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Mansion: they're not an easy band, by any means. Here's their terse but effective counter to our attempts to draw them out. Maybe you just need to accept you're gonna burn, baby, burn, and it isn't just going to be a Disco Inferno...

Interview with Mansion.
"Finland's Mansion have so far produced a fistful of releases that preach hellfire and eternal damnation to all outside their God-fearing cult, culminating in the November release of debut full-length, 'First Death Of The Lutheran'. Well, they're not the first band to hold a religious stance, or create elaborate personae - or even to combine both. Which it is, you'll have to decide for yourselves: we asked the questions, and this stern sermon was the response. Thanks to Jaakob (Guitar) and Mikael (Lyrics) for representing the faithful."

The Mansion band and congregation, including Alma (Vocals), Osmo (Vocals), Atami (Drums), Veikko-Tapio (Guitar), Jaakob (Guitar), Immanuel (Bass), Matti-Juhani (Organ), Mikael (Lyrics). Photo: Ulla Kudjoi.

Hello Mansion, and welcome to Doom-Metal.com. How are things in Finland right now?

The usual. A spiritual void among citizens and greedy wretches sucking them dry. You know that Finland is the ĒbestĒ country when it comes to corruption, both spiritual and political.

Your debut full-length 'First Death Of The Lutheran' has just gone on pre-order. How's that doing for pre-sales? Do you have anything special planned for the official launch?

Pre- sales are looking promising. Nothing special planned for the release date. There was a full house gathering for the self release limited version of the debut album on vinyl a couple of weeks ago.

Is it a nervous time, waiting to find out how one of your releases will be received? Does it get easier, the more you've done, or more difficult to manage, with ever higher expectations?

We are following the Lordís guidance and take little or no pressure of mundane things. His Will shall come to pass.

Alma. Photo: Jaakob.

We might actually have got the first review in (there's also a Spanish one which went up at the same time) - did that capture what you intended the album to be? Are there any comments you'd like to add to it, good or bad?

Thank you for a fair review. You seem to have done your homework.

Can we talk a bit about the band history and concept? I've been following Mansion for a few years now, since getting a review request from Nine Records for debut EP 'We Shall Live', but Metal Archives reckons the band was originally formed as a trio in 2011. Is that correct, and how did that come about?

Sure. There was three of us in the beginning when everything started, but the band has never performed or recorded anything as a trio.

Was the cult of Kartanoism always in mind as your source of material? What I mean is, did that shape how you put the band together, or did you create the band first and then realise it could fit into that concept?

Yes, Kartanoism was the start of everything. The Word came first.

Photo: Ulla Kudjoi.

How quickly did the band reach its full line-up? Was it a difficult task to recruit the additional members?

The band is constantly varying the lineup with members of our congregation. The core of our lineup has remained the same since our first release We Shall Live.

What influences did you all bring to the band, both musically and in any other sources of inspiration?

Diamanda Galas, Joy Division, Portishead, Danzig musically. Bergman movies and non-fictional literature about our predecessors, the Kartanoists.

And how would you describe your sound? How much do you feel it's changed and evolved over the course of Mansion's several releases?

We feel the sound reflects the lyrical content in a convincing way. We have evolved musically from traditional towards more atmospheric expression.

Mansion - 'Slumber Sermon' (Official, 2013):

'We Shall Live' was originally a self-released vinyl-plus-CDr format in 2013. How well did that circulate at the time? And how much of a boost was it when Streaks and Nine Records put it out with label backing in early 2014?

The self-released vinyl sold out quickly and was noticed among the sorrowless in a satisfactory way. We are not aware of things like that. Weíll die with our boots on.

You've worked with a number of labels, on and off, ever since, as well as also putting releases out under your own Mansion Records name. What mainly drives that process - do you get approached by labels in advance, or do you put releases out regardless and see if you can get anyone to pick them up afterwards?

We will put releases out regardless of any attention by labels, but we are always open for offers.

So, are you very much committed to old-school "real" formats as a preference? Where do you stand on the digital vs physical media divide?

We prefer vinyl, but we also feel that itís necessary to cater to the digital generation. At the end of the day spreading the Word is the most essential part of our Work.

Alma. Photo: Jaakob.

Your back catalogue, up until 'First Death...' has been three EPs, two singles and a split. How do you feel those have progressed or expressed the band's message along the way? What would you see as the most critical differences between creating a "shorter" release and a full-length album?

The Uncreation and Altar Sermon EPís were supposed to be our first album, but due to technical and thematical challenges we decided to split it into two separate EPs. The Mansion Congregation 7"s were results of studio experiments that lead into something that didnít fit the original Mansion mould. Regarding First Death ironically, we had to shorten songs in order to fit the full length album format. Song duration was never a problem with the EPs.

The press release states the album "represents the end of the insidious sinnersí earthly
 serpentine path as their life ends and they pass on to face the Final Judgement of the Lord Almighty". Is that an end to this particular story, then? Will you need a different narrative for any future works?

Second Death is coming. First Death of the Lutheran is the first chapter in the Endgame.

Mansion - 'Wretched Hope' (Official, 2018):

And do you have anything planned as yet, in respect of new material? Or is it far too early to be asking that sort of question?

The conceptual part of the next release is slowly but surely taking shape. We canít comment further on it at this time.

How often do you do live shows? Do you enjoy performing on stage?

We do a few live shows yearly. Enjoyment is hardly the word we would use in this context because for us it is a moment to channel the Wrath of God for the masses.

What are the logistics like, managing a large line-up? Does that cause difficulties in organising shows?

It doesn't cause any sort of difficulty that we couldn't overcome.

Live - Hamburg, 2015. Photo: Amalia Monk.

Have you got any plans to tour further across Europe? Is that a realistic possibility for you?

We havenít made plans on converting Europe yet. The Lord will show us the way into the Light.

Going forward, do you have any particular vision for where you'd like to take the band? Any definite ambition for what you'd like to achieve, or an idea how would you like it to be spoken of, looking back from sometime in the future?

Our congregation will sit by His side when Judgement Day comes. Those who wonít join us wonít be talking. They will be screaming in agony in a fiery lake.

Thanks again for your time and participation: I hope this has given you the chance to present a detailed picture of the band. If there is anything you'd like to add, the last words are yoursÖ

We want to wish our followers a Merry Christmas.

Click HERE to discuss this interview on the doom-metal forum.

Visit the Mansion bandpage.

Interviewed on 2018-12-01 by Mike Liassides.
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