Sivu 45

"Music has always been what's helped me explain the world." Live, in New York City at the Nokia Theatre in midtown Manhattan. Valo... HIM Ville Valo, vocals Mikko "Linde" Lindström, guitar Mikko "Mige" Paananen, bass Janne "Burton" Puurtinen, keyboards Mika "Kaasu" Karppinen, drums 1995 Ville, Linde and Mige establish a band called His Infernal Majesty in Helsinki says he wants home to be an inspirational place where he can relax, play music and watch movies. Onstage in New York, Valo introduces the band as coming from Helsinki, Finland. "It feels good to say that out loud," he says. Valo says that Finland is close to his heart and will remain his home. "My mom and dad and friends are there; I like Finland and Finnish people," he says. "They're polite and direct; they don't worry too much about their choice of words or hide their feelings. You don't find that anywhere else." Composing, recording, playing concerts, travelling, making videos, giving interviews, doing photo shoots, business meetings... "This is an equation that gets more complicated all the time," says Valo. "For me, music is a Rorschach test, a game of ping-pong, a word association game. Every day is a new discovery. Hopefully I can discover something that'll make me happy," says Valo. He goes on to say he feels lucky to be able to turn a beloved hobby into a profession. And when the music's over, does Valo have a backup plan? "I've never done any other work," says Valo, who says that he doesn't believe in long-term plans: "People change all the time. Besides, it seems cowardly to think about an escape route. This is all about love for music and love for the other guys in the group. Passion, friendship, a job, life: these are the only things that make me feel free." 1997 Greatest Love Songs Vol. 666 1999 Razorblade Romance 2001 Deep Shadows and Brilliant Highlights 2003 Love Metal 2004 And Love Said No: The Greatest Hits 1997-2004 2005 Dark Light (gold record in US with more than 500,000 copies sold) 2006 Uneasy Listening, Vol. 1 (rarities compilation) 2007 Uneasy Listening, Vol. 2 2007 Venus Doom ...and the band, from left to right: Burton, Linde, Valo, Kaasu, and Mige. JANUARY 2008 BLUE WINGS 45

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