Q & A with Perttu Kivilaakso from Apocalyptica

Published on 26.11.2012 6:33

Where did you grow up?

I grew up in Eastern-Helsinki, but let’s rather say I should have “grown up” at least a bit more. I haven’t grown up yet, and am not intending to do so.

When and why did you start to play the cello?

My father played cello in Helsinki Philharmonic Orchestra as well as in Savonlinna Opera Festivals and I got to see the operas and concerts already at the age of 1 etc. When I was like 4, I asked my mom what do I have to do to get to perform on stage as well, so I started to play cello.

When and how did you realize that you wanted to be a professional cellist?

Basically immediately, whenever I had cello in my hands I knew this is my journey and it’s part of my body but I never want to be ”professional” in the bad sense of the word. I want to FEEL and deliver emotions, being passionate cellist always, if that would stop I would have no reason to play and perform anymore, lucky us, I love the thing more than ever.

What would you be doing professionally if you hadn’t become a cellist and part of Apocalyptica?

I love animals, very much. Most likely something to do with them, protecting.

How did you meet the other guys of the band?

We met long time ago. Also we all studied in the same Academy, and played in the same orchestra. I have known Eicca around 22-24 years.

How come you decided to rejoin the band in 1999?

When I first time appeared in the line up in 95 I was just 17 years old and had all my studies unfinished and some competitions ahead. Lots to do in classical genre, so we thought it is better for me to concentrate for those things first and rejoin Apo when the time is right.

What is your favorite Apocalyptica album/song?

Favorite Apocalyptica-album? Whoa. All of them and none. Every album means a lot and have felt the best one after we’ve done it, but I admire our attitude and raw energy in Cult, for that time Cult was very brave and brutally innovative package, now I love the variety of dimensions in 7th Symphony, this has been an extraordinary and amazing journey through all the records and I’m EAGER to see where the hell will we still find ourselves!

What do you do when you are not touring or recording?

Trying my best forgetting touring and recording. I’m very good in doing nothing, I mean if you just staying on the sofa and eat pizza. Maybe watch movies, play games. I can spend unbelievably long times like that. When I’m in more active phase of my life I just compose new music, that’s pretty nice too.

What music do you listen to at home?

I don’t listen to much music at home, I prefer silence, but when driving or traveling, spending loads of time in some boring vehicle, my favorite music is opera (Verdi/Wagner etc), Amon Amarth, Radiohead, Arch Enemy, Mr. Bungle, Muse, Slipknot, Judas Priest, 2pac and E-Type, and hundreds of amazing artists around, I love all kinds of music.

What is the best part about performing on stage?

The orgasmic feeling when all ends, when all concentration and newborn energy you reach with raging crowd, major pain that determines the level of devotion. When all that has been through, when you see people having tears, then I know I did something right.

Is there a gig that you have perceived as being especially great?

For me the most memorable so far gig has been summer of 2012 gig in Savonlinna Opera Festivals, because I finally got to perform on that stage where I wanted as a child. Life is interesting; you never know when some of your dreams come true.