Folk metal royalty Ensiferum hits Australian shores at the end of February, and in the lead up to the event Metal Wani’s Jake Patton had the chance to catch up with bassist Sami Hinkka to gauge the band’s expectations of the tour and what plans the band has on its radar.
Beginning the conversation discussing the Australian tour, Hinkka notes that it had been several years since the band had toured the country. When asked about why there was almost a six-year delay between Australian tours, Hinkka is quite open “it’s always about the clashing schedules, and to be totally honest, flying from Finland to the other side of the planet to Australia is also a financial thing, but when there is a will there is a way and that’s why we are coming now”.
Hinkka then discusses the band’s approach to cultivating setlists, and how the band selects songs for not only the areas that they tour very infrequently but also those that they cover multiple times per year. When talking about how the band selects tracks for each setlist, Hinkka offers “We are in a way a very blessed band because we don’t have like you know, Paranoid or a Final Countdown, we don’t have this kind of hit song that we have to play, or you know some bands have multiple of these that they have to play at every show. Ensiferum is very blessed in this way, we can do several headlining, you know an hour and a half sets without playing the same songs and they still have hit songs that people will enjoy”
The conversation then looks at folk metal more broadly, from its meteoric rise in the mid-2000s all the way to the current day, and what expectations that Hinkka has for the future of the genre “What would be cool that there will be like a new band that takes something that we old geezers have done and brings something(sic) new twist to it, but I don’t know what that twist might be, but I still have my hopes up”.
Switching topics to the bands recent acoustic tour of Europe, the conversation covers the highlights of the tour, their reception and whether the band plans to roll it out to a larger global audience, to which Hinkka notes “I really hope someday we can actually do like an acoustic world tour, but at moment we are very busy with like traditional metal shows”. Given the success of the acoustic shows, the question is also posed to whether Ensiferum might want to release an acoustic album, an idea which Hinkka says has already been a topic of conversation for the band for some time.
Finally, the conversation closes by discussing the band’s upcoming plans, of which Hinkka shares that the band is already deep into writing for their next album, while also sharing a brief bit of insight into how successful the band was looking for a keyboardist/singer following their recent search that commenced in June 2018.
Stream The Entire Interview Below:
Ensiferum 2018 Australian Tour Dates:
Thursday 28TH February, BRISBANE, The Zoo
Friday 1ST March, SYDNEY, Manning Bar
Saturday 2nd March – MELBOURNE, Max Watts