwork and for the upcoming one. Lauri has made the final artwork for both releases. We are very happy with the next release’s physical formats, and it represents us as a band and the overall feeling of the EP very well.
Lauri: When we talked with Gogo about the logo we wanted, we did mention that we would like to have a heart pierced with an arrow or something similar. It’s a basic idea, but it turned out awesome. On this upcoming EP, I wanted to use one set of photographs I took a few years back. Those images’ colours are pretty dark, and it suits us well.
HMA: What was your earliest musical memory or influence that affected you?
Jere: Michael Jackson’s History was the first one I bought with my own money when I was maybe six years old. I remember I was mind-blown by it, and that was it.
Lauri: We had this old Deep Purple record at home when I was a kid, and it had Child In Time on it. I was mesmerized by the organs and vocals on that particular song. I remember trying to play it on my grandpa’s old Casio synth. It must have been a joy listening to me trying to learn it back then.
HMA: Can you give us a tour of your music and what it represents?
Jere: Burst of aggression and frustration towards the world we live in, towards the life we live in. For me, making aggressive music is a therapy.
Lauri: I don’t have much to add here. Our melodies are glimpses of hope we still have left in this world.
HMA: What are your thoughts on free speech?
Jere: This is a topic that could be talked about for ages. I’ll keep it short: this world needs to accept freedom of speech. As stated, as a band name, Heathen Hearts also represents the freedom to walk your path and not follow any guidelines that somebody else gives you.
Lauri: Freedom of speech is the foundation of modern society. Without it, we would live in a world of George Orwell’s 1984.