Music Monday Artist
From Helsinki, Finland, the punk rock´n´roll band, Daggerplay came together in 2011. Lead vocalist and guitarist Pekko Mantzin, guitarist and vocalist Tommi Luostarinen, bassist and backing vocalist Bryan Ugartechea, and drummer Sirpa Immonen are the band members. In 2013 they released their debut album, Urban Campfire Songs. In 2018 they released their second album, Subterranean Reality. We were able to connect with Pekko, here's what he had to say....
IFM: Tell me about how you guys started your band.
Pekko: It was 2011. A while ago our long-time band, The Jade, which Sirpa and I had played with, had called it a day so not much was happening. We were drinking cider in Tallinn, Estonia, and talked that it would be cool to play with a decent rock´n´roll band with punk rock attitude, Ramones and The Clash were and still are the sources of inspiration for us when it comes to music so we decided to follow that path and give it ago, just for fun. We met this nice chap, Ville Ahonen, who played bass and he knew this young guitar-geezer called Tommi Luostarinen and we gathered together and started to play some songs I´d written. The chemistry was really good right from the start so it was kinda easy beginning. With this line-up, we played until 2018 when Ville left the band. Sirpa and I had played some rockabilly stuff with our mate, Bryan Ugartechea with whom I´d also played in the band called Damian Cullen Band so he jumped in to help us out with some gigs that were coming up.
He´s one of the best rock bass players in Helsinki so when he said he wants to carry on with Daggerplay we knew that we´d get the band going.
IFM: What inspires you to write music and what inspires your specific style?
Pekko: It´s always an adventure when it comes to writing songs. Sometimes good, sometimes shit. The music itself is inspiring and real-life when it comes to lyrics. I´m not sure if we got any specific style. When we arrange the songs together anything can happen. There´s been folky punk rock, pop-punk rock, psychobilly kinda stuff, and country-inspired stuff. And ska as well.
IFM: What does your creative process look like?
Pekko: I write a song with my acoustic guitar and then bring it to our rehearsing place with lyrics, chords, and melody. We always arrange songs together.
IFM: I know you formed out of Finland, can you tell me what it’s been like to reach audiences in other countries and areas?
Pekko: It´s not easy as we are all indie. A big pile of cash would maybe help when it comes to promoting and spreading the word. Back in early 2000, it was way easier. Myspace was strong as hell back then and through that platform, it was easier to get the music heard. Promoting an independent band today is tiring and lonesome.
IFM: What is the meaning behind your newest single, Tailspin?
Pekko: It´s very personal song. I was a complete mess, kinda living wreck for some time and feeling nothing but shit. Depression comes and goes but back then there was no light at all. Fortunately a bit by bit I got over it. Bryan helped me out with the lyrics of the final version.
IFM: How do you hope to grow in your music in the future?
Pekko: Well, I don´t know. I believe we all are very realistic with the facts of how the whole music biz is nowadays. It´s mostly about luck and money. I don´t know how to stand out in the crowd so I suppose we´ll keep on doing what we´re doing. As long as it´s fun for us. I don´t wanna bang my head against the wall anymore just trying to push our stuff through. Que sera...
IFM: Do you have any new projects you’re working on? Anything we can hope to see from you soon?
Pekko: We´ve been just spending three extremely hot days in the studio recording four new songs, Castaway, Guitar Street, National Day, and Insomnia. Personally I´m super pleased what we´ve done so far. They´re almost done now, just gotta go back for half a day to do some percussion, ska Hammond and backing vox. And in some point we´ll release them one by one as singles. Would be nice to put the first song out sometime in the Autumn. No rush though.
Facebook : https://www.facebook.com/daggerplay
Twitter : https://twitter.com/daggerplay
Soundcloud : https://soundcloud.com/daggerplay
Bandcamp : https://daggerplay.bandcamp.com/
Contributing Music Journalist for Indie Flex Music