Sunday, December 12, 2010


Biography :

Waltari is a band from Finland, known for their diversity and combination of music styles, frequently combining alternative metal, progressive metal, death metal, hard rock, heavy metal, hip hop, industrial, pop, punk, rap, symphonic metal, techno and thrash metal.

Most of the band's music is written by Hatakka. Waltari's lyrics often deal with personal feelings of anxiety, loneliness and the cruelty of the world, often with heavy irony and sarcasm.

The name Waltari is a reference to the popular Finnish author Mika Waltari, a favourite author of guitarist Jariot Lehtinen.

History :

Waltari was formed in 1986 in Helsinki, Finland, by Kärtsy Hatakka (vocals and bass), Jariot Lehtinen (guitars) and Sale Suomalainen (drums). Sami Yli-Sirniö joined as second guitarist in 1989, a year after the release of their first EP, Mut Hei ("But, hi!").

Their first album, Monk Punk was released in 1991. As the title suggests, this album was mostly punk. Their next album Torcha! (1992) was the album that Waltari started blending various musical styles into the sound that would become their own.

After releasing a compilation of early work under the title Pala Leipää ("A Piece of Bread") (1993), the band went on to release So Fine! (1994), an album similar to Torcha!. Their next album, Big Bang (1995) is to date their biggest success. The album concentrates on mixing techno with heavy metal.

In 1995 Roope Latvala (current second guitarist of Children of Bodom) joined the band, replacing Sami Yli-Sirniö. During this time, Hatakka was working with conductor Riku Niemi on a project combining heavy metal with classical music. This project eventually became known as Yeah! Yeah! Die! Die! Death Metal Symphony in Deep C. The show was performed in 1995, and the album was released in 1996.

The year 1997 saw Space Avenue, a more progressive work containing more electronic drums, as well as a collaboration with Apocalyptica. In 1998, in honour of the band's ten-year anniversary, the band released a compilation titled Decade.

In 1999 Hatakka was working on yet another metal/classical collaboration, and this gave rise to the stage show Evangelicum (Evankeliumi). This production differed from Yeah! Yeah! Die! Die! in that it contained more than just music: the stage show contained music, ballet and a light show. Also, this spectacle featured a new opera singer. The guest vocalist was Tarja Turunen, who was the lead vocalist of the still young band Nightwish. An album of Evangelicum was not released.

Waltari's next album Radium Round (1999), featured a strong pop influence. After Radium Round, the band passed out of the public eye, working on less main-stream releases such as the Metal / Yoik crossover Channel Nordica (2000) and the punk EP Back To Persepolis (2001). However, these releases were very hard to obtain, and for a while Waltari only survived through its live shows. In 2001, the band's old guitarist Sami Yli-Sirniö returned, and Roope Latvala left the band.

In 2004 Waltari came back with an all-new studio album, Rare Species. The album was well received by critics, and an extensive tour put Waltari back on the map.

Album "Blood Sample" was released in 2005. 2006 saw the release of "Early Years", a double album presenting remastered versions of first album "Monk Punk" and "Pala Leipää", containing additional tracks from the 80s, never released before and recorded in autumn 2005 by the original trio: Jariot, Kärtsy and Sale.

Waltari released the album "Release Date" in 2007. This album includes bonus track "Spokebone", a collaboration with Amorphis singer Tomi Joutsen and Finnish ethnic band Värttinä.

Their latest album is "Below Zero" , released in 2009.

Band Members :

Current Members :

* Kärtsy Hatakka - Bass, Lead Vocals, Keyboards (1986 - )
* Jariot Lehtinen - Guitar, Backing Vocals (1986 - )
* Sami Yli-Sirniö - Guitars, Backing Vocals (1989–1995 and 2001 - )
* Ville Vehviläinen - Drums (2005 - )
* Janne Immonen - Keys, Noises, Backing Vocals

Former Members :

* Sale Suomalainen - Drums (1986–1990)
* Janne Parviainen - Drums (1990–2002)
* Roope Latvala - Guitars (1995–2001)
* Tote Hatakka - Live Keyboards
* Mika Järveläinen - Drums (2002–2005)

Discography :

* Waltari - Mut Hei (EP, 1989)
* Waltari - Monk Punk (1991)
* Waltari - Torcha! (1992)
* Waltari - Pala Leipää (compilation, 1993)
* Waltari - So Fine! (with Angelit, March, 1994)
* Waltari - Big Bang (1995)
* Waltari - Yeah! Yeah! Die! Die! Death Metal Symphony in Deep C (1996)
* Waltari - Space Avenue (1997)
* Waltari - Decade (compilation, 1998)
* Waltari - Radium Round (1999)
* Waltari - Channel Nordica (with Angelit, 2000)
* Waltari - Back To Persepolis (EP, 2001)
* Waltari - Rare Species (2004)
* Waltari - Blood Sample (2005)
* Waltari - Early Years (double album, remastered +add. tracks 2006)
* Waltari - Release Date (2007)
* Waltari - The 2nd Decade - In the Cradle (compilation, 2008)
* Waltari - Below Zero (2009)

Associated Acts :

* Kreator
* Ensiferum
* Children of Bodom
* Amorphis
* Sinergy
* Barathrum
* Stone
* Barren Earth

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