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Minus SF


As a follow-up to the previous Minus SF interview, Art For The Ears offered people the chance to meet the band themselves. This was organized with a message-board interview, and Juha and Ariel from the band joined to answer questions. Tune in for the answers this Finnish band gave to some spicy questions.


Discography: Self-titled single (2000); Self-titled EP (2001). Available through:   Minus SF. Official website: Minus SF. Interview by:  mpomusic, Jarhead, Liz, Quorius, DfTg. Article work-out: mpo. Date: April 29th-May 2nd 2001


mpomusic: There are so many great skaterock bands and punkrock bands and hardcore, and emo core bands in the USA. Why should anyone be interested in Minus SF, a band from a country called Finland?

Juha: Well, let's put it this way: There are millions of bands all around the globe trying their best to get fame et cetera, and, of course, no one should really be interested in them, but I'm sure that every music lover is always keen on hearing new bands, at least the promising ones. I also simply think that we have succeeded in making music that some people enjoy listening, and we want to share our message and music with them. The fact that we are Finnish shouldn't have anything to do with the orientation of our potential listeners' interests. However, it's obvious, that it complicates things, for example touring, promotion et cetera. So we will just have to put up with it, and hope that people will find us being Finnish only exotic and interesting. Actually, I think that people should just try us, and see if they like us. That's about it. Of course, I think we have a fresh sound and so, but I think it's always up to oneself to decide if he likes us or not.

Jarhead: Hey, what are the main influences to the sound of the band?

Ariel: Most of our influences stem from the American punk rock sound represented by bands such as Face To Face, Samiam, Husker Du but also from Swedish emo such as Starmarket, Fireside et cetera.

Liz: Which one of your songs would you like to see played on Radio here in the US? And why? Basically , which of your current songs is a 'Graber' , one that would people call for "More, More"?

Juha: I really don't know. New Colours is the kind of  'hit' here, and it is also the only music video we have. But it's also pretty long (four minutes) with an awful long intro, so other songs might work better on radio. I run a radio show in Finland, and usually the hits are easy to recognize, but not if you'll have to choose one of your own songs, you know. Our previous single release, Tightening Cracked Blinder, was played quite a lot on radio, also in the States, but as for now, I'd probably pick New Colours, or any of the first three songs on our EP.

Quorius: Are you a Christian band?

Juha: I'd just like to say that we are a Christian band, and we are all Christians. Our faith in Jesus Christ is the main motivation in playing in this band. We may seem proud on the stage, but that's just part of playing and posing for the audience. That's simply a part of playing rock 'n roll, you know.

DfTg: I am wondering from which perspective you approach your faith with the band.

Juha: We are Christians, everyone of us. We don't really call ourselves as a Christian band, but more like a band that doesn't play just for fame and fortune, you know. But, I think that us being Christians leads to the fact that we want to share our thoughts and tell people about God. I don't know if you've read our lyrics, but they are NOT the kind of 'gospel'-lyrics.. as a matter of fact, they might even include more politics than straight preaching. The most important thing is that the lyrics are honest, you know. We aren't trying to write lyrics that would include a certain message, instead of it we write about things that cross our mind, and what we think about different issues. But I'm still sure that the lyrics are given by God, or at least you can sense that we are Christians when we come up with our opinions. I believe that we have been chosen by God to play in this band, because so many 'impossible' things have happened to us without us having done anything. And God has blessed us in many ways. Although our lyrics aren't that preachy, we speak quite a lot at the shows, not always, but when God gives us something to say. By the way, it's a funny thing how God puts words in your mouth. For example, we have been criticized, because we have been talking about human rights (from the point of view of Bible and Christianity) at the Christian events and not that much about the John 3:16-basic things. What these Christians don't know is that usually when playing at secular clubs we preach the gospel, 'cause that's usually what people there need...

Liz: Without knowing anything about you all, what age group do you appeal to and in what types of places do you usually perform? Are the members of your band from a Church background or how did you come to calling yourself a band of Christians?

Juha: We are all 19-20 year old, and we play mostly in venues like rock clubs, bars and that kind of places. Most of our shows are in secular clubs, where people drink beer et cetera, but we do Christian events as well. And of course there are festivals and other happenings we play in. We have got different backgrounds, but we all have some kind of Church backgrounds. I myself, go to Pentecostal church. However, we are Christians and want to share our faith with other people by playing in a band, by which we can take gospel into clubs and such. That's why we are a Christian band.

mpomusic: What sort of tour offers do you get? And what bands would you like to tour with?

Juha: Mostly the tours we plan or are offered by someone else, are just tours with the bands we already know and have played with before, but then there have been also discussion about supporting REALLY BIG bands on their European tours, but, for example this summer wouldn't even work for us, and there are always so many factors and people doing those big tours that you never know why they get cancelled. We get also quite a lot offers for tours in places such as South America, but they are mostly the kind of offers that we would have to organize some of the gigs by ourselves, and that's usually almost impossible, since we don't have enough contacts in the area

Jarhead: Hey, I might be terribly wrong but I remember reading somewhere that Minus SF is taking time off in the summer season. But the summer season is also the festival season with Peacedog, Freakstock and some other festivals around. Am I right that you won't be doing shows this summer? And if so, why?

Juha: You've heard it right. We'll have a kind of break over the summer (June-August) basically because our singer hasn't really got time to tour at the time, since he is getting married, and he will also have to get his alternative civil service done before the wedding. However, we will do a couple of shows during the summer, but we aren't allowed to reveal the dates yet.