Nazarene With a Fax Machine
CoC chats with Impaled Nazarene's Mika Luttinen
by: Henry Akeley
Imagine my surprise when I tried to fax a set of questions to Mika Luttinen, owner of the deranged throat which fronts this craziest of bands - and got his voice coming out of my modem instead, "Hello?... Hello?" It's a surprisingly deep voice, too, especially when you consider Mika's throat-ripping high-end performance on _Latex Cult_ (reviewed in CoC #11), not to mention the band's three prior full-length releases. Anyway, we exchanged pleasantries for a (very expensive) minute or two, then fired up the faxes. And now, thanks to the miracle of modern communications technology, all you Karmakeddon Warriors out there can check out what transpired and read Mika's report on current Impaled activities.

CoC: What's new with the band? How has the recent touring gone?

Mika Luttinen: Not much happening; writing new songs. Touring's been okay. It has been great to play with Cannibal Corpse, Immolation, Angel Corpse, and Gehennah.

CoC: What kind of activities have you got planned for 1997?

ML: We will tour South America in March. We'll do Chile, Columbia, Argentina, and Brazil. After that, no plans, except we'll try to get to Mexico before summer as well. Late 97: studio!

CoC: The latest update from Osmose says that one of your concerts in Paris was sabotaged. What is the story there? Do you know who committed the sabotage, and why?

ML: Believe it or not, until today I thought that we had a normal power break during the gig in Paris, but as I just spoke with Herve of Osmose, it indeed was caused by some anti-Impaled Nazarene people... My guess goes for some black metal nerds.

CoC: The update also mentions some controversy about the cover art for _Ugra-Karma_. What can you tell us about all that?

ML: I cannot reveal too much, as it seems likely we'll go to court because of that. Anyway, nobody fucks with us like that, so some action is to follow. This just proves that Hare Krishnas or whatever they call themselves are just like any other religion: they seek cheap publicity and are money hungry. Fuck them.

CoC: After _Suomi Finland Perkele_, I was somewhat surprised to see the band return to the all-out aggression of earlier releases. What prompted this return? And how do you answer people who say that you were simply "playing it safe" by sounding so extreme on _Latex Cult_?

ML: The bottom line is that Kimmo [Luttinen - Mika's brother and the band's former drummer] changed our style pretty much after the release of _Ugra-Karma_. It was his vision of how we should sound, and the rest of us weren't happy at all. It is useless for a band like us to try to be a copy of Danzig or fucking Paradise Lost. So, after Kimmo was replaced, it was normal for us to go back to what we do best, i.e. play aggressive and fast metal. I guess you're referring to Metal Maniacs, where they said we just wanted to play it safe. If we wanted to play it safe, we would be doing fucking gothic metal or whatever, in the line of "Blood Is Thicker Than Water" from _Suomi Finland Perkele_. It was one guy who wanted to go a different way, and the rest did not agree. Nobody expected such a release as _Latex Cult_ from us anymore, but we fucking proved that we are still here, doing our thing our way. We can get only nastier.

CoC: You seem to approach your band's lyrics and image with a sense of humour. Is that a fair assessment? What is your opinion of those who are (or claim to be) one hundred percent serious about all this black metal stuff?

ML: If somebody is one hundred percent serious about black metal, then so what? It does not bother us. Certainly there's some humour on our first three CDs, but on _Latex Cult_ there's none. We were pissed off when we wrote it, and I think it shows. Lots of shit went down two months before we entered the studio, and it fucking shows.

CoC: I have read interviews in which you describe yourself as a "cynical individualist." For the benefit of readers who may think of Impaled Nazarene as a bunch of devil-worshippers, or whatever, could you please explain what you mean by cynical individualism?

ML: A better term would actually be "fucking asshole", but anyway, I see the whole band as individualists, as we do not belong to or support any political or religious movement or organization. We have come this far by being ourselves, and that's what I'm proud of! We never kissed ass or jumped the next trend or sold ourselves out. For sure, we would have a way bigger following if we had been into "evil guys and their doings", but we did not fucking care about them.

CoC: The year 2000 will soon arrive. How does the future look, from your own perspective?

ML: Things are starting to boil up, I guess.

CoC: What would the next hundred years look like, if Sir Luttinen were in charge?

ML: Sir Luttinen is actually a name my brother (our ex-drummer) uses. [Oops! My mistake. - Steve] If I were in charge, it would be the end of Greenpeace and all things green. Cement or nothing.

CoC: If you could be born again during any past period of history, what period would you choose, and why?

ML: I prefer present over past, so I am just happy here, thank you.

CoC: What sort of thing have you been listening to lately?

ML: Nothing but my own guitar playing, as the last three weeks I have been composing new songs - speaking of which, everybody check out the forthcoming _World Domination II_ CD by Osmose, as it has a brand new Impaled Nazarene track on it.

CoC: When all is said and done, how would you like Impaled Nazarene to be remembered?

ML: As a cult band - but I do hope this won't happen for a long, long time.

(article submitted 9/4/1997)

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12/13/2004 Q Kalis 7.5 Impaled Nazarene - All That You Fear
4/12/2002 A Wee 9 Impaled Nazarene - Absence of War Does Not Mean Peace
5/25/2000 P Schwarz 8 Impaled Nazarene - Nihil
7/8/1998 A Wasylyk 5 Impaled Nazarene - Rapture
5/10/1996 G Filicetti 8 Impaled Nazarene - Motorpenis
5/10/1996 S Hoeltzel 9 Impaled Nazarene - Latex Cult
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