Hanna Tsepesh: Moro Antii! Welcome to HELL ON FIRE and thanks for accepting our invitation for this interview! For the first question can you tell us about CELESTY history and introduce yourself and the other guys?
Antii: Thanks! Well, Celesty was formed in 1998 by Jere Luokkamäki(drums) and Ari Katajamäki(bass). The line up back then was completely different except Jere and Ari of course. Things did not work out as planned and tapani Kangas joined shortly after the guys had done some early material together. Then was the time for members like Jp Alanen(ex-celesty) and Kimmo perämäki(ex-celesty). And of course Juha Mäenpää “the master of the keys” who still runs the black and whites…The first album from us sadly with out me, came out in (2002) “Reign of Elements” It got good feedback where ewer it was found and the revives wore promising and the guys wore filled with excitement and started to compose new material for celesty`s follower album “Legacy of Hate”. In this point Kimmo Perämäki decided to part ways with the band. Then started the hunt for the new lead vocalist for the band. And just two weeks before the recordings wore scheduled to begin I came in. I was in two auditions the guys later on told me that they wanted to keep me in excitement for a while before letting me know what they had already decided. And the other audition went well with some test audience as well.. And off we went to record our album “Legacy of Hate (2004)”. Few years passed and in there somewhere our roads with Jp Alanen (ex-celesty guitar) and our label “arise records” went on different path we are all good friends still though, so no bigger drama there.. And our new guitar hero Teemu Koskela joined the band.
And so came our third full length album “Mortal Mind Creation (2006)”. Shortly after that we decided to part ways with our record company “Dockyard 1”. We had already started to work on new Celesty material and we decided to contact our long awaited dream “Spinefarm Records” and what do you know they liked our new stuff and we started to make our first record via them. And now here it is “VENDETTA (2009)”. It is simply the best album we have ewer done in every way. We have sweated blood and tears but now it’s finally finished and ready to be listened by you guys! It has in it the symphony atmosphere of a real symphony orchestra and professional choir and some female presence of Suvi-Tuuli Dietrich (Escape). It is an album every power metal fan should own. And even if you are not a big fan of power metal you still should hear out this record!
Hanna Tsepesh: What are your inspirations to create the lyrics for CELESTY?
Antii: Well, My inspiration for making lyrics comes always within, And from surrounding situations and the nature and people and there actions. But with this album I took a step back from the lyrical composing and gave it to the hands of our drummer Jere Luokkamäki, He has always been the one to create our Story, as our albums are each and every one, concept albums. They follow the story of Cryon. An imaginary world created by Luokkamäki. So with this album I only did some demo lyrics…
Hanna Tsepesh: What are your favourite bands at the moment?
Antii: hmmm… Well I have to say, Kamelot, “Tobias Sammet” Avantasia, Stratovarius, QUEEN, Helloween, Sonata Arctica, Judas Priest, Lamb of God, Sentenced, aa,and Celesty…
Hanna Tsepesh: (laughs)! Any of these musicians that you told us you admire the most? If yes, can you tell to us why?
Antii: Well, Timo Kotipelto from “Stratovarius” has been one of my biggest influences since I was a kid. Just because he is an amazing power metal singer and a charismatic performer! And now days when I have had the honor to work with him I find that he is also a very nice person, and a good Friend. And then of course Freddy Merqury from Queen has always been like a god for me and still is. I consider him to be the best singer there has ever lived. And I have tried to and I’m still trying to be at least a bit as good as he was.
Hanna Tsepesh: I agree with you! At what age did you start to sing? Do you have any kind of singing lessons? I ask that because you have an excellent voice and I am very surprised with your talent in “Vendetta” album… in some parts is like you have 2 voices or something! In my opinion you are very versatile singer! I think you will have a powerful career in the future…
Antii: Well first thank you! I have sung my whole life. But I guess you could say that I started to sing more professionally in 2001. I never really attended any singing lessons but I have had some coaches to give me some pointers. Mainly I am a self-studied singer. I have a dream to be a singer who has no boundaries, meaning that I could sing every technique there is, and when I say sing I mean that they really sound like 100%. In this album I have had the honor to sing really high pitched vocals some soft lines as well and even some Dark vocals, Growls if you will.
Hanna Tsepesh: Do you have another project at the moment or your time has musician is only for CELESTY?
Antii: Well most of my time off course goes into Celesty. But I also have the time to do some other stuff in the middle as well. I compose my own songs and I sing at the moment in a band called “Fall out Moon”. And I’m always open to new challenges. I have had some opportunities to be a guest musician in few albums as well, to sing backing vocals and even some complete songs.
Hanna Tsepesh: so cool! Let’s talk about the new album “Vedetta”, like I already told you I liked a lot your work in this particulary album! The riffs are very powerful and I only can give my congratulations for CELESTY for this amazing work! But, for the people who don’t listen this album yet I like that you told us a little bit about “Vendetta”, ok? And also tell me, you guys have an amazing help by Kalevi Olli, and he are much recognized for working with FINNISH NATIONAL OPERA, right? Can you explain to us about this?
Antii: Ok, So the album is a concept album witch ends our three album long saga. And it contains massive songs of evil, madness, love and even the end of the world! So the atmosphere is quite grand. But with our own unique style of Celesty so that the listener does not want to jump out of the window when listening one of the darkest songs on the album (laughs). No really it is an album witch binds our history in one. Kalevi Olli, had a really big part on our new masterpiece. He contributed his knowledge and master composer skills to create us this masterpiece we know as “VENDETTA”.
Hanna Tsepesh: (laughs) good one! It was difficult to recording this album? I ask this because CELESTY worked with Tampere city orchestra (I think). Do you guys feel proud with the final result?
Antii: Yes it was difficult. All the turmoil in the middle of all the recording schedules and such, But after all the ups and downs we raised victorious. And yes we are all very proud of our new album!
Hanna Tsepesh: How has the response been to the album by the media and fans?
Antii: Well it is still pretty early for this question since the album comes out in one day after I have written this interview, but so far every one who have heard this album have been in love with it. The record company and every one who has heard it. The response from fans has been very good as well, you seem to like it as well so for that we are grateful. Thank you all! You make our efforts worth while.
Hanna Tsepesh: You also told us about Suvi, the girl singing with you in this album, can you tell us a little bit how you discover her?
Antii: Yes actually she is called Suvi-Tuuli Dietrich from the band called Escape. She was found by our keyboard player Juha Mäenpää. He was surfing on the internet and stumbled upon Suvi-Tuuli, and he proposed her to sing on our album and we all agreed she would be the right choice for us. And she did a fantastic job! It really was an honor to hear her sing and to meet her. She is a really lovely person and a great singer.
Hanna Tsepesh: Yes, she really has an excellent voice. The cover album is GREAT! Who was the person that create this great work? You have a lot of nature elements in here and also the colors are very nice! What was the major inspiration? Do you think this cover album transmit a lot what “Vendetta” tells to us?
Antti: Yes I agree the cover art on this album is also the best from us so far. The man behind the art is Toxic Angel From our label “Spinefarm” ( www.spinefarm.fi ). He is the man behind Nightwish and Sonata Arctica`s cover art as well. And yes I think the cover tells pretty much of the atmosphere on the album. It’s been made from the description of us what it should seem like. We wore more than happy on it. Toxic Angel really knows what he’s doing!
Hanna Tsepesh: Any plans for a future EUROPE TOUR and maybe to play at Portugal? Can you tell us some dates/places for our readers to know?
Antii: There are some planes and discussions of us coming to visit Europe and other countries, but for now I can not tell you any dates because they are not yet settled. Hopefully it will be really soon! We all would love to see your beautiful country very soon!
Hanna Tsepesh: You guys are happy to have SPINEFARM RECORDS as your label?
Antii: We are thrilled! The atmosphere with the label is all different than we have had before, the guys and the girls in there are great and everything is going really smoothly and they have treated us really nice! And they have given us the chance to create our masterpiece so a big thanks to hem as well!
Hanna Tsepesh: What is your favorite song in “Vendetta” album and why?
Antii: I would have to say “Legacy of Hate part3”, because it contains so much feeling and complex music and I think my best vocals in the history of Celesty. I also like Dark Emotions very much! In it there really is an amazing atmosphere and the end makes me almost to cry…
Hanna Tsepesh: One little curiosity: If you have to chose one CELESTY album (except “Vendetta album”) that you like the most, what will be your answer and why?
Antii: Well it has to be “Legacy of Hate (2004)” just because it was my first one with the band and it was a magical time for me and the real beginning of my professional singing career.
Hanna Tsepesh: Last question: Do you want to send any message for your fans out there and our readers?
Antii: Well at first to anyone who has had the energy to read this novel thru, a big THANK YOU! For you to like us, makes this all possible, worth while and for me personally is one of the main reasons for doing this. It is so heart warming to know that our music helps and entertains people. And please if you have not yet heard about us go to your local record store or simply order our new album Vendetta from the net and enjoy it the way you prefer. Thank you All!
Hanna Tsepesh: Thanks so much Antti for your answers and time! THE GATES OF METAL wishes a lot of success for this great album and we hope to see CELESTY very soon at Portugal…
Antii: Thank you again! I hope to see you all fine people on our upcoming gigs in Portugal! In the mean while go and check our web sites for any news about upcoming tours etc. on http://www.celesty.net . Lots of love and of course HEAVY METAL TO YOU ALL!!!
Hanna Tsepesh: We hope the same! Thank a lot.
By: Hanna Tsepesh
If you want to listen to some CELESTY music’s and for future information go at: