Review 2148 : Ondfødt – Oldfodt – English

Ondfødt has found its cruising speed.

Following the release of their fourth album last year, celebrating their tenth anniversary, the Finnish band comprising Owe Inborr (guitar/vocals, Dispyt), Joel Notkonen (bass/guitar, Aeonian Sorrow, Arctora, Earthblood) and Tommi Tuhkala (drums, Arctora, Outlaw, Spell of Torment) unveil Oldfodt, their new EP, made up of old tracks brought up to date.

The band attacks into pure darkness with Faensgyte, a track that starts out ominous and then draws on its aggressive Old School roots. Sharp leads mingle with devastating screams to fuel the dark heart-rending tornado, which only ends to let No Ere Jo Satan take over with a catchier, sometimes even quite playful Black’n’Roll approach in the company of Mathias « Vreth » Lillmåns (Finntroll, …and Oceans, Dispyt…). The track is quite short but relatively accessible, while Midnatt quickly unveils a cold but more ethereal sound on which the vocalist unleashes his fury, respecting a moment’s pause before pouring out his rage once more. The heady melodies also add a more intoxicating touch to the final, before Den Sanna in turn ignites, shrouding us in some heavy haunting melancholy, which doesn’t hesitate to explode especially thanks to the furious blast. The oppressive final leads us to Paradiset, a cover of Finnish singer Rauli Somerjoki‘s Paratiisi, which the band manages to darken with its visceral touch while retaining its unifying energy, and which skilfully brings the EP to a close.

Ondfødt‘s fury is matched only by their darkness, and it’s with four new versions of their tracks and an unexpected cover that the band shows us on Oldfodt. The EP is short, but incredibly visceral and gripping.


Version Française ?

Few questions to Owe Inborr, founder and frontman of the Finnish Black Metal band Ondfødt.

Hello and first of all, thank you very much for your time! Could you please introduce yourself and the band Ondfødt without using the usual musical labels, like “Black Metal”?
Owe Inborr (vocals/guitar): Hello, my name is Owe Inborr and I am the founder and frontman of Ondfødt which is a Black Metal band inspired by the 90s scene and sound. We have existed since 2013 and I am the only original member of the band. We have 4 full length albums and an EP released and another Full length and EP on the way. Last year we started to play live again after a 9 year long break from the stage. We have nowadays a stable line up with very skilled musicians willing to take the band to the next level. Tommi Tuhkala on drums, Joel Notkonen on Guitar, Jere Halonen or Mathias Lillmåns jumping in on bass for live shows and me on vocals and guitar.

What does Ondfødt mean, and how is the link with the music you create?
Owe: The name is translated to « Evil born » and means that you basically think that your soul is dark and you look at the world in a dark way. The band name fits the music we make very well.

The band’s new EP, Oldfodt, will come out in a few months. How do you feel about it? Do you already have any feedback?
Owe: We are very excited with the EP, we decided in the beginning of 2023 to give new life to some old songs by re-recording them and give them the extra that those songs deserve. With the new members it was an idea we had to make the old songs sound that they were created today with this line up and give them a new identity. The EP will be the most aggressive sound we have created so far with this band. By releasing the Paradiset song which is a cover of an old Finnish Pop song from the 70s probably made the fans think that we have become softer, but no, when the EP is released they will find that we are the same old Ondfødt going more aggressive than ever.

How would you sum Oldfodt’s identity up in only three words?
Owe: Aggressive, Dark, Atmospheric

How did the creation process happen for Oldfodt? Did you notice some changes, compared to the previous records?
Owe: As mentioned earlier, this was an idea to shape up old songs to sound more like we sound nowadays with this line up and to give a more clear identity where the band is heading. This EP will also be a good way to already introduce how the next full length album will be more like. We are for sure going towards a more atmospheric sound but still maintaining the aggression and the fast and raw sound.

What about the artwork, what were the guidelines and how do they fit with the music you created?
Owe: We have used René Thyus from Belgium to design the last two full length albums and will most likely keep working with him because he understands our vision and can recreate them in the form of paintings. And his style is exactly what this band needs to make the right vibes. For the EP we used another artist that Tommi was in contact with.

Ondfødt’s sound is mainly rooted in cold and Old School influences, but we can also notice some more cheerful elements, whether it is on No Ere Jo Satan or Paradiset. How do you find the right balance between all your influences to make all songs different but coherent?
Owe: We have never been afraid of trying new things, but at the same time we are aware of what feels right or not to introduce to the band. We have always been singing of old stories from Ostrobothnia and the spiritual things happening around this area, also stories of ancient spirits that lives in the forests  here and how they affect us in different ways. Also, comparing Paradiset, wich is a cover of a pop song to one of our own songs is not the best comparison because we wanted to make that cover in honor of one of the greatest Finnish Pop artists that is loved by the majority of finnish people Rauli Badding Somerjoki. We would not make our own songs that sound like that, we did that song to honor Rauli. But I understand your question, about how we can make songs like No Ere Jo Satans and maybe compare that to Midnatt or Norden which is much more uplifting. Well my question is simple, we sing about stories and every story is different with different vibe. To create a song around a story that is uplifting the sound needs also to have the same vibe as the story itself.

The band welcomed the singer Mathias « Vreth » Lillmåns (Finntroll, …and Oceans, Dispyt…) on the song No Ere Jo Satan, how did you ask him to participate in this song?
Owe: I have known Mathias for many years and we play in the same band Dispyt. Mathias is also session bassist in Ondfødt and he have bee singing backing vocals in many songs of this upcoming EP so to ask him a second time to sing the same part in No Ere Jo Satan as he did on the original version from 2019s album Dödsrikets Kallelse was pretty obvious that he needs to do that. He was also guesting as the singer on Where Death Roams from our last album Det Österbottniska Mörkret. He is pretty much involved in one way or the other in every album we make.

The first song you unveiled to introduce this new EP was Paradiset, a cover song of Finnish singer Rauli Badding Somerjoki. Why did you choose to cover a song from him, and how did you add your own touch?
Owe: The idea came from Tommi. He explained to me how much more interesting it is to make a cover of a song from a genre that is so far away from the genre you play as possible and to still make it sound like you. Rauli Badding is maybe the most known artist in Finland for Finnish people. To make a cover of this song was a challenge for sure but as soon as we got a grip of the song and jammed around with the riffs it started to sound more and more like us. But we had to make the lead guitar keep playing the melodies all the time through the whole song to make it sound like Paradiset or in Finnish Paratiisi. This is also one thing that makes it not sound like us to have a lead guitar to play all the time, but to make the song work we had to do it this way.

Do you have a favorite song on this EP? Or maybe the hardest one to achieve for the EP?
Owe: For me the opening track Faensgyte turned out to be exactly how we wanted it to be 10 years ago when we didn’t know how to make the songs sound as aggressive as we wanted. We managed to make it so explosive and « show no mercy » attitude as the song deserves. I love all the songs as much as the others, but the reason I am picking Faensgyte is because of how much we could reshape the old song to sound brand new and exciting.

Where do you find your inspiration to create music?
Owe: I have been working 11 years in my studio recording so many artists I have lost the count, producing over 70 albums and over 200-300 songs. I have heard so much music my whole adult life that I live and breathe music. So to answer where inspiration comes from is pretty hard because it comes from everywhere. All the bands I have been working with and all the music I grew up with have taken me here where I am today. I can get inspiration from weird ambience tracks or horror movies or what else I do.

The band still teams up with Black Lion Records, how is the collaboration with them? What about your partnership with Hell Frog Promotion?
Owe: We are happy with both Black Lion and Hell Frog so far. The communication works very well, which is very important to make such a colab to work. We recently joined Hell Frog and they have already booked a lot of shows, so we cannot complain. Will be interesting to meet them in real life and travel around Europe this year!

Do you think you improved yourself as a musician and songwriter with this new record?
Owe: I think I have for every new release we have made. Since we started to work with this new line up, I have learned so much from Tommi and Joel it’s crazy. And one key to making good music for me is to do it with other people and not only by myself. For the past 2 full lengths and the EP I have first made demo songs that I introduce to the rest of the band and together we sit down, brainstorming, reshaping the structures/riffs to make them as good as possible and the outcome have so far been really good in my opinion.

I actually never had the opportunity to see Ondfødt on stage, how do you see an Ondfødt show from your end? How do you feel on stage?
Owe: We have only played two shows since we started to play live again last year, and as we speak we have around 10 gigs booked for this year and we are brainstorming again how we should do everything to make the shows as good as possible. But you can expect a pretty explosive show full of energy.

What would be the next step for Ondfødt?
Owe: To start playing a lot of shows, promote the band and keep making music.

Are there any musicians or artists you would like to collaborate with? Whether it is for one song, or maybe more.
Owe: I hope we can play sometimes with …And Oceans, that would be cool. We come from the same city, Jakobstad and we have known each other for many years. I have mixed and mastered their most listened album, Cosmic World Mother. So to me that would be nice to share the stage with them. Very good guys!

Maybe you know the French Metal scene? Are there any bands you know and like?
Owe: I must say personally I do not know so much of the French scene. I have not traveled so much so I had the chance to visit to take a look for myself. Hopefully we get the chance to play there soon.

If you had to organize a concert for Oldfodt’s release show, which bands would you love to play with? I let you create a poster with Ondfødt and three other bands!
Owe: …And Oceans, Moonlight Sorcery to start with, good friends and amazing musicians. For the third band I would love to play with Watain

Last and funny question: which dish would you compare Ondfødt’s music with?
Owe: Rotten burned meat

That was the last question for me, so thank you very much for your time and your music, last words are yours!
Owe: Thank you for this interview and I hope that we can soon visit France!

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