Interview with FEASTEM (plutonium fast grind from Helsinki, Fin)

“As far as Feastem goes, we had to cancel our European tour and will most likely have to cancel the shows we had planned in June also. But what’s really driving me crazy is the fact that we had planned to try and get to play as many festivals as possible in 2021. Now that everybody is re-scheduling their fests with the same line-ups for 2021, I’d say our chances of getting on any of those are slim to none.”

While we were working on the release of GRAVEYARD EARTH, we took some time to talk with Petri (singer) about life in FEASTEM.

Push play on the playlist he has made just below and let’s start…

  • Can you please introduce your band : how did you start 15 years ago, what is/was the line-up, your discography, your past tours…

Whoa, that’s a lot of history to go through haha! Feastem was started in the small north-western town of Raahe, where the original line-up (Kari – vocals, Olli – guitar, Antti – bass, Patrik – drums) were studying at the time. Their love for fast music drove them to make the unfortunate decision of starting a band and… well, here we are now! I joined the band late 2009 and Niko jumped onboard to replace Antti in 2013, if I recall correctly. We’ve toured Europe and the UK quite a few times over the years but have our eyes set on touring other parts of the globe by 2021 latest.

Discography :
– Worthless (CDr promo, self-released) 2007
– Fear In Concrete (CD, Scrotum Jus) 2008
– World Delirium (CD, Obscene Productions) 2011
– Split w/ Kill The Client (12“, Doomstar) 2012
– Avaritia Humanae (CD, Obscene Productions / LP, L’Inphantil Collectiv) 2013
– Split w/ Teething (7“ Tupatutupa, EveryDayHate, L’Inphantil Collectiv / MC Grindfather Productions) 2015

  • This time, Olli took care of all the recording and mixing process, how was it?

It was super cool, very relaxed and definitely a new experience. We’ve always worked with other people in studio and we always had a schedule to keep up with so sometimes compromises were made. We didn’t really have a set schedule (actually we did but it kept slipping as time went on) so we just did stuff whenever we had time and didn’t have to leave anything that was «good enough» on the record. Olli did a smashing job and I’m super proud of what we accomplished as a band.

  • So, «Graveyard Earth», what does it stand for ?

It stands for the destruction of our planet that we as a species have set on course. We are turning earth into a graveyard, a toxic waste dump and it’s pretty sad to say the least. Humanity has sunken to new lows on so many areas that it’s actually mind boggling, really hard to understand.

  • Can you tell us more about the artwork?

We gave three artists the same concept and let them come up with their own interpretation on it. We were so pleased with the results that we’re using a different cover on all three formats. The concept was a pretty straightforward explanation of the name of the album. We wanted it to show the world as a literal graveyard, a trash heap of misery, corpses, burning cities, a vision of the future that hopefully never becomes reality.

  • Seven years… What happened in between?

Where do I begin, hahaha! Lots of personal issues came in the way of the band along the way but I think we were kind of lost creatively since Antti, our old bassplayer contributed so much musically that we weren’t really sure how to start building the «new» Feastem after he left the band. I’m really happy that we took our time because that gave us the opportunity to kind of step back and figure out what we liked in Feastem and what didn’t really work. People were also spread out across the country so it was kind of hard to get together to write stuff. Also, my wife and I had two kids so I had to adjust my priorities a little bit, to say the least.

Feastem - Avaritia Humanae
  • What’s your plans in 2020? And are you in love with Bloody Juice Entertainment?

We have a European tour coming up in April/May and a few festival shows too. We’re going to try and do a couple of short trips later in the year and then start writing new stuff. We promise it won’t be another seven years until the next record! We are so deeply in love with Bende Juice that it hurts, he is a legend.

  • Your new album is so devastating, the earth is literraly turning into a graveyard… Any comment on the actual crisis ? How does it affect the band ? and will you still be happy in love with Bende Juice after all this ?

I don’t even know where to begin with this crisis, especially since I’m not an expert on viruses or pandemics but I must say that I am extremely worried about countries where people are turning this into a political issue. Watching the scenes from the demonstrations is absolutely mind-boggling. ”We need haircuts!” Grow up, this is bigger than you and your freedumb. Worst part is, if shit really hits the fan in places like the U$A, it will have a global effect. Western democracy is shaky at best as it is, we don’t need more populists riding on people’s suffering or 5G conspiracies. As far as Feastem goes, we had to cancel our European tour and will most likely have to cancel the shows we had planned in June also. But what’s really driving me crazy is the fact that we had planned to try and get to play as many festivals as possible in 2021. Now that everybody is re-scheduling their fests with the same line-ups for 2021, I’d say our chances of getting on any of those are slim to none. In a way, this virus fucked up our plans for next year as well. Oh well, I can only imagine what it must be like for professionals in the music industry these days… Bende will always be our little sweetheart, unless he confesses to being patient zero in Europe. In that case I will personally hug him to death.

  • What’s your point of view on the grind scene these days?

To be honest, I’m a bit of an outsider to it all so my perception of it is very limited. As long as there’s good bands grinding away and people keep a positive attitude and avoid drama, I’d say the scene is doing well.

  • What is the most memorable gig/live moment you had with Feastem so far?

So many good memories… Every time we’ve played Obscene Extreme or Bloodshed Fest have been off the charts. We had a super cool gig once in Slavonice where we played Sunday afternoon and started getting wasted immediately after the show. Everybody was shitfaced before 8PM. Playing Vilnius in 2015 with Farsas and Cut To Fit was intense, also our Euro tour with the Farsas boys has to be one of (if not the) best tours we’ve ever done. Prague has always been great to us too. Except that one time when our van was stolen. Never forget!

  • Do you have side-projects?

Patrik plays death/black metal in Brymir (among many other things, I’m not even sure if I know everything he’s involved in) and I do noise under the name tyhjiø. I did a project called Psykoma with Oskar from Axis of Despair and Simon from Dripping Hörror. It’s a little bit more death-influenced but grind nonetheless. I also have a yet unnamed primitive doom project with an old friend of mine and maybe another grind project in the works.

  • How is the «fast» scene in Finland / Helsinki these days? Quote some bands / labels / crew we should listen to.

To be honest, Finland is more geared towards death and black metal but here’s some cool bands, off the top of my head:

Death Toll 80k, Itsesaastutus, Romutus, Vvorse, Fading Trail, Revulsion, Galvanizer, Kleptocracy, Perinei, Scumripper, Brainspoon, Cut To Fit, Raamattu, Kovaa Rasvaa, Kürøishi, Harhat, God Disease (well, they’re not so fast but a great band nonetheless!), Cadaveric Incubator, Gorephilia and Corpsessed. As for labels, check out The Other Records, hahaha!

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