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Speedtrap (band)
Recently I reviewed the new Speedtrap album Powerdose. After spending some time with it, I shot some questions over to the guys in the band for a text interview. The other week the answers snuck by, answered by guitarist Ville Valavuo. Check out what he had to say about the album, how it came to be thanks to Svart Records, and more!

How is everything going on your end? I hope all is well.

Hi there! Everything’s cool, waiting impatiently for the LP release date…

First off, I heard so many various style traits throughout Powerdose, ranging from eighties Hard Rock, early Heavy Metal, Speed Metal, Thrash Metal… Was it the band’s goal to write music that kinda steps in all these different genres?

It was not intentional to gather elements from as many genres as possible just for the sake of it. We just combined all the stuff we really like and it turned out like this. In the beginning our music was more straightforward speed metal, but later on we added a lot more punk rock and high speed rock n roll in the mix, and now the band is finally starting to sound like the kind of stuff we’ve been aiming at for the last few years.

Who would you say are the band’s biggest inspirations for the band, or even just Powerdose?

I’d say Motörhead, Zeke and Diamond Head if I had to name a few. Basically we wanted to make super fast heavy metal combined with rock n roll lead parts and the intensity of hardcore punk. Inspiration has been taken from various bands, and i’d say it’s pretty obvious we owe a lot to bands like Discharge and Poison Idea as well as classic heavy metal.

One thing I absolutely love about the album is how most of the songs seem to just flow into the next, as if it’s a live show. Was this your intent for the album, or did it just come out this way?

We spent quite a while thinking about the structure of the album, and the album was especially designed for vinyl format. Since the LP has two sides, you pretty much have to come up with 2 small records which have a great start, something a bit different in the middle and a really explosive ending. I hate it when people make records without thinking about the tracklist. Some albums might have all the fast songs on A-side and everything else in the B-side for example. People should really pay attention to these things!

With the exception of Miika from what I’ve read, the members of Speedtrap also are involved with other bands like Death Toll 80k. Do these other obligations pose any sort of problem to Speedtrap, or is this now the main priority for everyone involved?

As for now, the band members are involved in Death Toll 80k, Scent of Flesh, Perikato, Stench of Decay, Forced Kill and a few other projects, They don’t really pose any problem to Speedtrap, but sometimes it’s frustrating trying to fit everything in the schedule, especially when there’s several shows or tours at the same time. I would assume we’ll be focusing more on Speedtrap when the album is out, and hopefully we’ll be able to tour more. All of our other bands have been touring in Europe, but Speedtrap have only played a handful of shows outside Finland so far, so it would be cool to play more.

Speedtrap is currently signed with Svart Records. How did this deal come about, and is it a single release contract, or will there be multiple albums though them?

Svart Records contacted us when they heard the rehearsal demo we recorded in late 2011. Some other labels also offered us a deal when they heard we were planning a full-length, but since they never replied to any emails or phonecalls we decided to go with Svart. It was also pretty easy to work with Svart Records since I already knew the guys and I’d seen how dedicated they are when it comes to producing high-quality vinyl records. We only signed a deal for this LP, but who knows, maybe we might work with them in the future too.

Svart Records is issuing the album on CD, and two different colored vinyls. The vinyl are limited to 500 total. Given the picture of a test pressing with “the sound of an enormous door slamming in the depths of hell” included in the post, why are these so limited? Is it due to the siae of the label, or was it a mutural decision with Speedtrap as well?

If we’re so lucky that the record is sold out instantly, I would assume Svart will press more copies. Don’t know if there’s gonna be something different in the 2nd pressing, we haven’t really discussed that yet. I hate it when people make limited pressings even if there are a lot of people asking for a repress. I know there are collectors (pretentious assholes) who are dying to get their hands on a limited vinyl pressing, but I think it’s stupid to be an asshole about it and stop people from getting the music they want, not to mention some douche buying all the colored records and selling them on ebay or discogs for way too high prices.

Was Powerdose already recorded prior to the current deal, or did the label have any hand in it, such as provided money for the studio or helping you secure a studio or any others involved?

The reason Powerdose got recorded is actually the deal Svart Records offered us. They provided money for the studio, since we couldn’t afford to pay for it ourselves. Usually we’ve recorded the album and paid for everything ourselves, but luckily this time it was different.

Speaking of, I haven’t seen any information as to who produced or mastered Powerdose. Mind filling us in as to who was involved with the technical aspect, as well as why you chose to work with them?

We didn’t really have a producer, so I guess you could say Powerdose was produced by Speedtrap. The album was recorded, mixed and mastered by Tapio Lepistö and Saku Tamminen at Black Floyd’s Analog Soundlab. We had recorded some stuff there before with Perikato, so we knew the analog recording equipment would be perfect for Speedtrap. They’re also great guys and it was a pleasure working with them again.

I don’t see any upcoming tour dates for Speedtrap. Are you guys done for the time being, or finalizing any dates at all? Please explain if you can.

We’ve been pretty busy with other bands (just got back from a european tour with Perikato and Death Toll 80k, recorded an LP for one band just before going on tour, etc.), so we haven’t had much time to book tours or shows for Speedtrap. We might be playing some small tours in Europe early next year, and there are some dates in Finland booked already, including a couple of record release shows with Ranger. Hopefully there will be time to focus more on Speedtrap after we get the LP out.

What have been some of the more memorable shows or festival Speedtrap has done so far? Are there any interesting stories you wouldn’t mind sharing real quick?

The show we played at Live Evil fest in London a few years ago was awesome. People knew all the songs and lyrics even though it seemed like the band was only familiar to some metal nerds on internet messageboards. Otherwise there have been nice shows in Helsinki with some cool bands.

So, what’s next for Speedtrap? Are there any other plans in the works for the near or distant future, or is this it for now?

When we were coming home from the studio after finishing Powerdose we were talking about writing new material as soon as possible. Would be great to make more songs or maybe record a 7” or something in the near future. We’ll see what happens, but the plan is to play more shows and not stay in the shadows for years like we did before the LP.

Is there anything else you would like to mention before i let you go?

Thanks for the interview!

Interview conducted thanks to Svart Records.