Saturday 2 June 2018

10 Questions: Pohjamuta

In March I reviewed a tape release featuring three sludge/heavy bands from Finland. They were Rutsa, Cicutoxin and Pohjamuta. After the review I contacted Pohjamuta to ask if they'd like to participate in an interview and luckily they said yes. Guitarist/Vocalist Lauri kindly answered the questions on this one.

Who is in the band and where are you from?

We are a three-piece-band (Lauri / guitar & voc, Otto / drums, Tuomas / bass & voc) formed in Jyväskylä, in the middle of Finland.

What is the history of Pohjamuta? When and how did you form?

None of us originates from Jyväskylä. At the time of the formation of Pohjamuta, we were studying there and somehow we connected and thought it was time to form a raw sludge band with hardcore punk influences because we all were in love with that kind of stuff. It was January 2012 when we started playing together.

Have any of you played in previous bands and are you any other bands currently?

Yes, we all played in a hardcore punk band called Ydinmätä together before the formation of Pohjamuta. Beside of Pohjamuta we all have some projects. Our guitarist Lauri has some noise projects for example, noisecore band Kolumbia to name one.

Who write’s the lyrics/music? Is it collective? 

It's collective pretty much. Sometimes one brings a prepared song to the rehearsal and sometimes we build up songs by jamming together. Same with the lyrics pretty much.

What subjects do you cover in your lyrics?

Pohjamuta means the mud in the bottom of the sea/lake. We have a political approach to that term and in our songs we raise up the concerns of the people who live in the bottom of the society, like alcoholism, drug addiction, violence etc. Lyrics of Uhrimiekka deal with arbitrary right-wing extremism and its’ urge to instigate fear & xenophopia.

Are there any bands that have influenced you?

Some of us are more influenced by metal bands (especially death metal) but I personally have grown with hardcore punk and that's how I found sludge at some point. Along with the iconic big US sludge pioneers, we all are heavily influenced by Finnish sludge bands, like Hebosagil, Stumm, Loinen, Frogskin, Usko and Viisikko. Also hardcore punk and black metal mean a lot to us.

What are your favourite albums/EPs at the moment?

My personal favourites at the time are:
Nightslug - Dismal Fucker LP
Everything from Moloch (Moloch/Thou LP and Moloch/Disrotted 7" to name a few..) and from Disrotted too,
Medicine Noose 7" 
and I just can't hype too much our own Finnish Slave Hands - World Rid of All Living LP

What is your favourite gig/tour story?

Hmm maybe our trip to Estonia to name one. We were playing two gigs, in Tallinn and in Tarto, and the whole trip was like straight out the movie Spinal Tap. Our car was almost dying since the very beginning of the trip and our drummer was almost dying from the hangover. The first venue was a local biker bar and we weren’t sure what to expect and what would happen, but eventually everything turned out fine. We even almost got kicked out of our hostel room in the middle of the night (actually for no reason, but we think that’s because the Finns don’t have a very good reputation in Estonia). The gigs were nice and the best moment was when we were driving peacefully through Estonian countryside enjoying some calming 80’s radio tunes like Madonna.

What is your local heavy/punk scene like and who should we check out (band-wise)?

My favourite Finnish sludge bands are Cicutoxin (Jyväskylä), Taser (Lahti) and Slave Hands (Helsinki).

What are your favourite tipples?

We are primitive rural guys, so it's gotta be traditional Finnish booze, Koskenkorva, served warm straight outta your pocket.

You can stream Pohjamuta's song from that split and the music from their previous releases below:-

All of their music is available to download from their bandcamp page as well.

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